Staying in Kihei, Maui: Restaurants & Things To Do

Published on:
October 16, 2023

Staying in Kihei, Maui, places you in a prime location for some of the best beach hotels and restaurants in the Hawaiian Islands while offering easy access to other regions, providing a comfortable base full of amenities. Our guide to Kihei, Maui, will highlight notable local restaurants & eateries, top attractions, and some of the beaches along the beautiful coast.

Along the southwest shore of Maui County, Kihei boasts beautiful weather year-round, making it the perfect spot for vacationers. This part of South Maui is known for its predictable environment, with plenty of sun and ocean conditions that offer a tropical paradise for all ages. The convenience of nearby gyms and car rentals to an array of beachfront hotels, Kihei is your all-in-one destination. You're only a short drive away from Kahului Airport and the wonders of Haleakala National Park.

Kihei offers more than just favorable weather and convenience; it serves as a gateway to the broader Hawaiian Islands. For those who want to explore beyond, West Maui is just a car ride away. If marine life fascinates you, a visit to the Maui Ocean Center should be on your itinerary. Kihei serves as a central point for your Maui vacation. Moreover, history buffs will enjoy learning about the native people of Hawaii and the area's rich cultural heritage.

Staying in Kihei Maui: Convenience & Location

Staying in Kihei Maui: Convenience & Location
Kihei, Maui. Photo by Alan Rodriguez.

Kihei, Maui offers the most convenience in a central location, along with many affordable options when it comes to relaxing beachfront hotels. Here The Hale Pau Hana is strategically situated to nearby beaches, shopping centers, grocery stores, car rentals, and even a movie theater for visitors looking to unwind after a long day of exploration, providing a well-rounded vacation experience for everyone.

Using Kihei as a base provides convenient access to South Kihei Road, North Kihei Road, and even the proximity to Wailea for additional travel plans. These roads grant easy access to a diverse array of dining options, shopping centers, and markets. Kihei also boasts a wealth of grocery stores, with Safeway and Foodland being particularly cherished by both locals and long-term visitors for their unmatched convenience.

With an abundance of restaurants throughout Kihei, you're never too far from a delicious meal. And for those looking to stay active, Kihei offers a wide variety of amenities, including gyms, tennis courts, and beach volleyball courts at Kamaole Beach Park II, allowing you to burn off those extra calories while enjoying your stay.


Kihei Weather and Rainfall

Kihei Weather and Rainfall
Wailea Beach Path, Maui. Photo by Alan Rodriguez.

Kihei's weather is a traveler's dream. Situated on the idyllic shores of Maui, Kihei boasts a consistently sunny and warm climate that makes it a year-round destination for sunseekers. With average daytime temperatures ranging from the mid-70s to low 90s Fahrenheit (mid-20s to low 30s Celsius), you can count on balmy weather no matter when you visit.

The hottest months in Kihei typically occur during the summer, from June to September, when daytime temperatures often reach the low 90s Fahrenheit (around 32-34°C). On the other hand, the coldest months are usually from December to March, with daytime highs in the mid-70s to low 80s Fahrenheit (around 24-28°C).

The secret to Kihei's fantastic weather lies in its location on the leeward side of Maui, which means it receives only about 10 inches of rainfall annually. This dry climate ensures that you'll have ample opportunities to enjoy the golden beaches, clear blue skies, and outdoor activities that Kihei has to offer.

Restaurants in Kihei: A Foodie's Paradise

Restaurants in Kihei: A Foodie's Paradise Yum!
Fish Tacos, a Maui favorite.

In Kihei and throughout the Hawaiian Islands, the local food scene is an exotic blend of traditional Hawaiian dishes, Asian influences, and American staples. Besides Loco Moco, you might come across 'Poke'—a raw fish salad seasoned in various ways. Another traditional dish is 'Kalua Pig,' which is typically cooked in an underground oven called an imu and served at luaus. 'Laulau' is also a popular choice, featuring pork, fish, or chicken wrapped in taro leaves and then steamed. For those interested in trying local seafood, 'Mahi Mahi' and 'Ahi Tuna' are often prepared in a variety of ways, from grilling to searing.

  • Kihei Caffe: Renowned for being on many “best breakfast in Kihei” lists. Located on South Kihei Road, this popular spot offers a menu that includes everything from traditional Hawaiian dishes to classic American breakfasts. Loco Moco, a traditional Hawaiian dish consisting of white rice, a hamburger patty, and a fried egg smothered in gravy, is a popular choice with locals and tourists alike at Kihei Caffe.
  • Da Kitchen: This restaurant is known for both its Loco Moco and Kalua pork dishes. What sets Da Kitchen apart is its ability to blend traditional Hawaiian cooking styles with influences from other cuisines. From American to Japanese to Pacific Rim, the restaurant incorporates a wide variety of flavors in its menu, making it a culinary melting pot that still stays true to its Hawaiian roots. 
  • Nalu's South Shore Grill: Situated on Lipoa Street, this restaurant offers a blend of American and Hawaiian cuisines. While the menu is diverse, you can typically find Mahi Mahi and occasionally Laulau. They also have outdoor seating options where you can enjoy your meal in a relaxed atmosphere.
  • Cafe O'Lei Kihei: Located on South Kihei Road, Cafe O'Lei is a versatile dining establishment that appeals to both locals and tourists. Known for its seafood dishes and steak options, the restaurant offers a diverse menu that features both Hawaiian and international flavors. Their macadamia nut-crusted Mahi Mahi is a must-try. The ambiance is casual yet sophisticated, making it a good option for everything from family dinners to romantic dates.

Essence of Japan in Kihei: Restaurants for Sushi & Matcha Lovers

  • Miso Phat Sushi: Located on South Kihei Road, this award-winning restaurant is celebrated for its generous portions and expansive menu, which includes a variety of sushi rolls, traditional noodle dishes, and vegan options. The eatery skillfully blends Japanese cooking styles with local Hawaiian ingredients, offering outdoor seating to complete the dining experience.
  • Akamai Coffee: While primarily a coffee shop, brings a Japanese twist with its menu of matcha lattes and other specialty drinks. Located on Piikea Ave, it provides outdoor seating where patrons can enjoy both traditional and Japanese-inspired coffee beverages.

Seafood Feasts and Tropical Treats in Kihei

  • Paia Fish Market: This restaurant is best known for its fish tacos and other fresh seafood dishes that are prepared in various styles within its menu, drawing inspiration from American and Pacific Rim cooking traditions as well.
  • Maui Bread Company: Renowned for its freshly baked goods, blending traditional Hawaiian ingredients with classic bakery favorites. One of the most appealing aspects of this bakery is its use of tropical elements like coconut, pineapple, and macadamia nuts to add a unique Hawaiian flair to its products.

Kihei is packed with diverse food options, including beachside food trucks and pockets with food trucks along S. Kihei Rd. Apart from the list above, you can savor mouthwatering fresh fish tacos at JAWZ Fish Tacos Maui, or head to 808 Deli for the best voted sandwiches on Maui. And for dessert, why not try some macadamia nut gelato at Maui Gelato and Waffles!


Popular Local Attractions and Things to Do in Kihei

Popular Local Attractions and Things to Do in Kihei
Big Swell from Maui Brewing Company. Photo by Jakob Owens.

Kihei, Maui, offers a wealth of attractions beyond its stunning beaches. Beer enthusiasts can't miss a visit to the Maui Brewing Company, where craft beers infused with local flavors await. Dive into the local way of life at the farmers market near Kihei Kalama Village, offering everything from fresh produce to artisanal crafts. Families can make a splash at Hawaii Mermaid Adventures Swimming Lessons, a unique and enchanting experience. And when hunger strikes, Kihei's food truck park serves up a mouthwatering variety of global cuisines.

  • Maui Brewing Company: Beer enthusiasts shouldn't miss a visit to the Maui Brewing Company, renowned for its craft beers that incorporate local flavors like coconut, pineapple, and passion fruit. The brewery offers guided tours where you can learn about the brewing process, sample a flight of beers, and even grab some exclusive merchandise. Its laid-back atmosphere and island-inspired pub fare make it a welcoming spot to relax and sip some uniquely Hawaiian brews.
  • Farmers Market near Kihei Kalama Village: For a taste of local life, the farmers market near Kihei Kalama Village is a must-visit. Open several days a week, it features a range of vendors selling everything from freshly picked fruits and vegetables to homemade jams and artisanal crafts. Beyond produce, you'll often find food stalls offering local dishes, making it a full sensory experience that showcases the agricultural richness of Maui.
  • Hawaii Mermaid Adventures Swimming Lessons: One standout attraction that's perfect for kids and family fun is Hawaii Mermaid Adventures. Located on Hale Kuai Street in Kihei, this enchanting experience welcomes visitors of all ages, including children, teens, and seniors, making it an ideal family activity. Explore the underwater realm and learn the art of mermaid swimming in a stunning aquatic environment. It's a one-of-a-kind opportunity for family members to channel their inner mermaid or merman and create unforgettable memories together.
  • Food Truck Park: If you're in the mood for a quick and tasty meal, the food truck park in Kihei offers a diverse range of options. From mouthwatering fish tacos to classic American burgers and international fare, these food trucks provide high-quality food without the wait. It's an excellent way to sample different cuisines without breaking the bank, and the open-air setting adds to the laid-back island vibe.

In Kihei, there's never a dull moment. You can head to Kalama Beach Park's skate park or book some Turtle Town & Molokini Crater snorkel tours or helicopter tours across Haleakala Crater from Auntie Snorkel. Not a fan of the hustle and bustle? You can simply unwind on your beachfront hotel's outdoor patio as the sun sets on another beautiful day in Kihei.


Kihei Beach Galore: The Many Beach Options Available

Kihei Beach Galore: Beaches Available
Kihei, Maui. Photo by Ris & Ry.

Kihei Beach Galore: The Many Beach Options Available

Kihei offers many beach options. Miles of beaches offering diverse experiences, from the enchanting vibes at Kamaole Beach I & II to the tranquility of Keawakapu Beach await you. Kihei's beaches are not only great for swimming and sunbathing but also provide opportunities for wildlife enthusiasts. Families of sea turtles can often be spotted at these beautiful beaches, making it a unique and delightful experience. Additionally, you might even catch sight of humpback whales on one of the larger whale tours, adding to the natural wonders of Kihei's coastal area.

Kamaole Beach Parks I, II, and III  

These are actually three separate beaches, collectively known as the Kamaole Beach Parks. They are popular among both tourists and locals.

  • Kamaole Beach Park I: Known for its large sandy area and excellent swimming conditions. Part of Kamaole I, Charley Young Beach is known for its privacy and is a good spot for romantic walks and sunset viewing.
  • Kamaole Beach Park II: Slightly smaller than its neighbor Kamaole I, but also offers a charming atmosphere for swimming and sunbathing. This beach tends to be a little less crowded, offering a more peaceful experience. If you're up for a game, there are often impromptu volleyball matches happening during the weekends.
  • Kamaole Beach Park III: A commonly recommended beach for kids and family fun. The water is relatively calm, making it safer for snorkelers, young swimmers, and boogie boarding. Provided is also a grassy area with picnic pavilions where families can relax and have a meal. Palm trees provide some shade, and there's plenty of room for kids to run around.

Other Notable Beaches in Kihei

  • Keawakapu Beach: Located at the southern end of Kihei near Wailea, this beach is known for its long stretch of sand, making it perfect for morning walks and jogs. The water is also quite clear, making it a good spot for snorkeling.
  • Kalepolepo Beach Park: Located in North Kihei, this beach is home to the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary's visitor center. The beach itself is protected by an ancient fishpond wall, making the water calm and good for children.


Where to Stay in Kihei: The Hale Pau Hana for a Beach Hotel

Where to Stay in Kihei for a Beach Hotel
Hawaiian Fishermen at Sunset, Photo by Jesse Collins.

The Hale Pau Hana is an ideal beachfront hotel in Kihei offering spectacular views and live local Hawaiian entertainment while being conveniently located near the city center of Kihei Town. We offer Wi-Fi; air conditioning, a beautiful heated outdoor pool, perfect for a hot afternoon dip, washing machines and dryers in the laundry room, and we're also within walking distance to Kamaole Beach Park and Kalama Park. If you consult Google Maps, you'll find that we're strategically placed in a convenient location near central Kihei, offering easy access to both North and South Kihei and Wailea.

For foodies, the area around Kihei Rd and S. Kihei Rd is bustling with food truck options, perfect for a quick bite. From fresh fish tacos to a full lunch plate at outdoor restaurants, Kihei's culinary scene has something for everyone. Late-night cravings? You'd be pleased to know that Kihei offers numerous bars that are a lifesaver at night such as the South Shore Tiki Lounge, which was voted to have the best pizza, best pau hana, and being the best bar on Maui.  

Experience the best of Kihei, Maui, where prime location and year-round sunshine create an ideal vacation destination with average temperatures in the mid-70s to low 90s Fahrenheit year-round, makes it perfect for outdoor activities. Use Kihei as your gateway to explore the rest of Maui, including West Maui and the Maui Ocean Center. Indulge in diverse dining options, shopping, and grocery stores, with Safeway and Foodland being local favorites. Enjoy local cuisine, from Loco Moco to 'Poke,' and savor the culinary delights Kihei has to offer. In Kihei, Maui, you're never far from conveniently placed grocery stores, relaxing beaches, and mouth-watering must-visit restaurants, no matter where you're staying.

Planning a stay in Kihei, Maui? Look no further for the ultimate island experience than The Hale Pau Hana in Kihei. Immerse yourself in the perfect blend of comfort and convenience at our stunning beachfront hotel in South Maui. Explore sunny beaches, savor delicious cuisine, and embark on exciting island adventures just moments away from our prime location. Book your stay today and secure your unforgettable Maui experience!

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