Higher humidity can make Maui summer days seem warmer. No worries…we have 5 great ways to hang loose and stay cool during Maui’s endless summer.
1. Visit Iao Valley State Park
If you’re seeking a dip in fresh mountain water or a cool walk on a paved shady path, we have the perfect place. Tucked away in a lush tropical rainforest is Iao Valley State Park. Located in central Maui just a few minutes from the airport, Iao Valley State Park has significant historical and geological features to share. A pretty drive through a winding valley road reveals a shear mountain landscape with a stream running through it. Before reaching the State park, you’ll come across a Kepaniwai Park, a County park popular with local residents. As you approach Iao Valley, you will see it’s iconic feature, a towering ancient geological formation, roughly in the shape of a needle. A paved path takes you closer to the base of the needle, or you can venture off toward Iao stream.
Go for a dip in icy pools or enjoy a picnic lunch along the shady bank. The stream is fed from high up Pu’u Kukui, the highest peak of Mauna Kahalawa (the West Maui Mountains), the third wettest place in Hawaii, and one of the wettest places on earth. It is in this valley that a great battle ensued in 1790. In an effort to unite the Hawaiian Islands, Kamehameha the Great landed his war fleet on the shores of North Maui while Maui’s Chief, Kahekili, was away on the island of Oahu.
After heavy flooding in 2016, Iao Valley State Park underwent periods of closure for refurbishment and stabilization. The park and trails recently re-opened for all to enjoy.
Note — Out-of-state visitors must have reservations. There is a parking and entrance fee. Limiting the number of visitors helps preserve the beauty of this natural valley. It also prevents overcrowding in the park, making your visit more pleasant. Reservations can be made here.
- Splash Around Twin Falls
So many visitors ask where they can experience a waterfall close-up, or one easily accessible with kids, without driving the entire road to Hana. Twin Falls, near the beginning of the Road to Hana is a good option, with two easily accessible waterfalls. A swim in a chilly waterfall pool after a short hike will cool you off. Twin Falls is privately owned and generously allows the public to visit free of charge. There is a parking fee to support attendants who manage the stream of visitors. Visit the Twin Falls refreshment trailer so your snack dollars can help support this wonderful park, and please pack out any trash you bring in.
- Eat Something Frozen- Ululani’s Shave Ice
Cool off with a sweet treat of shave ice at Ululani’s. With locations in Kahului, Lahaina, Kihei, and Kaanapali on Maui, you are never very far away from stopping for a truly unique shave ice. There are more than 40 flavor options, so you will definitely find a cool treat to satisfy on a warm tropical day. This cup of deliciousness was brought over by Japanese plantation workers who would chop a block of ice with a machete and add sugary flavors when they needed a break from a hard day’s work in the warm tropical weather.
- Spend the Day on and in the Ocean
Obviously, being on the water offers instant heat relief! A snorkeling reservation allows you to enjoy Maui’s most beautiful coral reefs in places accessible only by boat while cooling off at the same time. You can book a snorkeling tour from just about anywhere around the island, whether you are staying in South Maui, Maalaea or West Maui, there are plenty of companies to choose from. If a snorkel tour is too ambitious, you can enjoy the ocean from many of Maui’s iconic white sand beaches. Review this guide on learning how to snorkel.
- Join a Tour Group
Tour Maui in style and escape the heat in a luxury, air-conditioned bus. It’s a great way to explore different parts of Maui that are away from the coastline yet offer interesting sites, cultural narration and plenty of stops. You can pair a bus tour with and exciting activity, like a zipline tour on the slopes of Haleakalā. Beat the heat gliding through the treetops in a forest of eucalyptus trees and take in some of the native forest restoration efforts to keep you inspired.You can also do a self-driving tour in Upcountry Maui, where the air is always a bit cooler, to downright chilly on top of the mountain! See our new Upcountry Tour article here.
- Stay in a Beach Condo with AC
While Maui won’t get as hot as most parts of the mainland during the peak of summer, you might want to book accommodations with air conditioning. The best way to do that is to select air conditioning on our “must haves” dropdown list when searching for your perfect place to stay on DestinationMauiVacations.com.
Have fun exploring Maui this summer! Look for specials on where to stay on Maui with Destination Maui Vacations, to have a beach condo base of operations for all your adventures.