Once the royal capital of the Hawaiian kingdom, Lahaina is now a charming seaside town on Maui’s west side with oceanfront shopping and dining. Plus, it’s home to both Ka’anapali and Kapalua resorts, and some of the best beaches in Hawaii. These are some of the best hotels in Lahaina, whether you want to snorkel at Pu‘u Keka‘a, spot migrating humpback whales or enjoy a lomi lomi massage and traditional luau. Book the one you like best with Culture Trip.
There are two towers at this almost 800-room resort – and you want to be in the newly redesigned Hokupa’a Tower, where all accommodations have ocean views. You’ll also have access to a mezzanine lanai, or patio, for light bites at breakfast and dinner. At other times, cultural activities here include making lei po’o flower crowns and learning to strum ukulele. Expect complimentary beach yoga classes each morning. Kids flock to Kawaiola aquatic playground for its six pools – you can relax at the spa. New restaurant Waicoco is led by one of Hawaii’s most well-known chefs, Chris Kajioka. The garlic sun noodles and seared line-caught local fish are highlights.
All 810 rooms at this behemoth resort have been renovated in the past year, with a lighter, brighter color palette. There are so many activities here that you might never leave the property – including morning beach bootcamp classes to wildlife tours, people-watching by the pool and even penguin-feeding. Pampering highlights include the spacious hair and nail salon – a favorite for bridal parties – and delectable meals of sushi and udon noodles at Asian-fusion haunt Japengo. End the evening with awe-inspiring stargazing on the rooftop, where you can see 80 of the 88 constellations, helped by NASA ambassador and director of astronomy Eddie Mahoney.
Outdoor recreation and an outstanding spa are the top reasons to check into this luxury hotel in the serene enclave of Kapalua. Guests of all ages can explore tide pools, learn about ancient Hawaiian canoe plants and track turtles thanks to Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Ambassadors of the Environment program. The pool deck was revamped recently, and seven VIP cabanas surrounding the adults-only pool include flat-screen TVs and a fully stocked fridge. All guest rooms feature private lanai balconies, double sinks and original local artwork. You’d be seriously daft not to schedule a treatment at the sumptuous spa, where Eminence, ESPA and Intraceuticals products are customized for facials that are equally relaxing and results-oriented.
Nobody complains about lack of space at this 12-floor condominium resort. Each of the 350-plus units is unique, decorated by owners, and corner units have sprawling 544sqft (51sqm) wraparound lanais. There are studios, one-bedroom and two-bedroom condos to rent, all with full kitchens and laundry rooms on each floor. There are no restaurants or bars on site, but the resort is adjacent to Whalers Village, with a plethora of dining options. The atmosphere here is more laid-back and residential than its hotel neighbors – six grills are ideally positioned to watch the sunset while enjoying a beer and cooking up dinner.
Concierge services at this luxury condominium resort go above and beyond, pre-stocking your refrigerator for your arrival, booking activities and coveted dining reservations, and arranging nanny services. Many owners live here full-time so there are only 170 one- and two-bedroom condos available to rent. Top tip: you can even select the specific condo you want online. There are no restaurants or bars, but a grill master is available daily to cook up your dinner with Maui olive oil and fresh herbs from the garden. You just bring your own ingredients and relax in a beachfront cabana before settling down to eat.
This peaceful resort on the north end of Ka’anapali Beach was part of the original Ka’anapali development in the 1960s. Choose from tower accommodations or a room in one of the freestanding cottages scattered across 27 acres (11ha). Golfers enjoy preferred rates at two championship golf courses and tennis players can play at the adjacent tennis ranch, which has hosted professional tournaments. Royal Lahaina also hosts the longest running luau – trad cooking and live Hawaiian music – in Lahaina seven nights a week: come for unlimited buffet, fire and hula dances and fabulous oceanfront sunset views.
Villas and suites at this family-friendly condominium-style resort have up to three bedrooms, with full kitchens and in-room washer and dryer. Kids love splashing around the 3 acres (1.2ha) of the aquatic park, playing on the waterslide and in waterfalls with floaties, boogie boards and water toys to rent, while adults can relax in one of five hot tubs. Signature restaurant Duke’s Beach House is named after legendary Hawaiian surfer Duke Kahanamoku, serving furikake ahi tuna steak and and crispy coconut shrimp accompanied by daily musical performances. This is a place to settle into and never leave – at least, not until the end of your holiday.
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meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.