5 Fun Maui Day Trips

5 Fun Maui Day Trips

These kid-friendly day trips offer some of the best sightseeing, hiking and exploring on the island.


By: Michelle S.

Maui is home to some of the most incredible scenes I have ever laid eyes on. From black-sand beaches to the crater of a dormant volcano, here are five Maui day trips you must not pass up.

What to Do in Maui with Kids

Twin Falls
Twin Falls is a set of waterfalls located on a working farm 35 minutes from the Kahului Airport. The Wailele Farm is home to many different crops such as sugar cane, coconut, passionfruit and banana, all of which are sold at their farm stand at the entrance of the hiking paths.

There are lower and upper falls. The lower falls are easily accessible at the entrance of the hiking path, and the hike to the upper falls is 1 mile round trip over moderate terrain. Hiking to the upper falls is worth the time and absolutely exhilarating once you arrive.

The hike to the upper falls is labeled as a “difficult” hike, and while I do agree that the trek to get to the falls can be treacherous at times, it is doable for a hiker as young as 7 years old. Be aware that a good pair of hiking shoes is recommended, and be prepared for wet feet.

My kids’ favorite parts were walking through streams and hopping over rocks to get to the falls. Once you get to the falls, you are able to take a dip in the chilly pool and stand beneath the flowing waters.

Road to Hana Tour
The road to Hana can be intimidating; it is roughly 65 miles of winding highway that weaves in and out of rainforests and cliffs and is home to many one-lane bridges. But don’t be afraid. The drive is incredibly beautiful, and if you spend some time experiencing the waterfalls, lush landscaping and roadside stands, you will find this drive is worth your while.

The drive takes a while, so start early and pack plenty of food and beverages as there aren’t many spots to stop on the highway. Be sure to enjoy some of the beautiful waterfalls; many of them can be found just steps from the road.

A must-see on this drive is the black-sand beach at Waianapanapa State Park. There are cliffs with blowholes, caves and an incredibly gorgeous black-sand beach with turquoise waters. Swimming is not recommended.

Some other incredible spots on the way are Twin Falls around mile 11, ‘Ohe’o Gulch around mile 42, and Wailua Falls around mile 45. But keep going – the city of Hana is reminiscent of old Hawaii, and it feels like time there has stood still. You will find the Hana Cultural Center and a general store. Be sure to head back to your hotel before dark, or you will find yourself driving back on the winding highway in the dark, which is not an easy feat.

Haleakala Crater
Haleakala Crater is a dormant volcano on Maui that spans 75 percent of the island. The tallest peak tops out at about 10,000 feet, and the temperature drops dramatically during the climb. The road to the summit is 30 miles long and slightly treacherous for those afraid of heights; however, the trek is worth it. On the climb you will find plenty of stunning sights, and you may even spot the illusive NeNe bird, a goose found only in Hawaii that is extremely endangered.

Once you reach the top, the beauty and scale of the crater is incredible. A rainbow of colors spreads in front of you, and when you realize that you are looking at the inside of a volcano, you will be left speechless at this natural wonder. If you are extra adventurous, head up before sunrise to see the sun come up, and then bike down the mountain.

Snorkeling in Maui at Molokini Crater
Molokini Crater is one of the best snorkeling spots on the island. It’s a crescent-shaped crater that is south of Maʻalaea Bay and home to crystal-blue waters, visibility more than 100 feet deep and more than 200 different marine species. The water is warm and calm, and you will find some of the most interesting fish you may ever see. If you are interested in snorkeling, Molokini is a must-visit destination. You will find many tour companies offer options to get you out there and will educate you on the ecology and history on the way out to sea.

Lahaina Town
Lahaina Town was once the capital of the Hawaiian kingdom in the mid 1800s and is steeped in history and culture. The streets are lined with fantastic shopping and unique restaurants. Spend the day shopping and eating your way down Front Street. Then spend the evening at the Old Lahaina Luau, arguably one of the best luaus on the island.

Maui holds a special place in my heart: We honeymooned there, baby-mooned there, brought our children there and witnessed friends’ nuptials on the sand. You will experience some of the most incredible beaches and find your aloha spirit the moment you step on the island. It is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful places on earth.

You may also enjoy:

7 Favorite Things to do in Maui with Kids

5 Ways to Relax on Hawaii’s Big Island

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Michelle writes for Hilton Mom Voyage. She and her family reside in a small town outside of St. Paul. They love the quiet their little city affords them but enjoy being just minutes from mostly anything they may need, including both Minneapolis and St. Paul. Her family includes her husband Brian, her 10-year-old Annika, her 8-year-old Bianca and her 7-year-old Bennett. In her professional life, she works at home both as a mom as well as a Silver Team Leader with Young Living Essential Oils.

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