Best Maui Beaches
Just off of Makena Alanui Road is quite possibly the best beach in Hawaii. Big Beach stands heads and shoulders above some of Maui’s best beaches. You’ll find just under a mile of perfect sand, the beautiful backdrop of lower Haleakala, and water that’s a vibrant blue green. It is one of the largest beaches in Maui, extending nearly 2/3 of a mile long and 100 yards wide of golden Maui sand. The tourists usually just come to swim, snorkel, experience Maui’s most pristine waters, picnic in the shade, or simply sunbathe on the seemingly endless expanse of sand.
My favorite spot in Hana, Hamoa Beach, picture courtesy of our friend Dom Marino
Hamoa Beach is one the most famous and well known beaches across Maui because of its perfect views and picturesque backdrop along Hana’s tropical coast. Because it is secluded on the East side of Maui, the beach is hardly ever crowded and offers plenty of space to relax along it 100 foot wide by 1000 foot long crescent shaped beach. The water is crystal clear and is an awesome swimming beach, however, when the surf is up it can be a popular surf spot among the locals. The Travaasa Hotel actually manage the beach and landscaping with beach chairs and accessories for their guests. Parking can be challenging because there is only street parking on a narrow road.
Baldwin Beach is easily one of the most popular North Shore beaches. It’s a long, wide, and sandy beach perfect for walking or finding some shade to relax. Fully equipped with lifeguards, port-a-potties, showers, barbecues, picnic tables and a covered pavilion, Baldwin is mostly popular among the locals. Both ends of the beach have calm swimming areas (west end is known as Baby Beach and the east as Baldwin Cove). On weekends and holidays the parking area can get pretty crowded, however, even on the busiest days it’s easy to find some seclusion on the beach.
Best Maui Activities
Maui is the premier island in Hawaii to whale watch because of the shallow shores and warm water that surround the valley isle. From December (and maybe even as early as September) to about mid May is the six month whale watching season in Hawaii, the Pacific Whale Foundation is extremely confident that you will see whales during peak whale watching season. Maui is the best spot in the island chain to search for Humpback whales; they are drawn each year to Maui because the shallow waters (except off the north shore) are around 300-600 feet deep which provides safety for the calves (baby whales) as they grow. I suggest the Pacific Whale Foundation as the first choice company to use, they are a non-profit and are highly aware of the safety of the Whales.
The crater on Mount Haleakala, picture courtesy of our friend Dom Marino
Hiking is another popular activities among visitors because of the variety of hikes on Maui. The valley isle’s geography is unique because of the variety of microclimates on the island, there is everything from rain forests and dry desserts to snowy mountain tops on Mount Haleakala (on rare occasions). For waterfall hikes, the east side of Maui is the best because that is known as the rainy side of the island. For elevated views and a ridge hike, Waihee Ridge Trail in central Maui is the best place. If you would like to challenge yourself and experience a few different climate zones in 1 hike, then Haleakala National Park is your best best. I suggest Googleing “Maui hikes” for more information because there are many sites that offer tips and recommendations.
Best Maui Restaurants
Pita Paradise serves a mesh of Mediterranean and Italian recipes with dashes of Hawaii to round out their menu. Their menu for lunch and dinner is the same with plenty of options for diners. They have a variety of appetizers, entree salads, pita sandwiches, pasta, and entrees, mostly with a Mediterranean flair. Chef Owner, John Arabatzis, catches the fish himself and then creates wonderfully fresh fish inspired creations. Located in the Wailea Gateway Shopping Center, 808-879-7177.
With two locations, one in Kihei and another in Kahului, Da Kitchen, is easily a top 3 favorite among locals and is always a must try for visitors to the Valley Isle. They have grow their reputation for their creative diverse cuisine with an emphasis on traditional Hawaiian food. They are best known for their plate lunches which is an iconic tradition across the state and was first meant to be a convenient lunch in an outdoor setting. Kahului: 425 Koloa Street, 808-871-7782. Kihei: 2439 S Kihei Road, 808-875-7782.
Flatbread is easily among Maui’s best pizza places because of its Paia vibes and devotion to local and organic ingredients. Their popularity has steadily increased over the years, so keep that in mind if you do decide to dine there. My personal favorite is the Kalua Pork Mopsy, it is an unbelievable combination of pulled pork shoulder, fresh Maui goat cheese, mozzarella, red onions, pineapple, on top of a delicious mango-BBQ sauce. Located at 89 Hana Hwy, 808-579-8989.
Best Maui Tips
Although Yelp and other similar apps and websites are great and provide a wealth of opinions, I think the best way to get food recommendations is ask the locals! Whether it’s the pool boy, valet attendant, or your surf instructor, they are a great resource for local grinds. You don’t have to go with their suggestions, but it is a good way to get ideas and enjoy the aloha spirit. I can personally attest to this tip because I always use it when I travel to the mainland or abroad!
Where your slippers! It might seem cool and convenient to go barefoot in Hawaii, but in reality it probably might be something you ultimately regret. Here in Hawaii, where the sun is constantly out means surface areas are always heating up and walking on the cement and sand can be a treacherous task.
Don’t leave your valuables in the car! It’s sad to say, but theft happens in Hawaii every day; on the bright side, Maui doesn’t have much crime other than theft. If you rent a car, they are fairly easy to identify so please keep that in mind because there are thieves out there that specifically target rental cars for easy access to valuables.
Contact A Maui Real Estate Specialist
Please interview me to be your trusted Maui Real Estate and Lifestyle Advisor. I was born and raised on the island, and spend a considerable amount of time to inform my clients about the best deals currently on the market. Please do not hesitate to call me for your Maui real estate needs. I am more than happy to assist you in your home search.
Aloha,Anthony Sayles R(S) Anthony@Danosayles.com 808-280-6532