Lahaina is a town in Western Maui that has about 13,000 residents and no shortage of beaches nearby. When you say Lahaina Beach, you have to ask yourself which one: Kahekili Beach Park, Baby Beach, Honokowai Beach, Hanakao’o Beach, Ukumehame Beach,
Makila Beach, or Wahikuli State Park. But all these beaches have two things in common:
a fantastic place to swim and snorkel and beaches that are generally protected somewhat from the fierce winds that plague other beaches. And it is generally much less crowded. All of which makes the beaches of this area one of the most underrated but go-to destinations for savvy travelers.
Where are the Beaches at Lahaina
Lahaina lies on the Western Border of Maui is around 15 miles from Kahului Airport.
The beaches themselves, stretch up and down Highway 30, and the driving time is about
20 minutes if you wanted to stop at each and every beach.
Why are Lahaina Beaches Popular?
Great, sandy beach frontage, fantastic snorkeling, excellent beaches for challenging surfing, cliff diving off a lava flow at Black Rock Beach (Ka’anapali Beach,) gentle,
calm waters for small children at Pu‘unoa and Mala (Babies Beach,) paddle boarding, sea turtles, spinner dolphins, diving tours, all giving an amazing experience, and each with it’s own charm and characteristics.
Rest assured, there are plenty of hotels in the Lahaina area, with everything from
four and five-star hotels, in the $300 to $500 a night, to 2-star hotels, which will run you around $150 per night. Most hotels offer a local site map on their websites.
What To Do In Mauna Kea?
Of course, the primary activity is water sports, and Lahaina beaches offer a tremendous variety.
For example, Makila Beach, also known as the Shark Pit due to the numerous, but rather harmless reef sharks that hang about, is a happening place, primarily for expert surfers only. Meanwhile, Pu‘unoa and Mala is a very popular place for families to bring their young children because of the protective reef and the shallow water, hence no big waves or shocks for the young ones in the water.
What makes the Lahaina beaches so special is that many of them are in State Parks and are protected from civilized encroachment, yet the same beaches, for the most part, are with walking or near driving distance of restaurants, food stores, and the city, so you get the best of both worlds, while never feeling overcommercialized. But be prepared to eat out at the park picnic tables.
Other activities in Lahaina, besides shopping and dining include:
- Banyan Tree Park
- A visit to a working coconut farm
- The Acid War Zone Hike and it’s amazing blowhole
- Luau shows
- Boat Dinner Cruises
- Sailing trips
- Dolphin and whale watching
In addition to these activities, for the golfer, there are four golf course within a short distance of Lahaina, the Kaanapali Royal Golf Course, the Bay Course, which has hosted over 20 PGA golf tournaments, the Kaanapali Kai Golf Course, and Kapula Golf.
All four of these courses offer stunning views and exceptionally challenges due to the ocean winds. If you have ever watched a PGA tournament on TV where pros were putting
on a huge green adjacent to the sea and wished you could be there when in Lahaina, this is your chance.
Parking at Lahaina Beaches
As you’ve no doubt guessed if you didn’t already know, no matter which beach you go to, public parking is limited. You probably have a better chance of getting parking at on of the State Park beaches, but even then, the early bird catches the worm is certainly an adage for Lahaina Beach Parking.
Expect to pay a decent amount for parking, with the saving grace is the fact that
the more you pay, generally, the better the facilities are for your family to use.
If the women in your family refuse to use a port-a-potty, try to find a facility that
at least offers clean restrooms and perhaps a bit of comfort food.
How to get to Lahania?
Most people fly into Kahului Airport which is about a 20-minute drive by taxi and should run you around $30 one-way. Many of the four and five-star hotels have a shuttle bus to and from the airport for a nominal fee.