Welcome to the 2nd edition of our #NoReceptionParents series where we feature real parents in our community of adventurers. Through their stories, we hope families can learn, gain confidence and be inspired as you plan your next family vacation! If you have a favorite memory/trip you'd like to share, please reach out to us at: email@example.com.
In today’s post, Christie and Andrew will be touring us through Maui, Hawaii. Hawaii is the most frequently mentioned destination whenever new members join our Clubhouse community on Facebook. Maui also holds a special place in our hearts because the idea for No Reception Club was born during our 5-hour flight from SF to Maui!
As experienced travelers, we’re excited to share Christie and Andrew’s top recommendations to having an amazing time in Maui with your little one(s):
- Days 1-2: South Maui (Kihei / Wailea)
- Day 3: Pā'ia + Haleakalā
- Days 4-5: West Maui (Central + North Kaanapali)
- Days 6-8: Road to Hana
Days 1-2: South Maui (Kihei / Wailea)
Things to do: You need at least a couple days to soak in the beautiful beaches in South Maui. Located between Kihei and Wailea, we recommend Keawakapu Beach for its amazing views, relatively calm waters that are ideal for little ones testing the waters for the first time, and super importantly, convenient parking. Equally stunning and perfect for little ones is Wailea Beach, which also has the added bonus of the stroller-friendly (!!) 3.2-mile walk (round trip) on Wailea Beach Path.
Places to eat:
- Food: South Maui Fish Company food truck (try the poke + fish filet), Kitoko Maui food truck (try the bento), The Market Maui (amazing sandwiches), Morimoto Maui (for a fancier sushi meal with amazing views), Ka’ana (for a fancier meal featuring Hawaiian food)
- Drinks: Maui Brewing Co (sit down for a beer or buy some to go!)
- Coffee: Kraken Coffee, Akamai Coffee
- Groceries: Foodland in Kihei (check out the poke)
Beers at Maui Brewing Company
Day 3: Pā'ia + Haleakalā
Things to do: Spend the morning in Pā'ia, a hip little surf town (25-30 minutes drive from Kihei/Wailea) with some great food options, cute shops, and galleries. Then head over to the very closeby Baldwin Beach Park to relax and watch the surfers. After grabbing lunch either in Pā'ia or along the way (see “places to eat” below), head south toward the Haleakalā National Park to experience the truly awe-inspiring, third largest volcano in Hawaii (~1.5 hours drive from Kihei/Wailei). Explore the park with your little one(s), while making sure you are well positioned to witness the unforgettable sunset from the Kalahaku overlook or the summit. Definitely plan ahead for this part of your day – pack plenty of food and water beforehand as you won’t be able to purchase anything there, and have ample extra clothes for when temperatures drop in the evening!
Places to eat:
- Breakfast in Pā'ia: Paia Bowls (acai bowls)
- Lunch: Paia Fish Market (the name says it all); or on the way to Haleakalā, grab pizza from Marlow + beer from Mahalo Aleworks just next door.
- Dinner: Pack a picnic dinner to bring to Haleakalā!
Days 4-5: West Maui (Central and North Kaanapali)
Things to do: A day (or two!) at Kaanapali Beach is well worth it. Besides spending hours enjoying the beach itself and its myriad of available activities depending on your interests, we really recommend walking along the scenic and stroller-friendly (!!) Kaanapali beach walk. There are lots of convenient and great food options and shops in the area too. During your second day in the area, head to Kapalua Bay Beach for a day of swimming, snorkeling, and access to the also incredibly scenic ~1.76 mile Kapalua Coastal Trail (warning: NOT 100% stroller-friendly) but definitely kid-friendly and doable with a baby carrier! In the afternoon, head over to Makaluapuna Point (~3 minutes drive from Kapalua) to take in a memorable view of crashing waves before heading to dinner.
Optional Detour: Waihee Ridge Trail is a further drive away. A challenging hike (4 miles) but the views are absolutely breathtaking!
Waihee Ridge Trail
Places to eat:
- Lunch: Leilani’s on the Beach (think: fresh fish + local produce/meat), Burger Shack
- Dinner: Huihui (upscale beachfront restaurant featuring Hawaiian food + live music)
Days 6-8: Road to Hana
Things to do: The Road to Hana is one of the most recommended adventures in Maui. The journey is a 65-mile highway with over 600 turns, 59 bridges, and more waterfalls + beaches than you can possibly visit in one go. We highly recommend that you stay ~2 nights in Hana as it makes everything way easier when you’re driving / visiting places during off-peak times (and you’re also not trying to rush through all the sights and have a massive amount of time in the car).
On the day we left to Hana, we grabbed lunch in Kahului, and mostly drove straight to the hotel in the afternoon with a quick pit stop in Ke’anae (total driving time = 2 hours). On the next day, we headed to Pipiwai Trail first thing in the morning where we had the whole place to ourselves. It’s a 1.8 mile trail alongside 7+ pools, waterfalls, and an immense, super zen bamboo forest. The waterfall at the end is the ultimate prize. We also checked out ‘Ohe’o Gulch, Koki Beach and Hamoa Beach with the latter being our absolute favorite. On our final day, we took a more relaxing pace and enjoyed spending time at Red Sand Beach and Black Sand Beach (note: reservations are required, which you can book here up to 30 days in advance of your trip to Black Sand Beach).
Places to eat:
Great questions! We shared them with Andrew and Christie, and here are some replies they hope are helpful:
- They rented a bunch of gear (incl. hiking backpack, and pack & play). The site they used was: www.nokaoibabyrentals.com
- Things they packed that were great: UV protective clothes/hats, quick dry towels, baby water shoes (sometimes the beaches had rocky parts), and the usual baby stuff in the Getaway Bag
- phil&teds Lobster high chair
- A cooler backpack which they found super useful for storing food + drinks
- Their condo had beach chairs they could take to the beach (and some will also provide some beach pails / shovels / etc.)
- Travel stroller
Let us know if you have any other questions! Thanks for reading!
Thanks for sharing! What was your packing list for your little one? What clothes, swim items, beach supplies, did you use?