The Best Part Of Maui To Stay
I always recommend staying in all parts of the island throughout your Maui vacation. This lets you experience more of Maui and spend less time in the car.
In this guide I explain the pros and cons of each area of Maui and then list the best places to stay in Maui for that area with all budgets in mind.
*I have sprinkled some affiliate links in this post. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases that gives me a small commission at no extra cost to you if you decided to make a purchase. All proceeds go to keep Jess traveling, coffee and let’s be real…probably wine . I thank you in advance.
Where To Stay In Maui: 4 Top Areas With Hotel Picks
Looking for where to stay in Maui Hawaii? Picking not only the right hotel, but area of the island is so important when planning the vacation of your dreams. From 5-star luxury resorts to secluded beach stays and budget options, well give you a tutorial to paradise. Join us for the best hotels and areas to stay in Maui Hawaii!
Mauis 5 Best Areas To Stay In
Now, lets take a look, in more detail, at the five best areas to stay in Maui. Each offers different attractions, activities, and natural wonders, so make sure you read each section carefully and pick the area thats right for you! keep in mind that Maui is one of Hawaiis most expensive islands, so make sure you plan ahead and set up the right travel budget.
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Wailuku Best Places To Stay In Maui On A Budget
Wailuku is a charming town situated in the centre of Maui. It is close to the islands airport and is its commercial centre as well as the seat of government. This bustling and boisterous town is packed with charming local shops and delicious cafes, making it a fantastic place to enjoy a day.
This Hawaii town also gets our vote for where to stay in Maui on a budget because it has a high concentration of hostels and affordable hotels. By staying in Wailuku, you can enjoy all the best activities and attractions the island has to offers while ensuring you dont blow your budget.
Kula To Get Away From The Hustle And Bustle Of The Busier Areas
Upcountry Maui doesnt get as much love as the coast, but Kula Town is easily one of the more popular destinations in the Upcountry.
As with the rest of the region, Kula is a largely agricultural area, and its daily commerce and interactions continue largely undisturbed by the intrusion of tourists.
Kula boasts a great harvest of strawberries and onions, and the fields make it good grazing land for goats and cows. A tour of a farm or a guided walk of a plantation isnt going to top the itinerary of most Hawaiian vacationers, but you might be surprised at how relaxing it can be.
Understandably, Kulas lack of a large tourist sector means its not exactly flush with hotels and hostels. There are certainly places to stay, but you might have to work a little harder to weigh your options.
Theres more to explore within the town. Kula has its own botanical garden which spotlights some of the rarer native plants on the island, but its also home to a lavender farm that offers tours to visitors.
In fact, visiting the local businesses is one of the most popular choices here. Whether youre curious about life on a dairy, in a winery, or at a farm, youll find people eager to open up their doors and take you on a guided tour.
Fundamentally, Kula is a town that has a similar tempo to Paia, although it trades in the laid back surf hippie vibes for a more eclectic working man aesthetic.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Maui
What is the best area to stay in Maui?
Kaanapali, situated in West Maui is the best area to stay during your visit, known for its resort area and many activities. Kaanapali has some of the best beaches and restaurants in Hawaii.
What is the best side of Maui?
The west side is the best side of the island, this area is very green and picturesque, with the West Maui Mountains to admire and tropical scenery wherever you look. West Maui has the perfect weather and best places to stay.
What you should not miss on Maui?
Maui is known for the best snorkeling so you should try that when you visit Maui next time. You will find a snorkeling activity on every side of the island, no matter where you stay on the coast.
What are the best luxury hotels in Maui?
Four Seasons Resort and Hyatt Regency Resort & Spa are two fantastic options. The most luxurious resorts are located in Waiea so if you are looking for more options. Definitely check out this area.
This has been a rollercoaster! I hope you enjoyed my post on where to stay on Maui, this amazing vacation spot, and now know which part of the island better suits you and which beach you should check out! There are so many options for where to stay on Maui, it can get overwhelming but I hope that I was able to help you decide.
I know Ive given you tons of info about accommodations and options on where to stay on Maui island already but, I highly recommend these 2 that are my all-time favorites and Mauis best offerings.
Where To Stay In Maui
First upMaui is a pretty big island and while theres two major areas where visitors stay, the island is divided into four main regions:
West Maui: Majestic and rugged, West Mauis mountains yield to beautiful white-sand beaches where youll find Mauis oldest resort areas. Kaanapali, Lahaina, Kapalua, and Napili are all in the same general area, but all have very different vibes. The west side is the most developed part of Maui and its a big draw for visitors.
South Maui: Mauis other major resort area is on the south side where the beaches tend to be flatter and wider than on the west side and the weather tends to be a bit hotter and drier. This is where the resort areas of Maalaea, Kihei, Wailea, and Makena are located.
One of the biggest questions I get asked about where to stay on Maui is whether to stay on the west side or the south side and its a pretty nuanced answer so you can read a full post about that question here.
East Maui/Hana: The most remote side of the island, East Maui is mostly referred to as Hana, as in the destination at the end of the Road to Hana. While this is arguably the most beautiful part of Maui, not many people stay here. This could be because its super remote . As you might expect, there arent many places to stay around Hana. There also isnt much to do. You know, apart from hiking to hidden waterfalls and what not. Read more about Hana here.
Now, heres the info you really want
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Where To Stay On Maui
For many travelers to Maui, choosing an accommodation is simply about finding a place to sleep at night. They assume they will spend most of their vacation outdoors, exploring beaches and volcanoes, and that where they stay wont make much of a difference. They book with whoever has the lowest price, and move on to planning other parts of the trip.
While we agree that most of your holiday in Maui will be spent outdoors, we urge you to think twice about where you stay. In fact, we consider it one of the most important things, because most people overlook the amount of time theyll spend at their accommodation. Price and convenience are important, but you shouldnt underestimate how much the location and atmosphere can impact a trip not to mention how a beautiful, beachside resort or a spacious, local vacation rental can set the tone for your holiday.
Being smart about where you stay will help you get the most of out your experience, and choosing the right type of lodging with the appropriate amenities will help you do everything you want to do.
Below, we go through the different regions of Maui to give you an idea of their individual pros and cons and the different types of accommodations available hotel rooms, vacation rentals, campsites, etc. to help you decide which is the best fit for you.
The Best Places To Stay For
These are the places we recommend to stay for families, beach bums, luxury seekers, backpackers, surfers, and active adventurers:
Maui is very safe and fit for families, but areas like Kaanapali, Wailea, and Khei are best set up for a multi-generational stay.
If beaches are all you want from your holiday, try Pia, Wailea, Kaanapali, or Khei.
Both Wailea and Kaanapali will make luxury seekers very happy.
Backpackers like to stay either in Wailuku, Pia, Lahain, or Khei.
Surfers will find the best home in Pia, Khei, or Lahain.
Active adventures will like Upcountry Maui for its access to the volcano, Khei for its central location, and Hana for its remoteness.
If you like this guide and are also visiting other islands we recommend the following accommodation overview:
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Best Airbnb In Maui: Private Condo In A Great Location
With white sands, crashing waves, and beautiful sunsets right outside the front door, youll be hard-pressed to find a better deal for the price. Split bedrooms and beach access make this ideal for a group looking to make the most of the waves.
Set nearly 3,000 kilometres from the west coast of North America, Maui is an island paradise best known for its towering palm trees, golden sand beaches, and shimmering turquoise waters.
Maui is the second largest of the Hawaiian islands and it is considered to be one of the most beautiful places in the world. It covers an area of 1,883 square kilometres and is divided into six districts which are further subdivided into a handful of charming small villages.
This guide will explore the five best areas to stay in Maui based on your travel interests and needs.
Set on the western shores of the island is Kaanapali. The best are to stay in Maui with a family, Kaanapali is packed with fun and adventure plus great food and postcard-perfect beaches.
Travel south along the coast and youll arrive in Lahaina. A lively and vibrant town, Lahaina is the best area in Maui to stay in for sightseeing, dining, shopping and exploring.
Continue heading south along the coast to Kihei. This bustling and energetic town is known for its eclectic nightlife scene. Here you can enjoy a few drinks on the beach or dance the night away at a seaside club.
Still not sure where to stay in Maui? Dont worry, weve got you covered!
Where To Stay On Maui: Everything You Need To Know About Choosing The Best Maui Accommodations
Our guide will help you choose where to stay on Maui. Discover the best areas, regions, and hotels on Maui for your next vacation.
From our experiences exploring the Hawaiian Islands, weve come up with all of the tips for finding the best places to stay in Maui. So whether youre visiting Maui with kids or as a couples getaway, our guide will get you settled in for the perfect island escape.
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Kaanapali Best Area To Stay In Maui With A Family
Kaanapali is one of the most famous places in Hawaii. It boasts almost five kilometres of pristine white sand and crystal clear turquoise waters and was once considered the best beach in the United States.
Today, Kaanapali is home to a number of world-class resorts and luxurious condos. It offers a variety of activities and attractions, perfect for visitors looking for an idyllic vacation in paradise. Here you can swim and splash in the waves or build sandcastles on the beach which is why Kaanapali is our top choice for where to stay in Maui for families.
Where To Stay In Central Maui
Youll likely crisscross Central Maui on your way to the airport and back from beaches in West and South Maui at a minimum. This is the middle of the island between the famous west coast and Hana Highway. Close to the airport with easy access everywhere.
But be sure to visit lush Iao Valley State Park here as well. The state park, just at the base of the West Maui Mountains, offers 400 acres of lush valley for hiking and the opportunity to ogle the famous Iao Needle, a particularly striking and thin mountain peak rising out of the valley here.
Cute little Wailuku is where Mauis county government is based. Youll fall in love with the adorable boutiques and mom and pop establishments that have been here for generations. Kahului is, of course, home to Mauis main airport, but also hosts a swap meet, the Maui Arts and Cultural Center, and the Maui Sunday market.
Pros and cons: If you can stay near the Iao Valley, this is an idyllic location for a base on Maui. You can conveniently access just about anywhere on island. Wailuku feels cozy. And budget travelers will enjoy the hostel scene here.
While Kahului is not a popular base for most visitors to Maui, it does make a great spot if youre looking to minimize drive time to spend more time on the Road to Hana or Mount Haleakala or need to be close to the airport for a flight.
On the other hand, this is not near any swimming beaches. Its more of an industrial area.
Here are my picks for Central Maui:
1. Hawaiian Dream Temple
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Where Not To Stay On Maui
Keep in mind: Be sure to do your research when it comes to both budget hotels and short-term rentals. Mold is a known issue on Maui at large and unless you are staying at an upper-end hotel its something to be aware of. Be sure to read detailed reviews of past travelers and pay close attention to make sure the place you book is clean. Also, be cautious of inexpensive places in Wailuku or Kahului, as there are a few rough neighborhoods in these areas. Just do your due diligence and read the reviews. If you are really on a budget, I would suggest going for a well-known hostel.
Other than that, Maui is generally very safe. Because of its diverse terrain and cultural experiences, its more about getting what you want out of where you stay. We hope our above descriptions help you narrow it down!
The Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas
Sitting upon approximately 26 acres of Kaanapali, the Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas is the place to be. In line with the exceptional reputation of Westin vacation properties international, this is one of the very best places to stay in all the Hawaiian Islands.
Guests will surely enjoy sleeping in the Heavenly Beds and awakening to the smooth rolling sounds of gentle Pacific Ocean waves tempting the shoreline. Whale watch from your own private lanai during the Winter months and enjoy all the wonderful advantages of oceanfront Maui luxury living. The Villas, are a mastermind of comfort. They are impeccably designed, and beautifully furnished with a long list of vacation amenities. Spa Helani at the Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas is one of the overall best spas in the Hawaiian Islands. Guests will surely feel revitalized and at ease while they enjoy their customized treatments. Plush accommodations most definitely surround you while enjoying all the superior spa services, with a multitude of massage and aesthetic offerings.
Guest will enjoy the amenities here with six heated lagoon pools surrounded with cabanas, four hot tubs, tennis courts, a 24-hour fitness workout studio, outdoor BBQ grill stations, three restaurants, and two markets, all in arms-reach.
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Things To See And Do In Paia
Lounge on the beach or hit the waves at Hookipa Beach, the windsurfing capital of the world.
Feast on a variety of American-style dishes at Charleys Restaurant.
Watch the windsurfers zip across the horizon at H.A. Baldwin Beach Park.
Chill out on the golden sands at pristine Lower Paia Park.
Explore the calm and relaxing grounds of the Paia Peace Stupa.
Indulge in incredible seafood dishes from local landmark Mamas Fish House.
Hop in the car and explore nearby natural attractions like Hana and Haleakala.
Enjoy a delicious meal at Café Mambo Cinema.
Hunt for treasures and souvenirs at the Swap Meet at Paia Bay.
Kihei Where To Stay In Maui For Nightlife
Kihei is a stunning town set on a nearly 10-kilometre stretch of coastline on Mauis southwestern coast. It is famous for being one of the sunniest and hottest places on the island, making it one of the best towns to stay in Maui for travellers looking to relax on the beach and soak up the sun.
Kihei is also our top pick for where to stay in Maui for nightlife. This stunning seaside town is home to the Barmuda Triangle, a boisterous and buzzing area of town that is packed with bars, restaurants, shops, and clubs. So whether you want to sit back and relax or party until dawn, youll love staying in Kihei!
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