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Tips when staying on the Island

Whether you enjoy just relaxing on the beach or hiking mountains, Maui has it all.
The West Side


The west side (or leeward side) of the island is where nearly every hotel and condo on the island is. This is not by accident as its dryer and sunnier on this side of the island with gentle waves and sandy beaches. Lahaina is the center for activity, the first Friday of each month there is a street faire. There are a number of great restaurants, check for happy hours.  For something more casual we like the Kimo's on Front street.  A local secret, get a peak a boo view of a great luau from Betty's Beach Cafe next to the Lahaina Shores Hotel. The nearly Whalers Village has a regular event calendar for free music, dancing and shows:  see http://www.whalersvillage.com/events.htm

The Windward side


Most visitors know this side of the island as where the airport is and the start of the road to Hana. However, for those that stay a while, there is a lot more to the side of the island home to most locals. Kahului hosts the main Maui hospital, the main community center (keep up on local concerts as surprisingly big names show up on Maui), the Saturday flea market, and of course Costco and Walmart as well as the Queen Ka’ahumanu Center, the only indoor mall on the island.  

Windward is also the gateway to Iao Valley Park, don't miss, beautiful and important place in Hawaiian history.  On the way make sure to drop into Maui Topical Plantation. Has a great zip line, wonderful outdoor restaurant, and off course, incredibly maintained tropical gardens.

Upcountry and all around


Probably my favorite part of the island outside of Kahana of course, is upcountry.  While you'll have to drive across the island to get there, its well worth it. If you're there at the right time, make sure to visit the local Makawao Friday street party (3rd Friday of each month) . 

 

For something really special take the time to drive a little further and visit the area around Kula. While there is hardly anything that looks like a town, there is the beautiful Kula lodge and the best gift shop on the island. Have outdoor lunch or dinner at the Lodge and see a part of Hawaii that is truely Hawaiian. 

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For something unique and different


I read somewhere that less than .02% of the population has ever been in a private aviation aircraft.  As an aspiring pilot I can tell you this is just criminal!  There is really no experience like flying.  If you ever have that dream, my good friends at Fly Maui can help you fulfill it. You don't need a license or anything to take a discovery or scenic flight. Unlike a Helicopter where you're just a passenger in the back, you can sit right up front and even control the plane in flight if you want. There really is nothing like flying a light aircraft, when in Maui you can zip over to Molokai or the Big Island for even more spectacular scenery. 

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