Whether you're island hopping or taking the time to explore the island of Maui properly, Kahului is a must-see spot. If you're on your way to Wailuku or the West Maui Forest Reserve, Kahului is a great place to stock up and gear up before your nature adventure! It has a youthful vibe, thanks to the student population of University of Hawaii Maui College and many long-term visitors, who make the town a home base for further travels.
It wouldn't be a Hawaiian vacation without some place to set up surf. Kanaha Beach Park is not just a popular place to take a dip or relax in the sun; you'll find plenty of surf enthusiasts hitting up the waves, paragliding, and kitesurfing.
Eat your way through Kahului's favorites, which include sweet Lima Manju, Dry Mein, Saimin, among others.
The Kanaha Pond State Wildlife Sanctuary is the perfect spot for bird enthusiasts. Besides the plethora of wildlife this 143-acre wetlands supports, it's home to Hawaii's native birds such as the Hawaiian duck, coot, and stilt.
Head to Kanaha Beach Park and work up a tan, take in the sun and sand, and generally relax. Bring a good book for the day!
For golf enthusiasts who want to be challenged, check out the dunes at Maui Lani Golf Course!
The otherworldly terrain, unique hiking opportunities and the famously abundant nature of this national park, draw visitors from all over the island of Maui. The now dormant Haleakalā volcano formed the rugged mountain terrain around its crater, which stands in stark contrast to the lush sub-tropical forest below. Hike or drive to the peak to catch sunrise or sunset lights, and keep your eyes peeled for endangered species unique to this very park.
Once named America's best beach, this stretch of sand, just to the north of Lahaina, is the top choice for locals and tourists alike. Centuries ago Maui royalty retreated to these crystal blue waters for a break, and today it continues to feel fit for kings and queens. Swimming, sunbathing, snorkeling, paddle boarding - you name it, this beach has it all. The Ka'anapali Whaler's Village shopping complex and the two nearby golf courses offer even more opportunities for enjoyment.
The volcanic coastline of Maui is at its best in this glorious and remote state park. It is a highlight of the scenic Hana Highway, beloved for its mind-blowing hiking trails, panoramic views, and the unique black sand beach. Discover ocean caves, inlets, blowholes and the otherworldly beauty of Hawaiian landscape with a walk through Waianapanapa park. The name translates to "glistening water," and there is surely no shortage of it to be found here.
These Botanical Gardens are unique to the state of Hawaii, highlighting the natural world of the isolated archipelago. Unlike other such gardens around the world, Maui Nui focuses exclusively on local flora, rather than recreating alternative climates for foreign species in which to thrive. The goal here is to cultivate native and Polynesian-introduced plants - the plants that have called here home for centuries - to educate us about their relationship to Hawaiian economy and culture.
This flourishing valley at the heart of Maui boasts a great diversity of local flora and fauna, gorgeous hiking trails, and unique geological formations that will make your jaw drop. The incredible Kukaemoku, "Iao Needle," shoots over 1,000 feet skyward from the valley floor, a seemingly miraculous peak covered in luscious vegetation. Don't miss the chance of a hike through this unforgettable landscape.
Vacationers love to visit in the winter, from November to March, as the temperatures range from 81 - 84, though this season sees the most rain. Summer is relatively pleasant with little rainfall, though temperatures rise to 89.
Travelers will land at the local Kahului Airport at Keolani Place. The distance to the city center is 2.7 miles, which takes eight minutes. Take a taxi or grab an Uber because local buses do not allow passengers with large suitcases to board.
It's easy to get around Maui by car. Getting from Wailuku to Kahului is a 7 to 10 minute journey, using Lower Main Street and Kahului Beach Road.
Since Kahului is just one district on the island of Maui, travelers come from neighboring towns like Wailuku and Kaanapali and Haiku. Buses are shuttles that have a general boarding fare of $2. Routes come with a warning: you cannot carry a large suitcase or a surfboard on board.
For a comfortable stay in luxury surroundings, don't miss the Courtyard Maui Kahului Airport. You can also check into the Maui Seaside Hotel. Backpackers will love the Banana Bungalow Maui.
Kahului City Center - the main core of Kahului, this area has tons of amenities, homes, is close to the Kahului Harbor, and houses the University of Hawaii Maui College.
Ah Fong Village - Ah Fong Village is a quiet district, away from the center, where many long-term vacationers stay.
Kanaha - this district is home to the beautiful and serene Kanaha Pond State Wildlife Sanctuary.
Public transportation around Kahului consists of buses. The island is well connected but service is infrequent, especially on the weekends. A monthly pass costs $42.50 and a single fare, one way, for an adult is $2.
Hail any of the local taxis that charge by the meter. It's a flat rate of $5.25 to start and it's $2.50 per mile thereafter.
You can rent cars to check out the rest of Kahului and Maui from companies like Avis, Enterprise, and Alamo starting from $20 a day.
If you're in the mood for the hustle and bustle of shopping centers, check out the Queen Ka'ahumanu Center or the Maui Marketplace.
A gallon of milk is $1.52 and a dozen eggs will run you approximately $5.
If you want to try something hearty and Hawaiian, check out the low-key atmosphere and tasty food at Da Kitchen. Two can dine here for $23 over one dish because of generous portion sizes.