9 Unusual Things to Do on Maui
The best things to do on vacation aren’t always the most well-known things to do. For me, the more uncommon and off-the-beaten path the activity is, the better. If you prefer to find non-touristy things to do in Hawaii and want to go where Maui locals go, try some of these on your next trip to Maui.
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Discover this west coast hidden beach
One of the best things to do in Maui is to discover a new beach each day. All Hawaiian beaches are public by law, but finding the public-access points can be kind of tricky. That is what makes Oneola Beach such a secluded spot. Also known as Ironwoods Beach, this pristine stretch of sand can only be found by following a small footpath within a gated community. With no large hotels or commercial properties insight, you might just find you have this entire beach to yourself. It has great waves for body surfing.
Visit a surfing goat dairy for lunch
Get local and go upcountry. Spend the day with Maui Craft Tours sampling tasty treats and beverages from some of Maui’s finest purveyors. Begin the day by meeting Maui Tropical Plantation. There you will grab a cup of the island’s freshest roasted coffee at the Mill House, then head out to take a tour, feed the goats, and have a farm-to-table lunch at the Surfing Goat Dairy. End the day with a stop at MauiWine and a tasting at the Hali’Maile Distilling Company. This Taste of Upcountry Tour also includes a 20% discount on food, cocktails, and beer at The Mill House.
Sip coconut toasted suds
The Maui Brewing Company is not your ordinary brewpub. They have unique brews like dark porters flavored with hand-toasted coconut and hints of mocha, pineapple wheat beers, and citrusy IPAs. It is not just the beer that is homemade, either. Enjoy fresh island cuisine at either their Lahani or Kihei restaurants. They even make their own colas, ketchup, and mustard as well. While you are there, grab a four or a six-pack or growler of fresh brew to go!
Find Charles Lindbergh’s gravesite
Most people know that Charles Lindbergh was the first man to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean. What you might not know is that this notorious aviator is buried at Palapala Ho’oomau Church on the east side of Maui.
After you have splashed around in the Seven Sacred Pools (Ohe’o Gulch) in Hana, continue on eight miles to this tropical paradise. Save your picnic lunch and eat here in the beautiful gardens surrounding the church. The Charles Lindbergh gravesite is incredibly quiet and peaceful. This is one of the more unusual things to do on Maui, and you likely won’t see many tourists here.
Visit a lavender farm
One of the more unusual things to do in Maui is to go upcountry. Set on 13.5 acres on the mountainside, the Ali’i Kula Lavender Farm offers guided tours and gourmet picnic lunches. Wander the paths through the lavender fields and stop into the shop on your way out to bring home lavender honey, chocolate truffles, soap, or body butter.
Sip organic vodka on a mountain
Ocean Organic Vodka is made locally from organic cane sugar and ocean mineral water. Visit Ocean Vodka Organic Farm and Distillery to see how this high-end vodka is produced on a beautiful farm upcountry in Maui.
Feast at the food trucks on lower Honoapiilani Highway
Food trucks seem to find safety in numbers. By congregating together in one place, it makes them a foodie destination. While the food truck lot across the street from Costco in Kahauli is well known, it is worth visiting the lesser-known ones as well.
Maui locals know that the food trucks on Lower Honoapiilani Highway at Papalaua Street are a great place to find tasty eats. There are various food trucks assembled in the parking lot with picnic tables and lights strung around the field for ambiance. Feast on local fare from Pizza Connection Maui, Ba Gul Ba Gul, Wings, Thangs Comfort Food, Teppanyaki-2-Go, and more.
Seek out locally grown food
Located at the Kula Malu Town Center, the Upcountry Farmer’s Market has been around for 40 years. Listen to Hawaiian music on Saturday mornings from 7 am – 11 am while you shop for locally grown bananas, papayas, potatoes, rice, and other fruits and vegetables. You will also find lots of raw and vegan foods. Bring a sweater, as it can be a bit cooler in the mornings upcountry.
Canvas the local art scene in Maui
If it is Friday, it is time to party in Maui. Each week one of five towns (Wailuku, Lahaina, Makawao, Kihei, and Lana’i) hosts a party for locals and visitors to explore the vibrant art scene. The Maui Friday Town Parties, as they are known, highlight fantastic artists, great food, local vendors, and music. It is a great opportunity to stroll through town before or after dinner and stop into one of the many local galleries.
What do you think are the most unusual things to do on Maui?
Sadly I missed out on Maui when I visited Hawaii last year but it looks like an amazing island to visit. I would have expected there to be a lavender field though!
Upcountry, where the Lavender Farm is located, is a totally different part of Maui.
Great ideas! I love Maui and will def try out some of these ideas next time we visit!
What is your favorite thing to do on Maui? We love learning about new places.
I love any adventurous place filled with trees and flowers! I want to explore the lavender farm for sure. There is a pure pleasure in touching them and smelling them in real. Thanks for writing about this. Bookmarked!
I am glad you found it useful and hope you can use some of these tips if you get to Maui!
Heading to Maui for my grand girl’s 16th birthday! Thank U for the valuable info. Seven days to explore. We are ALL very excited!!
Very exciting for you and your granddaughter. Where are you staying?
Hi! Very curious how you enter a gated community to get to that beach. Do you hop the fence?
All beaches in Hawaii are public. There is no gate on the path down to Ironwoods beach. Sorry if the photo is misleading.
I loved the Ali’i Kula Lavender Farm. I recently spent 10 Days in Maui, so it gave me plenty of time to see all the cool not so touristy stuff. You have a great list.