5 Must-Do Activities on Maui
A nine-day trip to Hawaii doesn’t seem like enough time to spend in paradise, especially if that trip is your honeymoon. Our schedule (5 days on Maui and 4 days on Kauai) didn’t leave a lot of room for flexibility when it came to pre-booked activities, however, we crammed as much as we could into our first five days on the stunning island of Maui.
Some of the events are more expensive than others (don’t get me wrong, I would sell a kidney if it meant I could take a surf lesson every day for a week), but considering a number of these items can be considered “once in a lifetime” opportunities, we strongly encourage you to work them into your budget.
1- Drive Road to Hana
There is little else that exposes you to the natural beauty of Maui like the Road to Hana. Everything about this trip was breathtaking, and we loved navigating ourselves through this precious Hawaiian domain.This 100km stretch is filled with narrow roads that weave in and out of the mountains, hairpin turns that seem to endlessly zigzag, and a plethora of hidden adventures and pit stops. We chose to drive it ourselves versus a guided tour so we could stay on budget and keep our own schedule. The whole trip took us about 6 hours return, and we did not go all the way to Hana Town. It’s definitely all about the journey here, not the destination. There is tons of info about planning your trip, but we enjoyed this site.
2- Get Your Luau On
A luau is an immersion in Hawaiian history, taking you back through decades of music, dance, culture and food. When planning our trip, we knew we wanted to attend a Luau, but the options are really overwhelming. Some of the larger resorts offer a Luau on-site, and a few that run as a separate business. We chose the Old Lahaina Luau based on recommendations from friends as well as our diligent research through Trip Advisor. There were so many families with children, so it’s age-appropriate for everyone. It was such a blast watching the storytelling through music, and the buffet and open bar didn’t hurt either 😉 Check out my full post here.
3- Learn to Surf
This was an absolute must for me. I talked about it every day before our trip and every day after our lesson. Friends referred us to the Maui Surfer Girls with the words, “Just book them now. Do it.” So we did and man we were sooo happy with the choice. The owner, Dustin Tester, surprised us by bringing along a professional photographer to capture our lesson as part of the Honeymoon Package. Our whole lesson lasted about 2 hours including some land training beforehand we celebrated afterward with Hawaiian mimosas (guava juice and prosecco). Check out my full post here.
3- Eat Local
We did not have a bad meal on Maui. Not one. We chose local favorites over chains, opting for fresh fish or produce where possible. We ate our weight in Poke (pronounced poh-kay, raw fish sliced into cubes seasoned with fresh herbs and spices and served with white rice) and pineapple. Our favorite restaurants on Maui were the Kihei Café (breakfast burritos and french toast the size of your head!), Paia Fish Café (go for the catch of the day, grilled) and Kimo’s (fresh fish chowder and parmesan crusted Mahi Mahi – the best dinner we had all trip). I fell in love with a local brew from Kona Brewing Company – Wailua Wheat. It’s a wheat beer with a hint of passion fruit. And the bottle is super pretty.
5- Swim, Snorkel, and Snuba with the Sea Turtles
I love being on or in the water, so we decided to take full advantage of a boat trip to the Molokini Crater, which is an island marine sanctuary and one of the best places in the Hawaii to snorkel! We chose the Pride of Maui tour company and booked a half day morning trip to the Molokini Crater and Turtle Town. And we opted for the add-on of Snuba – which is a combination of snorkeling and scuba diving, but way less intense than scuba, and no training or certification is needed. We swam with the sea turtles and even saw some whales during our lunch. The tour runs from 8am-1pm, includes a continental breakfast, bbq lunch, and open bar. Overall a pretty awesome way to spend a Maui morning! Check out my full post here.
Which one of these activities floats your boat? Let me know in the comments!
After Maui, we headed to Kauai for 4 days of waterfall hiking and zip lining!
Check out the post: Top 6 Things To Do on Kauai!
I want to go to Maui so badly. I am so jealous of your snorkelling experience. This is on my bucket list of things to do. x
Those all sound awesome! I took surfing lessons a few years ago, and haven’t been surfing since (due to living in Boston, haha). I would love to go again!
I love the unique food experiences in Hawaii, the shave ice especially. Nice list of things to do. I have attended the hula show and made it to the Cultural Center. I certainly can’t wait to return. Nice post.
Maui looks divine.It’s always great to eat fresh and local. Congratulations on your wedding.Going to visit Maui
Awesome list!!! I have been to
Maui a few times and can say I have done all of these!!!! I especially love looking for local places to eat!!!!
I’ve always loved everything about Maui for all the activities you listed and more! I remember really enjoying the luaus!
This is one of the top places i want to visit it just looks so beautiful! I think id never want to leave!
I’ve never tried surfing, but I’ve always heard Maui is a great place to do it. That plate looks delicious!
It’s been 10 years since we’ve been to Hawaii. Thanks for the suggestions, time to go back!
We’ve never been to Maui but it looks like a stunning place. I love the idea of a traditional Luau they look like so much fun and such a great emersion of culture!
I’ve never been to Hawaii but it is definitely on my bucket list! I can’t believe you did so much in nine days! It looks like you hit all of the hot spots. I’m a certified diver so I would definitely go there first.
I never went to Maui, only to Oahu and love it. This made me think if I chose wrong… I would love to do the Hana Road 🙂
A very nice must do list, that covers almost all kind of experiences. I have not heard of this place. I will research more because your pictures are so tempting. And when I go here, I will definitely remember your list of todos
The Travel Ninjas
Maui looks incredible! I would love to learn to surf there but would be happy just to scuba 🙂
Awesome pictures, very nice post. Would love to go there some time 🙂
Finding My Calm – Kelsinwonderland
[…] I don’t have kids). Stress sucks, big time. And aside from packing it all in and moving to Hawaii with my husband to eat poke and surf all day, I had to find a magical solution to this nonsense. And I […]
I would love to know how to surf but i’m afraid of water (that much anyways). I would love to eat local, as I’m a sucker for eating.
I think it would be so fun to try and surf.
swim and snorkel with the turtles! sounds like a great experience !
I would love to snorkel in Maui! I love the water and all the colourful saline!
Drive Road to Hana would be my favourite!
All would be so great but think the 1- Drive Road to Hana would be awesome!
I would just like to visit there, but to Swim, Snorkel and Scuba with the Sea Turtles would be fun!
It was a really awesome experience! We got some great Go Pro footage as well 🙂 You should definitely check it out if you are ever in Hawaii