A brief overview of the place
Lahaina is the largest town on the island of Maui. This wonderful town is home to some incredible beaches, hiking trails, and to the largest Banyan tree in the United States, which this town has been built around.
What I did in Lahaina
The one thing that most people think of when they think of Hawaii is Hoola dancing in grass skirts, so when in Hawaii it would be almost rude not to see this traditional dance for what it really is.
Most hotels and restaurants have Luau nights where they put on an extraordinary spread of food, which you can enjoy while watching the dancing. The drinks are also very tasty, so by the end of the night, you are ready to hula yourself.
The Luau I booked was called ‘The Myths Of Maui Luau’ which was hosted at The Royal Lahaina Resort, which might I add, is an incredible hotel.
A group of 8 of us arrived at 8 pm along with what seemed the rest of the world, so we queued for a while to get in which was to be expected. As we passed through the main entrance we were given lei’s made out of real flowers to wear around our necks, to get us into the Hawaiian spirit. Another thing that got us into the swing of things was that the spirits were two for one, so we ordered our cocktails and found our seats right next to the front of the stage. The perfect place.
As the sun began to set, the girls and I took a stroll down to the beach to watch the magical sunset and to try and get some good pictures. The bright orange sky was breathtaking and the sound of the lapping waves and the steel drums in the background just added to the moment. Once the orange sky had turned to black, we sat back down at our table as it was time for the dancing to begin.
On stage was a group of boys and girls, all Hawaiian beauties with long black curly and beautiful tanned skin. The girls wore skirts made out of leaves and matching hair pieces.
The dance consists of Hula Kahiko and Hula Auana. ‘Hula kahiko’ is an ancient dance that is performed to chants and mythological stories being told. ‘Hula Auana’ is a more modern interpretation of Hoola so has a Western influence and is performed to melodic songs rather than chants and stories. It was wonderful to see the more traditional dance compared with the more modern, and to see a show that once, only Kings would have been allowed to see.
There was an interval in which we ate our food. The dinner was buffet style, so each table took their turn to go and get their food. The spread of food was out of this world, with so many local dishes to choose from. The colours were amazing and the smells had everyone drooling. It was nice to eat during the interval because I could enjoy my food without worrying I was going to miss anything.
Towards the end of the show, they went around the room and selected a few people to go on stage and Hoola along with them. It was lovely to see people loving this traditional dance and getting so enthusiastic about it.
Everyone was on their feet when the show has finished, cheering and whistling for the very talented dancers. Although the base of the dance looked quite basic, the show they put on was not, and to have an audience get so excited, it had to be something special. Most people got up to leave at that point so to save queuing we stayed out and enjoyed a few more drinks until it was time to return to the cruise ship.
If you are ever lucky enough to get to Hawaii, you have to, just have to go to a Luau. It is a brilliant night with friends and a wonderful way to get a glimpse at traditional Hawaii.
Of course, the thing that everyone wants to do is to go to a Luau, and who can blame them.
If you have never surfed before, Lahaina is a great place to learn as it has gentle waves and ideal conditions for newbies.
This beach is the best in Lahaina, so if a beach day is what you are after, then this is the place to go.
Banyan Tree Square
This is one of Lahaina’s most recognisable landmarks. This extensive Banyan tree sprawls across the whole square. The tree has been there since 1873 and now has branches that spread across the best part of an acre. It is the heart of Lahaina, with musicians setting up here and filling the air with music, and when the musicians are not there, the bird songs will keep your ears pert.
Lahaina Heritage Museum
This museum celebrates Lamina for being a big part of Hawaii’s history and showcases ancient Hawaiian plantations and mills. If Hawaii’s history interests you, then this is a museum you will love.
Hawaiian and English
Things to know
If you are visiting Lahaina via cruise ships, please note Lahaina is a tender port so be sure to get your tender tickets early.
Take your ID. Various places during the day will only let you in if you have it, and definitely during the evening. You won’t be getting in anywhere if you don’t have ID.