North Shore Vacation Guide

Where to Play, Eat, Shop and Stay on Maui's North Shore

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About Maui's North Shore

North Shore equals windiest; world class surfing.

Welcome to North Maui, where the fun and adventure never stop! Whether you're a seasoned surfer, a shopaholic, or a foodie looking for some great eats, this part of the island has got you covered.

From Kahalui and the airport, head to Paia and the North Shore.Let's dive into some of the exciting activities and attractions that await you in North Maui.

Areas in Maui's North Shore

Paia, Haiku and Wild Surf

North Shore

North Shore

Highlights of Maui's North Shore

Maui's North Shore  is cooler and less populated than the  popular tourist destination on the South and West sides. Known for its stunning beaches, world-class surfing, charming towns, and delicious food. This part of the island is perfect for those looking for adventure, relaxation, or a little bit of both.

  1. Paia, Spreckelsviille & Haiku: Explore the colorful streets and unique shops. Hippy havens, local art, shopping great food and more.
  2. Baldwin & Spreckelsville Beaches: Try body surfing, soak up some sun and enjoy the pristine beaches of North Maui
  3. Mama's Fish House - Indulge in fresh seafood and Hawaiian-inspired dishes at Mama's Fish House restaurant. Fine dining as a cultural experience - amazing setting - worth the price!
  4. Catch some wild waves at Ho'okipa Beach Park, Honolua Bay, or Pe'ahi (Jaws).
  5. The Road to Hana  - Embark on a scenic drive along the Road to Hana, which starts in North Maui.
  6. Watch pro surfers in action at the Maui Pro surf competition, held annually at Honolua Bay.

Things to do in Maui's North Shore

Wild Waves, Great Food, Quaint Towns, Local Art & Hippie Culture

North Maui is a veritable playground for tourists looking for adventure, relaxation, and everything in between. Come explore all that this magical part of the island has to offer, and make memories that will last a lifetime!

Things to do for the Adventure Seeker on Maui's North Shore

Paia and Haiku:

These two charming towns are known for their laid-back vibes and hippie culture. Take a stroll through the colorful streets of Paia and you'll find plenty of unique shops, art galleries, and cafes to explore. If you're feeling adventurous, head to the nearby Ho'okipa Beach Park for some world-class wind and kite surfing.

North Maui is home to some of the best surfing spots on the island.

Speaking of wild waves... Head to Honolua Bay or Pe'ahi, also known as "Jaws," to catch some epic waves and watch pro surfers in action. If you're not quite ready to brave the big waves, don't worry - there are plenty of surf schools and rental shops in the area to help you get started.

North Maui Beaches

  1. Baldwin Beach is considered the best beach for sunseekers on the North Shore. Besides the pristine sand and rolling waves, recreational facilities such as a basketball court and a sheltered picnic area are also provided. A life guard is on duty all day.  BBQ pits, showers and restrooms mean you can hang out all day. A great example of the "White Sandy Beaches of Hawaii" - we love Iz's rendition of that beautiful song.
  2. Sprekelsville Beach (Sprecks Beach or Baby Beach) is an extension of Baldwin Beach and an option for some great photography. The colors here - black lava rock, red lava shelf, golden sand beach - when combined with blue sky, green foliage and aqua water offer an amazing natural color pallet
  3. Ho'okipa Beach is the last beach before the start of the Scenic Road to Hana Drive. Want to see turtles? Sighting are guaranteed here. There is even a protected cove in the corner of the shoreline that is a dedicated honu (turtle) resting place where there are usually dozens of these creatures - some afternoons more than 100 appear. During the day a life guard watches out for the safety of the Honu.  Local surfers are also very protective of them.  Enjoy but keep yours distance.
  4. Paia Beach: Located in Lower Paia park and walking distance from the historic, colorful town of Paia - this is a full service beach park with parking, restrooms, showers abd life guards (8-4:30). Water here ranges from aqua to sea green and sand is a bit more gold than white.
  5. For those wanting to visit every beach on the North Shorem there are many more beaches that extend down to the airport and beyond - most frequented by locals and even one designated "clothing optional".  Secret gems... have fun searching.

The Road to Hana

Last but not least, North Maui is also the start of the famous Road to Hana, a scenic drive that takes you through lush rainforests, stunning waterfalls, and charming small towns. Make sure to pack your camera and plenty of snacks for the journey - you won't want to miss a single sight or bite!

Explore Maui's North Shore

Treat yourself to some delicious eats at one of the many restaurants in North Maui.

When you need a break from all the adrenaline-fueled activities, try food. From fresh seafood to farm-to-table cuisine, there's something to satisfy every palate. And if you're in the mood for some shopping, check out the eclectic mix of boutiques and galleries in Paia town (or head UPCOUNTRY to Makawao). 

Mama's Fish House - A must-visit spot for any foodie in North Maui.

This iconic restaurant is known for its fresh seafood, Hawaiian-inspired dishes, and breathtaking ocean views. To get there from Paia, head north on Hana Highway (Highway 36) for about 9 miles until you reach the town of Kuau. Keep To get there from Paia, head north on Hana Highway (Highway 36) for about 9 miles until you reach the town of Kuau. Keep going for another 2 miles and you'll see Mama's Fish House on your left, just before reaching the entrance to Ho'okipa Beach Park. Trust me, it's worth the drive! Mama's Fish House is not only a dining experience, but it's also a cultural one. The restaurant is situated in a historic beachfront home, and the decor and ambiance transport you back in time to old Hawaii. Be sure to try the Tahitian Ceviche or the Mahi Mahi stuffed with lobster and crab - they're some of the most popular dishes on the menu.

The Paia Fish Market

Moderately priced with food quality you can count on. No table service. DIne family style sharing tables with other folk.  Many like take dinner to the beach and watch sun sets over the West Maui Mountains. There is a branch of the Paia Fish Market in  Kihei (South Maui).

Flatbread Pizza Company

89 Hana Hwy, Paia. (808) 579-8989.       11am - 9pm

Good reasonably priced restaurant and bar - Pretty much open air with fans. Eat in or take out

Statistics about Maui's North Shore

Stats and Facts for Maui's North Shore

Most recent statistics easily available for specific areas on Maui are from the 2010 US Census so those are the numbers used below. However you can adjust a bit using this info from the 2020 Census which shows Maui's population grew about 6.7% from154,834in 2010 to 164,734 in 2022. Maui County estimates population decreased a bit (.2%) to 164,381 in 2022.

2010 Census


population: 2,668 Sq Mi: 7.5

population: 8,118 Sq Mi: 19.2

Weather for Maui's North Shore

The winds blow hard on Maui's North Shore - a favorite location for Windsurfers and surf board pros. The weather is cooler here that on the South and West sides of Maui with average temperatures year round in the mid to upper 70's.  According to the Maui County Gov't web site:  "The North Shore of Maui is a gently embayed coastal system with exposures to the northeast, north, and northwest. The shore is exposed to large swell during winter months, and short period, trade wind waves throughout the year."

FAQs about Maui's North Shore

Answers to the most frequently asked questions.

If you're into windsurfing and surfboarding - ABSOLUTELY.  Also true for adventure seekers who want to be closer to great hikes and waterfalls but still have good, relatively inexpensive food available. 

If rain is not something you want to experience then pick your days to visit but don't stay

If luxury is required, don't stay here. Most accommodations are much more basic though Mama's Fish House inn could be an exception

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