Kihei is my favorite town on the Hawaiian island of Maui. The laid back vibe and beautiful beaches won me over the first time I visited. Everytime we go back, it’s our home base for the stay. If you ever get the chance to go (hey, I know someone who can help with that) make sure you get at least one day in the Kihei area. And if 24 hours is all you get, here’s how to spend it.

Surfer blue sky from in the water

Wake up early.
I’m not a huge fan of waking up early on vacation, but Hawaii is the exception to the rule. Wake up early and brew a cup of Hawaii’s famous Kona coffee. Sip it slowly on the patio, overlooking the ocean. If you’re visiting during the winter, you’ll see the humpback whales splashing offshore. Maybe cut up a juicy Hawaiian pineapple for breakfast, before grabbing a yoga mat and partaking in a sunrise beach yoga class.

If you didn’t learn to surf, did you really visit Hawaii?
One of the perks of the south shore is the calmer morning water - perfect for beginner surf lessons at Cove Beach Park. After your lesson, head to the Maui Brewing Company in Kihei for a locally brewed pint and a quick tour of their brewhouse and cellar. It’s 5 o’ clock somewhere, right? If beer isn’t your thing, make a stop at Ululani’s in North Kihei for Hawaiian shave ice - and no, it’s not the same as a snow cone.

Maui brewing company beer can on the beach in the sand

Be a beach bum.
Spending the afternoon on any of Kihei’s stunning beaches is the perfect way to recharge. Take your pick of any of the south shore’s beaches and you won’t be disappointed. My personal favorite - Kama’ole II. Snooze in the sun or grab a boogie board for an idyllic afternoon on the beach. You’ll work up an appetite, so grab lunch right across the street at 808 Deli - they serve to-go lunches that you can enjoy at a picnic table overlooking the beach.

Sunset and a block party.
Watch the sunset from the beach, sinking between Lana’i and Kaho’olawe. Once the sun goes down, there’s more to be enjoyed in Kihei. Spend the evening at Kihei’s 4th Friday party, where local crafters and food trucks gather for an evening block party with music and entertainment. No need for a fancy dinner somewhere - the selection of food trucks at the party offer up affordable and casual dining options to round out a perfect day in Kihei.

Maui beach sunset looking out toward Kaho'olawe

Do you know of any hidden gems in Kihei?
Let me know in the comments below!

Does this day in Kihei sound like the perfect way to start your Hawaiian vacation? Let’s get started on planning your tropical getaway.