· Travel,Luxury

Aloha again from Kendall on Maui!

As you saw last week, there is no denying that Maui has some of the best resorts in the USA, just perfect for lounging by the beach or pool and truly getting into a relaxing vacation spirit. However, by just stepping outside of your resort a long list of incredible opportunities opens up to explore what the island really has to offer. One of the biggest suggestions I have for anyone traveling to any of the Hawaiian Islands is to rent a car. Transportation is limited if you do not have access to a car, and it gives you the freedom to explore as you please.
During my two weeks on Maui earlier this month, I was able to experience some of the best activities on the island.

This week’s top five is my Top Five Favorite Maui Activities

1. Trilogy Catamaran Excursions
While there is a long list of boat charters and at-sea excursions to choose from in Maui, Trilogy truly is top notch. Not only do they provide amazing meals and drinks on board, but their friendly and enthusiastic staff push the experience over the top. I had the opportunity to enjoy the sunset sail as well as the half day snorkel sail to Molokini Crater and Turtle Town. A member of the crew stays in the water while everyone snorkels (yes, that's me in the photo) and they provide information on any sea life you want to learn more about. It's always informative, fun, and perfectly social distanced with less than half of the boat’s capacity currently allowed on board making it the perfect activity for all ages and group dynamics.

2. The Upcountry
One of my favorite day trips on Maui will always be traveling to the upcountry. We split our upcountry adventure into two days on this trip because there was so much we wanted to see and do. I was able to experience Surfing Goat Dairy Farm (a great short tour with goat cheese tasting), Maui Wine, Ulupalakua Ranch, Ocean Vodka, and Maui Pineapple Tours. The upcountry is a nice change of pace from the beach and can be reached in no longer than an hour and 15-minute car ride from the main resort areas on the island. Not to mention it provides the best views of the mountains and ocean together.

3. Luaus
Luaus are of course one of the most popular activities to attend when visiting any of the Hawaiian Islands, and for good reason. Luaus showcase traditional Hawaiian dancing, music, clothing, and food. Unfortunately, due to Covid-19 restrictions, many of the best luaus have not opened back up yet. Two resorts that are performing their luaus are the Wailea Beach Resort by Marriott and the Andaz Maui resort. My best advice is to go with an open mind, be prepared to learn about Hawaiian culture, and definitely go hungry!

4. Whale Watching (below)
If you are not lucky enough to see whales on your Trilogy catamaran, booking a specific whale watching excursion is well worth it. Whale season in Hawaii lasts from the end of November into April. I was there at the beginning of December and we could see whales almost every day from our balcony. By going whale watching with an expert, you are far more likely to see them up close and learn a lot more about the species in general.

5. Local Towns
A particularly good reason to rent a car is to be able to explore all the local towns on Maui. Every town is so different and has its own specific charm. Two of my personal favorite towns are Lahaina and Paia (above). Many boats leave out of the harbor at Lahaina (below), so it is usually a good town to explore on a day when you have a boat excursion as well. There are many small towns in the upcountry that are fun to get out and visit on a little break from driving. This is such a great way to talk to locals, find your new favorite local restaurant, and overall become more immersed in the true Hawaiian culture.

I was especially impressed during my trip by all the health and safety precautions taken by all resorts, restaurants, and tour companies. We felt incredibly safe the whole time as social distancing was taken seriously and enforced everywhere. Although it was a much different experience than my past Hawaii trips, I was happy to be there and regain a bright ray of hope for travel in 2021 and beyond.

If you are inspired by Maui and are ready to start planning we would love to help create a magical Maui adventure. Click HERE to get started.

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