Aloha, fellow Maui lovers!
Have you ever been overwhelmed by the endless choices of breathtaking activities on this paradise island? Well, I’ve got your back! After countless visits with my boyfriend and trying out our fair share of adventures, we’ve nailed down a list of must-do excursions that’ll leave you in awe.
You see, from exploring hidden waterfalls to witnessing sunrises atop a volcano and even snorkeling among vibrant marine life – we have become self-proclaimed experts on Maui tours. Trust me when I say that whether you’re into adrenaline-pumping escapades or tranquil moments surrounded by nature, there’s something in store for everyone.
What’s more, you won’t need to break the bank or spend days researching potential options. We’ve considered everything – tour organization, sight variety (hint: lots to see in one trip), service quality, and accessibility (no worries about fitness levels or pick-up points). Our goal is to help you make the most out of your stay without any stress!
Warning: Once you dive into these fantastic excursions we’ve handpicked just for you, it might be difficult not to book them all!
Now let’s embark on this journey together and take a peek at what awaits around every corner on this enchanting island called Maui.
#1 Rappel Maui Waterfalls and Rainforest Cliffs
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)
Address: 10600 Hana Hwy, Haiku, HI 96708 (Enter the Garden of Eden Arboretum and identify yourself as a Rappel Maui guest)
For an exotic waterfall adventure and a few hours in a lush green jungle, this is the best tour. Visually it is a break from the beaches, shoreline, and a dive into the wild side of the island. Step off the beaten path and go on a small group rappelling excursion fit for most people.
This tour only takes 8 guests at a time, and there are multiple stops along the legendary road to Hana. We learned how to descend a waterfall and cliff, and it was exhilarating. We started with the basics and worked our way up.
My favorite part was the 30-foot (9-meter) waterfall rappelling and a swim in the water hole. Swimming under a cascading waterfall made for stunning pictures. There is plenty of time to do and see everything because the groups are small.
Regardless of the weather, they will prepare you well and take you into the exotic rainforest. They use an anchored rope system making everything super safe. There is also a short hike through streams and winding trails. The staff is excellent, knowledgeable, and well-trained. Service is top notch and the atmosphere is friendly. Overall, an excellent experience for couples or families looking for adventure.
My favorite Maui excursion is the Rappel Maui Waterfalls and Rainforest Cliffs because:
- This is an exciting activity, different from the typical beachside tours because you get to go into the jungles on the Hana road and rappel down some great waterfalls.
- They use an anchored rope system that is super safe and instruction and guidance are impeccable.
- Tour groups are small and personalized up to only 8 people.
- You get to swim in an exotic waterhole under a rushing waterfall, taking stunning once-in-a-lifetime pictures.
- This is a great couples activity that includes some hiking.
#2 West Maui Half-Day Snorkel from Ka’anapali Beach
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)
Address: 2435 Kaanapali Pkwy, Lahaina, HI 96761 (at the Sea Maui kiosk between Leilani’s & Hula Grill on the beach walk at Whaler’s Village)
If you are a fan of snorkeling, this will be an extraordinary experience at any level. Asides from an excellent spot for snorkeling, the tour provides all the equipment needed, delicious breakfast and lunch onboard the boat, drinks (soft drinks, juice, water, coffee), parking, and a professional guide. They are more than willing to accommodate dietary restrictions, so just let them know ahead of time if you are looking for a vegetarian or gluten-free meal.
We traveled to several breathtaking locations for snorkeling (including Oluwalu, Mala Wharf, and Honolua Bay) and got to see stunning coral, colorful tropical fish, sea anemones, eels, and more. We even saw green turtles, but whales and bottlenose dolphins can also be seen during the winter season.
Asides from taking lots of fun and exciting pictures ourselves, the trip is filmed. Back at the beach we watched the video and bought some stunning professional pictures. The entire staff was fun and friendly and there were about 40 travelers on our trip. So not overcrowded. It is however required that you know how to swim.
West Maui Half Day Snorkel from Ka’anapali Beach is a top choice for a Maui adventure because:
- You get to visit several great snorkeling spots with high-end equipment and a professional guide.
- They provide a delicious breakfast and lunch with accommodations if you have dietary restrictions.
- It’s an opportunity to see a vast amount of sea life including tropical fish, eel, coral, turtles, dolphins, and even whales.
- You can take your own amazing pictures or buy a video and pictures of your trip.
- The groups are relatively small, so there is no overcrowding and waiting.
#3 Maui: Molokini Wild Eco Adventure from Maalaea Harbor
Duration: 6 hours (approx.)
Address: PacWhale Ocean Store, 612 Front Street, HI Lahaina, 96761
This is a fun tour with a small group of people (I think about 30). They don’t have a set itinerary, but cover a lot of exciting and fun locations, especially for first-time visitors.
Our trip started with a delicious breakfast full of fresh and local fruit, Frittatas, all kinds of pastries, and the famous Maui coffee. We had a certified marine naturalist onboard which made all the difference and he entertainingly provided excellent information. For children, they also had a Jr. Naturalist Program.
We snorkeled at three different locations including the Molokini crater (which was a highlight for me). This trip offered so many chances to see all kinds of marine life, fish, octopus, eel, coral, and even turtles and dolphins. We enjoyed every minute and they provided premium snorkel gear, flotation devices, lunch on board, and drinks. Overall, a full service. All you need to bring is sunscreen and a good attitude.
Check out Maui: Molokini Wild Eco Adventure from Maalaea Harbor because:
- This is a small group tour with under 30 people where everyone has the opportunity for individual attention.
- They have a certified marine naturalist onboard and a Jr. Naturalist Program for kids.
- You are greeted with a delicious breakfast and coffee, and they also serve lunch.
- Snorkeling at Molokini crater is a once-in-a-lifetime experience because it is abundant with marine life and exotic fish.
- They use premium equipment and flotation devices.
- This is a good activity for couples and families with children.
#4 Haleakala Sunrise Best Guided Bike Tour with Bike Maui
Duration: 8 hours (approx.)
Address: 810 Haiku Rd, Haiku, HI 96708 (You can head directly to the meeting point or request pickup)
Biking lovers will get to experience one of the world’s most beautiful sunrises on this tour. The tour is impeccably organized and planned and takes about eight hours to complete. It includes complete service including a ride to the summit, all the needed equipment for the bike ride down, and a fun adventure.
The tour provides transportation to the crater and makes sure you get there on time. We brought warm clothes because volcano mountain is much colder than the shoreline (especially at night). The sunrise itself was a breathtaking experience. It was a clear morning so the colors of orange, yellow, purple, and pink were vivid and stunning. We did not wait much to get started with the ride and had a small snack in the meantime.
They provided excellent equipment for the ride including gloves, Helly Hansen windbreaker suit top and bottom (if needed), Columbia fleece vest, Kona Mountain Bike & Bell Helmet. We even made a great stop for breakfast in Makawao Town, where I had a little time to explore. The guide was great at keeping us all together and at a good pace.
There are so many great views to enjoy on this trip. We loved the sunrize, views from the crater, and a vast bi-coastal view of Maui. I took so many pictures, that they will be an original memory.
Haleakala Sunrise Best Guided Bike Tour with Bike Maui is a top tour because:
- You get to witness one of the most beautiful and unique sunrises on the planet.
- There is a great downhill bicoastal bike ride with fantastic equipment including Helly Hansen windbreaker suit top and bottoms, Columbia fleece vests, and more.
- There is a fun break in Makawao Town for food and a little exploring.
- This is a great couples activity.
#5 Guided “Halfway to Hana” Tour of Maui Black Sand Beach, Waterfalls & Turtles!
Duration: 6 hours (approx.)
Address: Maui Mall Village, 70 E Kaahumanu Ave, Kahului, HI 96732 (Meet at “Green Umbrella”)
This tour is run by guides that have more than 30 years of experience on the legendary Hana road. That’s why the tour is authentic, informative, and one of a kind. They know all the great spots to visit, and those to skip. The tour lasts almost 6 hours, so there is plenty of time to see, photograph, and enjoy everything.
We were picked up at the Maui Mall and the first stop was Pua’a Ka’a State Park. This is a stunning spot with over 5 acres of rainforest with waterfalls and pools. I enjoyed it very much. We also saw some spectacular waterfalls including Haipua’ena Falls and Upper Waikani Falls.
A surprising stop that I enjoyed very much was also Honomanu, a peaceful and small, secluded black-pebble beach. Shortly after we made a stop for lunch with a bunch of local vendors with burgers, smoothies, fruit, and delicious hot dogs. This is a private tour, so it’s partly customizable and can be done as a couple’s activity exclusively. We really enjoyed the personalized attention and privacy.
Guided “Halfway to Hana” Tour of Maui Black Sand Beach, Waterfalls & Turtles because:
- This is a private tour so you dictate the size of your group.
- The guides have been doing this for 30 years, so you get a lot of experience and knowledge.
- The tour takes you to the key areas to visit and avoids the tourist traps.
- You get to explore the rainforest, waterfalls, black beaches, and other hidden areas that are off the beaten path.
#6 West Maui Whale Watching and Snorkeling Excursion
Duration: 3 hours (approx.)
Address: 505 Front St, Lahaina, HI 96761 (Shops at 505″ in the back left corner across from Goofy Foot Surf School and Betty’s Beach Cafe)
If you love to kayak and snorkel this will be your favorite tour. I have some experience and did just fine. It was different and fun. Not to mention out of the way of crowds and typical tourist activities. The tour provides yummy snacks, water, snorkeling equipment, and a professional guide. It is run by Maui Ocean Sports.
We started our adventure at 7 a.m. and it lasted slightly over 3 hours. They do a maximum of 8 travelers, and our group had 6. So there was a lot of personalized attention and the atmosphere was great. Our guide was very knowledgeable about marine life and did a great job guiding us to see as much as possible. I loved the view of the shoreline.
The snorkeling portion was my personal favorite. We saw so many colorful fish, coral, eel, and other small sea creatures. On the way, we even met some green sea turtles. The guide told us that during winter months, they commonly spot whales too. If the weather is bad they offer a different date or a refund, so there is not much risk involved.
Make sure to check out West Maui Whale Watching and Snorkeling Excursion because:
- It’s a small group trip with a lot of individual attention and away from crowds.
- It’s perfect for lovers of kayaking and snorkeling.
- The guide is very well-informed, friendly, and helpful.
- They provide snacks and some additional sightseeing opportunities on the way.
- It’s a great activity for couples looking to explore marine life and admire views of the shoreline.
#7 Jungle Waterfall Adventure on Maui
Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes (approx.)
Address: Safeway, 1090 Ho’okele St, Kahului, HI 96732
Adventure and excitement lovers will have the time of their life on this private or semi-private tour. It’s an opportunity to go cliff jumping, swim under exotic waterfalls, and soak in the water while admiring the lush jungle surroundings. The tour is operated by Epic Maui Hikes and they do an excellent job of organizing the trip and providing everything needed.
Our trip started with an exhilarating hike through a bamboo forest, and a jungle trail full of exotic flowers and plants. There are even wild fruit trees to admire. We visited multiple waterfalls of different sizes. The place we chose to swim was impeccable. The water was the perfect depth, and the sound of the jungle and waterfall was exotic. I got some amazing pictures from under the waterfall.
We also chose the pro photo option and got additional photos making the trip one of a kind. Our guide was great and patient, letting us decide how much time we wanted to spend and where. He was knowledgeable about the local culture, plants, and history. Honestly, the 3,5 hours flew by. I wish we had more time.
If you are looking to spend a few hours in the jungle swimming choose Jungle Waterfall Adventure on Maui because:
- You can do a private tour of 4 or more people or a semi-private tour for less.
- They have a professional guide who is very knowledgeable about the area and provides great information about the history and culture of the area.
- You visit several waterfalls and can cliff jump, swim, and soak in the water hole as much as you want. Meanwhile, the jungle surroundings are exotic and relaxing.
- This is an activity for families and couples. They are focused on safety.
#8 West Maui Adventure Tour with Private Guide
Duration: 6 to 7 hours (approx.)
Address: 70 E Kaahumanu Ave, Kahului, HI 96732 (additional pick-up points available)
If you have a bucket list, this tour will fulfill it! As a private tour, they custom tailor each outing to your wishes. While providing a professional guide, Private transportation, Hiking Poles, Poncho, Towels, and even bug spray. They also include pick-ups and drop-offs in the Kahului or Ma’alela area.
Our trip included some key visits that I’ve wanted to visit including Nakalele Blowhole, Makamakaole Trail, Turnbull Studios and Sculpture Garden, and Iao Valley. Our guide was exceptional at providing interesting information, history, and more at each sight.
My favorite part of the trip was the Waihee Ridge Trail. For hike lovers, it’s a 5-mile round-trip trail that ascends 1,500 ft. It’s an adventure through a true tropical rainforest. Something most exotic I have experienced. Nature lovers will love it and have the opportunity to see wild-growing kukui, guava, ohia, and ferns throughout the trail.
Another highlight often not seen by tourists is the Turnbull Studios and Sculpture Garden which is home to the most gorgeous sculpture garden on Maui. They have diverse local artwork in all formats. It’s a place I could admire for hours. I even bought some handmade jewelry, which made great gifts for friends. We also had an awesome plate lunch in the garden here.
I highly recommend West Maui Adventure Tour with Private Guide because:
- You can customize your trip and make your own bucket list adventure because it’s a private and flexible tour.
- There is an opportunity to see multiple exotic sights like the Nakalele Blowhole, Makamakaole Trail, Turnbull Studios and Sculpture Garden, and Iao Valley.
- It’s an opportunity to take an off-the-beaten-path hike or explore an art studio filled with local work.
- The service and guide are excellent and provide lots of great information on the history and culture of the area, as well as about the animals and plants.
- The trip is lengthy at 6 to 7 hours, so there is plenty of time to see everything without feeling rushed.
#9 Maui Tour: Iao Valley, Hawaiian Distillery, and Lavender Farm Tour
Duration: 5 hours (approx.)
Address: Lahaina Harbor, Lahaina, HI 96761 (You can head directly to your preferred meeting point, or request a pickup.)
This is a leisurely and relaxing tour. It’s for the fun lover not looking to do extensive hiking, but rather appreciate the farming tradition of Maui. The tour takes you to the sacred Iao Valley for a walk through the Kepaniwai Heritage Gardens, Ali’i Kula Lavender Farm, and Ocean Vodka Organic Farm and Distillery. All three are worth individual trips, but when you combine them, you get a great local tour experience.
The tour picked us up right in front of our hotel, and the guide was very professional and friendly. Everything ran smoothly as promised. There was one more couple on our tour, so the four of us really enjoyed the personalized attention. Our first stop was Kepaniwai Park and Heritage Gardens and then we made our way to the Iao Valley State Monument.
My favorites were the Ali’i Kula Lavender farm and Ocean Vodka Organic Farm and Distillery. We spent about an hour at each one of these locations. Lavender was in bloom, and it was something I had never seen before. It was stunning. I took some of the most beautiful pictures of the purple and blue fields. The smell was amazing and their products were high quality. The distillery was charming and we had a great tasting. We got tons of interesting information about organic growing and the distillery process. Maui Tour: Iao Valley, Hawaiian Distillery, and Lavender Farm Tour is an awesome excursion because:
- You get to visit 3 great locations in one trip including Kepaniwai Heritage Gardens, Ali’i Kula Lavender Farm, and Ocean Vodka Organic Farm and Distillery.
- It’s a small group tour so no more than 4 to 6 people usually.
- You get to spend an hour at both the blooming lavender farm and Ocean Vodka Organic Farm and Distillery.
- It’s a fantastic trip as a couples activity or a family outing.
Conclusion on the best excursions in Maui
Maui has some of the richest ecosystems in the world. With the rainforest, ocean, and abundant coral reef, it’s an ideal place to explore.
Check out my guide for truly the best quality adventures that are safe, exciting, and authentic. Each pick is filled with stunning natural beauty, exciting activities, great organization, and more. Most are ideal for couples or families.
Try a private trip down the historic road to Hana, or Rappel down a Maui Waterfall.
Jump off Rainforest Cliffs or enjoy a Whale Watching and Snorkeling Excursion.
No matter which one you choose, you will love it. If you can, do multiple options!
Enjoy your trip!
Last Updated on April 30, 2023 by Brigitte