Welcome to Maui! Now Slow Down, This Ain’t The Madland! There are many things to do in Maui and they all center around being outdoors, having fun and relaxing.
You have made it out to the middle of the pacific and hung out on the beach in front of the hotel for a couple days. You are now ready to check out the island. What are some of the things to do?
For those with a vehicle you can pretty much go anywhere there is a road. Unlike Kauai, Maui has a road that follows it’s entire coast. That makes for a fun drive but you won’t really see or learn much. If you want to tour around the island and see things you best bet is to take a van tour. That way your guide can help you relate to the beauty of Maui better. You will begin to understand what you are seeing, smelling and feeling as you view the ever changing landscapes.
A car allows you to drive right to the activities and attractions that you have read or heard about.
No Car, No Problem! Most activity companies can provide transportation from anywhere on the island, except maybe Hana. Many of the hotel’s concierges know the best activity companies so ask them for recommendations!
Maui is surrounded by warm clean water, with great coral reefs, whales in the winter, turtles all year around and a couple of small craft harbors. Any type of in the water or on top of the water activities are available. Submarine rides, whale watching, parasailing and romantic sunset dinner cruises are all options. Rent a small boat for some deep water fishing or get a big boat for your celebration. They are all available for a great price. What’s better then swimming, snorkeling, scuba, snuba (you are still attached to the boat), surfing, windsurfing, kite surfing, boogie boarding and body surfing is being able to do them all at the same beach! It happens on Maui!
You love animals and want to see some on your trip. Maui has a very colorful past. Makawao is an upcountry town that still has a cowboy country feel. On the sides of the mountain you will find horse country. When you want to ride some horses then definitely head up that way. Most of the animals that you will see while on Maui will be in the water. From many places around the island you can look out to see the whales. The island itself has very few animals. Everything but the birds have been introduced. So there is an overpopulation of feral cats, rats, pigs and mongoose.
Getting out into the forests, mountains, craters, creeks and backcountry of Maui is a must. Plan to make one of the things you do in Maui is to visit a state or national park. The national parks are not to be missed as they are of national importance. The crater is a beautiful place to be at any time of night or day. The temperature at the top is much different then at sea level so be prepared. Taking a hike on any trail is sure to satisfy. Walk down the old Kings Road, or up to a hidden waterfall for a swim you will be glad you did that activity. There are 12 different climate zones in Maui so you can experience almost every type of weather. Snow might happen on the top of the mountain around Christmas so watch out for that.
This island is packed with adventure. You just have to decide how crazy you want it to get. Head out with a tour guide who can make arrangements for you to get a serious rush. Some examples…
- Old Vietnam Vets who now fly helicopter for people looking for a bit of excitement.
- Jumping off the side of a 10,000 foot mountain with a paraglider.
- Cliff jumping from a 25′ cliff to a 350′ cliff on Lanai.
- Swimming in a pool at the top of a 200′ high waterfall.
- Zip-lining through trees, gulches or way over it all along the slopes of the big mountain, Haleakala.
There are many tour companies available to take you to the very best things to do and see in Maui. Taking a boat to see whales, dolphins, cliffs and caves. Or riding in a van to see the flowers, pools, waterfalls and the historic landscape of Hana. Helicopter flights from the airport can take you to any point that you may want to see on the island. Taking a trip to one of the other small islands nearby is also a perfect way to blend sightseeing and adventure.
Many private companies and public organizations work hard to educate the public about all things Maui. Valley Isle Excursion’s Van Tour is a top rated educational sightseeing tour that is a lot of fun. Pacific Whale foundation has boat tours that focus on all things whales. There is the aquarium for you to learn about the rest of the creatures in the sea. Around Maui there are many historical Hawaiian and culturally important places that are now public parks. The signs in these parks are normally quite detailed so you can really relate to what you are seeing.
While in Maui do what the Mauian’s do. That is to take it easy, relax and let life happen. It might not be so easy to get into it but have a massage, play a bit of golf or tennis and you will be right into it after watching a beautiful sunset. Does shopping relax you? Well most malls have no roof and there are lots of open air markets where most gifts are sold. Need to see moves to chill out? The Maui Film Festival has showings under the stars. You will need to check ahead of time to when the shows are happening and at what venue. There are indoor theaters in every major town on the island.