Now that you’ve decided to move to Maui, it’s time to choose where on the island you want to call home. Though only 727 square miles in size, Maui features a number of different neighborhood communities, each with its own distinct character. Here’s a quick guide to several of them, to give you an idea as to where you’d like to start your search.
Lahaina: Repeatedly ranked as one of America’s happiest seaside towns, Lahaina is a cultural and historic hub, where there is always something interesting going on. Throughout the year, the town comes together to celebrate a number of festivals, many of them taking place beneath the giant banyan tree that occupies an entire city block. Tourists and residents alike enjoy Lahaina’s relaxing atmosphere, where they can spend a day on the beach, riding their bicycles against the breathtaking scenery or hiking the lush and inviting landscape.
Once a gigantic whaling port, Lahaina has now become an agent of ocean and whale conservation, attracting attention from all over for its spectacular whale watching from the coast or one of the many available cruises.
Kaanapali: A West Maui town, Kaanapali is famous for its three-mile stretch of beach that’s often regarded as one of the best beaches in America. Outdoor enthusiasts flock to Kaanapali to enjoy such water sports as swimming, diving, and windsurfing, as well as the many golf courses attached to its resorts.
Kapalua: Situated on Maui’s northwest shore, Kapalua is known for its stunning landscape and air of sophistication. The community hosts the longest-running food and wine event in the nation: the Kapalua Food and Wine Festival, which is attended by foodies everywhere, who come to enjoy world-class culinary fare.
Napili: Also referred to as Maui’s “best kept secret,” Napili is the epitome of relaxation. It’s situated only minutes away from Lahaina and is kept as a quiet paradise of sea turtles, coves, and blissful golden-beach scenery.
Honokawai: Home to a small, low-profile resort community, the Honokawai lifestyle is laid back and mellow. For years, Honokawai has long been regarded as one of Maui’s best spots for snorkeling and diving, where an abundance of sea life can be found amongst the coral.
Kahana: Close to Lahaina, Napili, and Ka’anapali, Kahana is among the best places to relax and take in the scenery — from watching whales from December through May or dolphins and green sea turtles in the bay. It is also home to the Kahana Gateway Shopping Center, where many spend the day shopping and dining at one of the mall’s many restaurants.
Kula: The word “Kula” means “open country,” a suitable name for this magical landscape of rolling hills and pastures. The Kula community includes a number of farmers and gardeners, who provide the area with fresh ingredients. To get a taste, locals only need to visit the little cafes and restaurants along the hillside.
Haiku: Once a bustling pineapple plantation, Haiku is now home to a small commercial town of restaurants, shops, and cafes. Among its beaches is Ho’okipa Beach, which is known as the “windsurfing capital of the world.”
Hana: Located in East Maui, Hana is more remote than the rest of Maui, and regarded for its pristine beauty with freshwater caves and a beach with red cinder sand. Hana is home to a number of reclusive celebrities, who hide away amongst the unassuming and extremely tightly knit community of native Hawaiian locals. Residents are accustomed to waving hello to one another in the street and living as much in line with traditional Hawaiian lifestyles as possible.
Kihei: A number of people move to Kihei for its beaches, which are wide open, sandy, and sunny. On any given day, swimmers and surfers will be found enjoying the waves. The beach park also serves as grounds for craft fairs, concerts, and other community events. Kihei is regarded for its less-expensive living, though it is home to a number of restaurants and a giant shopping center.
Makawao: Situated on the slopes of the Haleakala volcano, Makawao is known for its “paniolo,” or Hawaiian cowboys. Historically, the paniolo have been wrangling cattle for over a century in the upland fields. On the 4th of July, Makawao hosts Hawaii’s largest paniolo competition, which includes competitions, parades, and a number of Hawaiian traditions. Makawao also boasts a large artistic community with sculptors, painters, and glassblowers, whose work is exhibited in galleries, festivals, and boutiques.
Maui Showcase Properties is ready to give you a tour of the area that peaks your interest. Your realtor will give you the inside scoop and local news as you go from neighborhood to neighborhood, helping you get a more intimate feel for them, and ultimately matching you with the community that best fits your lifestyle.