Many visitors through Maui simply drive straight past Upcountry Maui on their way to watch sunrise or sunset at Haleakala National Park. Frequently, people will bypass the region altogether, instead favoring the beaches of the South or Western shores of the island or perhaps taking the long and windy drive on the Road to Hana instead. For those who do make the trip and stop to linger a bit, it is often one of the most unique and enjoyable parts of their visit to Maui.
Culinary Points of Interest and Farm Tours
Alii Kula Lavender – They have a really interesting tour of the farm and some culinary products in their gift shop. I absolutely love their lavender lemonade and lavender scones.
Surfing Goat Dairy – You can sample their award winning chevre, feta and other goat cheese varieties and visit the baby goats too!
Maui’s Winery (Tedeschi Vineyards) – Pineapple wine is more of a novelty than anything else, but it’s a nice out-of-the-way stop and the people at the tasting room are really sweet.
Sunrise Protea – The protea flower is a very unique and unusual bloom, which grows in the cooler climates of upcountry Maui exceptionally well.
>> Read more about Casual Dining on Maui, including local favorites like Komoda Bakery and Fukushima Store.
>> Read a review of Haliimaile General Store, a great (non-stuffy!) fine dining option in Upcountry.
>> If you’ll be in Maui during the 4th of July weekend, you can’t miss the parade and rodeo in Makawao!
>> If you prefer to go with an organized tour rather than do-it-yourself, contact Maui Country Farm Tours. They specialize in tours of Upcountry Maui.
Check out this entertaining video from Hawaii Grown TV’s visit to Surfing Goat Dairy:
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Where to Stay in Upcountry Maui
Not every traveler to Hawaii wants or needs a beachfront location. (Shocking, but true!) If you’re looking for slightly cooler weather and are not the beach bum type, a stay in Upcountry Maui just might be for you!
Your best bet in this region would be Vacation Rentals, and you will want to look out or search for those in the towns of Kula (higher elevation, sometimes cool enough that the homes keep fireplaces!), Makawao (Paniolo Country – Hawaiian Cowboys!), Pukalani, or lush and rainy Haiku (closest to Hana, very rural) or Paia (closest to the big winter waves at Ho’Okipa).
From many of these towns it might be a 30 to 40 minute drive to a nice beach, but you’ll save money on the resort fees and highest prices at the main tourist strips. All are closer to Hana than starting out at the resort areas of Lahaina/Kaanapali or Kihei/Wailea. If you’re also considering watching the sunrise at Haleakala, starting from Upcountry will give you an extra hour to sleep in!
Paia Inn is a B&B located in Paia, which is also close to the North Shore and central Maui. Kula Lodge is a great choice for a real Upcountry location – its up over 2,000 ft elevation, so it’s chilly but the lodge is very cozy and breakfast there is very popular.
Another option would be to base yourself in central Maui at the hotels near the Kahului Airport or hostels up in Wailuku Town. You can use the widget at the top or bottom of the page to search for hotels or hostels in any of these locations.