With an area of 727 square miles, Maui, also known as The Valley Isle, is the second largest island in the Hawaiian archipelago. Right from heavenly beaches, soaring sea cliffs, sacred pools and lush rainforests to culturally rich small towns and enclaves, this sun drenched island has diverse climates and landscapes to offer. People here are tourist-friendly and it shows up in the natural smile they greet you with, giving you one more reason to cherish the visit long after you depart.
Here are some of the major attractions of Maui Island:
On the eastern coastline of Maui is the small town of Hana. Its main attraction is the Hana Cultural Center showcasing Hawaiian art and artifacts.
2. Hamoa Beach
Hamoa Beach is situated on the Maui’s eastern side with steep sea cliffs and green vegetation. Boogie boarding and body surfing is popular here.
3. Kahanu Garden
Kahanu Garden is a botanical garden on the Hana Highway. It has the largest collection of breadfruit in the world. Plants such as bamboo, banana, calabash, coconut, kava, kamani sugarcane, taro, turmeric, vanilla and bitter yam are also found here.
4. Haleakala National Park
Haleakala National Park features the dormant Haleakal? or East Maui Volcano and the famous Haleakal? Crater. Measuring 7 miles across, 2 miles in width and 2600 ft depth, Haleakal? Crater is really huge. Two main trails lead into the crater from the summit area.
5. Iao Valley State Park
Iao Valley State Park is in the central part of Maui, about 3 miles from downtown Wailuku. The 1200 ft Iao Needle is found here.
With golden sands and blue oceans, Kaanapali Beach is located in the western part of Maui. Swimming and snorkeling are popular here.
A historic whaling village, Lahaina is found between the Auau Channel facing Lanai Island and the West Maui mountain range. Places to visit include the U.S. Seamen’s Hospital, Hale Paaho or Lahaina Prison and the Pioneer Inn.
8. Makena Beach State Park or Big Beach
Makena Beach or the Big Beach is situated south of Wailea and is one of the biggest beaches in Maui. ‘Oneloa Beach’ and ‘Makena Beach’ are the other names for this beach. It is a haven for swimming, snorkeling, picnicking and sun bathing.
Molokini is a small, crescent shaped islet situated off the southwestern coast of Maui. It is an ideal place for snorkeling, scuba diving and snuba diving (snuba is a portmanteau of ‘snorkel’ and ‘scuba’).
10. Pools of Oheo
On the Maui–Hana Highway, beyond Hana are the Pools of Oheo also called the Seven Pools which are fed from fresh water streams from Haleakala Volcano. Diving and swimming in these pools is a heavenly experience.
11. Waimoku Falls
Hiking on the Pipiwai Trail in the Haleakala National Park takes one to the spectacular Waimoku Falls which plunges from a height of 400 ft.
Makawao is a rural place on the slopes of Upcountry Maui. The Paniolo, or the Hawaiian cowboys are found here. Other attractions include art galleries and boutiques.
Location: Maui County, Hawaii State, USA
Altitude: 10,023 ft
Temperature: 17°C to 31°C
Best time to travel: Maui can be visited anytime of the year. High season (read rush season) is from December to March and the off seasons (read best value seasons) are from April to June and September to November.
Maui’s main airport, Kahului Airport (OGG) is well connected with flights. There are both direct and stopover flights to Maui.