Maui is the second largest island in Hawaii, and a fabulous place for a family vacation. In addition to 30 miles of stunning beaches, crystal clear waters, and lush national parks full of tropical plants and waterfalls, there are plenty of unforgettable Maui vacation rentals. Maui boasts an abundance of attractions and activities to keep everyone entertained from dawn ’til dusk. Neighboring islands such as Oahu and Molokai are accessible for day trips by boat, plane, or helicopter. Check out Maui’s top 10 attractions.

1. Take a Pride of Maui Snorkel Trip to Molokini

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All the locals agree that snorkeling at the Molokini Crater, located three miles off the Maui coastline, is a must-do activity for all visitors. Thanks to the absence of sand around this site, you can enjoy terrific water clarity and visibility of up to 150 feet. Swim alongside manta ray, sea turtle, parrotfish and more. The expert crew on the child-friendly vessel, Pride of Maui, operate a five-hour trip that includes snorkel gear, food, and drinks. Book your trip online and board at Maalaea Harbor North Dock.

2. Visit the Underwater World in the Atlantis Submarine

atlantis submarine
Source: Flickr/theunwary

If you’d rather stay dry while enjoying underwater life, book a trip on the Atlantis Submarine. Travel 100 feet under the water in air-conditioned comfort to see rare sea life and schools of brightly colored fish gathering around the artificial reef and the replica of a wrecked 19th century supply vessel. The submarine’s panoramic windows allow clear views. From December through May you might also spot humpback whales as they journey through the waters on their annual migration.

3. Meet Sea Creatures at the Maui Ocean Center

octopus at maui ocean center
Source: Flickr/Steven Tom

The Maui Ocean Center is a great way to learn about Hawaiian sea life. Follow a guided walking path to view rare attractions such as the outdoor Hawaiian sea turtle sanctuary and the hammerhead shark pool. Experience the amazing 54-foot walk-through sea tunnel that makes you feel as though you are snorkeling on dry land, and enjoy the shark tank where you can get up close to tiger sharks, white tips, hammerheads and more.

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4. Go on the Maui Jungle Treasure Hunt with Stardust Hawaii

maui jungle
Source: Flickr/neonquark

The three-hour Maui Treasure Hunt begins in Kahului, central Maui. Stardust Hawaii equips each participant with a backpack, snacks and bottled water before setting out on an adventure following a map along a 2-mile hiking trail in search of treasure. Kids have a superb adventure hiking through the woods, crossing the river and swimming in a lagoon.

5. Experience the Thrills of Maui Zip n’ Dip

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The Maui Zip n’ Dip Tour is a popular attraction that combines spectacular views of the island with water fun. The three-hour adventure takes you across four lines and ends with a 45-minute swimming and stand-up paddle boarding session in the fresh water pool. The longer four-and-a-half-hour tour takes you across eight separate zip lines to the ninth and final line that concludes with a 45-minute splash session in the pool.

6. Sample the Maui Chocolate Tour

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Enjoy a succulent foodie experience with The Maui Chocolate Tour in the Enchanted Floral Gardens of Kula. This educational experience explains how the humble cacao bean is turned into tasty chocolate and gives a hands-on opportunity to hand-grind cacao to produce “Xocolati” — the chocolate drink favored by the ancient Aztecs. The tour concludes with a yummy chocolate tasting, and you leave with a gift from the Sweet Paradise Chocolatier in Wailea. Make sure to allow enough time to wander through the gardens, as free admission is included in your entry ticket.

7. Enjoy Festivals and Fun at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center (MAAC)

jake shimabukuro ukulele concert
Source: Flickr/Michael McCauslin

The stunning MAAC venue comprises indoor and outdoor theaters and a gallery, offering locals residents and visitors a year-round program of arts and entertainment. Enjoy free events such as Starry Night movie screenings and guitar and ukulele festivals. Annual events include the Maui Film Festival, the Made in Maui Country Festival, the Mayjah Rayjah Summer Music Festival, and many more.

8. Relax in the Botanical Gardens

kula botanical garden
Source: Flickr/Forest and Kim Starr

The beautiful Kula Botanical Gardens are located 3,300 feet above sea-level. Stroll through the wonderful collection of tropical plants, drinking in the heady scent of the flowers and listening to the sound of the stream that trickles through the grounds. Take a tour of the bird sanctuary to see the endangered native Hawaiian Nene birds, and make time for some quiet reflection in the peaceful seating areas that the owners have created, or enjoy a picnic in magical surroundings.

9. Visit the Bailey House and Museum

bailey house museum maui
Source: Flickr/Smart Destinations

This 19th-century house, home to a missionary teacher Edward Daily, is located on the historic royal compound of Kahekill, who was Maui’s last ruling chief. The museum houses the island’s largest collection of Hawaii art exhibits, an ancient canoe, and a surfboard that belonged to legendary Duke Kahanamoku. If you enjoy music, time your visit to coincide with the monthly Moonlight Mele Hawaiin concert series with Grammy award-winning musician George Kahumoku Jr. and friends.

10. Experience the Old Lahaina Luau

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No Hawaiian vacation is complete without attending a Luau — a traditional Hawaiian party or feast. Round off your time on Maui by fully embracing authentic Hawaiian hospitality at the Old Hawaiian Luau, voted the best Luau in Hawaii. This memorable night out features traditional Hawaiian foods, ritual chanting, songs, and, of course, the traditional hula dance. There are also games to keep the kids amused.

 
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