How to experience Maui like a local

December 27, 2017
Adventure

Whether you are a returning visitor looking for new experiences or someone brand new to Maui who simply wants to avoid the tourist traps, there are hundreds of unique activities on the island that most tourists never experience. 

We’ve come up with a five day plan to make sure your vacation is nothing short of extraordinary.

Day One: Visit Makawao

Makawao is a small upcountry town with plenty of boutiques and restaurants to explore with less heat and crowds than some of the tourist towns. Grab some coffee and a delicious vegan scone at Sip Me, then wander through some of the shops such as Driftwood and Pink by Nature.

Don’t be fooled by the wild chickens, there is actually some great high-end shopping. 

Once you’ve explored the town, head to Makawao Forest for a hike. The forest looks like it belongs in the Pacific Northwest, with dense trees and picnic benches to enjoy the quiet, off the beaten path location.

Day Two: Hike La Perouse Bay

La Perouse Bay is at the very end of Makena past the upscale area of Wailea. You’ll drive past some popular snorkeling spots until you feel like you’re almost at the end of the entire island, bumping across a two lane road surrounded by black lava rocks. After some rugged driving, you’ll arrive at a parking lot.

Wear good shoes as the trail is through lava rock, but expect stunning views as you hike alongside the ocean and watch waves slam into the rocky shore.

Day Three: Maui Friday Town Party

If one of your days on Maui lands on “Aloha Friday” (which is every Friday), then you don’t want to miss a Maui town party. 

They rotate between Wailuku, Lahaina, Makawao, and Kihei depending on the week, but you can check out where they’ll be when you are visiting on their website

It’s a fun way to see how locals spend their Friday nights and offers plenty of family fun activities.

Day Four: Camp on Lanai

Take the passenger ferry and camp out on Lanai. The 45 minute ferry ride departs from Lahaina and is beautiful, especially during the whale watching season (January through April)! You’ll camp at Hulopo’e Bay, which is ideally located next to the ferry and much less crowded than any Maui campsites. 

You’ll need to get a camping permit and gear which can be rented from Camp Maui

You won’t regret a night spent under the Hawaiian skies!

Day Five: Rappel into Waterfalls

For the more adventurous, take a rappelling tour with Rappel Maui. This is a truly unique experience, where you’ll learn to rappel down some of Maui’s amazing waterfalls along the Road to Hana, where the landscape is lush and you are surrounded by the jungle. You’ll never forget rappelling down waterfalls and landing for a cool off in fresh water pools.

Looking to live like a local while visiting Maui? Check out some of our north shore listings, which offer travelers a unique way to experience Maui outside of the typical tourist areas.

Pris Lee

Aloha! I'm Pris and I am the head of marketing at Hawaii Chee. I'm quite partial to a good cup of coffee, hiking and horse back riding along the beach. And chocolate. Always chocolate...

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