MAUI: Must Do Things
The two omnipresent mountains, sunrise atop Haleakala, scary road to Hana, deep blue waters, colorful beaches, tropical fruits, lush greenery and forests – that is all there is to Maui and what more can one ask for?
From turquoise waters to dramatic terrain, Maui has much to offer.
Are you adventurous? Try hang gliding, ziplining. Even drive along Hana Hwy is enough of an adventure.
Are you an avid hiker? Hike the scenic trails and forests.
Love greenery? Botanical gardens, rain forests will keep you busy.
Water activities? Enjoy wind surfing, scuba diving, snorkeling, paddle boarding and many more.
Just want to relax? Sip on mai tais and relax under a cabana listening to ocean waves crash on the beach!
Love long drives? The island has got you covered!
Friendly Hawaiians and smiling tourists – Everyone is happy and at peace in Maui.
We also found Maui to be one of the most drone camera friendly places.
Try to figure out the aerial view pics in the post! 😉
Must read before you go: Maui Revealed.
I know, I know, I am the kind of person who likes to “plan” their vacation (if that’s a thing). Yes, I am aware that it beats the purpose of taking a vacation but sometimes it makes your vacation peaceful and satisfying! Without planning, I wouldn’t have known that you need to get a parking permit ahead of time to visit Haleakala sunrise. Or that most of the best luau’s are sold out if you don’t buy tickets in advance. I like to know what to expect before I go. So if you are like me, read the book! Of course, you don’t have to plan every activity every day and ask the locals for advice but a little bit of planning helps, doesn’t it?!
Must do things in Maui
Snorkeling: Maui is one of the best places for snorkeling. Best part is that you do not need to take a tour. You can snorkel right at the beach! Lots of beaches have reef with awesome snorkeling just a few feet away. Check out the snorkel store for the best beaches to snorkel. They also post daily snorkel conditions which can be quite useful. There is also a fish guide on their webpage! We spotted some of the most colorful and beautiful fish.
Tip to plan your day: Finish all the water activities in the morning when the wind is low and ocean is calm and then head out for sightseeing.
Luau: I wouldn’t say this is a must do, but a good way to experience Hawaiian/Polynesian culture and food! It was quite fun, especially the hula and Samoan fire dances.
Haleakala sunrise: A definite must do even though it is a pain to wake up at 2.30am and drive up a mountain. But how often does one get to see sunrise above a blanket of clouds! It was surreal. Do take time to see the endangered sliver sword plant and go a little early to star gaze. And stop in Kula for breakfast with great view of the valley.
Drive to Hana: This is for the bravest of the souls! Okay, I might be exaggerating but really, single lane windy roads, falling rocks, slippery slopes and dense forests make you hold on to your dear life and we only went half way! Plan on spending a whole day and have a really good driver. Do stop by the number of waterfalls. It is on the windward side of the mountain, plan for rain as well.
Helicopter rides: If there is one place worth taking helicopter rides, it would be Maui. We missed it though. The winding roads along the cliffs, high mountains with rain forests, inaccessible (by road) waterfalls and amazing coastline would be quite a view.
Local cuisine: The cuisine is one thing we always look forward to on our vacations. Kalua pork, fresh local fish (opah, papio, ahi, mahi-mahi, opakapaka), poke, sashimi, ramen, fine cuisine, they are all amazing! And the tropical fruits! I got to try the sweetest papaya ever!
Headsup: Maui is super expensive, including food!
Paia: Paia is a cute little town on the way to Hana. A nice place to shop and grab a bite. Don’t miss Paia Fish Market and Mama’s Fish House. Mama’s Fish House is the most romantic with fantastic views and some of the best seafood including Tristan Island lobster.
Fun fact: Tristan Island is the most remote inhabited island in the world between South America and Africa. The closest continent, Africa is 2400km from Tristan Island and the nearest landmass St Helena is 2000km away!!
Sunsets: Need I say more?! If you are lucky, you can see whales this time of the year.
All in all, Maui is a must visit for everyone! Don’t wait anymore and plan your next visit! 😀
I would love to know, what are your favorite things to do in Maui? Leave a comment below. 🙂
I am Aswani Kurra. I am an engineer, dreamer and part-time wanderlust, writer and wine lover. I always had an urge to write, create and travel. So I created this space to satisfy my creative itch and combine all my skills to help you plan your Charming Escape.