Best What to Do in Wailea Maui 1
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Best What to Do in Wailea Maui

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Greetings, Internet Stranger! I’m Stella Jane, and welcome to a day of what to do in Wailea Maui. It’s sort of hard to define what Wailea is. Apparently it’s something called a census-designated place, which sounds kind of boring.

However, Wailea is anything but boring, unless you think gorgeous beaches, resorts, restaurants, and views are boring. And if you do think those things are boring, I’m going to assume you’re a professional sky diver or baccarat expert or something equally cool.

Stella’s Top 3 Picks: Best What to Do in Wailea Maui

#1 TOP PICK

Best What to Do in Wailea Maui 2

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
SNORKEL TOUR
✔️ Breakfast and lunch included
✔️ See amazing sea creatures

#2 PICK

Best What to Do in Wailea Maui 3

MAUI PINEAPPLE TOUR
✔️ Tons of fun
✔️ Snacks included

#3 PICK

Best What to Do in Wailea Maui 4

ALL OTHER MAUI TOURS
✔️ Find your favorite!
✔️ Get the best deals

But for the rest of us, Wailea has more than enough excitement for one day. Follow me to find out why!

what to do in wailea maui

What to do in Wailea Maui

Morning: Relax on the Beach

Whether you’re staying at the Days Inn or a different hotel in the area for your day of What to do in Wailea Maui, I can guarantee that you’re going to want to spend some time on the beach. I’m going to focus on Keawakapu Beach because that was the one off the Days Inn. We’ll be exploring some of the other beaches in the Wailea area later in this itinerary.

It seems strange to give tips for visiting a beach on a travel blog, especially since I am assuming you’ll be within walking distance and won’t need instructions about how to find the beach. But since I’ve been to the beach, and I assume you haven’t yet, I do have a few pieces of wisdom to share with…

Three Fascinating Facts: Keawakapu Beach

what to do in wailea maui
1) What should I bring to the beach?

If you’re staying at the Days Inn, they’ll provide you with towels, as long as you return them before you check out. I always travel with an extremely lightweight beach towel that I got in Brazil. As they say in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, a towel is the most important thing you can carry.

In Hawaii, they are strict about leaving as much sand as possible on the beach. Part of this is for ecological reasons and part of it is because tracking sand everywhere leaves a huge mess. So don’t forget to dust yourself off thoroughly before leaving the beach, or you will never get all the sand off the floor of your hotel room.

The sun burns brightly on this beach, so you absolutely have to wear sunscreen, and it might be a good idea to reserve a beach umbrella. (Do this early in the day because they might run out.)

Keep in mind that in Hawaii, they ask you to wear reef safe sunscreen if you are going in the water, so make sure to check your product before using it.

what to do in wailea maui
2) Is the Beach Crowded?

As you can see from my photo, it isn’t crowded really. We will go walk along the different beaches of Wailea later and see tons more people. In fact, we’ll see bigger resorts, houses, shops, and restaurants. But the Keawakapu Beach was a lot more secluded, especially earlier in the morning.

By about ten o’clock, more people were on the beach with me, as I enjoyed a favorite mystery novel or three, but by then you’ve already snagged a good spot, so it’s no problem.

Go for a swim, relax with your companions, or pop in some ear buds and ignore humanity. It’s your beach vacation; you do you, Internet Stranger!

what to do in wailea maui
3) What if I get Hungry?

Well, put some clothes on and go for a walk with me. We’re going for a twenty minute walk down to the outdoor mall known as The Shops at Wailea to stop at the gastropub Pint and Cork. (If you really don’t want to walk, you can take an Uber, but I found the walk to be extremely pleasant.)

what to do in wailea maui

We’re going here for bar snacks, like these deviled eggs, and Hawaiian classics, like the light and refreshing poke.

what to do in wailea maui

However, Pint and Cork has excellent cocktails, like the Sunday Bike Ride, which is made with mezcal, averna, and something called Tempus Fugit Creme de Banane. Perhaps that means time flies if you’re drinking banana liqueur? In my experience, that’s very few.

In short, Pint and Cork is a great place to go if you want to day drink with some fine people who will sing “Glory of Love” by Peter Cetera with you when it comes on the radio. (Definitely speaking from experience here.)

what to do in wailea maui

What to do in Wailea Maui

Afternoon: Go Exploring

I know it seems like a perfectly odd thing to say. Why should you want to go exploring when you’ve just come to enjoy a beach vacation?

Well, that’s totally up to you, but since you went looking for a list of What to do in Wailea Maui, I figure that I should show you some actual things to do. We’ll see a lot of beaches, but we’ll also find a park, we’ll go on a very healthy walk, even though we’re still a bit full of banana liqueur, and we’ll even do some shopping.

I promise it will be fun! And if it gets to be too much, you can always just head back to your hotel for a nap before dinner. Sound good?

Approximately Top 5: What to do in Wailea Maui

what to do in wailea maui
1) Shop at the Shops at Wailea

So, I mentioned that the Pint and Cork is located in a lovely outdoor shopping mall called The Shops at Wailea. Now that we’ve finished with lunch, why don’t we go for a walk here? It’s the kind of mall where you can find anything from fine art to a convenience store that sold me a charger for my iPhone.

My favorite store in the Shops at Wailea was Martin and Macarthur, where I bought some cufflinks made out of wood from the USS Missouri for my dad for his birthday and some earrings made out of koa wood for yours truly.

(Koa is an especially beautiful Hawaiian wood. If you see something made from koa that you like and can afford, grab it!)

what to do in wailea maui
2) Ice Cream at Lappert’s

So I know we got some cocktails and poke for lunch, but we didn’t get any dessert. That’s a situation that needs to be rectified immediately! Let’s head over to Lappert’s, which is still in the Shops at Wailea, for some delectable ice cream.

Lappert’s always seems to have lines mid-day, both because the ice cream is good and because it’s basically always ice cream weather in Maui.

I recommend the Kauai Pie flavor, which is made with chocolate and coconut: the perfect Hawaii combination. Well, it would be if there were some mac nuts added, but you can’t have everything, Internet Stranger.

what to do in wailea maui
3) Wailea Coastal Walk

OK, despite the amazing beaches and the ice cream and the Peter Cetera, I have to admit that the Wailea Coastal Walk was my favorite activity out of all the things I did when creating this What to do in Wailea Maui itinerary.

The Wailea Coastal Walk actually begins on Polo Beach, which is just a short walk away from the Shops at Wailea, and it ends at Keawakapu Beach, which is right where our hotel is. So this couldn’t be a more perfect way to spend the afternoon.

This part of Maui’s coast is right off the famous humpback whale sanctuary, so keep your eyes on the horizon as you stroll. You just might spot one of these beautiful creatures.

I was visiting at the very tail end (get it?) of whale season in Hawaii, so I didn’t see any whales on this walk, but you might! And we will see some whales on one of our other Maui itineraries.

what to do in wailea maui

One of the best things about this coastal walk, is that along the way you’ll get to stop on some beaches attached to some very fancy resorts. For example, this photo above was taken at the beach of the Grand Wailea: A Waldorf Astoria Resort.

I could absolutely not afford to stay here, but I can afford to walk on the beach here, which is free. (It’s also totally open to the public to walk here. Don’t worry; you’re not doing anything wrong.)

what to do in wailea maui

Keep your eyes peeled for the Native Hawaiian Coastal Garden, which is along the coastal path. There’s at least one sign marking the garden. Many plants in Hawaii were brought there from abroad, both by humans and by natural causes like birds.

However, the plants in these gardens are actually indigenous to Hawaii. My favorite plant was the creeping naupaka, just because that’s a very cool name. If I ever start a band, that will be our name.

what to do in wailea maui

Some of the beaches on the coastal path, like Ulua Beach, will be mostly empty by the time you get to the end of this walk. That’s good because you can have them to yourself, but keep in mind that it can get very windy here. My hair was completely insane by the end of the walk.

what to do in wailea maui
4) Kamaole Beach Park III

If, by the time you get back to Keawakapu Beach, you still don’t feel like taking a rest, head over to Kamaole Beach Park III, which is just a short walk north. In fact, your timing might be perfect because this is one of the most popular places around Wailea to watch the sunset.

When I was here, I saw people boogie boarding, so if you are into boogie boarding, you can also give it a shot. (I’ve never even been boogie boarding once in my life, so I’m afraid I can’t offer any tips.)

However, I will say that after a long day of walking, beaching, and drinking, it was nice to be able to sit on a bench with some shade before getting ready for dinner.

what to do in wailea maui

What to do in Wailea Maui

Evening: Dinner at the Restaurant at Hotel Wailea

The Restaurant at Hotel Wailea has kind of a funny name for a restaurant, doesn’t it? I am more used to hotel restaurants having names.

However, it’s certainly true that the Restaurant at Hotel Wailea is a restaurant, it’s at the Hotel Wailea, and it’s where we are having dinner tonight, at the end of our day of What to do in Wailea Maui. And this will be the second time today that we’re checking out a resort that I couldn’t otherwise afford.

Unless you’re staying at the Hotel Wailea, I suggest taking an Uber to and from the restaurant. It shouldn’t take too long for one to show up. This isn’t Kauai.

what to do in wailea maui

I suggest starting off with one of their excellent cocktails. Just keep in mind that this isn’t the sort of restaurant that will appreciate you singing along loudly to “Glory of Love” after one cocktail.

I was seated in between two entirely different honeymooning couples, so it seemed more appropriate to softly whisper “Glory of Love” to them. But they didn’t seem to appreciate that either.

what to do in wailea maui

For an appetizer, I selected the pork ribs with mac nuts and papaya. Pork is such a popular meat in Hawaii, though I am more used to eating pork ribs prepared as Southern barbecue. That’s why the local touches of mac nuts and papaya were so interesting.

I guess you could eat this with your fingers, but I was too scared to use my fingers in such a classy restaurant, so I used a fork and knife instead.

what to do in wailea maui

For the main course, I chose the ono fish and Manila clams served with bok choy and tomatoes in a yellow curry. Ono is a super popular fish in Hawaii, and you can only find it there, so please eat as much as you can. It tastes creamy and decadent, which is a bit unusual for a fish.

This curry was packed with flavor. My only mild complaint is that the portion was so massive, I couldn’t finish it and still leave room for dessert. And I definitely wanted room for dessert.

what to do in wailea maui

Look at this gorgeous kalamansi tart! Wouldn’t you want to save room for this too? It was made with a graham cracker crust and topped with vanilla cream.

Kalamansi is a citrus fruit from the Philippines, but it’s also popular in Hawaii. It’s quite tart, but it’s got a terrific tang once you add sugar. This reminded me of a Hawaiian Key lime pie. And it was the perfect way to end our day of What to do in Wailea Maui!

what to do in wailea maui

What to do in Wailea Maui

Where to Stay?

For your day of What to do in Wailea Maui, you’ll definitely want a hotel that’s right on the beach, so you can just grab some cereal and coffee in the morning and head right out onto the sand and surf. And if you’re like me, you’ll want a great place that won’t cost a grillion dollars.

That’s why I recommend staying at the Days Inn by Wyndham Maui Oceanfront. It’s got clean and comfortable rooms, a friendly staff, and breakfast is included. They were especially helpful about holding my luggage the day I checked out while I spent all day at the beach. And most important, the hotel is right on the beach, so you’re just a short step away from the perfect place to relax.

If you want a great deal on this hotel, click here.

And if you’re looking for other hotel options in Wailea, check out these fantastic prices on many other hotels in Wailea.

Check rates and availability on Wailea hotels right here.

This search engine will help you find the perfect place to stay as the base for your day of What to do in Wailea Maui. With hundreds of options to choose from, I’m sure you’ll find something for your schedule and budget.

what to do in wailea maui

That’s A Perfect Day of What to do in Wailea Maui

If you thought this article was funny, check out my hilarious travel guide Get Lost.

What would you like to do in Wailea? Have you ever sung a song off the Karate Kid Part II soundtrack with a group of strangers? Are you ready to start booking your hotel in Wailea now? Please email me at stellajane@aroundtheworldin24hours.com and let me know.

Stella’s Top 3 Picks: Best What to Do in Wailea Maui

#1 TOP PICK

Best What to Do in Wailea Maui 2

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
SNORKEL TOUR
✔️ Breakfast and lunch included
✔️ See amazing sea creatures

#2 PICK

Best What to Do in Wailea Maui 3

MAUI PINEAPPLE TOUR
✔️ Tons of fun
✔️ Snacks included

#3 PICK

Best What to Do in Wailea Maui 4

ALL OTHER MAUI TOURS
✔️ Find your favorite!
✔️ Get the best deals

Note: If you want to know how I put my travel itineraries together, just click here. Keep in mind that while each article is about how to spend 24 hours in a place, that doesn’t mean you should only spend 24 hours with What to do in Wailea Maui.

You can also add 24 hours in Honolulu. You can go on a circle tour of Oahu. Why not add a Big Island Kona things to do tour? You can then try what to do in Kona HI. There’s what to see on Kauai. You can experience a snorkel tour in Maui. Add on the best things to do in Lahaina HI. Finally, try the best things to do at Hilo Hawaii.

Best What to Do in Wailea Maui 8

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