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Overview

Kihei is a thin, seven-mile long, densely packed beach town on Maui's sunbaked south shore with three great beaches. It's a hodge-podge of a place inhabited by real people who reside in new, costly suburban houses amid hotels, condos supermarkets, drug stores, restaurants, and night clubs plus two malls, Azeka 1 and Azeka 2, with all the usual shops back home (and more), lined up along trafficky two-lane S. Kihei Highway. Kihei is where tourists meet and mingle with locals (something that doesn't happen in Maui's plummy resorts). Canadian snowbirds first flocked here in the '70s, and the old fishing village became known as Maui's ...

Kihei is a thin, seven-mile long, densely packed beach town on Maui's sunbaked south shore with three great beaches. It's a hodge-podge of a place inhabited by real people who reside in new, costly suburban houses amid hotels, condos supermarkets, drug stores, restaurants, and night clubs plus two malls, Azeka 1 and Azeka 2, with all the usual shops back home (and more), lined up along trafficky two-lane S. Kihei Highway. Kihei is where tourists meet and mingle with locals (something that doesn't happen in Maui's plummy resorts). Canadian snowbirds first flocked here in the '70s, and the old fishing village became known as Maui's bargain spot, with affordable condos, (Maui Parkshore), relic lodges (Maui Lu), and spiffy hotels (Maui Coast Hotel), award-winning restaurants ( Sansei Seafood Restaurant, Roy's Kihei Bar & Grill), and kicky nightlife (up to you). It's close to Maui's aquarium at Maalaea Bay, near Maui's 18-hole public golf course, and next door to upscale Wailea resort. Beaches are Kihei's main attraction and Kam-3, as everyone calls it, is the best, a gold sand beach with gentle waves at the foot of a grassy knoll, but either Kam 1 and 2 would be a hit in Vancouver B.C., or anywhere.

Rick Carroll
About the Expert

Rick Carroll has written dozens of articles on Hawaii and the Pacific. His books include Great Outdoor Adventures of Hawaii, Madame Pele: True Encounters with Hawaii's Fire Goddess, and Travelers' Tales Hawaii.

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Rick Carroll for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Kihei is a small town on Maui's South Shore, with a large supply of hotels, condos, shops and houses. It is known to be one of the hottest places to stay on Maui (temperature-wise) because it doesn't get the breezes enjoyed in other parts of the island.
  • Research: Wikipedia | Wikitravel
  • Weather: Daylight | Rainfall
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