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Maui has long been considered a top honeymoon destination and it's easy to see why: Known for its stunning beaches, incredibly friendly locals, and diverse landscapes, the second largest of Hawaii's islands offers something for every type of newlywed pair. "If a couple is active, if they’re foodies, or if they love water activities, it’s possible to create itineraries that really focus on a particular interest," says Amina Dearmon, a luxury travel expert and the owner of Perspectives Travel. "There’s a lot to do in Maui, so each day of the honeymoon can be unique and an experience to really look forward to."
If you're thinking of heading to this Pacific hotspot for your honeymoon, we're here to help you build your perfect itinerary—from where to stay and what to do to our favorite restaurants and must-know travel tips, we have all of the advice you need to plan the most memorable trip.
Meet the Expert
- Patty Ehinger is a luxury travel consultant based in New York City with Local Foreigner.
- Amina Dearmon is a luxury travel expert and owner of Perspectives Travel, a SmartFlyer affiliate.
- Margaux Pfeiffer is the director of concierge and guest experience for Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea.
Planning Your Maui Honeymoon
With 120-miles of coastline and lush forest-covered mountains, there's plenty to see and do on Maui. "Maui, lovingly referred to as Maui nō ka 'oi (which translates to Maui is the best), is the perfect honeymoon location," says Margaux Pfeiffer, the director of concierge and guest experience at Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea. "Maui offers a delicate balance of beautiful mountains and warm turquoise waters, with world-class dining and shopping. Where some honeymooners may find Oahu too fast-paced (particularly Honolulu and Waikiki), Maui boasts countless activities while preserving the laid-back island rhythm that melts worries away, allowing couples to connect and enjoy tropical paradise."
Plus, since Hawaii is part of the United States, it's an exotic trip you can take without a passport. "Some clients prioritize wanting an easy destination that’s both exotic, but at the same time familiar," says Ehinger. "When traveling to Maui you don’t need to worry about navigating immigration, understanding tipping customs, calculating foreign currency purchases, or overcoming language barriers."
There's truly no bad time to visit Maui—"The weather is consistently pleasant throughout the calendar year, giving the island a leg up on other popular honeymoon destinations," says Patty Ehinger, a luxury travel consultant—so whether you're tying the knot in the fall, winter, spring, or summer, this island destination is a great one to consider all year long. But if you want to visit when tourism is slower, April, May, August, September, or October are likely your best bets. Have your heart set on seeing migrating humpback whales? A honeymoon from December to May is non-negotiable.
In general, you'll want to spend at least a week on Maui; there's a lot to see and do, and for those visiting from the United State's midwest or east coast, the full-day trip can take a little time to recover from.
- Language: English
- Currency: USD
- When to Go: If you want to visit when the weather is great and the crowds are manageable, consider April, May, August, September, or October. If you really want to spot whales, though, you'll need to visit from December to May.
- How Much Time to Spend: Plan to spend at least seven to ten days on the island; with all of the exploring you'll want to do, it's best to have at least a week on Maui. However, if you're looking for a longer getaway, two weeks is great—you won't run out of activities on the island, but you can also make day trips to nearby islands like Lāna‘i or Moloka‘i.
- Getting There: Direct flights to Kahului Airport, the island's main hub, are available from most west coast airports; for travelers flying in from the east coast, you may prefer to take a direct flight to Oahu and catch a shorter connecting flight to the island.
- Transportation: Depending on your plans, renting a car is likely the best way to see everything the island has to offer. A vehicle with four-wheel drive is preferable if you plan to visit Hana, but convertibles are also popular. Uber is readily available and most hotels, especially those in Wailea and Kapalu, offer transportation to and from the center of town.
- Must-Pack: In addition to your favorite resortwear, make sure to pack a couple of extra layers. If you plan to visit the island's active volcano, you'll want something warm; quick-dry layers will also be helpful for day trips.
Places to Stay During Your Maui Honeymoon
Stunning accommodations abound on the island of Maui, especially for honeymooners. Whether you want to sleep just steps from sunny Wailea Beach or enjoy a quiet, secluded stay in lush Hana, we're sharing our favorite stays for your trip.
Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea
You may recognize this stunning hotel from the first season of the hit HBO series The White Lotus, but your own experience at the Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea will far exceed what you saw on the small screen. "After the potentially stressful planning of a wedding, Four Seasons Resort Maui is the perfect spot for honeymooners to unwind and relinquish control; especially on the exclusive Club Floor, our hotel within a hotel with dedicated staff, private lounge, and complimentary dining options," says Pfieffer. "Guests can take a break from planning with the help of our dedicated concierge team, who will tend to your every need and create a memorable itinerary for you to enjoy; including masterfully created Unforgettable Experiences, which connect guests to Maui's most interesting people and places." Don't forget to book a cabana at the adults-only Serenity Pool!
Traveling to and from Hana in one day is entirely doable, but if you want to slow down and enjoy the adventure and the destination, plan to spend the night. Book a room at Hāna-Maui Resort so you can make the most of your time in this idyllic town and have a home base to return to. Many rooms come complete with their own private lanai, which means you'll be able to enjoy the beautiful views of the Pacific Ocean while you enjoy a cocktail or room service.
An adults-only property, Hotel Wailea is basically a honeymooning couple's dream: With 72 suites, 15 acres of ocean views, a stunning pool, and everything from in-room spa treatments to wellness experiences, activities and offerings at this beautiful property are tailor-made to appeal to adult visitors.
The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua
If the island's upcountry is calling your name, plan to spend at least a few days in Kapalua. The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua, which sits on 54 acres overlooking the Pacific Ocean, is the perfect place for a getaway. With recently-renovated guest rooms and a three-tiered pool, a brand-new lobby, and access to two champion golf courses, as well as six delicious on-property restaurants, this hotel is basically your own little oasis in paradise.
Things to Do During Your Maui Honeymoon
Sure, you could spend all day bobbing in the ocean or relaxing at your hotel's pool, but then you'd miss out on authentic experiences unique to this stunning island. In order to make the most of your trip, we suggest scheduling an activity every other day—give yourself some time to unwind but make sure to have a plan so you don't miss out on what makes Maui so special.
Take Part in a Luau
You can't visit Hawaii without enjoying a luau, and while there are tons of different ones on the island (always check with your own resort to see if they have regularly scheduled luaus!), the Lū'au at Grand Wailea is a wonderful option for anyone staying in the area. All guests enjoy authentic Hawaiian ceremonies, music, and food (like poi, kālua pig, poke, and haupia) from the their own private table on a stunning lawn overlooking nearby Wailea Beach.
Visit Haleakalā for Sunrise
You'll catch quite a few stunning sunrises during your time on the island, but none quite like this one. Haleakalā, an active shield volcano also known as the “house of the sun,” offers the most epic view of the sunrise thanks to its incredibly unique terrain and summit height of 10,023 feet. "The Haleakalā sunrise is a can't-miss experience," says Ehinger. "While requiring a very early wake-up call, watching the Maui sun emerge over the ocean is an amazing spectacle. If you're up for a little adventure, after sunrise you can bike down the volcanic Haleakala." You have two options for your visit: First, you can book a group tour with an outfitter, who will pick you up from your resort, transport you to and from the summit, and provide blankets for warmth. If you'd prefer to go it alone, take the journey in your own rental car, but be sure to make a reservation through Haleakala National Park's website up to 60 days before you plan to visit.
Travel the Road to Hana
Adventure awaits on the Road to Hana! Get an early start and head out on the 64-mile journey from Kahului to Hana—it's best to beat the crowds if you want to make a variety of different stops, including must-see spots like Twin Falls, Garden of Eden Arboretum, and Wai'anapanapa State Park—which takes you through rain forests and volcanic terrain. The views are absolutely stunning, but cautious driving is essential: You'll make 600 hairpin turns and cross 45-one lane bridges, so take your time, allow locals to pass, and keep your eyes on the road. If you're concerned about missing any key spots, be sure to download a guided app before you start your trip.
Hungry during your journey? Stop at Hana Farms for lunch, where you'll have some of the best farm-to-table bites of your entire trip. On the way back, Ehinger says to remember to visit Aunt Sandy's, where the epic banana bread is guaranteed to call your name.
Spend Time at the Black Sand Beaches
If you're driving the Road to Hana, be sure to spend some time at Wai'anapanapa State Park, where the stunning black sand beaches are not to be missed. Advanced reservations are required and must be made at least one day before your visit.
No Hawaiian honeymoon is complete without an oceanfront spa experience. At the Four Seasons Maui Resort at Wailea, be sure to book a couples' massage in one of their open-air hales, where you'll be treated to a soft sea breeze and the sound of gently crashing waves while a talented therapist works out any wedding planning-induced tightness and knots. At the Ritz-Carlton Maui, Kapalua, be sure to arrive early for your treatment so you can spend some time in the outdoor hot tub or the indoor whirlpool.
Enjoy a Cooking Class
Food is a huge part of the culture in Hawaii, and a cooking class is the perfect way for you and your new spouse to learn something new that you can take home once the trip is over. Options for private cooking classes abound, but consider scheduling an experience with Coconut Information Farm & Cooking School, Hawaii Private Chefs, Chez Klio Maui Cooking Class & Private Chef, or Kiawe Outdoor’s.
Get in the Water
Don't forget to take advantage of the balmy Pacific Ocean during your trip. Dearmon suggests scheduling surf lessons or a snorkeling tour (if you can, get out to Molokini Crater) if you're looking to try something new. To better acquaint yourself with important Hawaiian traditions, don't skip out on any opportunities to enjoy an outrigger canoe lesson (which the Four Seasons Maui Resort at Wailea offers complementary to all guests). The sport is deeply important to the Hawaiian people and it's a great way to learn more about the region, get close to sea life, and enjoy the open water.
Where to Eat During Your Maui Honeymoon
Maui has an incredible food scene, so just about any restaurant you visit is bound to be outstanding. If there are any restaurants you absolutely can't bear the idea of missing, though, be sure to plan ahead. And whatever you do, don't wait to make your dinner reservations. "Popular restaurants are booked far in advance, and peak dining times are often the first to go," says Dearmon.
Mama's Fish House
Scoring a table at Mama's Fish House is a little like winning the lottery—reservations open a month in advance and are extremely hard to come by during dinner hours. If you can, start looking as soon as possible before your honeymoon and consider off-peak times; should you be unable to secure a reservation, sign up for the waitlist as spots sometimes open. The menu changes regularly (you'll enjoy the freshest catch of the day!) and the view is just as breathtaking as the food.
Dining at Spago, the Hawaiian outpost of master chef Wolfgang Puck, is an experience that every honeymooning couple should enjoy. A "fusion of Hawaiian and California cuisine," every dish on the menu is thoughtful and delicious. Be sure to save room for dessert, as the Baked Haleakala might just be one of the most divine dishes you eat all week.
If you're spending time in Kapalua, a dinner at Merriman's is an absolute must. Whatever you do, be sure to check sunset times before making a reservation, then (kindly!) ask for a table along the water. Trust us when we tell you that you'll want to be sipping one of Chef Peter Merriman's famed mai tais just as the sun drops below the horizon. Then, settle in for an incredible farm-to-table menu highlighting some of the island's freshest ingredients.
If you're looking for fine dining in an unfussy environment, Lāhainā Grill is your spot. Start with a Maui Mule or a Bee Sting, then enjoy the local Mahi Mahi or the seared Ahi, share an order of the daily risotto special, and finish out your meal with the Road to Hana, Maui (layers of chocolate cake and mousse with macadamia nut caramel).
Budgeting for a Maui Honeymoon
As with most destinations, a honeymoon in Maui can be as expensive or affordable as you're willing to make it. For the best price on flights, try to visit during the off or shoulder season. Another good way to save? Don't rent a car for your entire stay, which could set you back well over a thousand dollars depending how long your honeymoon will be. Instead, rent a car for three or four days and do all of your far-flung exploration then.