Things to do in Maui when it rains

Discover Maui's best plans when the clouds darken the sky. The island does not lose its charm even in bad weather.

Matteo Gramegna

Matteo Gramegna

9 min read

Things to do in Maui when it rains

Maui | ©Thomas

In Hawaii, the sun shines all year round and rainfall is usually short. However, there can always be an exception, especially during the winter. Don't worry, there is plenty to see and do in Maui even when it rains.

In case the rain doesn't allow you to do outdoor activities, you can always opt to check out places like the aquarium, relax at a spa or visit some of the island's museums.

1. Marvel at the Maui Ocean Center

Maui Ocean Center| ©Jonathan Konrath
Maui Ocean Center| ©Jonathan Konrath

The Ocean Center is considered one of the 10 best aquariums in the world. It is divided into areas and the most beautiful are probably the one that reproduces the coral reefs and the tank that houses the sharks. Normally, a complete tour lasts about 2 hours, although you can spend more time if you book an activity.

During the high season, the aquarium gets quite crowded, especially in the mornings. The best time to avoid crowds is before closing, when families have already returned to their lodgings. You can purchase your ticket on the official Ocean Center website.

Practical information

  • Address: 192 Maalaea Rd, Wailuku
  • Hours: all week from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. No admission after 4:00 pm.
  • Closing days: none, the Maui Aquarium does not close for Thanksgiving or Christmas.
  • Price: a single ticket is around 40 €.
  • Recommended for those who want to see marine life up close.

Buy your ticket for the Maui Ocean Center

2. Tour the island by car

Road to Hana, Maui| ©dronepicr
Road to Hana, Maui| ©dronepicr

Maui is a paradise for road trip enthusiasts. The island has breathtaking roads, the most famous of which is Road to Hana, a scenic highway that connects the airport with the town of the same name.

Its curves and stretches overlooking the ocean attract many tourists, which is why it can be quite crowded.

Fortunately, Maui has no shortage of alternatives. The Kahekili (North Shore) and Paulani (connects Hana to Wailea) highways and Upcountry roads have nothing to envy. A word of advice: don't stop where it's not allowed! Fines exceed $200.

Practical information

  • Price: depends on the type of car and the price of gasoline.
  • Recommended for those looking for the most beautiful views of Maui.

Book a Maui Road to Hana Tour

3. Sail in the depths

Atlantis Submarine Surfacing to the Surface| ©gadgetdude
Atlantis Submarine Surfacing to the Surface| ©gadgetdude

Have you ever been in a submarine? In Maui you can experience sailing underwater admiring reefs, sandy bottoms and the thousands of animals that inhabit it.

During the right season - from November to April - also organizes whale watching tours

The excursion lasts about 2 hours and the visibility is excellent: the seats are arranged so that each passenger can watch from the porthole. To know everything you need to know before booking this activity, you can read the article about Atlantis submarine tours in Maui.

Book your Atlantis submarine tour in M aui

4. Visit a key World War II site: Pearl Harbor

Aerial view of Pearl Harbor| ©Eric Tessmer
Aerial view of Pearl Harbor| ©Eric Tessmer

If it rains on Maui, maybe the sun shines on Oahu. It is the most populated island of the archipelago and is more than 100 miles away. Its capital is Honolulu and a few miles to the west is a former military base known throughout the world.

In my opinion, any trip to Hawaii should include a stop at Pearl Harbor. History is in the air here: the bombing of the naval base changed the dynamics of World War II and the fate of the entire world.

Pearl Harbor is a lagoon and harbor west of Honolulu, the capital of Hawaii. It is located on another island and can be reached quickly with an internal flight. If you don't feel like finding your own tickets, I recommend booking a tour to Pearl Harbor from Maui.

The cost includes not only the airfare but also a guide, tickets to the main attractions and transportation once in Honolulu. Guided tours usually include admission to:

  • USS Arizona Memorial, a memorial built on the wreckage of the eponymous battleship. It was used during World War I and became inoperative on December 7, 1941, when the Japanese bombed the harbor. Inside, documents and objects of the time recreate the day of the attack.
  • Battleship Missouri Memorial, the battleship where the emperor of Japan signed his country's surrender.
  • USS Bowfin, a submarine built after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. The United States was preparing for war and needed more submersibles to patrol the Pacific. In the seas of Asia, the USS Bowfin became a legend.
  • Aviation Museum. It is located on Ford Island and is dedicated to the pilots who fought on the Pacific front. Find all the information on the official website

Usually, the route takes more than ten hours. Therefore, it is necessary to leave early to reach the airport. Please note that not all tours include the transfer from the hotel.

Practical information

  • Price: about 600 €.
  • Recommended for those who like contemporary history.

Book your excursion to Pearl Harbor from Maui

5. Taste the local wine

Maui Wine| ©Thadd F
Maui Wine| ©Thadd F

In the United States, most of the bottles come out of Napa Valley, California, but they're not the only ones. Hawaii also contributes its grain of sand with varieties that benefit from the volcanic soil and sea breezes. Some wineries manage to produce syrah, malbec, pinot noir and other varieties.

Maui and the other islands are also known for their pineapple wines. Its fermentation gives a sweet wine with an intense yet pleasant flavor. By the way, this fruit thrives in these parts and if you want to learn about the cultivation methods, I recommend reading the article on visiting Maui's pineapple farms.

There are several local wine tastings but my favorite is the one offered by Maui Wine. It is a winery with 23 acres of vineyards on the slopes of Haleakala. Here, the grapes benefit from the volcanic soil and breezes blowing in from the ocean.

They don't offer guided tours, but you can book the tasting room and sample the island's varietals. Personally, I recommend ordering a glass of chenin blanc, a fresh variety with hints of mint, blackberry and persimmon. Advance reservations are recommended.

Practical information

  • Address: 14815 Piilani Hwy, Kula
  • Price: from $20
  • Recommended for those who are intrigued by exotic wines.

6. Get reborn in a Spa

Spa in Maui| ©Longhorn Nation
Spa in Maui| ©Longhorn Nation

A little pampering never hurts, right? If the rain doesn't let up, you can book a massage at a spa in Maui. The offer is wide and yet, some options stand out from the average:

  • Andaz, characterized by its drugstore-inspired decor. Before the massage begins, a consultant will explain the characteristics of each essential oil. Unique selections include locally sourced ingredients such as coffee, kava kava (a stress-relieving root) or hibiscus (3550 Wailea Alanui Drive, Wailea).
  • Spa Grande, one of the best spas in the United States according to Condé Nast Traveler. It has 40 treatment rooms, saunas, special baths and much more (3850 Wailea Alanui Drive, Wailea).
  • Black Rock, known for the therapeutic 'Eleu Arnica hot stone massage and Poha Berry body wrap (2605 Kaanapali Pkwy, Lahaina).
  • Spa Montage, ideal if you're looking for a highly personalized plan with local "ingredients". I recommend booking the Lomi Lomi pack, a Hawaiian-style massage with rhythmic movements that simulate ocean waves (1 Bay Drive, Lahaina).
  • Heavenly Spa, (2365 Ka'anapali Parkway).

All of the centers are located inside a resort, a common occurrence in Hawaii. A day at a spa is the ultimate romantic plan. If you are interested in this topic, read the post about another classic couple's plan: the best boat trips in Maui.

Practical information

  • Price: depends on the structure, although all of them are high-end.
  • Recommended for those looking for a relaxing plan

Book a boat trip in Maui

7. Stroll through the art galleries

Front Street, Lahaina, Maui| ©Tony Faiola
Front Street, Lahaina, Maui| ©Tony Faiola

On the island, art galleries are concentrated on **Lahaina'**s iconic Front Street. In recent times, a new art scene is taking interest in the town of Wailuku while in Pāʻia it has been a reality for years.

In the interior of Maui, Makawao is your destination. Artists have been present in this cowboy town since the 1980s.

Practical info

  • Price: depends on the art gallery
  • Recommended for those looking for decorative objects, a souvenir of Maui or an original gift.

8. Ask for a table at the best restaurants in Maui

Papa'aina, Maui| ©Jeremy Thompson
Papa'aina, Maui| ©Jeremy Thompson

Hawaii's cuisine is one of the most interesting in the United States. The Japanese influence and fresh local ingredients guarantee a first class gastronomy. In case of rain, I recommend you try one of these establishments:

  • Papa'aina, a restaurant that works side by side with farmers, ranchers, fishermen and other local producers. It is located in the old town of Lahaina (658 Wharf St, Lahaina).
  • Nuka, an authentic Japanese restaurant run by chef Hiro Takanashi. It is best known for its Miso Butterfish. They don't take reservations so try to arrive early (780 Haiku Road Haiku).
  • Ferraro's, the Italian restaurant at the Four Season Hotel. According to connoisseurs it is one of the most romantic establishments on the island. Specialties include meatballs and eggplant parmesan (3900 Wailea Alanui Drive,


  • Nalu's South Shore Grill, the place to go for grilled meat, poke and loco moco, a recipe based on rice, hamburger, gravy, mushrooms and fried egg (1280 South Kihei Road, Kihei).
  • Tight Tacos, in case you're craving something Mexican. On Tuesdays, tacos are cheaper (349 Hanakai St, Kahului).

Practical info

  • Price: depends on the restaurant, options listed include mid-range and high-end establishments.
  • Recommended for those who want to experience the recipes of Hawaii.

9. Enjoy the Ultimate Air Trampoline Park with your little ones

Trampoline park| ©Todd Van Hoosear
Trampoline park| ©Todd Van Hoosear

When traveling to Maui with kids, there is one place I want to recommend: Ultimate Air.

It's an indoor activity park with dozens of trampolines. You can also dunk a basketball or dive into a pool filled with foam rubber squares. Ultimate Air is located in Wailuku, a town west of Kahului.

Practical information

  • Price: one or two-hour passes are available at a price ranging from about $18 to $20. If you don't want to wait in line, you can buy skip-the-line tickets at a slightly higher price (about $25 for an hour of fun).
  • Recommended for family travelers

10. Visit the museums

Lahaina Heritage Museum| ©Memaxmarz
Lahaina Heritage Museum| ©Memaxmarz

Forget the big museums in the United States. In Maui they are much more diminutive, but this does not detract from their charm. Here are the three best options on the island.

  • Hana Cultural Center, the cultural institution that houses traditional artifacts, such as fishing nets, quilts, boards, etc. It is located in Hana, one of the most traditional towns in Hawaii (4974 Uakea Road, Hana).
  • Sugar Museum. Until World War II, Hawaii produced sugar. After the conflict, U.S. tariff protections led to the closure of the islands' sugar mills. This museum traces the history of this crop and its workers. To see it, drive to Puunene (3957 Hansen Rd, Puunene).

Practical Information

  • Price: Maui's museums are not expensive, they are often free but accept donations.
  • Recommended for those who want to discover the island's past.

Book your traditional show in Maui

What is the rainiest season in Maui?

Maui| ©dronepicr
Maui| ©dronepicr

Winter is the rainiest season on Maui. Being an island, the weather can change quickly and after a downpour, it's always calm again. With a little luck, a rainbow will end the storm. To learn more about this topic, I recommend you to read the article that explains what to do in Maui in winter.

Can you go to the beach even if it rains?

Rain in Maui| ©AarynMPhotography
Rain in Maui| ©AarynMPhotography

If the rainfall is not heavy, you can do outdoor activities, including the beach. Keep in mind that the climate in Maui is tropical, with daytime highs ranging between 23° and 29° all year round.

At night, temperatures rarely drop below 15°, even during the coldest winters. Of course, if the sea is rough you shouldn't go near the shore...