On our Hawaiian Airlines flight from Seattle to Kahului, Maui

My husband, Darren, and I had the opportunity to meet up with 15 family members on Maui this summer. We went with our toddler, Owen, while I was 6 months pregnant. My Mom lives on Kauai, so I’ve been there many, many times (and a few times solo with Owen.) I explored Maui last October with Owen, but this was the first time Darren was able to join us for a Hawaii trip. We stayed up in Ka`anapali, which was a first for me.

We opted not to do the Road to Hana or Haleakala this time simply because Owen and I did it in October and we wanted to spend as much time with family as possible. But, I highly recommend doing them if you haven’t before. We are planning to do them on a future trip to Maui.  Either trip would make a great “staying out of the sun” day trip, if you are sunburned!

Here’s how we spent our week on Maui:

Day 1: Arrival Day

  • Arrived on Maui in afternoon (Owen took a short nap on airplane)
  • Lunch/Dinner at Da Kitchen just minutes from the airport (featured on Food Network’s Drive-in’s, Diners and Dives). Their fried spam musubi and kalbi were amazing and the lilikoi pie was out of this world!
  • Costco for food, drinks and supplies for the week. My main reason for going was to get 3 large tubs of Furikake Chex Mix. Owen and I can go through an entire tub in a couple of weeks. It is soooo good!
  • Check in at Honua Kai Resort (after 12 hours of road delays).

Rainbow at Honua Kai on Maui

We saw a rainbow on our lanai right after Owen’s nap. As you can see, he’s still waking up!

Day 2: Relax Day

  • Family breakfast in Condo
  • Running errands in Lahaina (picking up swimsuit we forgot to pack, replacing food items that spoiled in the road delays, etc)
  • Pool time with all of the cousins! Owen was in heaven getting to “swim” with his cousins wearing his waterwings/life jacket.
  • Lunch at Duke’s (located at the Honua Kai)
  • Naptime for Owen
  • Family dinner in condo

Kula Botanical Garden on Maui

Owen navigating the Kula Botanical Garden

Day 3: 4th of July

  • Spam Musubi breakfast to go at Tesoro Station in Kahului (came highly recommended by a guy at the rental car place and it was so yummy!)
  • Attempted to get guava malasadas and donuts on a stick from T. Komodo Store & Bakery in Makawao, but they were closed due to the holiday. Fun to drive through the small, historic town though.
  • Attempted to tour Surfing Goat Dairy in Kula and sample their famous goat cheese truffles, but they were also closed for the holiday. But, we did get to see lots of goats and the drive was pretty.
  • Walked the Kula Botanical Garden (after we called ahead to make sure they’d be open.) Great way to stretch our legs after so much driving.
  • Called ahead to see if Ulupalakua Ranch & Cafe was open (they were closed for the holiday) but decided to take the drive anyway for the scenery. Stopped several times to take photos.
  • Turned around and drove 45 minutes to Kihei (while our toddler napped in the car) to eat at Zagat-rated fish tacos at Coconuts Fish Cafe. It was well worth the drive and my standard for fish tacos has been raised.
  • Stopped at Ululani’s Shave Ice in Kihei for delicious shave ice! I had a snow-capped Sunset Beach and my toddler had a Hawaiian Rainbow with ice cream at the bottom. This is my absolute favorite place to get shave ice (and I’ve sampled a lot!) We were both happy customers!
  • Headed back to the condo where we checked out Ka`anapali Beach and then hung out at the pool.
  • Family dinner at the condo

Ka`anapali beach with a toddler

Owen got to explore Ka`anapali Beach when Grandma babysat him

Day 4:

  • Breakfast in Condo
  • Darren played golf with his brothers for most of the day at Plantation Golf Course, which is used by the pros. Needless to say they lost quite a few balls! But, he said it was gorgeous and a highlight of the trip.
  • Hung out at the resort pools all morning with Owen and his cousins
  • My Mom arrived from Kauai for a short visit
  • Had family lunch in Condo
  • Owen napped
  • My Mom babysat while we had a date night at Roy’s (after loading up on after-sun products.) Read my Babymoon Date Night at Roy’s review here.

Maui Ocean Center in Ma`alaea

Owen enjoying an indoor exhibit at the Maui Ocean Center

Day 5:

  • Family breakfast in Condo
  • Did a load of laundry
  • Walk to Farmer’s Market, which was a bust. Only 4 stalls and 2 of them had prepackaged items you could buy anywhere. We ended up buying papaya and lilikoi from the store in the same parking lot.
  • Explored Maui Ocean Center, read my review here
  • Lunch at Seascapes Restaurant next to Maui Ocean Center, which had super slow service and watery drinks
  • Picked up SPF rash guard for Darren and more after sun products
  • Owen napped (briefly)
  • Family dinner at Duke’s where we were treated to Hula Pie to celebrate birthdays and an anniversary
  • Watched the sunset at Ka`anapali Beach

Owen Darren and Grandma snorkeling on the Four Winds Maui

Owen and Grandma snorkeling on the Four Winds Maui

Day 6: My Birthday!

  • Early morning breakfast in condo
  • Snorkel boat trip to Molokini on Four Winds, which was a fantastic group outing for our family. Read my review of the Four Winds here.
  • Stopped at Ululani’s Shave Ice in Kahului (Owen napped in car)
  • Checked out the Maui Cook Kwee’s Factory in Kahului and stocked up on 15 bags of cookies (we eat a lot of cookies in our house!)
  • Dropped my Mom off at the airport
  • Picked up Spam Musubi from Tesoro station before heading back to condo
  • Darren and Owen hit the pool
  • Family dinner in the condo
Surfing Goat Dairy
Owen petting his first goat at the Surfing Goat Dairy in Kula, Maui.

Day 7:

  • Picked up several family members to take them on our adventure
  • Headed to T. Komodo Store & Bakery in Makawao to sample their guava malasadas, donuts on a stick, malasadas on a stick, cream puffs, cocoa puffs, apple turnovers and coconut turnovers (can you tell we like bakeries?)
  • Visited the goats at Surfing Goat Dairy in Kula. Owen had fun petting a goat, but was more interested in playing with the dump truck with other kids in their sandy play area. We also got a couple of boxes of their famous goat cheese truffles.
  • Drove to Kihei for another round of fish tacos from Coconuts Fish Cafe (still soooo good!)
  • Hit up Ululani Shave Ice so our nieces could try it for the first time and they loved it!
  • Took our time driving back to the West Side so Owen could get in a good nap
  • Stopped at Foodland Farms in Lahaina for bags of fresh lychee (a family favorite fruit)
  • Swung by the ABC Store and Deli in Ka`anapali for freshly made Spam Musubi and gifts for friends back home
  • Ate our musubi in the car while Owen finished his nap
  • Relaxed in the condo before heading to family dinner at China Boat in Ka`anapali

Lili & Stitch

Owen watching Lilo & Stitch while we packed and cleaned the condo

Day 8: Departure Day

  • Packed and cleaned the Condo while Owen watched Lilo & Stich (Read my review of the Honua Kai Resort & Spa here)
  • Got coffee!
  • Loaded car and went to Kahului early to pick up souvenirs  and have lunch at Da Kitchen
  • Stopped by Tesoro station for gas and Spam Musubi to eat on the airplane
  • Darren dropped us off at the airport with all the luggage, carseat and stroller while he returned the rental car
  • Flew home to Seattle

We had such a fun time in Maui with family! Even though we were only gone 8 days and didn’t pack too many activities into those days, we were exhausted and ready to come home. Eight days was the perfect amount of time for us to vacation with extended family.

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19 Comments

  1. This looks like a lot of fun! I really want to visit Hawaii one day!

    • Marcie in Mommyland Reply

      Julia, you should! It’s so fun and the people are so friendly!

  2. Sounds like a great time! I’ve been to Waikiki once but I was so young. I’d love to go back to a different island in Hawaii one of these days!

    • Marcie in Mommyland Reply

      Waikiki is so fun and you should go back as an adult and see what you think! I also recommend Maui and Kauai!

    • Marcie in Mommyland Reply

      Rebecca, you should go! It’s so beautiful and I swear there are rainbows practically every day!

  3. This looks like such a fun trip for you and your family! I would love to visit Maui someday! Great itinerary, love that you had a relax day in there!

    • marciecheung Reply

      It’s such a beautiful island! We’re lucky that it’s just a 5.5 hour flight from Seattle!

  4. My sister in law has recently become a mom and she keeps asking me suggestions on how to travel with her little one. I’ll make sure to pass her this article, because it clearly shows that you can travel, have fun, and show the world to your kids, if you plan everything carefully. Becoming a mom doesn’t mean that you can’t travel anymore! Thank you for writing this!

    • marciecheung Reply

      I know! My blog is all about encouraging people who love to travel to bring their kids. It can make for some lovely memories!

  5. Muai looks like the perfect place to go with kids. It seems to offer a whole range of things to do and I would love to take my son to meet a goat! I will be copying your tips and tricks when I visit Muai!

  6. Maui sounds like a very nice place! As so many different things to do. I’d love to go snorkling and go to that pro golf course. It always the best if many theses kind of sport activities are available around you.

  7. I would have loved to have gone to play golf with Darren, it’s a dream of mine to play golf in Hawaii. I’m sure I would have lots plenty of balls in the rough too! Snorkeling for your birthday in Hawaii must have made it a memorable day, such a beautiful place to snorkel. It seemed like a fun 8 days in the condo with Owen, he sure looked like he had a good time!

  8. What a great family trip. 15 of you all together? Sounds like an epic adventure and a great place for a family holiday.

    • marciecheung Reply

      Yes, there were a lot of us! We’re doing it again next month!

  9. Vicki Louise Reply

    It sounds like you spent lots of quality family time together which is great! And snorkeling in Hawaii is definitely on my bucket-list so it’s very cool you got to do it on your birthday. It sounds like there is a lot to do for families there too, perfect for those with little ones to keep entertained!

  10. This was a pretty cool itinerary. My favorite part was knowing the different local foods that you can eat in Hawaii. I would love to eat Ululani’s Shave Ice, Maui Cook Kwee’s Factory cookies, lychee, and fish tacos. I have eaten lychees but I am sure that they taste different in Hawaii.

  11. Great tips I wouldn’t have thought Maui would be a good destination for families but I was wrong as it looks like you had a great time. The goat cheese truffles sound interesting shame you didn’t get to try them but I bet seeing the goats was fun for your little one.

    • marciecheung Reply

      Yes, I don’t usually think of farms in Hawaii but it was pretty neat!

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