Over a lifetime on Maui and many years as a personal chef, these are my favorite places to eat on Maui.
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Over a lifetime on Maui and many years as a personal chef, these are my favorite places to eat on Maui.
If you thought taking a six-hour drive on the Hana Highway was the only way to experience adventure on Maui, then get ready to be pleasantly surprised!
Napili Bay |
With one of the most diverse collections of golf courses in world, Maui lets you play the mountains one day and the ocean the next.
Don't book an expensive boat tour. Some of the best snorkeling is right off the beach.
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Your Maui vacation is incomplete without at least one memorable meal. Choose from one of these restaurants for the big splurge.
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Hawaiian food seems as if it were designed for kids. I remember going to Maui for the first time and discovering that there’s really a star-shaped fruit.
If you’re in West Maui and you like to eat well, this guide has some delicious choices.
Napili Bay |
Napili Bay |
Poke, or raw cubed, marinated fish is a centuries-old Hawaiian specialty. This food truck serves it straight up or fried.
A 30-minute ferry ride takes you to one of Hawaii's smallest inhabited island. Check out the beach at Manale, a playground for spinner dolphins.
It's the "Old Faithful of the Pacific." Watch a plume of sea water shoot 100 feet in the air out of an ancient lava tube. Don't get too close (trust me on this one)!
2,500 species of plants and trees line a landscape of lava rocks, natural streams, and koi ponds. These gardens give you a sense of Hawaii's stunning biodiversity.
Take an easy 2-mile hike to a scenic ridge with panoramic views of central Maui. Ioa Valley was also the site of an epic battle and served as a burial ground in ancient Hawaiian history.
It feels like an alien world in the cinder cone gardens of Mt. Haleakala. Come for the view at sunrise or sunset, heck, come anytime, it's out of this world!
Is pineapple wine any good? Head to Ulupalakua Vineyards for free tastings and find out. Worst case, you get to see a vineyard on a volcano.
Serene wetlands in Maui's central valley make for a great place to watch dozens of exotic bird species. Come in the mornings when the sun is out and wind is less.
If you're a proud astronomy geek and want to meet other proud astronomy geeks, join this Maui astronomy group and find you're posse.
Protected from the wind by the mountains, this player-friendly course offers a new view of the island at every hole.
Golfing in a Lord of the Rings-like setting, this challenging PGA course is par 73 at 7,400 yards.
These 3 world-class courses cater to all types. From the tough Robert Trent, Gold Course to the family-friendly Emerald, and player-friendly Blue.
Not overly long at 6,570 yards, it's a course for shot makers, with smallish greens, dog legs, and elevation changes. Oh and with their Aloha Friday deal you can play for $49, all day.
You could come for just the clubhouse. But if you come for golf, you'll be rewarded with a "pure golf experience" – nothing but nature in all directions.
A gently sloping entrance and sandy bottom means you won't step on coral as you go in. Underwater, you'll find butterflyfish and cool multi-colored sea slugs.
Turtles are everywhere here. It's their safe hideaway with ample resting spots and plenty of green algae to chomp on.
Centuries-old coral colonies grow to a whopping 25-feet in diameter on lava rocks to create a vibrant reef.
In Maui's rugged north, you'll find sea turtles, white-spotted puffers, octopuses, unicorn fish, and maybe even a giant manta ray.
In the highlands is a forest created by a botanist using trees from around the world. You can hike, mountain bike, or even zipline through it.
Lahaina has 40 art galleries with works from Picasso, Rembrandt, Any Warhol, and whole host of local artists inspired by the beauty of the island.
Home to top brands and a regular farmers market, it's Maui's biggest mall. This gorgeous building is covered by an open-air roof, shaped like a ship's sail.
It's something out of a movie: walk through fragrant bamboo forests paved with fresh guava (eat one!) and cool off in stunning natural pools fed by waterfalls.
Sounds of the ocean set the mood on this romantic cruise. Enjoy a 3-course meal prepared by Chef Bailey.
Bring the kids along to celebrate the family you built together with a gorgeous sunset in the background.
You might not expect it, but Pacific Whale Foundation has their own sunset cruise. Dine aboard a double-decker catamaran with live music.
Cool off in the shade of the banyan tree and see work from local artists. There's also a face painting booth and kid's crafts for the little ones.
Every Friday from 6-9 pm, the galleries of Lahaina host a free "Art Walk" with featured artists and refreshments.
Maui's capital knows how to party! Join on first Fridays for a street party with craft vendors, food stands, and a beer garden serving local brews.
All the galleries light up until 10 pm and Front Street buzzes with music, food, family activities, and performers from Ulalena.
Maui's cowboy town puts on a street party with locally farmed food, classical Hawaiian music, dancing, and a fire show.
The Keiki/Youth Zone has lots for the little ones, and parents can browse booths set up by local shops.
The decor is funky, really funky. See for yourself! They serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner with live jazz. Say hi to Farzad, the super friendly owner.
Lunch bentos, sandwiches, salads, and other Hawaiian specialties make up the menu. Try the fresh made Malasada donuts.
This hidden gem, is basically in the middle of nowhere. But those who make the trek out to Hali'imaile in the highlands, will be rewarded with some of the island's best cooking.
With an emphasis on local food, you get a real sense of what the island has to offer. Highlights include the Abalone Risotto with Kampachi Bacon and the Surfing Goat Cheesecake for dessert.
It's Hawaiian fusion food done right. This chain may dot the state of Florida, nearly 5,000 miles away, but it still holds its own on Maui.
Now for the holy combination of steak and seafood. That's the specialty here at this open-air, Four Seasons restaurant.
With postcard-worthy views and Instagram-worthy dishes, this romantic Kapalua restaurant serves delicious rack of lamb and tasty snapper.
It lives up to the hype! Dine on fish caught that day and cooked to perfection in the light of flickering tiki torches over a secluded cove.
Think Jiro Dreams of Sushi. This exclusive 15-seat sushi bar serves some of the best raw fish outside of Tokyo. Be sure to make reservations well in advance!
This 1/4-mile trail delivers maximum breathtaking views at minimum effort. It's a good option for families with young kids who still want to see Haleakala.
Hike down into moon-like valleys of dormant cinder cones. You can take on this entire 11-mile odyssey or turn back at any point for a hike of any length.
Enjoy macadamia nut pancakes, eggs benedict, and other brunch favorites with a view of surfers in the distance. It's Maui's most famous brunch spot for good reason.
This is where you'd come to propose in grand style. Set in a tropical garden with gorgeous views of the Island, Capische? serves delicious Italian food with a local twist.
It's hard to be closer to the ocean without being in it. Sea House is known for its extensive happy hour menu and views of Napili Bay.
If you drive by here and blink you might miss it. But if you can find it, this calm, uncrowded beach is really special.
The manager at Maui Hill resort puts on a weekly Mai Tai party with live music and free drinks. Seriously, Dennis is the the man!
Right on Ka'anapali Beach, you can hear the waves as you dine. Try their seasonal specialty cocktail at happy hour, which runs from 3-5 pm everyday and includes live music.
These coveted donuts come with exotic tropical fillings, like guava jam. Located in Upcountry, it's a great place to pick up a treat as reward for summiting Haleakala.
Indulge in seared ahi and foie gras or try their daily opakapaka fish special. This is one of the fanciest restaurants in Lahaina.
Perched on cliffs above the Pacific, this elegant open-air restaurant serves top grade sushi rolls and sashimi.
In the heart of Whalers Village, it's a great place to dine with the family on the beach. Try the ceviche marinated in coconut sauce!
This quieter resort is at the north end of Ka'anapali Beach, and hence much less crowded. Grab your own spot and camp out for the day or relax by the pool.
It's the best of both worlds. You're right in the heart of downtown Lahaina and on the beach. This smaller resort is great for couples looking for relaxing days and romantic evenings on the ...
There's a fun waterslide and pirate ship pool for the little ones. Relax by the adult pool or on Ka'anapali Beach, just steps away. You also have three delicious on-site restaurants.
With three unique pools, a mini golf course, massage cabanas, and several on-site restaurants, it's an action-packed family resort, right on Ka'anapali Beach.
This resort offers dozens of family activities including hula lessons, lei making classes, nature walks, and its famous “Mix” and “Mingle” gatherings with burgers and mimosas.
Vacation rentals here offer beautiful ocean views and come with all the amenities of home. Snorkelers can drive 2 minutes to nearby Honokowai Beach to enjoy a pristine reef.
This low-key resort has nice, peaceful pool, perfect for laps or quiet relaxation. The beach is right across the street and there's an interesting whale museum in walking distance.
You’re a close walk to a local park and farmers market, and five minutes from shopping and dining. Relax by the quiet seaside pool or walk out to the reef for snorkeling.
With easy access Ka’anapali Beach, this resort features lush gardens, multiple pools, and recently upgraded condos.
One of the most luxurious family resorts on Maui, Honua Kai offers a spectacular pool area, beachside restaurant, full-service spa, and unfettered access to Ka'anapali Beach.
This former Ritz-Carlton is one of the most luxurious resort on Maui. Perched along the lava rock cliffs of Kapalua, you're right next to two intimate beach coves with fantastic snorkeling.
The resort has the rich charm and character of a classic Hawaiian resort, and is located on a prime spot of Ka'anapali Beach.
Perfect for couples looking for a romantic getaway, this resort has an elegant pool with plush cabanas, fine garden-side dining, and spectacular views of the ocean.
The gorgeous lawn stretches right out to the beach. This family resort has a fun bar and restaurant, boogie board rentals on-site and is close to dining and shopping in Kihei.
Right above the intimate beach at Napili Bay, you can boogie board, snorkel, swim, or relax on the sand. It's also home to Gazebo restaurant, serving some of the best brunch on the island.
Sit by the pool and admire and the resort's lush gardens. Then head back for a family cookout on your personal grill. The resort is a 5-minute drive from shopping, dining, and the beach.
Perfect for golfers and those looking for a quiet stay away from the action, this resort borders Wailea Golf Club and is right next to the best tennis facility on the island.
You're just one block from the art galleries, restaurants, and shops of historic Lahaina. The resort also offers two gorgeous natural pools, bike rentals, and an activities shack.
You're walking distance to a great golf course, and snorkeling at the famous Black Rock Beach that divides both sections of Ka'anapali.
Swim in one of four pools or in the ocean at Napili Bay. The resort has “quiet time” at night to ensure an exceptionally peaceful stay, along with great dining overlooking the ocean.
The beach here is protected from the waves by a rock wall, making it perfect for young kids. You also have access to a roof top party area with BBQs and a calm seaside pool.
An expansive seaside lawn stretches out to the beach and is home to bocce ball, tennis courts, and other fun games. Large condos here feature spacious living rooms and full kitchens.
So close to the ocean that you can see turtles from your balcony, this romantic resort features large condos with full kitchen and easy access to cafes and shops across the street.
One of the first resorts on Maui, The Royal Kahana laid claim to arguably the best location on the island. Enjoy a drink by the family pool, while kids are treated to shave ice.
It's tucked away in a quaint neighborhood with a tropical country vibe. Wake up to sunrise over a championship golf course and spend the day on the links or the beach at Napili Bay.
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