Top Five Family Adventures in Maui

These family adventures are not going to break the bank. After all, didn’t you spend enough money already flying over here, paying for a place to stay AND renting a car? There’s plenty of Maui adventure to be had that won’t cost a pretty penny. Our kids span the ages of 3 – 7, but we have done these adventures with infants and teenagers as well.

5. Explore the Iao Valley

  • The Iao Valley is wild, raw, wet Hawaii. You can explore Hawaiian gardens along a paved path, learn about the ancient Hawaiian culture, splash in the crystal clear (cold!) river, and hike for miles on various trails.
  • Bring cash – there’s an entrance fee to the park.

4. Drive the road to Hana

  • The road to Hana isn’t meant to be a sit-all-day-and-stare affair. Yes, the road is incredibly long and windy, but there are hundreds of adventures to be had at almost every turn.
  • If your rental car agreement allows for it, drive the whole loop around Haleakala (keep going from Hana and you’ll eventually arrive back in upcountry Kula). The landscape is unlike anything else and it’s truly a treat if you’re able to do it!
  • Our favorite spots:
    • Twin Falls
    • Ching’s Pond
    • Wainapanapa State Park
      1. Black Sand Beach
      2. Blowhole
      3. Cliff hiking
    • Red Sand Beach
    • Venus Pools
    • Seven Sacred Pools and trail in Haleakala National Park

3. Take up surfing

  • There are heaps of companies out there that will gladly teach the whole family how to surf. If you’re already familiar with the water, it’s also a great option to rent some boards, pack a picnic (avoid the hanger), and head to the water. Traditional surf boards are great, and SUP paddle boards are fun to learn on too. Often, we’ll grab two extra stable paddle boards, pile all the kids on them and paddle around for awhile, searching for whales and turtles and waves. Fun for everyone!
  • When to go: just after sunrise is pretty magical. That way you don’t have the whole day to think about it and chicken out. 😉
  • Our favorite places to surf, beginner – intermediate breaks:
    • Sugar Cove (in Kihei)
    • Laniupoko (almost to Lahaina)
    • Paia Bay (entering Paia town)
    • Puamana (along the ‘pali coastline between Ma’alaea and Lahaina)

2. Book a snorkel tour

  • Snorkeling is an adventure that spans the ages! Whether you’re 3 or 85, you can do it. Our kids practice in the bathtub well before we go on a trip so they are used to the mask. We also practice breath holds in the bath. We have a friend that can hold his breath over 4 minutes; we’re not quite there but we’ll keep trying.
  • There are several amazing places you can go snorkeling, but here are our favorites:
    • Olowalu
    • Honolua
    • Molokini
    • Lanai
    • La Perouse Bay
  • If you can, make a reservation with a boat tour and make a day of it! Tours typically take care of both breakfast and lunch which is a huge score with kids.
  • Our favorite boat tour companies:

1. Hike the Waihe’e Ridge trail

  • Trail stats: 4 miles round trip, approx. 1700ft elevation gain
  • This is one of our favorite family hikes on Maui! The views are mind-blowing.
  • Pack water, snacks, emergency kit, camera, shoes with good traction, and a positive attitude
  • Hike at sunrise for amazing views and minimal crowds