If you are a fan of the island life, you definitely need to put Maui on your list of places to travel. This beautiful and amazing island is the second largest of the Hawaiian islands and is filled with many things to explore! If you check any ultimate island travel list, Maui is sure to make the cut and there is no surprise why. It’s sunny, filled with beautiful beaches, friendly locals and great sights.
It was the beginning of summer and we found a last minute deal to Hawaii for a 5 night stay and jumped right on it. We then traveled a week later via Hawaiian Airlines to Maui. As this was a last minute stay, we didn’t have a lot of time to prepare and search for all the “must do” places in Maui, so we got our rental car from the airport, got the keys to our villa and played it by ear!
HIKING, BIKING AND HORSEBACK RIDING
If you don’t mind some physical activity, you should see Maui from a bike. In fact, there are few places in the world that are as bike-friendly as Maui. There are even bicycle tours that let you go from one end of the island to the other as well as downhill bicycle tours. On our first day of outing we opted for a slow-paced tour that allowed us to see the farms and small towns of the upcountry and headed down to the beaches at Paia for an afternoon beach day. Later that night, we decided to BBQ at the villa. We made a run to COSTCO and had a fun BBQ on the beautiful grounds of the villa.
Our second day on Maui we took a hike and then went horseback riding. There are fabulous trails that take you all over the island, but we hiked in the great craters of Haleakala and hit the Triple L Ranch Private Custom Horseback Rides for a three hour horseback riding tour that was simply amazing. Nothing that you would have been able to explore by car, as the views were gorgeous and the horses were well trained.
There are tons of fine dining places to eat all over Maui. Many experienced chefs from all over the country come to Maui to work their magic in the restaurants here on the island. There is a restaurant for every taste so whether you like to experiment and try a bit of everything, or whether you are strict in your eating habits, you are sure to find plenty of great places in Maui. For us, we went to a spot called Japengo, it serves Japanese Seafood and Sushi. The food was delicious, creative and visually stunning, I highly recommend you check them out.
Our third day we met a friendly local while grabbing some smoothies and learned about a few spots to sight see and some of the fantastic scenic drives on Maui. The Hana Highway is a 56 mile stretch of 54 bridges over winding lava shore, through old plantation towns, past miles of beaches and through towering forests which was a blast to take on. We also stopped at many historic locations such as Lahaina and old Hawaiian churches.
Later in the day we decided to go whale watching. We didn’t get to see too much as the humpback whales that are pretty popular tend to disappear after April each year and return around November. It was still a fun experience to see what marine life we could spot throughout the journey.
SHOPPING, SWIMMING AND SNORKELING
With so many shops and stores to choose from, you simply can’t see Maui without leaving with some fantastic souvenirs. On day four we headed to go shopping at Whalers Village, a stretch of boutiques, shops and restaurants to explore. We picked up a few items for ourselves as well as friends and family. We then took a quick dip at the beach and enjoyed some snorkeling.
EXPLORING A LUAU
Our last night we thought it’s time to hit a Luau! I mean, who goes to Hawaii without seeing one right? Luaus feature authentic Hawaiian food such as kalua pig, poin and haupia and usually a buffet spread of more familiar foods. Not only was the food delicious, but the entertainment was fantastic!
Maui was a blast, as there is so much to learn about the island and so much to see, when you visit, you will wonder if you have enough time to do it all!