2021 Shaka List: 20 Reasons to Love Maui

Every year we publish our Shaka List — the multitude of reasons Maui is nō ka ‘oi (the best) — and this time our staff offered up their personal lucky-to-live-on-Maui suggestions. From trees to seas, shoes to views — these intimate, inspirational details are what make our island home the magical place that it is.


6 Grandma’s Coffee House, Kula

Perched on the slopes of Haleakalā, Grandma’s is one of those old Maui staples that exudes Upcountry charm. Since 1918, “Grandma,” a lifelong resident of Makawao, has roasted and blended Grandma’s Coffee, and the shop is a peaceful place to stop and refuel before heading to Kaupō or Kīpahulu. Enjoy a cuppa joe and a sweet treat with friends and family in a wooden booth rubbed smooth by time. Photo by Mieko Horikoshi

7 Rubbah sleepahs

Only in Hawai‘i are rubber slippers — aka flip-flops — considered formal wear — even in five-star establishments! Illustration by Matthew Foster

8 Polipoli Cabin

This former ranger’s cabin in the Polipoli Spring State Recreation Area is located 6,200 feet up in the Kula Forest Reserve. Spend the day hiking, then stay the night and be treated to stunning sunrise views of Maui in a quiet, romantic Upcountry setting. Be prepared to rough it a little, though: There’s no bedding, electricity or refrigeration, and nighttime temperatures can dip below freezing — even in summer! Photo by Adelle Lennox

9 Hot Chocolate at sunset on Haleakalā  

Enjoy an unobstructed view of the sun dropping below the horizon from atop the highest point on Maui. Bring a thermos of hot chocolate to chase away the chill and toast your loved ones as day rolls colorfully into night. Photo by Andrew Shoemaker

10 Songs of the Sea

If you’re on Maui between November and February, follow these steps exactly: When the sea is calm, wade in, take a deep breath, submerge slowly and be still. There, beneath the blue, you’ll hear the humpback whales singing their surreal songs of travel and family and birth, talking to one another across the channel and beyond. Illustration by Matthew Foster




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