Maui Vacation Recap :: Local Eats, Must Sees and More!

Max and I went to Maui last week and we had such a wonderful time I couldn’t wait to share our experience! This was our first time to Hawaii and I was lucky enough to tag along with Max who was attending a conference there. The conference was in Wailea at the gorgeous Mariott resort and we stayed at a great Airbnb in Kihei which was just a few minutes away. Our Airbnb was wonderful and in a great location, with a lanai overlooking the ocean, and we loved being so close to the beach, shops and restaurants. We flew in on Monday and left on Friday and really wish that we could have stayed longer. We fit in a good bit while we were there, had beautiful weather, and figured out a few things we’d do differently next time we visit Maui (which we can’t wait for!). I was so grateful for fellow bloggers and friends who shared their tips and I wanted to do the same so here are a few highlights and tips for from our first trip to Maui:

Kihei favorites:
Kamaole Beach Park III - This was right across from our Airbnb and turned out to be our favorite beach. It’s a great spot to snorkel, enjoy to sun, or have a picnic. We loved snorkeling along the reef and even saw two amazing sea turtles which was quite possibly our favorite part of our trip!
Kihei Café – adorable little counter service breakfast spot with amazing food and a quaint atmosphere. I couldn’t resist the French toast topped with macadamia nut and fresh bananas - it was incredible!
5 Palms Restaurant – the view from this resort restaurant is absolutely beautiful! The food is pricey (like $60 for 2 breakfast entrees and coffee pricey…) but the view is worth it. I've heard their happy hour is the way to go but breakfast was yummy too!
Paia Fish Market (Kihei Location) - low key amazingly fresh seafood - a great casual but delicious dinner spot.
Coconuts – I am all about ambiance so I was skeptical of this place but it’s actually quite airy and the fish tacos really are that good. They’re big so you can share the plate of 2.

Other Maui Tips:
Do the Road to Hana and use the GyPSyApp! Yes it does take all day but the experience and views are worth it. We downloaded the GyPSy App which was incredibly helpful and kept us entertained along the way. The roads are winding and narrow but totally doable. Our favorite stops were Paia town (at the start of the road to hana), the Ke'anae Peninsula and Wai'anapanapa State Park but there are so many amazing other stops to see too!

Extend your trip as long as you can! Our flight from LA to Maui wasn’t too bad but travel does take up pretty much the whole day, even when you’re coming from the West coast, so stay as long as you possibly can. Our 5 day, Mon – Fri trip was all we could do and we’re so grateful for that time but it flew by – there’s just so much to do! If you can swing it, stay longer!

Stay at a resort. We stayed at an Airbnb to save on costs and while our Airbnb was fabulous, clean, across the street from the beach with a beautiful view, what we didn’t realize we’d miss out on by not staying at a resort was the nighttime activities. When you stay at a resort there are built in luaus, live music by the pool, etc. which we really would have enjoyed. Next time, we’re staying at the Wailea Marriot!

Our bucket list for next time:
Stay at the Wailea Marriott - it's so gorgeous!
Attend a Luau
Take the helicopter tour
Do a whale watching / snorkeling trip
Offroad to the seven sacred pools on the road to hana
Eat at Mama's Fish House - we kept hearing it's the best place in Maui!

I hope this is helpful to anyone planning their trip to Maui! It's by no means a complete guide but just a few things we loved on our trip. If you have questions or anything to add please feel free to contact me and be sure to check out all the great tips on Pinterest here. I hope you enjoy your Maui experience as much as we did!

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