An artsy, bohemian-style enclave in the heart of West Maui, Lahaina bustles with activity from galleries, boutiques, beach bars and seafood eateries. This former whaling village now serves as a nightlife hotspot and a gateway to the famous Ka'anapali Coast.
Things to do
Maui isn’t just sun and beaches, with Lahaina reflecting its past as the capital of the Hawaiian Kingdom. With a listing on the National Register of Historic Places, almost 22 hectares of historic districts cradle structures such as the U.S. Seamen’s Hospital and Hale Paaho, the old Lahaina Prison. Cool off with some Hawaiian shave ice on Front Street, then rest in the shade of Maui’s oldest living banyan tree.
Front Street is full of quirky art galleries, street huts and rustic beach bars serving tropical cocktails with names like Ka'anapali Cooler and Dragonberry Bomb. Splurge at classic Maui eateries, such as Kimo’s and Lahaina Fish Co, which sizzle up fresh daily catches of mahi-mahi, ono and opakapaka.
You haven’t experienced Lahaina until you snag tickets to one of its famous luaus. The Old Lahaina Luau is the most authentic, featuring traditional Polynesian dancers and food, including roasted pig from an underground imu oven. You’ll also learn ancient Hawaiian customs, such as poi pounding and kappa making.
Get seats for the award-winning Ulalena show at Maui Theatre, which showcases the deep culture of the Hawaiian Islands. Explore Japanese influence at Lahaina Jodo Mission, a Buddhist temple with a carved pagoda and enormous bronze Buddha statue.
Lahaina is about 45 minutes from Kahului Airport, where you can pick up a rental car. It’s also common to hire motorcycles, scooters and bicycles or use taxis and hotel shuttle buses.
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