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Hawai'i: Highlights of Maui

Hawai'i: Highlights of Maui

story by: Inspire Hawai'i

On the west coast of Maui, there’s a pretty little town named Lahaina where you can chill out drinking cocktails and gazing across the sea to the neighbouring islands of Lana’i and Moloka’i. Art galleries and restaurants now line the quaint main street where once badly-behaved whaling ship crews rampaged through taverns. The main visitors to its port today are cruise ships and whales. At the other end of the island is Hana, a small town of about 700 people. Its main attraction is the journey itself with 52 miles of coastal road that incorporates 600 bends and 54 one-lane bridges. Between the two is massive Haleakala, a volcano that forms more than 75% of the island. The crater is over 11km across and 800m deep, but perhaps the best reason to visit is for the spectacular sunrises and views.

  • MAKAWAO – A thriving arts community and well worth a visit into up-country Maui. Take in a weekend rodeo event, and if you’re there over the 4th of July enjoy the Makawao Rodeo, one of Hawaii’s largest paniolo (Hawaiian cowboy) competitions.
  • IAO VALLEY STATE PARK – A peaceful, lush area centering around Iao Needle, a towering black rock pinnacle soaring over 1200 feet high. It’s best to go in the early morning and there are lots of great hikes from which to admire the area’s rich foliage, natural pools and scenic mountain views.

  • LAHAINA HISTORIC TRAIL– Pick up a walking guide from the Lahaina Visitor Centre and explore Lahaina’s rich whaling and plantation history, as well as the historic court house, jail and Banyan Tree on a self guided tour throughout Lahaina Town.

  • GOLF – There are many golf courses which will satisfy even the most demanding golfer. Courses are flanked by crashing waves and soaring hillsides with panoramic vistas and tropical landscapes.

  • ROAD TO HANA – With over 600 hairpin turns and 54 narrow bridges, the famous road to Hana is much less a thoroughfare as it is a life lesson. Slow down and enjoy the ride, there’s a surprise around every corner.

  • HALEAKALA NATIONAL PARK – Rising more than 10,000 feet from the sea, Haleakala is a dormant volcano and is one of Maui’s most memorable attractions. A sight not to be missed is watching the sunrise over the unusual lava forms. Don’t forget to bundle up as it can be quite cool at the top of the mountain. On a clear morning you may even see the neighbouring islands of Hawai’i, Lana’i, Moloka’i, O’ahu and Kaho’olawe.

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