Wailea, and the smaller Makena to the south, are resort areas on the south side of Maui, Hawaii, immediately south of the town of Kihei. They are known for their luxury resort hotels and condos, upscale restaurants, fancy shopping center and expensive golf courses. And although hidden behind the hotels and condos now, the beaches that attracted the developers in the first place are still there in all their golden sand beauty.

Get in

From Maui's main airport in Kahului, follow the signs to Kihei and Wailea via Highway 311 (Mokulele Highway). Highway 311 becomes Highway 31 (Pi'ilani Highway) in Kihei and it ends in Wailea, where it becomes Wailea Ike Drive. Driving time from the airport to Wailea is about 30 minutes.

Get around

The main street through town is Wailea Alanui Drive and The Shops at Wailea (Wailea Alanui Drive and Wailea Ike Drive) serve as the center of town.

The long stretch of Big Beach at Makena State Park



Go swimming or snorkeling at one of the many beaches along the coast. Take a stroll along the Wailea Beach Walk. It stretches for a mile and a half and connects the town's beaches. In winter, it provides a good spot to watch whales.

If you're a golf enthusiast, there are two golf clubs with five courses in the area.



Accommodation in Wailea and Makena is on the upscale-side, with hotels in the four and five star range. If you want or need something cheaper, Kihei is a better bet.



Go next

Wailea/Makena is almost as far as you can go south, but there are a couple of good spots to go to for snorkeling and hiking before the road ends for good.

Heading north up Highway 31 will bring you to the main part of Maui, which is all accessible within a day's drive.

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