Maui In a Heartbeat
Maui in a heartbeat or more precisely, 59 pictures.
The fact is that it’s the first week of the new year. And I hope you had a wonderful time celebrating the holidays with family and friends but I think it’s about time we put a pause on the food posts just for now and take in those sunny rays of Maui’s spectacular sunsets. Bonus: if it’s 31 degrees where you live (like it is in Houston) pictures of Maui is what you need to warm you up!
This was our first trip to Hawaii, and after tons of back and forth, Anees and I decided to spend all five days on one island – Maui. And I am so glad we did! It would be challenging to fit it all into a shorter trip. A little R&R combined with lots of exploring was precisely what we needed before the holiday hustle and bustle.
For those that are interested, I’ll leave a few of our favorite things to do and places to eat on Maui.
But for now, sit back and just enjoy the warm, sunny vibes. 😎☀✌🏼
Not quite on Maui yet, this is right before we landed in Denver. 👆🏼
Clearly, we look our very best at 5 am!
Grand Wailea Resort and Beach Life:
Our favorite things to do on Maui:
- Explore the Haleakala Crater: A dormant volcano measuring 10,000 feet above sea level, it is Maui’s highest point. Most people suggest doing this around sunrise so that you can watch the sun peak out, but Anees and I both had decided before even leaving Houston that we would not attempt this. The drive is slightly dangerous to do in the dark and to get here from Wailea (where we were staying was an hour and a half with sunlight, I’d say it would be at least two doing this in the dark). Most people usually use a shuttle tour to do this from their hotel or stay near the crater the night before to make the drive more comfortable. We ended up making the trip as a day event and would recommend that if you also can’t be bothered to get up before the sun does!
- Surfing Goat Creamery: the cutest little farm to check out! These guys have tons of baby goats on site and offer a goat cheese tasting along with a tour of the farm. Admission is $12, and the goats are utterly adorable!
- Pipiwai Trail to Waimoku Falls: This one was a bittersweet one for me! Bitter, because it rained 90% of the time on our 2 1/2 hour (4-mile) hike and sweet because the views are spectacular. It starts with the Makahiku overlook which is the first picture of that waterfall you see above. Then comes the larger than life Banyan tree. Follow the trail into a bamboo wonderland and finally, if you make it that far, the Waimoku Falls. I certainly didn’t say it was worth it then mainly because I really couldn’t feel my toes or stop shivering but looking back, it’s an experience of a lifetime!
Maui’s Food Offerings:
WowWow Lemonade (Kihei): These guys have acai bowls and any lemonade you can think of! Both the strawberry lemonade and the watermelon basil sounded good to me so I asked if they’d make me a hybrid — strawberry basil. DO IT. It was terrific, strawberry basil deliciousness in every sip! They also have souvenir cups that they serve the lemonade in if you want something to take home with you.
Coconuts Fish Cafe (Kihei): These guys have two locations, and believe me when I say this place is oh, so good because we ended up going to both! The fish tacos are very different from what you’ve ever had before, and they are messy and worth every bite too. They loaded the tacos up with tons of fish and tender, sweet mango chunks. I also recommend the coconut shrimp here; tender sweet shrimp crusted with lots of shredded coconut.
Natcharee’s Authentic Thai Food (Kihei): This had to be the most delicious restaurant we ate at! This little hole-in-the-wall Thai restaurant is perfect for when you NEED your Thai food fix. We started with the Crispy Fish Mango Salad and guys; I can’t wait to make something like this for us. Crispy, crunchy fish on a bed of tangy and sweet mango salad — my mouth is watering just at the taught! I can’t take the credit for this one either, thanks to the people of Yelp, for always making the best recommendations. Thai Green Curry and the Pad Gra Prao were also notably tasty!
Star Noodle (Lahaina): Whatever you do, make a reservation before you go! The wait can get super crazy if you don’t. During peak season, it’s pretty common to hear a 3-hour wait time so before you even leave for vacation, figure out when you’re planning on going here. Also, get the garlic noodles if you’re someone who likes garlic the way we do! Might I also suggest the miso salmon — it’s perfectly cooked and goes well with the noodles!
Geste Shrimp Truck (Kahului): Our last meal on the island before we left for Houston and honestly, it was garlickyyyyyyyy! This is a food truck, pretty close to the airport and usually sells out before they close. The first time we went, they had sold out for the day so plan on going for an early lunch. Also, this place tends to get pretty busy around lunchtime so plan to go for an early lunch so you can beat the rush. Both hubby and I got the Hawaiian Scampi which is SUPER garlicky, but others often recommend the Spicy Pineapple flavor as well. Served with coconut rice and a traditional Hawaiian macaroni salad.
Other places to eat on Maui:
- Food Land (Kihei): Truth be told, this is a grocery store. But, but, but these guys also happen to offer some of the freshest and most extensive variety of Poke on Maui. It’s perfect to grab for lunch on the beach or to pop into a cooler for a day trip out somewhere. We liked the California Roll Poke and the Shoyu Ahi Poke. Be sure to sign up for their loyalty card (you just need to register your phone number) and the poke bowls are an affordable $6.99 for one type of $9.99 for two!
- 808 Deli (Kihei) – a great place to grab sandwiches, hot dogs or salads for a quick beach lunch! I especially loved their chopped salad with the walnut vinaigrette.
- Paia Fish Market Southside (Kihei): Go with grilled fish or some traditional fish and chips! This place has an outdoor patio that’s perfect to relax on while you grab dinner and watch that glorious Maui sunset!
- MonkeyPod Kitchen (Kihei): Unfortunately, we never made it to this one, but the ratings are awesome! They offer happy-hour with 1/2 priced apps and $10 pizzas. The menu also offers something for everyone, with tacos, salads, pasta, and seafood.
And that’s that! If you’ve been to Maui and have a recommendation on what to do or where to eat, feel free to leave it as a comment below.
Onto the next adventure!
I found your website because we recently ate at Star Noodle and my wife, who is not usually a fan of Asian cuisine, fell in love with the garlic noodles. I will be trying the recipe; I hope it’s close to the original.
My recommendation for your next Maui adventure ; Hali’imaile General Store in Makawao (upcountry). Make reservations here at the same time you reserve Star Noodle…very early. Pricey but wonderful – It’s worth the drive. If you go during the day, you can walk through the town (5 minutes away) – lots of cute shops. Also worth mentioning…Ululani’s Hawaiian Shave Ice – one of the tastiest dessert items I’ve ever had.