Unique, Unusual & Offbeat Things to do in Maui
Not that anyone really needs any further incentive to visit a paradise like Maui, but if you do, there’s plenty more than beaches, mai-tais, and stunning vistas to keep you occupied — especially if you’re into one-of-a-kind experiences. Here’s my list of quirky things to do in Maui:
Sail in a Traditional Hawaiian Canoe
Hawaii natives Sage and Liz Spalding are the only ones on Maui to offer sailing trips on a wa’apea — a traditional Hawaiian outrigger canoe. There are only a handful of them still operating in all of Hawaii. Their company called Hawaiian Sailing Canoe Adventures offers snorkelling and whale watching opportunities during their tours that launch directly in front of the Four Seasons in Wailea. Check out what Eric Stonestreet from Modern Family had to say about the tour on Ellen…
See Trash turned into Treasure
I wrote in greater detail about the Art of Trash in a previous post, but I think a nod to it on a list of Quirky Things to Do in Maui is definitely fitting as well. Everything at this exhibit is made from garbage — garbage that would have otherwise ended up in dump or landfill somewhere. And while it only runs for three weeks of the year, it shows what folks can do if they make a conscious effort to recycle and reuse. Certainly worth a visit if you are in Maui when the exhibit is in progress.
Shop at Endangered Pieces
When I first drove by this place, I thought it was a pawn shop for eccentrics. Turns out Endangered Pieces is an upscale furniture boutique (for eccentrics) specializing in antiques and…well, pretty much anything slightly weird. One part vintage and many parts outlandish, it’s worth a visit if only to poke around the overflowing aisles where you can spot everything from mannequins legs to a chandelier once owned by Jackie O.
By a mile one of the most fun things I did on Maui was jump off a mountain (and yes, those are my legs.) Proflyght Paragliding is the oldest paragliding operator on Maui, and operates flights most days from Waipoli Flight Park on the slopes of Mt. Haleakala. Maui’s unique and predictable weather (it’s always nice!) makes it the perfect spot for the sport. Even when clouds roll in like the day I was there, it’s still possible to jump off from the lower starting point of 1000 feet (on clearer days you get to go from 3000 feet.)
Get a Traditional Hawaiian Lomilomi Massage
Not so much quirky as it is unique, a Lomilomi Massage is something everyone should try at least once. And I know my way around a massage — I was involved in a car accident many moons ago so have been a regular to massage therapists and chiropractors over the years. But I’ve never really experienced anything like a Lomilomi.
Following the tenets of the traditional master healers of Hawaii, Lomilomi practitioners use rhythmic strokes that are both gentle and deep at the same time, with the aim of restoring harmony and balancing energy. I know that really doesn’t say much, and it’s difficult to describe something that’s simultaneously so relaxing and so invigorating without sounding like too much of a new-agey putz, so I will leave it at that. But trust me, the result is amazing. I had my massage done by Cynthia Johnson at the Spa at Travaasa Hana, and I would go back in a heartbeat.
Which of these Quirky Things to Do in Maui is your fave?
Note: My trip to Maui was in conjunction with the Maui Visitors and Convention Bureau but they did not ask that I write a favourable review — all opinions are my own.