Maui is not the largest Island in Hawaii, and neither is it the smallest. It is not as bubbly as places such as Oahu, nor does it give as much quiet as Kauai does. However, there’s the spirit of Maui that visitors encounter each time; one that encapsulates the traits of the other Islands and so much more. It is what keeps them coming back over and again.
Known as the Valley Isle, Maui hosted between 2.2 and 2.5 million visitors annually before the pandemic kicked in. As economies reopened in the first quarter of 2021, visitors and tourists decided to make up for a lost time, but COVID-19 restrictions meant the second largest Island in Hawaii could not fully open its doors to everyone that needed to enjoy its magic and splendor.
Things have since picked up, and even though restrictions have been reintroduced, there’s a lot of fun and relaxation that Maui offers to anyone looking to explore its amazing beaches, attractions, food, drinks, and historic sites. If you’re looking to spend your next holiday on Maui Island, here are a few tips to make your trip truly rewarding.
Before you set out…
You should know that travel restrictions are being reintroduced in all the major Islands of Hawaii, including Maui. The recent surge in the COVID Delta variant forced Honolulu authorities to reevaluate the situation in June and introduced some level of restrictions in the weeks that followed. In fact, Governor David Ige in August 2021 called on residents and visitors to put all non-essential travel plans on hold until the end of October 2021.
This, he said, is one measure geared towards helping the city cope with the rise in COVID cases which is putting a strain on the health sector. If you’ll be traveling to Maui Hawaii once the restrictions are lifted, then you’d need to get tested and show proof of a negative test or even proof of vaccination plus a negative test result. There is also a 10-day trans-pacific quarantine that is likely to still be in effect when things open.
Things to see and do…
If you’ve never heard the saying, “Maui no ka oi”, which translates to “Maui is the best”, then you probably have never let yourself get soaked in the beauty, sights, and sounds of Maui. Its nickname, the Valley Isle is derived from a broad isthmus that cuts through from Haleakala and runs through the West Maui Mountains. So, sightseeing is a no-brainer as far as Maui is concerned.
The lush tropical rainforests, volcanic craters, windswept plains, and pristine beaches as far as your eyes can see, provide a wide array of scenery and spectacle. From the Road to Hana, Haleakala National Park, Wailua Falls, Iao Valley State Park, and the Molokini Island to the Waihee Ridge Trail, the Pipiwai Trail, and the Sliding Sands Trail in Keoneheehee, there are several must-sees and must-dos in Maui.
Ever thought about taking a bike ride down a volcano? What about a zooming zipline adventure over the West Maui Mountains? There are several Kayak Tours, Redline Rafting, Hiking Adventures, Helicopter, and Airplane Tours and Paddle Sports that you can engage in for the time of your life.
Where to stay
There are top-rated, luxury, and budget accommodation options in Maui. However, if you want comfort, fun, and brilliant customer service, here are a few places to consider.
- Diamond Resorts Ka’anapali Beach Club. Great pool, spa facilities, a functional gym, a great bar, and beautiful rooms. Can also be afforded on a budget.
- Four Seasons Resort at Wailea. Top-rated 5-star hotel, slightly above the budget line, but offers a great experience with a luxury spa, pool facilities, great dining, and amazing nightlife.
- Maui Ka’anapali Villas. Another great place of Refuge for tourists and visitors seeking a family-styled apartment. It comes with some perks like pet friendliness and free parking. It also has a pool and a great bar among others.
Others include the highly-rated Montage Kapalua Bay, the Ka’anapali Ocean Inn, the Napili Sunset Beach Front Resort, etc.
Where to eat
There are several restaurants, cafés, and upbeat, breezy spots for good food and cuisines in Maui. For a great food experience, you should try the following.
- Seafood – Mama’s Fish House
- Local food/Seafood – Nalu’s South Shore Grill
- Maui Bakeries – Maui Bread Company
- Local food – Tin Roof Maui
- Seafood Restaurant – Tante’s Fishmarket Restaurant & Bar
- Local/Seafood – Hula Grill Kalapani