A visit to Maui between December and April is not complete without doing at least some whale watching. Every year over 1000 Humpback whales come to the waters surrounding Maui County to give birth to young and to breed. Though there are other species of whales that live in these waters, Humpbacks come particularly close to shore and are very playful. They can often be spotted from shore breaching, or tail slapping. For a closer look at these behemoths consider taking a whale watching boat tour. One popular company is the Pacific Whale Foundation.
Pacific Whale Foundation, 300 Maalaea Rd # 21, Wailuku, HI 96793. Tel: (808-249-8811)
Snorkel/Dive Molokini Crater
Maui's clear, placid waters are an excellent place to go snorkeling or scuba diving. In particular, Molokini Crater is not to be missed. According to the travel guide, Maui Revealed, Molokini Crater is an offshore island located just three miles from Maui. It is in fact a partially submerged crater. Visibility at Molokini Crater is often 120 feet or more, and you'll be able to see lots of colorful coral, turtles and fish that are endemic to Hawaii. Divers may also be lucky enough to see sharks and manta rays and hear (possibly even see) Humpback whales. A particular thrill for advanced divers is to dive the back wall of Molokini Crater. The way the crater wall dramatically plunges deep into the water is an impressive sight, but it does require good buoyancy skills. Many tour operators run boat tours to the island. Maui Dive Shop is one such company which offers both snorkel and dive tours.
Maui Dive Shop, 1455 South Kihei Road Kihei, Hawaii 96753 Tel: (808-879-1775)
Take the Road to Hana
When you're not spending time in the water, consider spending a day taking a road trip to Hana. The Hana Highway is the most beautiful drive on the island. Along the way you will come across numerous waterfalls off the side of the road, as well as hikes that will take you across black sand beaches and through forests of bamboo. You can either spend the night in Hana or drive back the same day. Hana itself is very picturesque but it's important to realize that getting to Hana isn't the point of the road trip: it's enjoying the journey.
Hana Highway, Route 26, Maui, HI