Maui, Hawaii is one of the most visited vacation spots on the planet. Maui is known for white sandy beaches, warm Hawaiian culture and a red hot nightlife. The island lives up to it’s reputation as one of the premier destinations in the United States and the world. The following guide will identify some of the best places to eat on the magical island of Maui.
Eating on Maui has a distinctive Hawaiian flair. At almost every restaurant on the island you will find dishes at least partially influenced or inspired by native Hawaiian cuisine. This means lots of pineapple, coconut, and other tropical flavors along with tons of pork and native chicken and birds. Most eateries have some combination of these ingredients and the following establishments are no different.
Cheeseburger in ParadisePhoto credit: @cheeseburgerinparadisemaui
Cheeseburger in Paradise in Old Lahaina, Maui is a great example of this phenomenon. This world famous cheeseburger restaurant offers fantastic burgers and sandwiches and many menu items with a distinct Hawaiian influence. Along with things like traditional hamburgers and french fries you can order pineapple teriyaki burgers and Hawaiian sweet potato fries. Sweet Maui onions are also a very popular burger and sandwich topping and add some sweet island flavor to every bite. Cheeseburger In Paradise is located right on the beach in scenic Lahaina and is an absolute must visit for any burger lover.
Kai-WaileaPhoto credit: Kai Wailea
For those looking for more exotic fare there are a number of great Asian dining options on Maui due to its location in the Pacific Ocean and proximity to Asia. One standout Japanese restaurant on Maui is Kai-Wailea, located in the gorgeous Wailea Resort and Spa. Kai is world famous for their incredible Japanese-Hawaiian inspired fusion and locally inspired sushi and sashimi. The bluefin tuna rolls and saba shioyaki are especially scrumptious if a little pricey. Kai also has a great selection of local and imported sakes that are sure to put a fire in your belly.
Fred’s Mexican CafePhoto credit: fredshb
If you are in the mood for a more festive atmosphere Fred’s Mexican Cafe serves great Mexican food with a Maui twist and has a party-like atmosphere all day and night. The ahi fish tacos are made with local fish and they are unlike anything you can find on the mainland or anywhere else for that matter. The food at Fred’s is great but the real stars of the show are the incredible cocktails. Most drinks at Fred’s come with either Tequila or Rum and are chock full of fresh island fruit juices and garnishes. Fred’s Mexican Cafe offers a great island experience with good food to boot.
Buzz’s WharfPhoto credit: Buzz’s Wharf
The service is fair, the atmosphere is decent, and the view of the harbor is breathtaking. Buzz’s Wharf is one of the best restaurants on Maui. Why is it among the best? I have only one word – a shrimp. Buzz’s Wharf is the only place on the island where you can get the markea prawns. These prawns don’t actually taste like the average shrimp from Thailand or the Gulf of Mexico though. They trick your palate into thinking that you’ve just eaten a lobster rather than a shrimp.
Big Wave CafePhoto credit: Buzz’s Wharf
Big Wave Cafe is one of the best restaurants that breaks the laws of the Maui universe. The seating is open-air, the food is great, and the coffee is hot and delicious. If you think breakfast is just breakfast, think twice, because Maui breakfast consists of waffle, muffin slingers and omelet. Big Wave Cafe has reasonable prices. If you eat before 9am you’ll be treated to a combination breakfast with eggs, meat, coffee, and even more for $3.99.
These are only a few of the amazing restaurants on the beautiful island of Maui. When you visit feel free to explore and find places that match your tastes but for some surefire delicious meals be sure to check out these wonderful spots.