When it comes to Maui, you truly can’t go wrong. Maui is as easy as it is beautiful. On the island, you have everything you need at your fingertips. No matter where you stay, accommodations include picturesque pools, easy access to beaches, and naturally, breathtaking views. If you enjoy sunbathing on the beach or pool-side sippin’ — Maui has the laid-back, resort lifestyle you’re looking for. If you’d rather be face-to-face with gaint sea turtles or hiking to the top of a 2 million-year-old volcano, it’s all there for you!
And since there are so many options in Maui when it comes to stay, food, and activities — I thought I’d share what we’ve experienced and loved with you. I’ve highlighted my Wailea and Lahaina resort and dining recommendations below, followed by activities you can enjoy no matter what part of the island you’re visiting!
Wailea, located in the Southern part of Maui, is known for its luxury hotels and tranquil environment. And with only 4 and 5-star resorts available, any bet you make is a safe one. We’ve only been once and stayed at the Four Seasons, but have only heard positive things about all of the resorts in town.
It’s true, the Four Seasons is not the most economical hotel of the bunch, but for my 30th, we wanted the full pampered experience — and we definitely got it. The grounds are exquisite, there’s a private beach, and the service you get at the Four Seasons is second to none. Not to mention the resort conveniently has three restaurants and live music in the open-air lounge every night!
While we didn’t stay at the Andaz, we definitely made sure to visit it for its picturesque pools and well-known sushi scene. The Andaz is a Hyatt owned resort for those who have the points, and is newly remodeled. The interiors are stunning. All natural dark wood – modern with an island flare.
As most Waldorf Astoria Resorts, this one does not disappoint. I know folks who have stayed here and loved it, I’ve also heard it’s great for families. It’s also Jen Aniston stays soooo…at least that’s what our Uber driver said. 🙂
Food & Drink
Go for the famous mai tais, banana cream pie (all of their pies!), and live music.
Go for the chef’s special sashimi and cocktails.
Go for the freshest fish and ocean views. I should note that it’s about 30-45 minutes from either both Lahaina and Wailea. Some people like to visit on the way from or to the airport.
Go for the french toast, pancakes, and any breakfast rice dish.
Go for the cocktails and incredible views.
Lahaina is located on the west side of the island and it’s where we spent our first trip to Hawaii back in January of 2016. For that reason, it will always have a special place in our hearts! While less secluded than Wailea, we love it’s energetic, active environment. It also has a cute downtown for strolling, shopping, and grabbing a bite! All in all, if you have children (or not!), Lahaina is a sure bet for fun and activities.
Our friends had been to Lahaina many times, each time staying at different hotels along the water. And each time, they felt their heart was at the Hyatt. So when it came to booking for the first time, there was no second guessing where we wanted to stay. The grounds are breathtaking, the pools are wonderful, and the service is excellent.
Food & Drink
Go for the sunset views, mai tais, and any meal on the menu. They’re a sister restaurant of MonkeyPod in Wailea, so you can expect the same delicious experience!
Go for the pork buns, ramen noodles, and creative cocktails.
Go for the all-natural syrup shaved ice cones – the best on the island.
Go for the fresh sushi and views.
Go for the live music, roof deck, and drinks.
Go for the fried rice dishes and views.
WAILEA + LAHAINA ACTIVITIES
We used Sail Trilogy for both of our trips to Hawaii and loved it! Friendly staff, clean boat, with extra activities like snuba diving. We took the earliest snorkel cruise both times and would highly recommend it. You arrive at dawn, grab a coffee across the street, and watch the sun come up as you head out on the water. The other perk of going this early are the whales! We saw so many but keep in mind, it was whale watching season both times we went. I would recommend the tour to Molokini Crater and Turtle Island. We did take one of Sail Trilogy’s whale watching sunset cruises our first trip and while we loved the live music and cocktails, we saw more whales on the morning snorkel cruises!
This is something we have yet to do (it’s easy to be lazy in Hawaii) but have heard from friends that if you have the time, making the trek — even half way — is worth the trip. You can expect, scenic hikes, roadside food stands, and picturesque waterfalls! I’ve heard this book is a great guide to waterfalls and hidden gems!
While I can’t say we’ve done this (again, we are beach bums for the most part), we have heard from numerous people that biking the Haleakala Crater at sunrise is as special as it sounds. There is no shortage of companies that provide these tours!
Going on an organic farm tour is not something you’d expect to do in Maui, but in hearing from friends, it’s quite the experience! From touring the harvest grounds to roasting coffee beans to a gourmet lunch on the farm, it’s a great opportunity to taste local food and enjoy a day away from the beach.
I hope these tips are helpful as you plan your next Maui getaway! Feel free to reach out with any questions and if you have recommendations for Maui, please send them my way! Aloha!