Maui. A legendary place that most people have heard of. Many people dream of coming here, but only see it in the movies. Others make it here for a week vacation, or a honeymoon, & almost always…people come back. Some of us, like me, came here a few times & decided to make the big move & call it home. After 8 years of living on Maui, I can’t say I’ve had any regrets. I started an event production company & organized over 50+ music events with live bands, DJ’s, live painters, dance performances, & a VJ. We had a stellar jolly good time almost every show (often sold out!), as people love to get down on the islands! Compared to all the other islands, minus Oahu, Maui has got a lot going on for its size! Music events, theater, art galleries, DJ beach dance parties, silent headphone rave’s & the annual Art=Mixx event that kind of sums it all up to let you know the verdict = MAUI IS NO KA OI (the best)!
:: Music Venues ::
Charley’s: 142 Hana Hwy, Paia. website
This place is a local legend in itself. Willie Nelson used to be co-owner before he sold his share. I saw him perform there once to a crowd of 200 of us lucky locals that got in! There are many good live bands & DJ nights at this little joint located just a few hundred meters from the ocean in the little ole town of Paia. Its got a country & western theme, but don’t let that fool ya…its more surfer-dude/beach-babe crowd then anything. One of my highlights here was November 2016 organizing the Charley 2na show (from Jurassic 5) to a sold out crowd! Mainly Fridays & Saturdays for music events, as well as Monday open mic nights is where its at. As far as their food, they serve succulent sushi, burgers/fries, pizza, pasta & have quite a good chef in the house always adding new delights to the menu. It’s a great place to just get a beer & chill as well. Like Cheers…it is an ”everybody knows your name” kind of a bar.
South Shore Tiki Lounge: 1913 S Kihei Rd, Kihei. website
This place is located in “The Triangle” – a place locals refer to because of 3 main music venues within a few hundred feet of each other (this one, Ambrosia + Threes). South Shore Tiki Lounge is a cute little Hawaiian themed restaurant with plenty of tiki torches & a tropical vibe. There is an outdoor area with live music and an indoor area for dining as well. According to their website they offer this for you music lovers:
“Live music every day by Maui’s most talented musicians 4-6pm. Music & Dancing every night from 10pm-Close.”
MACC: 1 Cameron Way, Kahului. website
Maui Arts & Community Center hosts many big concerts, theater & festivals. The one you definitely do not want to miss is thrown 2-3x a year…an amazing party called ArT=Mixx! This is by far the best of the best of Maui’s talented musicians, bands, DJ’s, VJ’s, dancers & artists all in one space! It’s Burning Man inspired culture, if that means anything to you. It should! It means it’s FUN x100, so go! See Facebook page for upcoming Art=Mixx events: https://www.facebook.com/ArtMixxMaui/
*That is actually me DJ’ing on the right, with Larry Fitzpatrick on congas. Biggest crowd I’ve performed to yet, 3,000+ !!!
Vibe Bar & Nightclub: 1913-H S Kihei Rd, Kihei. website
This venue is new, since I left Maui. I have heard good things. The calendar shows all DJ’s every night, so not sure if there are live bands too. This same block has South Shore Tiki Lounge mentioned above, as well as Amnesia & a few other bars.
:: Vegetarian & Vegan Restaurants ::
Alive and Well: 340 Hana Highway, Kahului.
Health food store with an amazing organic deli. www.aliveandwellinmaui.com
Choice Health Bar: 1087 Limahana Place 1A, Lahaina.
100% Vegan incredible smoothies, acai bowls, veggie burgers, amazing salads, etc www.choicemaui.com
Down to Earth: 305 Dairy Road, Kahului.
Hawaiian Health food store chain with a large all vegetarian deli, smoothies, deserts. www.downtoearth.org
Flatbread: 89 Hana Highway, Paia.
Amazing local organic pizza restaurant with wood oven & vegetarian menu options. www.flatbreadcompany.com
Hawaiian Moons Natural Foods: 2411 S Kihei Road, Kihei.
A full service health food store with salad bar and deli. www.hawaiianmoons.com
Mana Foods: 49 Baldwin Avenue, Paia.
Absolutely, hands down the best health food store on island! Best prices that are similar to mainland prices for some products, & an incredible deli as well! www.manafoodsmaui.com
Maui Kombucha: 810 Kokomo Rd, Suite 136, Haiku.
Kombucha, as well as Vegan and Vegetarian meals, snacks & smoothies! www.mauikombucha.com
Maui Tacos: Located all over the island.
Mexican food. Tex-mex that is. I go here when I’m not around the health food stores. Good for a quick burrito fix. www.mauitacos.com
Monsoon India: 760 South Kihei Rd, Kihei
Indian food with many veggie & vegan options. Great restaurant for a romantic date. Go for the amazing sunset view, or at night when they light up tiki torches! www.monsoonindiamaui.com
Polli’s Mexican Restaurant: 1202 Makawao Ave, Makawao.
Mexican food that is large in portion, done right & many vegetarian options! www.pollismexicanrestaurant.com
Rodeo General Store: 3661 Baldwin Avenue, Makawao.
A small grocery and bakery with a deli that includes vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free items. Smoothies, coffee, salad, sandwiches, beer, they have everything you need!
Veg-Out Restaurant: 810 Kokomo Rd., Haiku.
This all vegetarian little restaurant packs a punch for its size! Salads, Wraps, Pizza, Pasta, Mexican, Italian, Thai, and Indian food options. www.veg-out.com
:: Fun Things TO DO ::
The best thing is to get the book: Maui Revealed – you can then locate the spots i mention below on their maps:
For jungle vibe and waterfalls:
One favorite place is 7 Sacred Pools in Kipahulu. It is the most jungly area. If you camp at the park there you can go hike up across the street through a huge bamboo forest and see a great waterfall about 300 feet high! Highly recommended! About 45-60minute walk.
Twin Falls is amazing (touristy) but beautiful hike to different pools!
On the way to Hana there is a lot of nice views and great falls/pools,
Not to be missed: Waiʻānapanapa State Park & Venus Pools!
:: Which neighborhoods to stay? ::
Maui has a few choices for you. North Shore if your really into surfing & the vibe of smaller old towns & less resorts. Westside near Lahaina & Kaanapali if you prefer the 4 & 5 star resorts & high end AirBnB’s in that area. Southside near Kihei or Makena/Wailea if your into the dry desert beach action over there. Explore AirBnB & check out the flats, studios, beach homes & amazing Maui magic places you can stay!
Book your AirBnB there & receive $40 free credit (see my blog on how to do this by creating a new account with alternate email):
:: Camping options ::
Camp Olowalu :: best camping spot on island! Cabins, Tents, Showers, Kayak rentals, car camping right on the beach! https://www.campolowalu.com/
There are only few places to camp on North Shore. One is what people call “Airport Beach” as its literally minutes from the airport, official name is Kanaha Beach. Totally free to stay there, no registration needed. Its a mix of windsurfers/kite-surfers & homeless people by the way, wouldnt leave any possessions in tent during day but tent should be fine. Lovely beach!
*my favorite camping is at 7 sacred pools area past Hana on ocean for $5 night (actually, you can show up past 6pm or so & nobody there to collect, many do this, no worries).
**contact Maui state park office and rent a cabin in Wainapanapa State Park for about 40 bucks a night and they are pretty slick!
:: Random Other Stuff ::
1) Facebook Groups: Maui NightLife and Entertainment & Hawaii For The International Traveller
3) Going to the Big Island? Check out this home on the dried lava beds just 1.5 miles from the active lava, #1 tourist destination! Click here!
4) This guy created a map with lost of useful stuff that is really useful for travellers! Click here!
:: Random Photo Of The Week ::