Book unique vacation rental condos, apartments, and more on Airbnb
Guests agree: these stays are highly rated for location, cleanliness, and more.
Blessed with six miles of coastline, the beachfront town of Kihei is located in one of the driest and sunniest sections of Maui. It’s a beach lovers’ destination where once-in-a-lifetime sunsets seem to happen daily, affordable shopping and dining options are numerous, and safe, swimmable beaches like Kamaole Beach Park III invite underwater exploration with just a mask and snorkel. Kihei is also central to many of the island’s more popular destinations, such as ʻIao Valley, Lahaina, and Maui’s North Shore. Unlike the highly developed and resort-laden Kāʻanapali, Kihei retains a laid-back dose of local flavor, including roadside food stands, farmers’ markets, and families selling homemade wares.
Most travelers flying direct from the mainland will land at Kahului Airport (OGG), the island’s largest airport, currently serviced by 10 domestic airlines. Another option is to fly into Honolulu’s Daniel K. Inouye International Airport (HNL) in Oahu before continuing on to Maui, as the short flight between islands takes only 30 minutes.
Designated taxi and rideshare pickup spots are stationed on Floor 1 of the Kahului Airport, located to the right upon exit from the terminal. The Maui Bus public transit system provides limited service to the airport. Car rentals are available a short distance from the terminal, but require a shuttle ride from the baggage claim area. Having a rental car in Maui will help you explore Maui’s landmarks and find those really special hidden spots.
Like all of the Hawaiian Islands, Maui is both blessed with pleasantly warm weather year-round as well as a variety of microclimates capable of delivering sun, drizzle, and sometimes a deluge of rain in a matter of minutes. The South Shore, Kahului, Kihei, Wailea, and Makena are drier, while the northern end of the island, from Kaanapali toward Kapalua, deliver a greater chance of rain. Pack for daytime temperatures in the mid-70s to mid-80s Fahrenheit, with evening temperatures usually falling between the mid-60s and low 70s across the island.
The only destination warranting special attention is the Haleakalā Visitor Center, situated 9,740 feet atop Haleakalā National Park, where temperatures can drop into the 40s or lower and wind is likely.
If you’re a fan of scenic road trips, this winding 10-hour, 64-mile journey defines “unforgettable,” delivering around 600 hairpin turns, 60 bridges (many one-way), and countless waterfalls along the way. Most visitors will stop in the quaint town of Hana before turning back, but if weather permits, you can take the road less traveled for another 44 miles to complete the entire loop, where the Pools at 'Ohe'o in Haleakalā National Park and the young lava fields of Haleakalā await.
If you’re planning to visit Maui between November and May, there’s a good chance you’ll spot North Pacific humpback whales migrating offshore. Whale-watching tours depart from the harbors of Lahaina and Maʻalaea. Those who prefer to stay on land can watch the whales from Maʻalaea Bay. Just remember to bring binoculars for optimal viewing.
Even if you don’t wake up early enough to watch the sunrise from this spectacular 1 million-year-old, 10,000-foot summit, the 2-hour drive up the mountain from the base of Haleakala National Park can offer a dramatic four-seasons-in-one-day adventure. Just be sure to bring a jacket or sweatshirt, as high winds and 40-degree Fahrenheit temperatures are not uncommon.