Maui Itineraries

Maui

Maui Itineraries

Maui Itinerary Suggestions

Valley Isle Itineraries

As the second-largest island in Hawaii, Maui is home to many beautiful splendors. Its natural beauties, warm and inviting beaches, and endless activities make it the place to be. Maui is the perfect island to explore if you enjoy snorkeling, hiking, basking in the sun, and observing nature’s handiwork.

Are you venturing to Maui for a multi-day adventure? Consider heading to the Hana Highway. You will enjoy the endless yet striking views of lush trees, impressive waterfalls, and the bright blue ocean. Have you ever heard of black sand? Waianapanapa State Park offers this unique sight, and it is a must-see feature of the island. Maui is an island of remarkable beauty that is intended to be traveled and admired.

How to use our Maui itineraries for your trip

Maui 'Pack-and-Go' Wayfinder Guides for daily excursions

Ultimately, we’ve designed our Maui itineraries around a set number of on-island Maui days: offering one, two, three, four, five, six, and seven-day itineraries for exploring the island, soaking in the best sights, and ensuring your precious time (and potentially money) on Maui are used wisely. We’ve tried to balance our itineraries between those who seek adventure and those looking to find a good beach and relax. Overall, we want your experience to be exactly what you’ve dreamed of when planning your Maui trip.

For each island, including Maui, we’ve attempted to split up the itinerary days by sorting attractions according to their geographic proximity; i.e., on West Maui day, you’d explore the best of west Maui’s attractions, beaches, and activities. Our itineraries are not meant to be followed consecutively necessarily, which would probably be exhausting, but instead as a grab-and-go resource for ‘mapping’ your trip - think of us as a Wayfinder’s guide to Maui. If you have four days on Maui, then selecting either our three or 5-day itineraries will likely work well for you, where you’d have an extra day in one case and need to trim off a day’s activities in another, respectively. We always like to travel by making day-by-day plans, putting the most important attractions and activities (the must-see and do) upfront, and if the weather doesn’t cooperate one of those days, we switch that day with another. That way, we always get to the important stuff first, and if we have to skip anything, it’s ideally the minor attractions only. 

We’ve provided all Maui directions via Google Maps when possible, as Google Maps works on all platforms and across all devices. You should be able to pop the directions into your phone or tablet and go. To help you visualize each day’s itinerary, we’ve also provided overview maps that help you get your bearings.

On-page resources for Maui...

Why use our Hawaii Itineraries for your visit to Maui?

For nearly 20 years now, we've been visiting Maui and making detailed notes about what Maui's highlights are and what visitors like yourself simply must-see based on the limited time you've allocated for each Hawaiian Island.

It isn't easy and can even be overwhelming to start planning a trip to Hawaii. One quick look on our website, and you'll soon discover there are hundreds of possibilities; a variety of sights to see, a plethora of beautiful beaches to choose from, and a diverse set of incredible trails that criss-cross each of the islands. Honestly, you could spend months on Maui and not see and do it all.

Having a reliable guide, that's key. We'd genuinely love to be your guide to the island of Maui during your stay, and we hope you find our itineraries resourceful while planning your trip.

Overview of Maui - the ‘Valley Isle’

Maui is also the second-largest landmass in the Hawaiian island chain, which consists of eight major islands and 124 islets. The archipelago is made up of numerous volcanic islands in the central Pacific Ocean stretching in a 1,500-mile crescent from Kure Island in the northwest to the Big Island of Hawaii in the east, encompassing an area of 6,459 square miles. The eight major islands at the eastern end of the chain are, from west to east, Niihau, Kauai, Oahu, Molokai, Lanai, Kahoolawe, Maui, and the Big Island of Hawaii.

Maui is composed of two major volcanic areas, the older and extinct West Maui Mountains and a very expansive volcano named Haleakala on the eastern side of Maui. In between the two is a valley filled with deposits. The center of the island is where Maui earns its nickname the "Valley Isle." The isthmus stretching from Haleakala to the West Maui mountains is likely where you'll begin your journey- at the airport.

The island of Maui features an abundance of beaches, especially along the West Coast. Sun is abundant here, too, as the volcanoes in the center of the island block the majority of precipitation from ever reaching the leeward side of the island. While portions of Maui's west coast are often dry and barren, the eastern portions of the island are a lush and green paradise boasting waterfalls in numerous valleys. Many visitors enjoy the Hana Highway (aka The Road to Hana) as it winds its way along the coast to the sleepy town of Hana in the bay.

Accommodations on Maui & Where to Stay

On Maui, you’re probably staying on either the west side of the island in Lahaina or Ka’anapali, or you’re accommodations are located instead on the south shore, in either Kihei or Wailea. If you haven’t yet decided where to stay on Maui, we can help with that too, be sure to check out our Where to Stay on Maui article for the best tips and suggestions on where to book your stay. Don’t worry if the two locations above aren’t you’re starting point, as there are a number of accommodations, b&bs, inns, etc scattered across the island. Regardless of where you’re staying, we’ll still help you plan accordingly.

Be sure to also read our Best time to Visit Maui article for an in-depth look at which time(s) of the year is best for your travel party on Maui.

Getting Around Maui

On Maui, a rental car is definitely the best option for getting around the island and viewing all the sights we detail in our itineraries. The rental rates in Hawaii are often some of the cheapest anywhere in the world because the competition is fierce.

There is no reliable bus service on the island and taxi services are both expensive and illogical for sight-seeing purposes.

Summary of what to pack on your Maui trip

Regardless of how much you’ve traveled in the past and where you’ve been, there is one good rule to follow when coming to Hawaii, leave as much as you can at home. Seriously, bring only what you’ll need during your stay and nothing more. For starters, schlepping around three suitcases is NOT what you want to be doing after getting off a long plane ride. Next, consider that long pants, dress clothes, and anything else formal really have no use in Hawai‘i (unless you are staying in a very exclusive resort). Chances are a pair of shorts and an old Aloha shirt are all you’ll need for even some fine dining.

As far as clothing goes, that’s usually a few pairs of shorts, several T-shirts, sandals or flip-flops (slippahs as Hawaii residents call them), and a good visor or hat, anything made of a cotton blend is usually good. A light jacket might also be nice for those visits to higher elevations.

With the motto, “less is more” in mind, here are a few other items to bring. Sunblock (the UV on Hawai‘i is typically 10+ in the spring, summer, and fall), a backpack (for any hikes) and a water bottle, slippers (flip flops, shower shoes, zoris), mask, snorkel, and fins (or rent locally instead), two bathing suits (one to wear while the other dries) and a cover-up, your phone or a camera, lightweight raincoat or poncho (for mountain/rain forest hiking), bug spray with DEET (for any forest hikes), flashlight (if the sun goes down before your hike ends or for night walks on the beach), hiking boots and hiking rods, and most importantly a list of all your troubles to leave behind.  For more information on what to pack, seeing our What to Pack When Visiting Hawaii article.

Maui Highlights:
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