At the Maui Ocean Center in Maalaea, Mauis marine environment is showcased through a variety of aquarium displays, hands-on exhibits and even a "touch pool" where visitors can touch various ocean creatures like sea urchins and starfish. Other live ocean inhabitants at the Center include jellyfish, octopus, reef fish, shrimp, eels, skipjack tuna, lobsters, rays and sharks.
Maui Tropical Plantation
This activity spotlights the Magic Isles agricultural history, taking visitors on a tram tour of acres of sugar cane, macadamia nuts, guava, mango, banana, papaya, pineapple, coffee and flowers.
Hawaii Nature Center
Located in Iao Valley, the center features an Interactive Science Arcade. Here, more than thirty hands on exhibits will help you learn about Mauis natural environment. You can even "experience" life as a dragonfly, simulating the ability to see a hundred directions at once. There is also a Rainforest Wilderness Walk guided by naturalists who interpret the culture and the natural history of Iao Valley.
Known as "Dig Me" beach among the local teens, Kaanapali Beach is one of Mauis best beaches. It is four miles long, with grainy gold sand as far as the eye can see. The beach parallels the sea channel through most of its length and has a paved beach walk. Summertime swimming is excellent. Various beach activity vendors offer nearly every type of water activity and equipment.
Bikers can cycle from Wailea to Kapalua, from Hookipa to Kahului and from Waiehu to Wailuku, on improved shoulders or bike lanes. Numerous tour companies provide several unique biking adventures, including an exhilarating 38 mile ride from the 10,023 foot summit of Haleakala.
There are hundreds of miles of hiking trails on Maui, but only three of the trailheads are marked. Haleakala; Polipoli, a large upland forest; and Oheo Gulch in Kipahulu , a moderate four mile walk along a stream, past waterfalls and through bamboo forests. Haleakala National Park rangers lead regularly scheduled hikes. There are several guide services for hiking on Maui. A program called Na Ala Hele has been maintaining trails and advocating beach access routes. Ancient Lahaina Pali Trail, echoes the sixteenth-century Piilani Highway, the first walking path built around the island. Remnants of it still remain. Na Ala Hele provides an informative booklet that includes interesting facts and stories about certain points along the trail.
There are numerous stables on the island, providing mounts to match every level of riding ability, and trips usually last from one to six hours.
Snorkeling gear can be rented for as little as $15 - a bargain when you consider the rare and wonderful sights that youll see underwater. Five of the best spots on Maui to snorkel and dive are Honolua Bay, Ahihi-Kinau Bay, Kaanapalis Puu Kekaa or Black Rock and Waileas Ulua Beach. Numerous charter boats offering sailing, cruising and snorkeling trips can be found anchored in Maalaea and Lahaina Harbors.
Scuba diving is extraordinary in paradise. For experienced divers, cave and lava tube diving are adventures of the Indiana Jones ilk. Dont miss breathtaking Cathedrals off Lanai, hailed by avid divers as one of the best dive spots in the world.
Maui has several areas with world class waves. Maalaea and Honolua Bay are two of the best. For those interested in learning, there are many classes offered throughout the island.
Hookipa Beach is the "Windsurfing capital of the world", hosting international championships and drawing hundreds of spectators. Only the pros surf Hookipa. Novices should practice at Kanaha, Kihei and Spreckelsville. Gear can be rented at several sports shops in Paia, Wailuku and Kahului.