To get to the West Side, drive west on Highway 30 from Ma'alaea Harbor. This curvy, two-lane stretch of pavement wraps along the pali, or cliffs, of the West Maui Mountains while also bordering the ocean. Depending on the time and season, the drive can offer stunning sunset views, countless whale spottings, and miles of beach and surf opportunities just off the roadside — without any major development in sight. But please, drivers, keep your eyes on the road to avoid disturbing the steady flow of visitor and commuter traffic. Instead, pull over at one of the many beaches or the scenic lookout at mile marker 9 to behold the seascape. Check out the Olowalu Petroglyphs at mile marker 15 or Launiupoko Beach Park at mile marker 18 along the way.
You'll arrive in Lahaina town after about a half hour of cruising. What was once a bustling whaling town during the mid-1800s today gushes with action and activity. Catch a whale-watching boat or a sunset cruise from Lahaina Harbor, located adjacent to Banyan Tree Park at the south end of town. Mosey down and around Front Street for an impressive variety and abundance of bars, restaurants, shops, boutiques, and art galleries. Familiar names such as Hard Rock Cafe, Cheeseburger in Paradise, Billabong, and Roxy supply all the expected wares, while local businesses such as Célébritiés Fine Art gallery, Pakaloha Bikinis, and Kimo's Restaurant contribute elements of local style and flavor. Nightime in Lahaina offers some of the island's best shows: the Old Lahaina Luau, the Feast at Lele luau, Warren and Annabelle's Magic Show, and 'Ulalena. On your way out of town, Zen-out at the Lahaina Jodo Mission, which houses one of the largest Buddha statues outside of Japan.
Your next stop along the highway is Ka'anapali, defined by the resort-lined, golden sandy stretch known as Ka'anapali Beach. This is where you'll find the Westin, the Hyatt, the Sheraton, and a few other big name hotels decked out aloha-style just steps from the sparkling blue ocean. A paved walking path runs along the beach and connects the resorts and attractions, which include the Whalers Village shopping center and Black Rock, a popular snorkel spot. Visitors may also take a surf lesson, rent a kayak, hop on a sunset boat cruise, dine ocean side, or play a few rounds of golf at the Ka'anapali Golf Course without having to leave this pocket of Paradise.