Do you only have one day in Maui?  Unfortunately, we were in the same boat!  I wish we could have spent a lot more time exploring this amazing island.  We had to narrow down exactly what we wanted to do to make the most of our one day in Maui!

Our top choices were snorkeling and hiking. There is also a lot of free things to do in Maui. Let’s explore some options of how to make your one day in Maui the best day ever!

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Hiking in Maui

Hiking in Maui

My husband and I love to hike and trail run.  We did some extensive research before we got to Hawaii on what trails we wanted to hike.   Some of the amazing hikes are actually on the road to Hana or close to Hana.  With only one day in Maui we did not have time to experience the Road to Hana.  We decided to focus our attention on the opposite side of the Island.

Nakalele Blowhole & Sweetheart Rock

Distance 1 Mile

Location: West Maui

We decided to hike to Nakalele Blowhole.  It is a short hike down a rocky path.  One thing I think is important is to check the tide calendar to see when the tide is high or low.  We hiked early in the morning and the tide was low.  This meant the blowhole was not as strong as it would have been during high tide.  Around the blowhole there were hundreds of crabs crawling around.  It was really cool!  I recommend this hike but be careful not to drive on the road of death to get there.

Choosing The Best Hikes in Maui

One day in Maui is not enough time to hike all the amazing hikes available.  I thought it would be good to list some of the hikes we researched and hopefully give you more options to choose from. One reason we love hiking is it is a free thing to do in Maui.

  1. Kapalua Coastal Trail 3.5 miles – almost like walking in a park.
  2. Mahana Ridge Trail – 20 + miles round trip – obviously, you don’t have to hike the entire thing!
  3. Waihee Ridge Trail – 2.5 miles – West side of Maui.

Most of the hikes that looked incredible are on the Road to Hana.

Snorkeling in Maui

Snorkeling at Maui

We did not get to snorkel at all of these locations but I think mentioning your options here will be helpful for you as plan out your one day in Maui.  We had time to do one location and decided to do a afternoon boat tour that took us out to a spot and included a lunch.

Molokini Islet

The most famous place to snorkel at is Molokini.  You can charter a boat to take you to this point, unfortunately for us, you have to do it early in the morning!  We arrived to the area later in the afternoon and were told that the conditions of the ocean were not suitable after the morning hours.  I wish we could have experienced this area because the water in this area is possible the clearest in all of Hawaii.

Honolua Bay and Kapalua Bay

Both of these snorkeling spots are relatively close together.  I would spend a few hours at both locations to get some good snorkeling in.  Kapalua is more of a sheltered cove.

Kaanapali Beach and Black Rock

Kaanapali has been voted one of the best beaches in the world.  So you can enjoy white sand beaches and be able to snorkel out to the Black Rock.

Turtle Town

Is a really popular place to snorkel in Maui.  If you are snorkeling from shore you will start at Makena Beach.  There are many tours that kayak out to Turtle Town so you have many options to choose from.


Beaches in Maui

Best Beach In Maui

The beaches in Maui are incredible. Honestly, we could have spent our entire one day in Maui on the beach.  The water was unbelievable.  It was crystal clear and warm.  We pretty much swam the entire time and if we hadn’t booked a snorkeling excursion we would not have left.

If you only have one day in Maui you will probably have to just pick one beach to enjoy.   I would pick one that is close to your location or plan a trip to one of the most famous beaches.  We went to Kamaole Beach and I really can’t describe how wonderful it was.

The Top Beaches In Maui

  1. Kaanapali Beach
  2. Napili Bay
  3. Makena Beach (Big Beach)
  4. Baby Beach
  5. Keawakapu Beach

In the comments below let us know what your favorite beach in Maui is! Or if you only had one day in Maui, what was your favorite activity?! 

What You Will Not Be Able To Do In One Day in Maui

Road to Hana

The Road to Hana is something you probably won’t have time to do if you only have one day in Maui.  I wouldn’t recommend putting this into your itinerary unless you were going to be staying on Maui for a longer time period.  There are some amazing hikes and waterfalls on your way to Hana and it is worth keeping this on a bucket list for when you return.

One Day In Maui - Tours and Activities

Submarine Tour of Maui

Have you ever wanted to go on a submarine tour?  This is a great tour that takes you 100 feet under the Pacific Ocean to view all the amazing sea life you could image.  This tour is located in Lahaina, HI and last 1 hour.  Tours are available every hour.  This would be a once and a life time opportunity.

Maui Cruise and Dolphin Spotting Tour

This Maui Cruise and Dolphin Spotting Tour is available Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.  It last 4 hours and departs in the morning.  You will board a 70 foot catamaran in Lahaina and head out to the private island of Lanai.  Breakfast and lunch are included and transportation to two separate snorkeling spots are included.  Snorkel equipment and instruction, boogie board, and water slide are also included.

Downhill Volcano Bike Tour

The Volcano Bike Tour is for adventure seekers!  Racing down Mount Haleakala will give you incredible views of Maui. As you venture down this 38 mile trail a team leader will guide you down.  There are two times available 2:15 am and 7:00 am. All equipment is included and a light breakfast is served.

Whale Watching Tour in Maui

The Whale Watching Tour in Maui is only available during mid-December through April. This is when the whales are migrating and you are sure to spot some.  This tour starts in Lahaina and is offered daily.

Maui Helicopter Tour

Helicopter Tour of Maui begins in Kahului.  There are actually five different helicopter routes available to choose from.  Each tour last about 1 hour and is lead by a certified pilot.

Luau at The Royal Lahaina Resort

If you are looking for a Luau to attend Laua at Royal Lahaina has amazing reviews and will give you an authentic Hawaiian experience.  The Laua last about 3 hours and starts at 6:00 pm daily.

Enjoy your One Day in Maui

If you only have one day in Maui it probably means you are spending more time on another Island.  We spent most of our time in Oahu and loved our time there.  I am looking forward to Kauai and Big Island on my next trip.

If you are planning on a trip to Oahu and are looking for the best places to snorkel in Oahu  or the best hikes in Oahu check out my other post for Hawaii.

Hawaii really is a dream vacation. One that I plan on going on many more times! Hopefully, this helps you plan your time in Maui!  I know you will have so much fun!

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