Finding outdoor pursuits on the Maui isn’t difficult. The challenge comes in trying to choose which ones to tackle first.
The Valley Isle, which rests between Molokai and the Big Island in Hawaii’s island chain, offers picturesque beaches, clear waters and lush landscape that beckons visitors to get outside and get active. From surfing in the warm waters of the Pacific Ocean to playing world-class golf courses, Maui has an outdoor pursuit for everyone.
Surfing on Maui
The waves that break in the Pacific Ocean just off Maui’s shores can accommodate both beginning surfers and more-advanced wave riders. Novice surfers can head to the island’s western shore, where the waves are relatively small and conducive to learning how to ride. Maui has a handful of surf shops that will rent boards and offer suggestions on where to go, as well as surf schools and instructors that offer lessons.
Haleakala Crater’s Visitor Center, at 10,000 feet above sea level, offers information on the many hiking trails in Haleakala National Park. The Visitor Center is also the starting point for the 10-mile Sliding Sands Trail. On the western side of the crater is another 10-mile hiking trail — the Halemauu Trail. For an easier hike, head to Polipoli State Park, which has several shorter trails, such as the 1.7-mile Redwood Trail.
Maui Tennis Courts
Tennis is a popular sport on Maui, and the island has a handful of public courts and several clubs that offer lessons and allow visitors to play for a small fee, such as Wailea Tennis Club, Royal Lahaina Tennis Ranch and Makena Tennis Club. Many of the island’s hotels have their own courts, as well, Maui is also home to parks with free public courts, such as Hana Park in Hana and Kalama Park in Kihei.
Maui has more than a dozen bicycle shops that rent bikes and helmets and offer guided rides around the island. Maui’s most unique biking opportunity is the adrenaline-inducing ride down Haleakala Mountain. Tour groups head up the mountain in vans to the drop-off point at the summit, then ride down the mountain, descending 3,000 feet over 10 miles of switchbacks and sharp curves through Haleakala National Park.
Maui Golf Courses
Maui features some of the more picturesque golf courses in the world, including championship-level courses that have held professional golf tournaments. Wailea Gold Course, the Plantation Course and Royal Kaanapali are all open to the public and have been host sites of professional events.