maui rainbow

This page is dedicated to all things Maui!  Check back here to see the latest news, happenings, history, stories, and more.

I la maika’i nou – Have a nice day!

Surf Forecast

wave northshore surf

Forecast through next Friday (August 2-9)

Strong trades will maintain rough surf along east facing shores. As Tropical Storm Erick passes south of the state through Saturday, there may be a brief spike in surf along south facing shores. Swells from Tropical Storm Flossie may produce elevated surf along east facing shores Saturday through early next week.

Maui Beaches
Hana:    3-5+    (measured in feet) 
Hookipa:    0-1 
Kanaha:  0-1 
Kihei:     2-3 
Maalaea Bay:   3-4 
Lahaina:        3-5+ 
Upper West:     0-1
 
Oahu Beaches
  
North Shore:     0-1 
West Shore:      0-1 
South Shores:     3-5+              
East Shores:         3-5+

 

Big Island
  
North Shore:      0-1 
West Shore:       0-1 
South Shores:     3-5+ 
East Shores:     3-5+

 

Kauai
  
North Shore:       0-1 
West Shore:          0-1 
South Shore:       3-5 
East Shore:      3-5

 

The Island of Maui

The island of Maui is the second-largest of the Hawaiian Islands at 727.2 square miles (1,883 km2) and is the 17th largest island in the United States. Maui is the largest of Maui County’s four islands, which include Molokaʻi, Lānaʻi, and unpopulated Kahoʻolawe. In 2010, Maui had a population of 144,444, third-highest of the Hawaiian Islands, behind that of Oʻahu and Hawaiʻi Island. Kahului is the largest census-designated place (CDP) on the island with a population of 26,337 as of 2010 and is the commercial and financial hub of the island.  Wailuku is the seat of Maui County and is the third-largest CDP as of 2010. Other significant places include Kīhei (including Wailea and Makena in the Kihei Town CDP, the island’s second-most-populated CDP), Lahaina (including Kāʻanapali and Kapalua in the Lahaina Town. Makawao, Pukalani, Pāʻia, Kula, Haʻikū, and Hāna.
The Island of Maui is also called the “Valley Isle” for the large isthmus separating its northwestern and southeastern volcanic masses.
 
Maui’s diverse landscapes are the result of a unique combination of geology, topography, and climate. Each volcanic cone in the chain of the Hawaiian Islands is built of dark, iron-rich/quartz-poor rocks, which poured out of thousands of vents as highly fluid lava over a period of millions of years. Several of the volcanoes were close enough to each other that lava flows on their flanks overlapped one another, merging into a single island. Maui is such a “volcanic doublet,” formed from two shield volcanoes that overlapped one another to form an isthmus between them.

What makes Maui so special?

Maui no ka oi – Maui is the best!

There’s just something for everybody here.  If you’re able to soak up the easy going island vibes, you’ll blissfully take your time cruising from one beautiful destination to the next.    Sparkling blue-water beaches,  volcanic mountain terrain, waterfalls,  and lush, tropical landscapes – you may find the spot teaming with other people or just you there!

Maui Weather by Region, Cycle, and Month

The island of Maui is made up of numerous different sub-climates. Depending on where you are, the weather can act in a multitude of ways. For the most part, each area has a general weather pattern.

Below we’ve listed the weather that each part of the island typically holds.

Maui Weather by Region
Because of the warm ocean airflow, the West Maui Mountains get a lot of rain. The Iao Valley rarely sees a day without some kind of precipitation. Wailuku Town is located over here as well as some of Upper West Maui like Honolua Bay. All of these areas are lush and green due to the near-constant wet weather. If it is raining, check out things to do when it rains in Maui.
 
Leeward West
Similar to the South of Maui, most of the leeward side of West Maui is located on lower ground near the coast. This area is warmer, sunnier, and drier than the rest of the island. We do notice that Lahaina town tends to get a little more rain than Kihei area in comparison. The further up you go in West Maui, the more wet it will get. You’ll find the landscape becomes more diverse and lush. In the summer, the west side of Maui is subject to wild brush fires from the dry heat.
 
Central Valley
The central valley of Maui encompasses Maalaea, part of North Kihei, and Kahului. This area is dry and windy. Maui is made up of two huge mountainous regions with a valley between it. The valley is home to mostly sugar cane fields, and is usually sunny between the cloudy mountains.
 
Leeward Halekala
Leeward Haleakala consists of South Maui and most of Up Country Maui. South Maui is home to Kihei, Wailea, and Makena. These areas get the least amount of rain on the island. This isn’t saying that it doesn’t rain. Some parts of Makena and Wailea get more rain than others, and Kihei’s Maui Meadows gets more rain and is cooler than the lower parts of Kihei. Generally, the higher in elevation, the cooler it gets, and Maui’s elevation changes drastically within miles of itself. Certain portions of Makena have a constant stream of clouds flowing in a strip from Kahoolawe to the crater summit. Southern parts of Big Beach (Makena Beach) are covered by this cloud formation frequently. Upcountry Maui is much cooler and wet than South Maui. The elevation is considerably higher here, which is conducive to more rain and colder air. The ancient Hawaiians who lived on this side of Maui would travel up the slopes to the upcountry during the summer and live in South Maui for the rest of the year.
 
Windward Haleakala
The windward side of Haleakala is home to Hana and everything on the Road to Hana. This area is the wettest because of Haleakala’s tall slopes. Trade winds are responsible for blowing in moist air from the ocean, which Haleakala deflects up its slopes. Once the saturated air cools with altitude, it rains. This is the same for the windward side of the West Maui Mountains. The leeward sides of both these mountainous regions are blocked from the rain and get very little precipitation. The Windward side of Haleakala have rain over 3/4 of the year. When you drive the Road to Hana, you’ll most likely get wet at one point or another.
 
Haleakala Summit
The Summit of Haleakala is a completely different world. With the look and feel of our moon’s landscape, the crater of Haleakala is vast and high. Towering to over 10,000 ft, Haleakala Crater regularly reaches below zero in temperature and has on occasion even snowed. Dress warmly when visiting this area, and remember to do this especially when you go on a helicopter tour of the crater. If you’re planning on catching the sunrise or sunset at the summit, keep in mind that it is cloudy more often than not. If it’s clear, you’ll have a view like no other. It feels as though you’re on top of the world, and in reality, you are!

Maui Weather Cycle

From the crater at Haleakala’s summit, you can watch Maui weather being made. On a typically warm day, trade winds carry moisture-laden air up the northeast slopes of Haleakala. As the moisture rises, it cools and condenses into the cloud layer that frequently rings the mountain.
 
Rising warm air often pushes the clouds up through Ko’olau Gap and Kaupo Gap. As the evening air colls, the clouds drain out of the valley and the cycle begins again.
 
Haleakala influences weather all around the volcano. Average annual rainfall varies from about 400 inches (1,000m) in the high-elevation rain forest above Hana to 10 inches (25 cm) in Kihei, only about 15 minutes apart. Because temperatures drop about 3.2F (1.3C) every 1,000feet (305m), the summit of Haleakala is roughly 32F (13C) cooler than the beaches.
Average Maui Weather by the Month
 
 
December, January, February
These months have the lowest temperatures for the year. Keep in mind that it’s still plenty warm in many areas. With regular showers, these winter months are home to the wettest Maui weather of the year. In January, tradewinds only blow half as much as they do in the summer. Throughout the winter, generally from November to March, large North Swells create big surf on our North and Northwest facing beaches. The ocean temperature is approximately 75 F, and the air temperature averages between 65-80 degrees F depending on which area you’re in, and closer to 64-79 degrees F in Hana.
 
March, April, May
We find this time of year to be much like a mix between September, October, November. Some days are warm and above 80, others are chilly in the low 70s. We get plenty of rain still, depending on when you’re on island. Whales are still around a bit, though leaving the islands. Again, keep in mind that the weather is different across the island depending on your region. Anytime of year it can be dumping rain in Haiku and gorgeous on the beaches of Kihei. Hurricane-windy in Paia and calm in Lahaina. We have almost every micro-climate, so if you’re seeing an 85% chance of rain, consider driving for 10 minutes in any direction.
 
June, July
You’ll find Maui summers to be the most crowded with visitors because it’s hot and dry. By now Hana has caught up and is warmer at times than the rest of the island. June is extremely dry for Maui and trades blow almost always. With most of Maui at 69-87 degrees F, you’ll find it sunny and warm most everywhere. One of the major pluses in the constant Trade winds is there tendency to cool things down. Be wary of the sun! With the wind comes a disillusionment of how hot the sun really is on your skin. Wear sunblock on exposed areas at all times. You can be out for just 5 minutes and turn into a lobster.
 
August, September
These months on Maui are the pinnacles of summer heat. This is often the most humid of the summer months. Maui ocean water temperatures are from 79 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Maui air temperatures are from 70-80 degrees F depending on the area. Hana begins to get cooler and drops to between 70-84 degrees F during these last summer months. The Pacific Ocean sees Tropical Hurricanes within these months, but are rarely close to the Hawaiian Islands.
 
October, November
are transitional months on Maui from summer to winter. With a little rain, a few degrees in temperature, and an occasional storm, Maui’s winter begins to step in. Average temperatures are from 68-88 degrees F and 68-83 F in Hana. Ocean temperatures are between 77 F and 79 F in October and November. Keep in mind that the winter in Maui really isn’t a traditional winter. The differences between seasons in Maui are not all that significant relatively. Weather differences on Maui are more strongly noticed by location on the island than by what time of year it is.
 

Paia Town

paia town
The north shore town of Paia, Maui is now over 103 years old and has a history of diversity and change. The birth of the town can be traced back to the opening of the Paia Store in 1896. Before that it was the creation of the plantation camps which housed workers of the Paia Sugar Mill. The mill opened in 1880 and the store was eventually built to support the needs of the immigrant sugar workers. The Paia Sugar Mill attracted a culturally and ethnically diverse group of workers, and this legacy of an international population has played a big part in shaping Paia into what it is today.  The early sugar mill camps housed workers of Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Korean, Puerto Rican, Portuguese and Native Hawaiian backgrounds.  All of these different cultures left a mark on Paia’s early days.
 
Another re-invention of Paia happened during the flower-power 60s with the arrival of counter-cultural “hippies” from the mainland United States.  Looking for a different way of life, these new arrivals fell in love with Paia and helped to set the tone for what what it is today.  These hippies saw the potential in Paia’s quaint architecture, left over from plantation days, and began opening art galleries, craft stores, and other tourist attractions.  It was the late seventies and early eighties when a group of guys realized that Ho’okipa Beach was great for windsurfing.  In fact, they realized it might have the best windsurfing conditions in the world, and windsurfers from all over descended on Paia throughout the eighties and nineties to try their skills at Ho’okipa and other spots like Spreckelsville.   And did we mention the yoga lovers?  Paia is a mecca for those who practice and live yoga.    The Maui Yoga and Dance Shala has made Paia a destination for yoga and for yoga teacher trainings over the years.
 
Today, all those diverse influences continue to play a role in the unique offering that Paia town is. Just steps away from pristine north shore beaches, Paia is a bustling bohemian, surfer village with new age vibes and is frequented by adventurers, sight-seers, celebrities, and fun-seekers. You may notice humorous bumper stickers like ‘Welcome to Paia, don’t feed the hippies’. Cool, little independently owned cafes and boutiques line the colorful streets and you may see coconuts being sold out of vintage VW buses. The beach starts at Paia Bay next to the Paia Youth Center and a big grassy park with a basketball court. The winter months typically see big surf on the beach and boogie-boarders swarm the central waters while the surfers paddle out to the east. If you want to see more beach head towards the trees and just beyond you’ll find the clothing optional ‘Middles Beach’ with tamer waves and more nature vibes. If you continue on, you’ll hug the shore line past more trees until you find ‘The Cove’ which is the beginning of Baldwin Beach. The Cove is a nice place to swim anytime of the year and a gathering spot for locals, families, yogis and free-spirits. Friday sunsets host a drum-circle and dance jam.
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Molokini Crater

Molokini is a crescent-shaped, partially submerged volcanic crater which forms a small, uninhabited islet located in ʻAlalākeiki Channel between the islands of Maui and Kahoʻolawe, within Maui County in Hawaiʻi. It is the remains of one of the seven Pleistocene epoch volcanoes that formed the prehistoric Maui Nui island, during the Quaternary Period of the Cenozoic Era. Molokini is one of only three volcanic calderas in the world. Located just a few miles off Maui’s shore, it is Hawaii’s only island marine sanctuary. Scientists believe Molokini Crater formed about 150 thousand years ago.

Molokini rises from 300 feet below the ocean’s surface and is just under a half-mile wide and peaks at about 160 feet above sea level with half of it being hidden under the surface of the ocean. Divers and snorkelers flock from all around the world to experience the incredible underwater marine life.

Hana

Along Maui’s rugged eastern coastline is the peaceful town of Hana, considered one of the last unspoiled Hawaiian frontiers. The legendary road to Hana is only 52 miles from Kahului; however, the drive can take anywhere from two to four hours to complete since it’s fraught with narrow one-lane bridges, hairpin turns and incredible island views.

The Hana Highway (HI-360) has 620 curves and 59 bridges. The road leads you through flourishing rainforests, flowing waterfalls, plunging pools and dramatic seascapes.  Please keep in mind that you’ll encounter challenging turns and narrow bridges along the way, so it’s important to exercise caution and take your time.  There  are plenty of opportunities to stop and enjoy the lovely views, so get an early start and take your time on your drive. While it’s all about the journey, once you reach the beautiful and quiet town of Hana, you’ll see why it’s worth the trip. 

Haleakalā Summit

Towering over the island of Maui and visible from just about any point, Haleakala Crater is a force of nature in every sense. At 10,023 feet above sea level, this dormant volcano is the stage for a breathtaking range of landscapes—and skyscapes. Haleakala means “house of the sun” in Hawaiian, and legend goes that the demigod Maui lassoed the sun from its journey across the sky as he stood on the volcano’s summit, slowing its descent to make the day last longer. 

Many visitors wake up early to drive to the Haleakala Visitor Center, the best spot to watch what may be the most spectacular sunrise on earth. As the sun peeks over the horizon, an ever-changing swirl of color and light dance across the vast sea of clouds—a sight described by Mark Twain as “the most sublime spectacle I have ever witnessed.” Perhaps just as impressive are Haleakala’s sunsets and the bright, starry skies revealed at night.

 Haleakala National Park covers the summit area of the larger of the two volcanic mountains that make up Maui. The National Park’s boundary has fingers that extend down the Hana side of the mountain, all the way to the ocean. The entire park includes the Kipahulu area, where Ohe’o Gulch (Seven Pools) and Pipiwai Trail are found.

Lahaina

Once known as Lele, which means “relentless sun” in Hawaiian, Lahaina is a historic town that has been transformed into a Maui hotspot with dozens of art galleries and a variety of unique shops and restaurants. Once the capital of the Hawaiian Kingdom in the early nineteenth century, Lahaina was also a historic whaling village during the whaling boom of the mid-1800s. Up to 1,500 sailors from as many as 400 ships took leave in Lahaina, including Herman Melville, who immortalized the era in his classic novel Moby Dick.

Today, Lahaina is on the National Register of Historic Places. You can still get a feel for old Lahaina as you stroll down lively Front Street, ranked one of the “Top Ten Greatest Streets” by the American Planning Association. Visit historic stops like the U.S. Seamen’s Hospital, Hale Paahao (Lahaina Prison), the Pioneer Inn, Maui’s oldest living banyan tree and other sites on the Lahaina Historic Trail. Approximately 55 acres of old Lahaina have been set aside as historic districts.

Get Active with these Unforgettable Maui Experiences

surf lessons

Surf & Stand Up Paddle board lessons & outings for private or group 

maui beach yoga paia wailea

Join us mornings for a yoga flow with the sounds of the sea and the spirit of Maui. The sun and the ocean will teach us, too! All levels & ages welcome.

Enjoy a meditative  outing in nature  with a hike & yoga on one of Maui’s epic trails