10 Budget Friendly Maui Adventures
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1. Hike to a 400 Foot Waterfall
Cost: $30 per vehicle Haleakala National Park enterance fee
Idyllic waterfalls tucked deep into lush jungles are one of the many images that people think of when they think of Hawaii. Hiking to Waimoku Falls is just that. The Pipiwai Trail is one of Maui’s most popular trails as it takes you past waterfalls, through a dreamy bamboo forest and finally ends up at the jaw dropping Waimoku Falls. These falls are located in Haleakala National Park on the east side of the island past Hana town.
2. Kayak with the Whales
Cost: $65 to rent a two man kayak so you can share the cost
Whale season runs December 15th through- May 15th and is the best time to visit. If you’re feeling more thrilling than a whale watching tour, rent a kayak and go out on a Maui adventure whale watch of your own. Renting a kayak in Lahaina is easy and almost directly on the beach. Which makes getting in and out of the water easy. Go early in the morning when the ocean is at its calmest and when the whales are the most active.
3. Watch the sunset above the clouds
Cost: $30 per car Haleakala National Park enterance fee or Annual Park Pass
The summit of Haleakala sits above the clouds at 10,023 feet. Watching the sun dip below the clouds as you stand on top of a volcano is a magical way to end your day. Being up there makes you feel closer to Mother Earth. Make sure you dress warm, last year it snowed and the snow stuck for a few days! You can also head up Haleakala for sunrise but you must make reservations in advance here.
4. Scuba dive/ Snorkel an Atoll
Cost: $40 & ↑ depending on the tour company/activity
Molokini Crater is a crescent shaped islet and is one of the best places to dive/snorkel on Maui. Why you ask? Molokini is a marine preserve therefore you can’t hunt the fish. There are close to 250 species of fish and 38 species of coral that live here. On a clear day you can see up to 150 feet of visibility and you may even see moray eels, octopus and reef sharks! Most of the boat tours leave from Maalaea Harbor making it convenient no matter which side of the island you’re staying on.
5. Surf at a World Renown Surf Break
Cost: $75 per person in a group lesson
Hawaii and surfing go hand in hand and there’s no shortage of breaks on this island. This is one of the ultimate Maui adventures. If you’re new to surfing do yourself a favor and get a private instructor for a couple hours. It’s definitely not an easy sport and you want to learn the proper way as not to piss anyone off in the water. Joe (my other half usually behind the camera) is a surf instructor a few days a week and loves getting people up on a wave. Actually getting up on a wave only increases the enjoyment value and experience.
6. Hike through a dormant volcano
Cost: $15 per car Haleakala National Park enterance fee
Hiking is one of my favorite past times and being able to hike through a dormant volcano has been one of my favorite Maui adventures. Maui is home to Haleakala National Park. The park offers visitors the chance to hike through the crater and explore its foreign landscape. The most popular hike is the Sliding Sands Trail that takes you down to the crater floor. The elevation and sandy trail makes it strenuous but worth every step. You’ll feel like you’re traversing the surface of Mars.
7. swim at a red sand beach
Red sand beaches are exotic as they seem. Maui is one of those exotic places that transports you to a different world. Maui’s red sand beach can be found in the town of Hana on the Eastern side of the island. Most travelers only visit Hana on a day trip missing the magical experience that Hana offers. Plan on spending at least one night in Hana and splurge on the Travaasa. The red sand beach is easily accessed from this beautiful hotel and getting there is half the adventure.
8. Swim with the Dolphins on a Snorkel Cruise to Lana’i
One of the most magical moments you can have is being submersed in warm tropical ocean with dolphins swimming all around you. Although it is possible to have the experience on Maui, the BEST way to make sure this experience happens is by island hopping to Lana’i for the day. These spinner dolphins frequently hang out at Manele Bay which is where the boat will anchor and you will enjoy lunch and the beautiful beach for the day.
I know most people wouldn’t consider $100 a budget friendly adventure but considering that the average daily budget in Hawaii is $200 and up, I’d say its a pretty good deal. But if you’re still trying to opt out of the boat trip, Slaughterhouse Beach is a place that I frequently see dolphins.
9. Watch Sunrise at a Vibrant Black Sand Beach
One of Maui’s most famous beaches is Honokalani, a vibrant black sand beach at Wai’anapanapa State Park. Being so famous has its minuses though as this beach is always packed with people. Getting to the beach for sunrise however will give you the beach to yourself. If you’re into videography or INSTAGRAM it is a dream come true. The beach itself and the black sand is more of a smooth black pebble. This is my top ranked activity on the budget friendly Maui adventures list.
10. Swim Under a Waterfall
Cost: FREE but they kindly accepts donations!
At Twin Falls you can do just this. A popular stop off on the road to Hana, like most attractions on Maui you’ll want to get here early when it opens to get the dreamy people less pictures. There are 2 falls, hence the name Twin Falls. The second waterfall is my favorite and worth the 10 minute hike.