Please note that at the time of this writing the west side of Maui has been severely impacted by the Maui fire. As the community transitions from response mode to recovery, the Maui Ocean Center is open and ready to welcome back both kamaʻāina and visitors seeking solace and support. During a news conference on August 17, 2023, Governor Green emphasized the importance of travel but urged visitors to avoid West Maui, including areas like Lāhainā, Nāpili, Kāʻanapali, and Kapalua.
However, rest assured that there are still plenty of options available on the island where you can enjoy a memorable and enjoyable stay. The team at Maui Ocean Center welcomes both kamaʻāina (local residents) and visitors seeking solace and support during this challenging time.
By choosing to explore other parts of Maui and engaging in respectful tourism practices, you can contribute positively to our local businesses who heavily depend on the visitor community.
The visitation status of these parts may vary and change rapidly based on the ongoing efforts and the evolving situation. You can view our Community FAQ page for the most up to date information.
Maui is the second-largest of the Hawaiian islands, and it’s known for its beautiful beaches, lush rainforests, and stunning mountain views. When considering where to stay in Maui for your first time, it’s important to keep in mind the current situation and the areas that have been affected by the recent fires. As mentioned earlier, it’s best to avoid the west side of Maui, including popular destinations like Lāhainā, Nāpili, Kāʻanapali, and Kapalua. However, the rest of Maui is safe and ready to welcome visitors.
Whether you’re on a budget or traveling with kids, finding the perfect accommodation that suits your needs can make all the difference in creating an unforgettable vacation experience. Look no further than South Maui, a picturesque destination known for its pristine beaches. Here, you’ll find popular towns like Kīhei and Wailea offering a wide variety of accommodations ranging from luxury resorts to cozy vacation rentals.
Kīhei is known for its stunning beaches, relaxed atmosphere, and affordability. The town offers a collection of gorgeous beaches, including the famous Kama’ole Beach Park, which features three pristine sandy stretches perfect for swimming, sunbathing, picnicking, and snorkeling. The nearby Kalama Beach Park has picnic areas, playgrounds, and even skateboarding ramps – guaranteed fun for the whole family.
Kīhei stands out for its affordable accommodation options while neighboring Wailea is aso home to several high-end resorts, including the Four Seasons Resort Maui and the Grand Wailea Resort, offering top-notch amenities, spas, and fine dining options. Wailea offers a combination of natural beauty, luxury amenities, and a tranquil atmosphere, making it a sought-after destination for travelers seeking an indulgent and relaxing vacation experience.
While known for its luxury resorts, Wailea also offers family-friendly options. Some resorts have dedicated kids’ clubs, pools with water features, and even special programs for teenagers. The stunning Wailea Beach is a fantastic place for families to spend time together and enjoy some of the best beaches in Maui.
If you enjoy golf, you’ll find Wailea is well-known for its exceptional golf courses. It boasts several world-class golf destinations, including the Wailea Blue Golf Course, the Gold Course, and the Emerald Course. These meticulously designed courses offer challenging play alongside stunning views of the Pacific Ocean and lush landscapes, attracting avid golfers from around the world.
For families staying in South Maui with kids, a visit to the Maui Ocean Center offers an enriching and memorable experience. This educational and interactive attraction provides a hands-on opportunity for children to learn about marine life, ecosystems, and conservation. With its diverse array of native Pacific Ocean creatures, from vibrant tropical fish to majestic sea turtles and awe-inspiring sharks, kids can discover the wonders of the underwater world.
This area is located in the mountains of Maui, and it’s a great place to escape the hustle and bustle of the coast. This area is known for its cooler climate, lush landscapes, and picturesque views. Upcountry Maui refers to the elevated region located on the slopes of Haleakalā, which gives it a distinct climate and offers a different perspective on the island’s natural beauty.
When staying in Upcountry Maui, you’ll find a range of accommodations that offer a more serene environment compared to the coastal areas. It’s a great choice if you’re seeking a more relaxed and nature-focused getaway.
Upcountry Maui is known for its charming bed and breakfast establishments. These accommodations provide a more personalized experience and often have beautiful gardens, scenic views, and a cozy atmosphere. The G&Z Upcountry Bed & Breakfast is located on the slopes of Haleakalā and offers unique rooms with a view of Lānaʻi all for about $150/night. G&Z is adjacent to their farm where they grow avocado, Meyer lemon, Tahitian lime, pomegranate, fig, coffee, and a vegetable garden.
For those looking for something a little bit more luxurious but still situated away from the crowds, we recommend the North Shore Lookout. Occupying nine acres of lush agricultural land and situated next to the charming town of Makawao, this haven redefines the concept of a traditional Bed and Breakfast, with spacious suites designed in a modern Hawaiian style. As champions of agri-tourism, the region offers a diverse range of experiences, from goat cheese tastings to wine tours, farm-to-table lunches, vodka distilleries, and even a lavender farm.
Staying in Hanā offers a unique and rejuvenating experience that stands apart on your Maui journey. The town is enveloped by some of the most breathtaking natural beauty the island has to offer—lush rainforests, cascading waterfalls, pristine beaches, and dramatic coastal cliffs. The tranquility that permeates Hanā creates an ideal environment for unwinding and escaping the everyday hustle. As you choose to stay in Hanā, you’ll find the opportunity to fully savor the famous Road to Hanā at your own pace, discovering each scenic viewpoint and waterfall without haste.
Hanā’s accommodations, from cozy cottages to boutique hotels, seamlessly integrate with the natural surroundings, ensuring an authentic and immersive experience. Hanā radiates the authentic Hawaiian culture, fostering connections with locals and allowing you to immerse yourself in traditional practices. Limited cellular connectivity encourages a refreshing detachment from technology, enabling a deeper connection with nature and oneself. With opportunities for water activities, wellness pursuits, and secluded beach explorations, Hana becomes a haven for relaxation and unforgettable memories.
Pa’ia stands out as an ideal destination for budget-conscious travelers. Paia’s old-west style building facades are painted in a patchwork of pastel colors, giving the town a nostalgic and funky feel. The town’s small T-shaped stretch is reminiscent of a 60s California beach town. Despite being overshadowed by other tourist destinations, Paia has developed into a hub of its own, offering reasonably priced quality restaurants, quirky shops, and an independent bohemian vibe.
Paia may be small, but it offers a surprising range of attractions. There are art galleries, surf and swimwear shops, coffee houses, boutiques, a Buddhist stupa consecrated by the Dalai Lama, a yoga studio, and much more. The town is a gathering place for individuals who appreciate its independent and laid-back character. Visitors might encounter street performers, local musicians, and unexpected celebrity appearances, such as Willie Nelson playing with a local band. Several beautiful beaches are within walking distance, including Paia Bay, Baldwin Beach Park, and Baby Beach.
This charming town boasts a selection of lodging options that cater to various budget ranges, including budget-friendly hostels, cozy guesthouses, and affordable vacation rentals. Consider the Nalu Kai Lodge for a cozy budget-friendly option. Located a few minutes’ walk from the town, this charming hostel offers dormitory-style rooms and private rooms at affordable rates. It’s a popular choice among backpackers and travelers on a budget.
Unlike the resort areas, Paia’s restaurants cater to the local crowd, ensuring a diverse range of affordable and delicious dining options. One of the town’s highlights is the Paia Fish Market. This casual dining spot is renowned for its emphasis on fresh seafood and its laid-back atmosphere. The menu features a variety of seafood options, from fish tacos and fish burgers to traditional Hawaiian poke bowls and grilled fish plates. With a focus on quality and sustainability, the Paia Fish Market prides itself on sourcing its seafood locally and providing a taste of the ocean’s bounty.