Home to white-, pink- and black-sand beaches, you’d be hard pressed not to fall in love with Maui, considered a favorite among those familiar with the islands. Distinct resort areas, a unique landscape of rainforests and volcano craters, and plenty for families to do and see, Maui makes an excellent family vacation destination.
Take your pick: Kaanapali Beach, Napili Beach, Wailea Beach or the black-sand beaches of Waianapanapa State Park. You’re in for a treat with a visit to any one of Maui’s famous beaches. Or, ask the locals for their favorite, private picks.
It’s Hawaii; you cannot miss enjoying the Hawaiian hospitality, food and entertainment at a luau. Try the Old Lahaina Luau an award-winning luau with performances that tell the tale of the Polynesian Islands and the discovery of Hawaii.
Maui’s renowned Road to Hana is a 55-mile scenic highway from the airport to the remote town of Hana. Curves are so tight, so will slow to a crawl and pray another car isn’t coming from the other direction – or worse, a bus! While you may be white-knuckled along the drive, it is absolutely worth it, with multiple waterfalls, hidden beaches and scenic overlooks.
Hike or drive up to Haleakala Crater, which is 19 square miles in size and provides miles of hiking trails along its dormant landscape.
Maui is actually two islands these days, after water has seeped to divide it into two. The smaller “island” is home to Kaanapali Beach, which is a 3-mile stretch of beautiful beaches flanked by towering resorts around a residential and golf area. The more popular area for visitors is Wailea, which features numerous oceanfront resorts around another planned community on the larger “island,” closest to the airport. For a more authentic Hawaiian getaway, visitors choose to stay in remote Hana.
The aforementioned Road to Hana’s 55-mile drive is the best reason to visit Maui; it’s unique to the Hawaiian islands. The all-day excursion will take you along some of the most incredible scenery you’ve ever witnessed. Afraid to drive it yourself? Tour operators will do the driving so you can sit back and enjoy the views.
Visit the world’s largest dormant volcano, which encompasses 30,000 acres. The summit is more than 10,000 feet above sea level, and provides excellent views and a 19-mile crater. Hiking trails, waterfalls and even a winery are available to check out while visiting.
A “pit stop” on the Road to Hana, this state park is worthy of its own day trip. Here, you will find black sand beaches, lava tubes, caves to explore and picnic areas overlooking some of the prettiest views ever.
For some outrageous hiking, visit this state park, home to a 10-mile, 4,000-acre park. You’ll enjoy the truly Hawaiian landscape.
If you plan on exploring the island rather than just relaxing at a resort – which is easy to do! – you will need to rent a car. Roads are well marked and there are only a few main roads to follow, so you won’t have any trouble navigating the island.