We all know Maui is paradise. But what you may not know is that Maui is also one of the most naturally and culturally diverse islands in the world. From the misty rainforests of Haikü and the rugged peaks of Haleakalä to the palm-fringed beaches of Wailea, Maui is indisputable proof that variety is indeed the spice of life.

Just like snowflakes, no two places are exactly alike on Maui, which means there truly is something for everyone here. I call it “variations of perfection.”

South Maui (Wailea, Makena and Kïhei):

Arguably, there is an intrinsic appeal to any coastal community, but I believe South Maui gives the rest a run for their money. There’s a reason why visitors flock here year-round—and why I chose to build a home here. Considered by many to be the crown glory of Maui, Wailea, Makena and Kïhei boast pristine white sand beaches, impossibly blue waters and breathtaking sunsets that inspire the inner romantic in each of us.

Like me, if you’re inclined to indulge in sun, sand or surf, the perpetually sunny and dry (South Maui averages less than 15 inches of rainfall annually) climate is guaranteed to deliver optimum beach time, day or night. Just a 26 minute drive from Kahului Airport, it is an easily accessible area, with two, main intersecting roadways (the Pi‘ilani Highway and South Kïhei Road), convenient bus routes and ample parking.

But what sets this seaside community apart from the rest of the island is that it has just about everything under the sun (and I mean that quite literally). You’ll find an assortment of retail shops and award-winning restaurants to suit every taste and budget, as well as a dizzying array of amphibious activities, such as SCUBA diving, surfing, stand-up paddling, kayaking, nature hikes, marine education courses, sunset dinner cruises, tennis and some of the best golfing in the world.

But wait, there’s more. South Maui is brimming with cultural events, farmers markets, craft fairs, a vibrant nightlife scene featuring live music and entertainment and “Hawai‘I’s Answer to Sundance,” the world-renowned Maui Film Festival.

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2481 Kaanapali Pkwy Unit 1023 S Lahaina, HI 96761

$65,000
2 Beds
2 Baths
1,444 SqFt
Status Active
MLS # 358557
Property Type Time Interval
Two bedroom, two bath time interval unit on the 10th floor overlooking the popular courtyard side of Tower 1. Spacious floor plan sleeps 6 people comfortably. This unit has recently had a full renovation to the kitchen including new counter tops and new appliances. Also newly renovated is both of the bathrooms. The Whaler on Kaanapali Beach offers amenities that include an ocean view pool, spa, sauna, workout gym, salon, underground parking, and a business hub center.

2387 S Kihei Rd Unit D-205 Kihei, HI 96753

$359,000
1 Bed
1 Bath
700 SqFt
Status Pending - Cont. To Show
MLS # 362877
Property Type Condo
Lowest priced unit in Kihei Alii Kai at time of listing! Enjoy this wonderful vacation rental unit just a short stroll to Maui's most popular beaches - Kam I, II, and III. Close to many shops and restaurants but perfectly tucked away for privacy. The pool, tennis courts, and barbecues are just some of the amenities you will be able to enjoy. Sit back and relax on your large lanai taking in the incredible ocean views and sunsets. Get your offer in now, coming out of a long escrow with no price increase so get your gloves on and let's get ready to rumble!

960 Front St Lahaina, HI 96761

$2,200,000
3 Beds
2 Baths
1,676 SqFt
Status Active
MLS # 363878
Property Type Single Family
Great oceanfront property and backyard mountain views. Walking distance to the attractions of Front Street Lahaina. World class cuisine, art galleries, harbor and nightlife. Spacious lot size where you can stay at home, barbecue on your covered lanai and watch Maui sunsets with views of Moloka’i, Lana’i and our winter visitors the Humpback whales right from your lawn.

255 Lower Kimo Dr Unit Kula Kula, HI 96790

$785,000
3 Beds
1 Bath
840 SqFt
Status Active
MLS # 366477
Property Type Single Family
Investors! Chance to acquire an income producing Kula property on a very beautiful nearly half acre estate of land in a prime location directly off Lower Kimo Drive. Offers great potential to expand income opportunities. One of the sellers has an active Hawaii Real Estate License. High DOM because listing kept original MLS # while property was taken off market while rented.

1090 Aala Pl Makawao, HI 96768

$647,000
3 Beds
1 Bath
864 SqFt
Status Pending - Cont. To Show
MLS # 367046
Property Type Sf W/det Ohana Or Cottage
Great location with amazing views. Older house and cottage on a charming dead end street on the outskirts of Makawao Town. These properties do not come on the market often and truly have that “Old Kamaaina Feeling”. Both house and cottage were remodeled in 2005 but need work to restore to original condition. This property is just waiting for the right person to come along with a vision to enjoy all it has to offer.

1206 Summer Rd Lahaina, HI 96761

$2,495,000
4 Beds
4.5 Baths
3,636 SqFt
Status Active
MLS # 367720
Property Type Single Family
Premium location within the gated community of Pineapple Hill, in the Kapalua Resort. This quality built home is situated right above the 11th green of the world renown Kapalua Bay Course, This property is one of the few that offers unobstructed ocean, golf course and expansive sunset views from Lana'i to Moloka'i. Community amenities include a pool, BBQ grills, party pavilion and two tennis courts.

10 Aahi Pl Kaunakakai, HI 96748

$145,000
3 Beds
1.5 Baths
864 SqFt
Status Pending - Cont. To Show
MLS # 367876
Property Type Single Family
Located at the edge of Kaunakakai town and minutes to the shorelines of the Pacific, this starter home is searching for a new occupant. Simple, quaint and cozy is a brief description of this modest home. Offering all the necessities one needs for the island lifestyle, this is a property to consider if you are shopping for home ownership on Molokai. Please contact a Realtor to schedule a showing opportunity. This listing is subject to seller's lender SHORT SALE APPROVAL.

470 Ulaino Rd Hana, HI 96713

$825,000
1 Bed
1 Bath
800 SqFt
Status Active
MLS # 367953
Property Type Single Family
Make Hana your reality! SELLER WILL LOKK AT ALL OFFERS! This property boasts 27.5 acres of lovely, lush, tranquil grounds near Hana town. At present, the property is off the grid. Photo-voltaic power and back-up generators provide electricity for main house and separate cottage. There are 10 acres of Hawaiian tropical plants and fruit trees to stroll through. Fresh breadfruit, orange, lemon, mango, trees etc. along with an assortment of nut bearing trees may be available for harvesting when in season. The Botanical gardens could make an incredible build site for your perfect dream home. This is a peaceful location complete with all the natural beauty and convenience to Hana town and airport. Surround yourself with your complete and private get away. There may be many possibilities for a property like this. Buyer can check on subdividing, using as eco-tourism, agriculture, or having your own Hana oasis.

100 Ridge Rd Unit 2521 Lahaina, HI 96761

$825,000
1 Bed
2 Baths
1,125 SqFt
Status Active
MLS # 368080
Property Type Condo
This lovely Kapalua Ridge One Bedroom/Two Bath Villa, second story, level floor plan, sits along the Kapalua Bay Golf Course 9th Fairway and has a Partial Ocean view with Winter Sunset behind the island of Lanai. Enjoy jolly golfers and whales too from the bright and sunny living/dining room and comfy lanai. The villa is professionally decorated, has AC, and is located across from a heated pool with gas BBQ grills. Kapalua Bay Beach is just a short 5 minute walk from the front door. Kapalua is a 1200 acre world class resort with 2 golf courses, 10 tennis courts, 3 white sand beaches, 2 Spas at 2 luxury hotels, over 100 miles of hiking trails, restaurants, and shops, resort shuttle.

And that’s just to name a few.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the piece de resistance of South Maui: From November to April, pods of humpback whales make their annual voyage just a few miles offshore, offering spectators a rare opportunity to witness one of Mother Nature’s greatest gifts.

This is, as the saying goes, just the tip of the iceberg. There’s so much to see, do and experience here, which is why Wailea, Makena and Kïhei are three of the most coveted locations on Maui.

Of course, I may be a bit biased. After all, I do live here.

West Maui (Lahaina, Ka‘anapali, Kapalua and Napili):

West Maui was once the playground of the Hawaiian royals, and today, it’s an equally coveted destination for those seeking the royal treatment. The popular “resort towns” of Lahaina, Ka‘anapali practically burst at the seams with things to do, places to go and people to see.

You’ll find a lot of people in the water here—surfing, paddling, parasailing, swimming and snorkeling—and for good reason. West Maui is arid and hot.

Along Front Street, Lahaina’s iconic promenade, there is a treasure trove of historical landmarks, museums, retail shops, art galleries, restaurants, cafes, live music and entertainment and the world-famous Banyan Tree Park, where you can enjoy the cool reprieve of the shade from a 60-foot-tall Banyan tree.

Throughout the year, both Lahaina and Ka‘anapali host a variety of special events, including the Halloween Celebration (dubbed the “Mardi Gras of the Pacific”), King Kamehameha Day Parade, the International Festival of Canoes and the Taste of Lahaina.

Further down the Honoapi‘ilani Highway, you’ll find a slower pace of life in Kapalua and Napili, not to mention some of the world’s most legendary golf courses (Kapalua hosts the PGA Tour’s Hyundai Tournament of Champions, the LPGA Classic Tournament and the Mercedes Championship each year).

If you want some R&R or to escape from the “real world,” West Maui can certainly deliver. Depending on weather and traffic conditions, it’s a 45-minute drive from Kahului Airport, and it is only accessible by Honoapi‘ilani Highway—unless you have a private jet or helicopter, of course.

North Shore (Pä‘ia, Ha‘ikü and Spreckelsville):

When it comes to small town charm and character, Maui’s North Shore has the market cornered.

We call it the “wet” side of the island, which is why it’s not uncommon to see a rainbow or two while cruising along Häna Highway, and if you plan on spending a day at the beach there, I’d recommend bringing an umbrella. The North Shore is also considerably quiet and mellow (at least, compared to rest of Maui), which is why many residents travel to other areas of the island for business and pleasure.

But the North Shore is best known for its unique wind and surf conditions, which has made it one of the world’s premiere destinations for surfers, kitesurfers and windsurfers (H‘ookipa Beach Park is known “Windsurfing Capital of the World” and “Jaws” is appropriately named for its jaw-dropping big wave surfing).

If you’re not into extreme sports, though, don’t worry. The North Shore offers plenty of other outdoor activities and adventures, as well as opportunities to enjoy some “quiet time” with your family. In fact, you might just find me there one Sunday afternoon with my daughters, collecting seashells along the beach.