When I was researching my trip to Maui, it felt like there were so many things I could do – I didn’t know where to begin!
After my visit this September, I knew I had to put together a guide to the absolute must-do experiences in Hawaii.
If you’re planning on visiting the island of Maui, this post is for you! I’ll be sharing bucket list experiences to add to your Maui itinerary.
Where to stay in Maui
While there are endless accommodation options in Maui, we’ve put together a guide to some unique places to stay here:
- This adorable secluded cabin in the woods in Makawao, only a 15-20 min drive from the airport. Perfect for those who want peace and quiet. Fun fact: Jimi Hendrix stayed here when filming the 1971 movie Rainbow Bridge!
- A Bamboo Cabin, away from the busy tourist crowds of Maui. Perfect for travelers after a romantic getaway, from here you can see incredible ocean views and sunrises. This is a really unique place to stay and is the first permitted bamboo structure in the entire United States!
And if these are too unique, just remember there are endless accommodation options in Maui to choose from!
Had enough planning talk? Here are the can’t miss things to do in Maui…
1. Take a road trip on the road to Hana
The road to Hana is one of Maui’s most popular spots for tourists. What makes this so popular?
The road to Hana is all about the journey.
The narrow, winding (and sometimes pot-holl filled road) is filled with endless waterfalls, food trucks, and dramatic coastal lookouts.
The Road to Hana is often at the top of any Maui bucket list for this exact reason.
Planning on driving the Road to Hana? Make sure you start early (traffic jams are common, especially during busy tourist seasons) and put aside a full day to give yourself enough driving time.
2. Visit the Honokalani Black Sand Beach in Waiʻanapanapa State Park
The Honokalani Black Sand Beach is one of Maui’s most popular black sand beaches.
The beach consists of a small cove and areas around where you can walk or sit for a while enjoying the views.
This beach is technically part of the Road to Hana, but because there are so many places to stop on your road trip, make sure you add this to your google maps.
During our visit, there were many other people here, so if you’re after peace and quiet – you probably won’t get it here! But if you’ve never been or seen a black sand beach before – then make sure you visit this beach on the Road to Hana.
3. Go hiking and swimming at The Pools at ‘Ohe’o
The Pools at ‘Ohe’o is a series of 7 pools which is part of the Haleakala National Park.
This is a great place to end your road trip on the Road to Hana, or to do a spot of hiking or cooling down.
There are some short hikes here, or you can even swim in some of the pools (make sure you check with the park ranges as to whether the pools are open – sometimes they’re closed!)
This is part of the Haleakala National Park so an entry fee does apply.
4. Watch the sunrise at Haleakala Crater
The Haleakala crater sits at 10,023 ft (if measured from its base on the ocean floor) making it one tall volcano.
This is one of the most incredible places in Hawaii to see the sunrise. And is 100% worth waking up early in the morning for.
If you want to watch the sunrise at Haleakala Crater:
- You need to purchase tickets in advance, the cost is $1 / car
- Tickets are available 60 days in advance (a portion of tickets are also made available 48 hrs in advance)
- The tickets sell very quickly, so make sure you’re organized!
- You will also need to pay entry into the National Park, or use your National Parks pass
- Wear very warm clothes – Haleakala Crater has very different weather compared to the rest of Maui – trust me, you will be cold!
5. Go hiking at Haleakala National Park
If you’re not a sunrise person, Haleakala National Park is still worth a visit.
The area has some cool hikes available, making it a must on any Maui itinerary.
If you’re not up for a sunrise wake up, it is still worth visiting, especially since you don’t need to wake up at some crazy hour (we had to wake up at 3 am!) and sit in the freezing cold.
6. Go snorkeling at Molokini Crater
Snorkeling is always a recommended activity on Maui, but I’d specifically suggest snorkeling at the Molokini Crater.
This crescent-shaped volcanic crater is known for having high visibility, and its isolation means there is so much marine life to see! This is basically one of the coolest places you can go snorkeling in Maui.
The waters are shallow here too, which means only smaller boats can stop here for snorkeling – snorkeling here is a lil’ different to other parts of Maui (which can be incredibly crowded especially with larger boats!)
7. Enjoy an evening at the Old Lahaina Luau
Enjoying a Luau is a must if you’re visiting Hawaii, but especially the Old Lahaina Luau.
What’s a Luau you might ask?
It’s a traditional Hawaiian celebration, consisting of Hawaiian food and entertainment!
The Old Lahaina Luau is known for being one of the most traditional Luaus available in Hawaii and is known for being the most respectful towards Hawaiian culture.
8. Spend an afternoon at Lahaina Town
Lahaina used to be the capital of the Hawaiian Kingdom in the early 19th century and was also a whaling village during the mid-1800s.
The town today is filled with boutiques, cafes, and restaurants.
It’s worth spending an afternoon here strolling and taking int he views from Lahaina Harbor.
9. Cool down with a shave ice
Did you really visit Hawaii if you didn’t have shave ice?
Shave ice (not “shaved ice”) is the perfect way to cool down in hot weather.
This refreshing snack consists of shaved ice topped with flavored syrup.
You can find shave ice practically everywhere in Maui, but specifically at Ululani’s Shave Ice, a franchise that is known for having some of the best shave ice in Maui!
So there you have it, my favorite things to do in Maui – hopefully, you found some things to add to your itinerary!
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