Accessible Adventures on Maui

Here is a list of some of our favorite accessible activities that we do in Maui. We hope this lists helps you become familiar with some of the accessible activities available on Maui.

We recommend that you take the first couple of days to acclimatize to Maui and recuperate from the trip. You will have beautiful ocean views and tropical flowers to look at and enjoy by simply hanging around Makani A Kai. During these first couple of days you will have to go into town to get food and stuff and that should be enough outings to start. After that we usually suggest 1 day with activity than 1 day off as we find the best Maui holiday is one spent relaxing at our complex as much as it is sightseeing.

Helicopter Ride We recommend going on a helicopter ride in the beginning of your vacation as it gives you a good overview of the island. We suggest taking the half island tour of East Maui that lasts approximately 45 minutes. This tour includes the stark moon-like surface of Haleakala Crater as well as the O’heo Gulch (better known as Seven Sacred Pools), lush Hana rain forest, and cascading waterfalls. There is a full island tour available, but we feel you get a better deal with this half island tour. We think that just the helicopter ride itself is a terrific rush. Sunshine Helicopters has a lift to get you inside the helicopter.

Whale Watching From approximately November 15th to April 15th the Humpback whales are in Maui’s waters. They give birth to their calves in the bay in front of the condo. You can watch them from the shore of Makani A Kai or take a whale watching cruise on one of the many boats in Ma’alaea Harbor (wheelchair accessibility is limited).

Lunch at Kula Lodge This restaurant has good food and beautiful views of Maui’s isthmus and West Maui Mountains. It is located upcountry at Kula. On the way to Kula Lodge you will see a variety of landscapes from lush green rolling hills to fields of cacti. The cattle graze on the hillsides among the cacti. In the spring the Jacaranda trees are in bloom and they become full of vibrant violet colored blossoms. The restaurant is accessible and their gardens, which have a wide variety of protea, are accessible but some pathways are a bit steep. After a recent renovation the washrooms are now accessible.

Wailea sea walk It meanders along the black lava coast of Wailea and through the grounds of the expensive resorts. We highly recommend taking time to wander around the Grand Wailea Resort. It is magnificent and a tribute to how good man made stuff can be. The resort includes fountains, statues, and a two acre lagoon with reef fish just to name a few of the many features — it has all around great architecture.

Lahaina Art crawl A visit to Lahaina’s Front Street is better in the evening as Lahaina gets hot during the day. Front Street has great art galleries and you can do your tourist shopping here as there are many t-shirt and souvenir shops. It also has lots of good restaurants and has good sunsets.
Drive around West Maui We recommend driving clockwise from Ma’alaea and stopping to have breakfast or lunch at the Plantation House in Kapalua. From there, continue the drive around that will lead you to Wailuku. The scenery is very beautiful, but keep in mind that there are some tight, twisty roads and one lane bridges (similar to the way the road to Hana used to be). The drive is well worth your time and effort.
Maui Tropical Plantation This is a commercial tourist plantation where you can take a tour and see displays about the local agricultural products such as sugar cane, macadamia nuts, pineapple, etc. They have a big gift store and it is a good place to order pineapple for sending back to your friends and family.

Iao Valley State Park This is a gorgeous valley with a long history, not all accessible but well worth it.

Museums and historical tours There are numerous museums on island and a walking tour of Lahaina’s historical sites, with many of them being accessible.
Picnic lunch at Ho’okipa Pick up lunch in town and take out to watch wind surfers and surfers. Ho’okipa is known for its big waves. World championship windsurfing and surfing takes place here.

Ka’anapali This is another resort area with a boardwalk on the beach, shops, restaurants, big resorts and museums.

Breakfast at Charley’s located in Paia. Our favorite is whole wheat macadamia nut pancakes; they are great and huge. It has a very casual atmosphere. After breakfast, we suggest wandering around Paia where the shops have a surfer/hippie feel.

Maluaka Park at Makena is a beautiful, quiet beach park. Grass goes up to the sandy beach. Old historic church located in area also.

Scuba Diving is another activity that is available for the disabled on Maui. Introductory dives to full certification under the direction of Lahaina Divers are available. Lahaina Divers is trained to teach the disabled scuba diving. The diving for Bruce was a wonderful adventure, but the manhandling that it included (getting wet suit on and off, getting in and out of the water) was the main hardship that stopped Bruce from continuing this sport. Contact Lahaina Divers at (800) 998-3483.

Maui Ocean Center Maui is very fortunate to be the home for this brand new aquarium. It states that it opens a window to the unique beauty of Hawaii’s undersea world and that is true. We recommend going there in the morning as we spent all day there. They have indoor and outdoor exhibits and have several places to eat. We absolutely love it there and the best thing is how close it is to our condo. It is located 1/2 mile away from the condo down a level paved road by the Ma’alaea Harbor.

Full Day Adventures

Road trip to Hana This drive along the East Maui coast has some twisty parts, lots of one lane bridges, but also includes rain forests, waterfalls and spectacular, beautiful ocean views. To take full advantage of the drive requires approximately 7 to 8 hours.

Drive to Haleakala Crater This drive goes through Upcountry Maui and climbs up 10,000 feet to the crater. It looks like a moonscape, with ever changing colors. The crater is about 3 miles in diameter and 64 miles around. There is a big hype about going for sunrise, but we find it more enjoyable to go after having had a good nights sleep. We suggest going there towards the beginning of your vacation as the temperatures are very cold and the longer you get used to the warm weather, the harder it is to enjoy the crisp, cold weather at Haleakala. Even with the cold temperatures, we really enjoy our time spent at the crater. Remember to take warm clothes with you and also note that the air is thinner at 10,000 feet so be careful. This adventure takes about 5 hours round-trip and the road to the crater from Kula has many switch backs. If you do decide to go there for sunrise, you may want to stop at Kula lodge for breakfast on your way back down.