Maui with Teens: A Perfect Family Day

Maui with Teens: A Family Vacation


A family vacation in Maui, Hawaii - you have been saving, planning and packing for months. You are excited, the kids are excited (which is rare for those finicky teens), and you're all set! You finally arrive in paradise for an idyllic family vacation, and you are so excited do what exactly? Trying to plan a fun-filled family adventure in Maui with teens can be an intimidating prospect, but with so many amazing attractions available, there's nothing to fear. Here are some ideas to keep you and your family busy while getting the most out of your long-awaited trip.


I will jump right into it with breakfast. This is a hands-down, no-contest, must-try: The Gazebo Restaurant (5315 Lower Honoapiilani Road, Lahaina, 808-669-5621, open 7:30AM-2PM for breakfast and lunch) on Napili Shores. This is simply the best breakfast on the island, especially the banana macadamia nut pancakes. While there may be a wait, there is no better way to start the best family vacation in Maui than with the delicious culinary treats at this local mainstay.

Now, if you happen to be visiting from December through April, a whale-watching excursion is an adventure that's not to be missed. During this season in Maui, it is common to see many humpback whales from the shore, but there is nothing like the up-close and personal experience of a whale-watching adventure in Maui with teens. There are many tour companies that take boats out at all times of the day, but I recommend the calm waters of a morning excursion to avoid seasickness. The Pacific Whale Foundation (612 Front Street, Lahaina, 808-667-7447) is an excellent charter group for these excursions, as they are concerned about conservation and ocean wildlife research, and they seek to inspire an appreciation of the ocean and its creatures in everyone. Prices run from $20.00-$25.00 for adults, with frequent specials and pricing events.


After a couple of hours of whale watching, your family is bound to be hungry. Head over to Cheeseburger in Paradise (811 Front Street Lahaina, 808-661-4855) for a teen-friendly, casual lunch with great food and a fun atmosphere. Once you have all polished off your burgers and relaxed a bit, drive over to Makalua-puna Point - otherwise known as Dragon's Teeth. This lava rock formation is a wonderful place for a little family adventure. Maui views are simply unbeatable from this location, and Dragon's Teeth is also a favorite spot for cliff jumping. Climb up to the top of the "teeth" and leap off the edge into the warm, blue water. This is a perfect adventure for teens and adults, but you should definitely be a good swimmer before leaping off the edge! And be sure to hang on to your hats – it's almost always windy at Dragon's Teeth.


To put the final touch on a fun day of family travel with teens in Maui, you must experience the Old Lahaina Luau (1251 Front Street Lahaina, 808-667-1998, shows nightly at 5:45PM April 1-September 30 and 5:15PM October 1-March 31) for a traditional Hawaiian dinner and show. You'll be presented with a lei, all the food and drink you can handle, and ample entertainment with dancing and traditional music. It's a tourist favorite and is sure to be an enjoyable way end to a busy day!

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