STAY & PLAY ON KAANAPALI BEACH

Kaanapali Beach Resort is a three-mile stretch of beach with oceanfront resorts, shopping, dining, and more. Whether you plan to daytrip around the island of Maui or relax in one locale during your Hawaiian getaway, Kaanapali Beach offers the perfect combination of serenity and style. For a wallet-friendly, authentic Hawaiian experience stay at Kaanapali Beach Hotel. In addition to charming accommodations with family-friendly amenities, you’ll find an assortment of on-site cultural activities like lei making, ‘Ukulele lessons, and ʻŌlelo Hawaiʻi language classes. The property includes a whale-shaped pool, direct beach access, and an assortment of dining venues including regional cuisines offered at Tiki Terrace.

Pool at Kaanapali Beach Hotel. © CT Shier.

Pool at Kaanapali Beach Hotel © CT Shier.

If you’re interested in a larger resort with front row viewing of the nightly Cliff Diving at Black Rock, book your stay with Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa. Grab a seat at Cliff Dive Grill for sunset cliff diving and drinks, or make reservations at Black Rock Kitchen for local flavors and fine dining. Sheraton Maui has a sprawling pool with winding river and waterfall features, surrounded by options for quick bites and afternoon refreshments. On-site activities include introductory scuba lessons, snorkel gear rental, and marine life education through Maui Ocean Center’s Hawaiian Marine Life Hale kiosk located in the pool area.

Hawaiian Mini Poke Bowl at Tiki Terrace, Kaanapali Beach. © CT Shier.

Hawaiian Mini Poke Bowl at Tiki Terrace, Kaanapali Beach © CT Shier.

DINING AT KAANAPALI BEACH

In addition to Tiki Terrace and Black Rock Kitchen, you’ll want to take a stroll along the Kaanapali Beachwalk to access the wide variety of oceanfront dining and beverages at each resort. You’ll also find your coffee fix at Starbucks in front of Marriott’s Maui Ocean Club or Island Vintage Coffee in Whalers Village. In the shopping and dining plaza of Whalers Village, newcomer Monkeypod Kitchen by Merriman is worth a visit, as is the locally-loved Hula Grill. I recommend ordering the Crab Topped Macadamia Nut Crusted Mahi-Mahi for delicate, but divine local flavors. If a luau is on your bucket list, pick up tickets for Royal Lahaina Resort Luau, Maui’s longest running luau show. I enjoyed the bountiful dinner menu accompanied by an evening of captivating cultural performances.

Kaanapali Surf School. © CT Shier.

Kaanapali Surf School © CT Shier.

KAANAPALI BEACH ACTIVITIES

There’s no shortage of beach activities found all along Kaanapali Beach and each resort has several on-site options to choose from. Snorkeling is an absolute must, especially with some of the world’s best marine life easily found right off Black Rock in front of the Sheraton. While I was out there, a large Hawaiian sea turtle passed by, and I had a wondrous time watching tropical fish in their natural habitat. If you’ve ever wanted to try surfing, but feel a little nervous about your skill set, I highly recommend booking a lesson with Kaanapali Surf Club, which you’ll find right in front of Marriott’s Maui Ocean Club. Group lessons are available, though I appreciated having the one-on-one time with Randy during a private lesson as he ensured I caught every wave possible.

For non-beach activities, spend some time exploring Whalers Village. Free hula shows take place every Wednesday and Saturday, and it’s common to catch a free movie under the stars on Tuesday nights. Whalers Village is also a great place to pick up souvenirs and you’ll find national retailers alongside local boutiques, offering everything from beach gear to jewelry and more. Snacking on Honolulu Cookie Company treats is a must! And, if you’re up for a daytrip, visit Maui Ocean Center, located between Kaanapali Beach and Lahaina, for interactive marine activities and educational programs on sharks, mantas, and an assortment of tropical fish. Save time to explore Lahaina’s shops and galleries before visiting The Plantation Inn for a bite to eat at Gerard’s Restaurant, home to contemporary French cuisine with island inspiration.

Maui Ocean Center. © CT Shier.

Maui Ocean Center © CT Shier.

IF YOU GO

Kaanapali Beach Resort
GoHawaii: Maui
Kaanapali Beach Hotel
Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa

A portion of my itinerary was made possible by Kaanapali Beach Resort.

Black Rock at Sheraton Maui. © CT Shier. FWT Magazine.

Black Rock at Sheraton Maui © CT Shier.