Blue skies, sandy beaches and pounding waves. A lavender farm, a swap meet and a sugar museum. A luau, happy hours and delicious restaurants. Maui has it all! I spent 13 days in Maui with my parents in March 2016 and loved every minute of it. There truly is something for everyone on this stunning Hawaiian Island.
We were staying at the Westin Ka’anapali Ocean Resort Villas, which is an absolutely beautiful property. If you have the opportunity to stay there you won’t be disappointed.
My Loves: What to Check Out
Alii Kula Lavender Farm, Kula
I LOVE lavender. It’s one of my favourite scents. But 45 different types of lavender? Are you kidding me? I thought there was just one! Despite visiting on a rainy day I was amazed at what I saw at the Alii Kula Lavender Farm. Guided tours are available but we explored on our own. The farm has pathway upon pathway surrounded by lavender plants as well as plants of many other varieties. I really enjoyed discovering the different types of lavender.
There is a cute little gift shop where you can buy everything from clothing to culinary lavender to lotions. And gentlemen, shea butter is NOT meant to be eaten (apparently my dad was not the first person to taste it by accident though!) They also sell drinks and sweet treats: both the lavender coffee and lavender scone with honey were delicious! I bought lavender spray as well as culinary lavender. I have used the culinary lavender numerous times to make Lavender Tea Cake which has been a total hit!
Maui Exposition, Kahului
On Saturday’s from 7am until 1pm this Lahaina swap meet has over 200 stalls selling food, souvenirs, clothing, accessories and more. It was quite crowded but there was ample parking so we found a spot right away. It was fun to browse around and sample some home-made goodies. My favourite? A maple bacon donut!
I bought a pair of sunglasses, jam made in Maui and a cool photograph of a Maui sunset skyline that is on metal. The prices were cheaper or comparable to other merchants.
Old Lahaina Lu’au, Lahaina
This lu’au was a fantastic; an experience that included fancy drinks, a pig roast and performances that told a cultural and historical story. When we arrived we were greeted with a fresh flower lei and a Mai Tai before we were led to our table. We were seated with two other parties for a total of eight of us. It was a nice opportunity to meet other travelers. Before dinner began there was time to enjoy some drinks while walking around the grounds. One of the coolest things was seeing the pig being unearthed!
Dinner was a buffet which included a wide variety of foods. I think everyone would find something they liked! I was encouraged to try poi, which is a paste made from taro root. I didn’t enjoy the texture or the flavour (it was pretty bland) but at least I can say I tried it! My absolute favourite item was Laulau which is pork wrapped in taro leaf. The flavour was incredible! The fresh fruit and banana bread was delicious and a tray of desserts which included variety of cake, squares and cookies was brought to our table. Each guest also received a mini banana bread to take home.
The actual entertainment was wonderful and told the story of Hawaiians through music and dance. I loved every minute of it!
D.T. Fleming Beach, Lahaina
If you’re looking for a beach that isn’t too busy but has decent waves for body/boogie boarding and surfing you might want to check it out. I decided I wanted to try boogie boarding. There are several places where you can rent boards but I picked one up at Walmart for around $20 – good enough for me! I also had fun just letting the waves crash over me.
This is one beautiful spot! We spent quite a while watching surfers tackle the breathtaking waves from our spot on top of the cliff. For a girl who has never even attempted to get on a surfboard, this was quite fascinating. When I saw the size of the waves I was shocked to see children surfing but I suppose when you grow up in Hawaii it’s just a way of life!
Alexander and Baldwin Sugar Museum, Kahului
We came upon this little gem when we were out for a drive on a rainy day and spotted a sign on the side of the road. Yes, it rains in Hawaii! And quite hard at times I might add! This museum is dedicated to the history of Maui’s sugar industry. The museum has six exhibits, each of which includes a plethora of artifacts, photographs and historical information about different aspects of the industry. Outside the museum you will also find equipment from the plantation.
My Loves: Where to Eat
Teddy’s Bigger Burgers
Burgers! Huge, juicy burgers! Teddy’s first location opened in 1998 and today this popular burger joint has several locations on the Hawaiian Islands, the US Mainland and Asian countries. Teddy’s menu also has other options including chicken burgers and salads, as well as an impressive selection of sides. Breakfast is also served daily.
Note: You should be able to find coupons in one of the free Maui guidebooks that you will see around the island
Aloha Mixed Plate, Lahaina
Aloha Mixed Plate is an eatery with a cool island vibe. The tables are all outside and if you’re lucky you will have a view of the ocean. The restaurant serves traditional plates similar to those plantation workers ate in the past. There are several different plates to choose from with your choice of seafood, chicken, beef, pork or a combination. Each is served with two scoops of rice and a scoop of macaroni salad. I ordered the “Aloha Mixed Plate” which included chicken, fish and beef. I enjoyed it immensely and would definitely order it again. My dad had “Locomoco” (hamburger patty and eggs) and my mom had “Teriyaki Beef” which they enjoyed as well.
Note: My parents have been back twice since then and enjoyed it just as much.
Kimo’s Maui, Lahaina
My Dad celebrated his 60th birthday while we were in Maui and he chose to go to Kimo’s for dinner. It did not disappoint! The fish of the day was snapper. I ordered it “Lobster Topped” and my dad ordered it “Baked Kimo’s Style.” Both were delicious. My mom ordered prime rib and to this date it remains the best prime rib she has ever had. We also received a complimentary Hula Pie because it was my dad’s birthday. It was AMAZING!!