Where to Live on Maui – A guide to choosing the right neighborhood for your best lifestyle.
Considering that Maui is a relatively tiny island, you might be shocked to learn just how many different ecosystems and diverse lifestyles there are here to pick from. Maui truly has something to offer everyone.
For people that are relocating to Hawaii due to Covid, or if you just need a local perspective on where to live, this guide is for you.
Disclaimer: There is no wrong place to live on Maui. However there are areas that may be a better match for your unique lifestyle than others. Maui is all about living your best life, so let us help you design the best Maui lifestyle possible.
Let’s start with Kihei. If you didn’t know anything about Maui but wanted the benefits of warm weather, beautiful beaches, the potential to find a job, and live in a safe and established community, you might have landed in Kihei.
Kihei is one of the most popular areas of Maui, especially amongst new arrivals and truly offers the best of everything Maui. You will find shopping malls and restaurants, dentist offices and gyms along with remote beaches, pristine sands and clear blue waters and plenty of watersports (and whales in the winter).
While nightlife on Maui remains a bit of an oxy moron (the island gets quiet after dark), Kihei has centrally located bars and restaurants that bring food options, fun, live music and a sense of the night.
Pros: Always sunny. Close to beaches. Populated city.
Cons: Slightly busy. No easy access to mountain or forests. Smaller land parcels.
2. South, West & Northshore
To understand the island of Maui, it’s helpful to know its sides. Each side has different weather, proximity to beaches, and varying characteristics that make them unique.
South Maui – Home to Kihei, popular with new arrivals because of it’s endless list of easily accessible beaches. South Maui also includes the more luxurious Wailea and remote beauty of Makena. South Maui is one of the most constantly sunny areas of the island and is an amazing place to spend the winter.
Pros: Endless Beaches. Constant Sun. Luxury Options.
Cons: Slightly Higher Density.
West Maui – Home to Lahaina, the old capitol and fishers village / tourist mecca with world famous front street and its array of oceanfront restaurants, art galleries and bars. West Maui is also famous for its luxurious resorts and golf destinations and includes Kaanapali and Kapalua towards the north west end.
Pros: Great Weather. Surf spots and beaches. Nightlife & Restaurants.
Cons: A bit far from Central Maui hospitals and Costco.
North Shore – North Shore Maui is comprised of beachfront towns like Paia & Haiku where you will find gentle people with a laid back attitude who prioritize surfing, yoga and enjoying a country lifestyle on the edge of a tropical jungle.
Pros: Amazing nature. Big Waves.
Cons: Winter rains.
While most of Maui is located near or on the ocean, Upcountry is a notable exception with a different vibe. Located midway up Haleakala volcano are the mountain side towns of Pukalani, Makawao and Kula.
Perfectly elevated, these towns receive cool breezes and stunning sunsets that inspire the recluse and artistic people that live here. These towns have a history of cattle ranching and a throwback to older times in the country.
Kula is known to have some world famous home owners such as Oprah and Barrack Obama.
Pros: Cooler elevation. Forest hikes. Amazing sunsets.
Cons: Further from the ocean. Further from town.