Tourists, visiting Maui, usually stay in Kihei (South) or Kaanapali (West) with its world-famous paradise beaches of Hawaii. However, this island has so much more to explore. For example, the historic hippie town Paia, located on the North Shore of Maui.
Paia – Bars & Restaurants on Maui
Surrounded by sugar cane fields, Paia has a population of only 3000 people. However, it’s amazing how many restaurants, funky boutiques and art galleries this town has to offer.
Charley’s Restaurant and Saloon is well known for its great breakfast, served even through lunch hours. Here, you never know who might be sitting next to you. It’s been a favorite hang-out for famous surfers, musicians and other celebrities. It’s not unusual to see country legend Willie Nelson or Steven Tyler from the rock band Aerosmith here while taking the stage with local bands.
Next door to Charley’s is Rock & Brews with tasty pizzas and burgers with dozens of beers on tap. Dave Furano, a well-known rock & roll concert tour promoter for the Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, George Harrison among others, met co-founder Peter Morton of Hard Rock Cafes at a KISS concert in 2010. After the concert they were enjoying a cold beer together with Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley backstage. Dave said, “What’s better than rock and brews?” The rest is history, Rock & Brews was born!
Another nice place to have an exquisite dinner is Mama’s Fish House, a converted beach house on a secluded white, sandy beach. Mama’s Fish House also offers secluded apartments.
In this area, there are no resorts, big hotels or fancy condos like on the other side, the Westside of Maui. If you are lucky, you can find some rooms at the Paia Inn or rent some vacation rental houses on airbnb. But be careful and don’t rent an illegal vacation rental in Hawaii, like the ones in Waikiki!
Beautiful Beaches of North Maui
North Maui has also some great beaches. Just outside Paia is Baldwin Beach Park, a very remote beach where all the locals hang out and Baby Beach. This beach has calm waters and is ideal for kids. That’s where this beach got its name from! However, it’s not easy to find this beach as it is located on a dead end road and you have to drive through a residential neighborhood.
Road to Hana Tour, Maui
For many tourists, North Maui is also known for the Road to Hana and the beautiful drive actually starts here in Paia. Although Hana is only 42 miles away, it might take you about two and a half hours drive to get there, without taking any stops as the road is very winding and narrow. Hana is a small town, located at the eastern end of the island of Maui and is one of the most isolated ones with a population of only 1,300 inhabitants. If you want to visit the quiet little town of Hana, lean back and enjoy a Road to Hana Tour with Daniels Hawaii.
The Road to Hana passes over 56 one lane bridges, 46 of which are only one lane wide. There are approximately 617 curves and if you want to enjoy this beautiful road, it will take you about five hours one way. But it’s worth it! You drive a scenic road that leads you through a lush rainforest with cascading waterfalls and breathtaking ocean views. Along the way you can also see lava tubes and take stops at great lookouts. The Road to Hana is definitely an adventure with many unforgettable memories and photos in a beautiful paradise. In order to enjoy this memorable day without driving a winding road, check out Daniels Hawai Road to Hana Tour. Relax in our luxury vans and have our experienced guide take you to all the scenic stops.
Whether you decide to take the Road to Hana or not, you definitely have to see the Twin Falls, located about 20 minutes past Paia towards Hana. Here you’ll find a couple of hikes and a great waterfall.
You also need to see Kaumahina State Wayside Park which is one of the first stops on the Road to Hana with scenic views of the northeast Maui coastline. There are also several trails and picnic facilities with toilets at this park. People, who love camping outdoors, can have a great time here, as it is free.
Sunrise or Sunset on Haleakala
Another of East Maui’s biggest attraction is the spectacular sunrise and sunset of the Haleakala crater which is more than 10.000 feet above sea level. There, you feel like being on a different planet like the moon. At the summit of Haleakala, the temperature can even go below the freezing point. Therefore, make sure you have warm clothes and closed shoes with you. You need to wake up early to see the most spectacular sunrise on earth – a once in a lifetime experience. The park is open 24 hrs a day.
Make sure you have tickets for the parking lot up on the Haleakala, otherwise you will have to turn around and go back down Visitors without parking tickets are not allowed. Interested in a sunrise tour to Haleakala – or a sunset tour up Haleakala Crater?