South Maui is a beach lover’s paradise, with over two-dozen strips of soft white sand where you can leave a long string of footprints. The town of Wailea, with its world-class resorts, offers all the amenities, dining, and golf you’d expect from luxury on Maui, and is one of the island’s most desirable places to live for its climate and year-round sunshine.
Kihei is known for its long string of beach parks, restaurants, and oceanfront condos, where winter mornings are characterized by warmth and watching whales off your balcony.
Makena, on the other hand, offers peaceful seclusion, where rugged black lava rocks pepper a shoreline that was formed by Maui’s last eruption.
Real estate in Wailea, Kihei, and Makena, is always in high demand, and many of Maui’s best luxury homes are here on this sun-addled coast.
South Maui is home to an active community, where mornings are spent walking, paddle boarding above turtles, or snorkeling in the crystalline waters. Evenings are filled with live entertainment, from the rhythmic strum of ukulele and guitar at a local restaurant happy hour, to the timeless keys of a Grand piano in the warmth of a lobby bar.
Many South Maui homeowners split time between here, Canada, or the US Mainland, and are always happy to return for more sunshine—especially over the winter.
Many of the most popular restaurants on Maui are located in Kihei and Wailea, from hole-in-the-wall favorites to high end dining with certified sommeliers.
Fresh fish is a staple dish at many South Maui restaurants, where you can dine on locally caught mahimahi at Nick’s Fishmarket and The Restaurant, or navigate the multi-course omakase experience at Morimoto Maui. For a touch of island heritage with your meal, learn about Maui’s plantation past at Ko and Ka’ana Kitchen, where cuisine from the island’s multi-ethnic community all melds as it melts in your mouth.
For a more casual South Maui dining experience, grab banana pancakes at Kihei Caffe after a morning spent surfing at The Cove, or feast on the flavors of a freshly made poke bowl from Eskimo Candy, in Kihei.
South Maui is also bursting with happy hours, which can include everything from half priced sushi at 5 Palms overlooking Keawakapu Beach, to sampling craft beers and wood-fired pizza at Monkeypod Kitchen in Wailea. Speaking of beers, Hawaii’s largest brewery, Maui Brewing Company, is also located here in South Maui along with their restaurant and taproom.
Late-night karaoke and sushi at Sansei is a classic Kihei tradition, and Wailea Resort offers special events from concerts with A-list, famous musicians, to some of the world’s top chefs.
To pick up a new bathing suit or gift for the home, The Shops at Wailea is the premiere venue for South Maui shopping and retail.
For an unforgettable South Maui experience, spend an evening at the Celestial Cinema watching movies out under the stars, which is part of the annual Maui Film Festival that draws revelers from around the globe.
Since life in South Maui is about connecting with the ocean, you can kayak, paddleboard, join an outrigger canoe club, or learn to ride waves with one of the surf schools across from Kihei’s Cove Park.
For a day spent learning about Maui’s marine life, tour the Maui Ocean Center where fish, stingrays—even sharks—swim all around you and high above your head as you walk through an underwater tunnel. You can also learn about our famous winter visitors at the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary building, or take an early-morning sailing excursion to Molokini Crater—a sunken caldera that’s teeming with fish and some of Hawaii’s clearest water.
Kihei Charter School, Public, K-12
Kamali’i Elementary, Public, K-5
Kihei Elementary, Public PK-5
Lokelani Intermediate School, Public, 6-8