The Island of Lanai
Seen From Maui's Kaanapali Beach
really made up of several islands. Maui, the largest
island in Maui county is known for its fabulous beaches,
ample sunshine, excellent activities, restaurants,
shopping and overall beauty. As the saying goes, Maui No
Ka Oi, or Maui is the best. Molokai lies off of Maui's
north shore and is also a rather large island, Lanai is
one Maui's western shore, Kaho'olawe lies off Maui's
southern shore and tiny Molokini sits just off of Wailea
on the south western shore. The island of Maui consists
of two mountain ranges, the west Maui Mountains that
make up the northern part of the island and Haleakala,
an extinct volcanoe that makes up the southern part of
Port Location and Information:
Docked in Kahului, Maui
dock in Kahului's cruise terminal in Kahului Harbor. The
cruise terminal is only about 10 minutes from the Maui
International Airport (OGG) where rental cars can be
arranged. Virtually all of the rental car companies will
pick you up and deliver you back to the ship. Kahului is
Maui's main city and is located on the windward side of
the island. Because of this, there is not much to see
and do in Kahului itself. There are a couple of large
shopping malls with all the the brands found on the
mainland, so if you need to stock up on any staples,
this is an opportunity to do so. The Maui Marketplace
will offer a free shuttle from the port to the shopping
Anchored off Lahaina
ships will anchor off the coast of Lahaina on the
leeward side of Maui and tender into the Lahaina Harbor.
This is much more preferable as one can reach Maui's
leeward shoreline quite easily from here. The tender
wharf is located right at the famous Pioneer Inn and
Maui's largest Banyan tree in the heart of Front
Street's shopping, dining and entertainment.
Exploring on Your Own:
Black Rock, Kaanapali
One of Maui's Premier Snorkeling Spots
has so much to offer visitors that it would be
impossible to even scratch the surface in one or two
days. For this reason I am going to describe what I
would suggest you do to see as much as possible.
a Car: Maui is best explored in your own vehicle.
Renting a car is easy and affordable on Maui and is the
way to go without question. Especially if you are
staying for two days in Kahului.
the first day: I would suggest visiting Lahaina,
Whaler's Village on Kaanapali Beach and possibly Napili
Bay. This will allow everyone to shop, beach it up, lay
in the sun, do some more shopping, dine on the beach,
snorkel, surf, SUP, sail, pretty much whatever anyone
would want to do.
day two: I would suggest visiting Kihei, Wailea and
Big Beach. This would allow for a second day of
shopping, sunning, snorkeling, surfing, SUPing, dining
and simply enjoying another part of Maui that makes Maui
"No Ka Oi".
the cruise terminal is both easy to do and is also free.
Even if the lot gets full you can park on the breakwater
right next to the ship.
while Maui does have a public bus system that one could
use to get around the island, the frequency is not
robust enough to make it viable for the purpose of
exploring Maui with limited time.
Some Hotel Shops in
offers excellent shopping opportunities in its many
malls, resorts, towns and various boutiques, kiosks,
shops and stores. Here is a list of just some of Maui's
major shopping centers that you may wish to visit during
your time in port.
Queen Ka'ahumanu Center: This is the main mall for
central Maui and offers a good number of department
stores (Macys and Sears) along with a bunch of smaller
Marketplace: This is important to know for Starbucks
people. There is a Starbucks here...VBG. Also many local
stores that are of little interest to visitors.
Lahaina offers block after block of shopping
opportunities, as well as restaurants and bars along it
quaint Front Street. There are several small malls that
make up Lahaina's shopping area and you can find just
about anything Hawaiian in this area. Just about
everyone that visits Maui spends time walking Front
Street and enjoying its ambiance.
Lahaina Cannery Mall: Located towards the northern
side of Lahaina just outside of the main part of town,
the Lahaina Cannery Mall is a hit with visitors who
enjoy the local shops, boutiques and restaurants. Be
sure to check their website for when the hula show is
taking place. This free show is well worth attending as
it is quite a bit more authentic than some of the big
resort shows. Currently shows are performed at 7PM
Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Whalers Village: This is an excellent place to spend
your day at Kaanapali Beach. First, the mall offers many
excellent stores for buying items to take back to the
mainland with you. There are several restaurants to
enjoy, as well. You can also use the beach in front of
Whalers Village or walk along the beachwalk the entire
length of Kaanapali beach from the Hyatt Regency Hotel
to the Sheraton Maui.
Kaanapali Beach Hotels and Resorts: Each of the
hotels and resorts along Kaanapali Beach offer
substantial shopping opportunities. The Hyatt, Marriott,
Westin, Kaanapali Beach Hotel and Sheraton all have
shops selling beach ware, sundries, jewelry, Hawaiian
art and crafts and so on.
Shops at Wailea: If you visit Wailea, a stop at this
mall is a must do. It features many designer stores, as
well as many local boutiques and boutiques that are all
sophisticated and wonderful.
Kaanapali Beach is blessed with such perfect weather and
perfect ocean conditions to have been voted the "Best
Beach in America" and once you spend the day on its warm
sand, you will know why. Spending the day on Kaanapali
Beach is something everyone should do. It offers great
snorkeling (Black Rock at the top of the photo in front
of the Sheraton Maui) body boarding, swimming, sun
bathing and much more.
The beachwalk traverses the entire length of Kaanapali
Beach and is great fun to check out all of the hotels
and resorts. All beaches in Hawaii are public beaches,
so you can settle where ever you would like. There is
restaurants, bars, shops, boutiques, beach concessions
and much more to enjoy. If you only have one day in
Maui, head to Kaanapali beach for the day and you will
have a wonderful time.
Kaanapali Beach North
of Black Rock
the beach walk stops at Black Rock, you can go through
the Sheraton Maui and continue up Kaanapali beach for
quite a ways. If you would like to enjoy a quiet day on
your own private beach, this is where you can find it.
Just continue past the Royal Lahaina Resort and you will
leave the tourists behind you.
Lahaina's Front Street
hitting Whalers Village on Kaanapali Beach you can
easily spend an hour or two walking around Lahaina's
shops, boutiques, mini malls, restaurants and bars.
Front Street is a eclectic collection of old and new
want to do some serious snorkeling and beaching in a
less populated environment, then head to Napili Bay for
some of the best snorkeling on Maui. Park at the Napili
Kai Beach Club Resort and head for the beach. If you
come to Napili Bay be sure to have lunch or pupus at
Napili Kai's Sea Housee Restaurant. Located right on the
beach the food here is wonderful and the dining
experience very memorable.
Maui's Big Beach
on the leeward side of Haleakala Crater, Big Beach is
one of Maui's best beaches. It is always hot and sunny
here and the beach is never crowded (there are
lifeguards on duty) If you have two days in Maui, do
Kaanapali the first day and then visit Kihei, Wailea and
Makena the second day and allow plenty of time to enjoy
Big Beach. While there are restrooms at Big Beach, there
are no snack bars or food concessions. However, there
are local lunch trucks that park along the side of the
highway that serve local treats like teriyaki, plate
lunches and such and most of the are outstanding.
Maui's Lava Fields in
the Lee of Haleakala
has so much to offer that it would be impossible to
focus in on just a few highlights. Many folks rave about
the bike ride from the top of Haleakala Crater at dawn.
Snorkeling at Molokini is also a favorite with folks
looking for some adventure. Molokini is a crater that
barely breaks the surface of the ocean a few miles off
of Wailea. The crater itself is like a sheltered
swimming pool teaming with sea life and offers world
class snorkeling. Folks also like taking a sailboat to a
remote beach on the island of Lanai for the day. There
is surfing, SRPing, body boarding, snorkeling, SCUBA
diving, sailing, fishing, hiking and sdo much more to
and Drinking Suggestions:
are so many great restaurant on Maui that you can't
miss. However, you shouldn't come to Maui and not enjoy
a bag of Maui Chips. These kettle cooked potato chips
are like nothing you have ever tasted before. While you
will see "Maui Chips" in every store, there is only one
original Maui Chip. Look for the red and yellow bag that
is named "Kitchen Cook'd" and only buy these. Make sure
to buy them in the morning because the entire island is
usually sold out by 2pm until the next morning.
say that exploring Lahaina, spending time on Kaanapali
Beach and Big Beach all rise to the "Must Do" level.
Also, enjoying a bag of Maui Chips is a "Must Do" also.
Enjoy your days in Maui!
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