Winter is a very special time here in Maui. While the weather stays warm, with pictures of a sunscreen and grass skirt-adorned Santa Claus lining the shops of Lahaina’s Front Street’s windows and greeting cards; both tourists and locals alike are more excited for the arrival of our greatest tourists; The Humpback whales.
From the months of December to early April (many arriving in December) humpback whales make their way to Maui’s coast to mate, give birth and raise their young in the tropical waters of the Pacific before returning North.
While humpback whales may be the island’s greatest draw in December (besides the arrival of tourists looking to escape the snow with Maui’s eternal sunshine), there are so many hidden gems and activities to fill your Maui vacation during winter months!
Maui Arts and Cultural Center
The Maui Arts and Cultural Center, familiarly known as the “MACC” hosts some of Maui’s greatest events! From comedy shows to orchestras, the MACC has it all!
If you are lucky, you may be able to enjoy this outdoor venue jamming to some local favorite bands or world renowned stars.
Since the shutdown of 2020, the MACC has slowly been opening their doors to the public; hosting stars like Jim Gaffigan or, more recently, The Green. This December you can grab your tickets to Maui’s Pop Orchestra for their special holiday show “Holiday Pops” or even the 11th anniversary show of Bill Maher!
Whether you’re in the mood for a laugh or to enjoy some great music in Maui’s most beautiful venue the MACC is a great option! Because you are in the tropical pacific, you don’t have to worry about the weather or the cold derailing your enjoyment— this outdoor venue is sure to provide a great time.
Holidays in Hawaii
If you are looking to spend a special Christmas or holiday season with your loved ones, there is no better place than Maui!
While it may provide a difference experience than the traditional “chestnuts roasting on an open fire” or lighting candles near a frosted window, Maui has other wonderful holiday traditions to share.
December 11th, there will be a 6 foot tall Snowman in Lahaina Town, the perfect photo op for your Maui Christmas vacation! December 18th , from 6pm-8pm, also in downtown Lahaina, there will be a snow zone for kids to play and cookie decorating for everyone to get into the holiday spirit!
Downtown Lahaina town shows off its holiday spirit in December when it lights up the giant Banyan Tree with magical Christmas lights every year. The historical town celebrates with decorative with banners and festive storefronts, Christmas caroling and holiday dining.
One of these Maui holiday traditions is enjoying some of the seasonal fruit and vegetation that grows during the winter months like squash, strawberries, and melons! Even though most of Maui is classified as a warm tropical climate there are still seasons around some of the most popular crops that locals and visitors alike anticipate.
Maui Whale Watching Tours
The winter months are a time where Maui sees an influx of both visitors and wildlife. As mentioned, whale season in Maui spans from November to early spring at its peaks. If you choose to vacation in Maui during December make sure that you are aboard one of Maui’s award winning whale watching tours.
If being on a boat isn’t your thing, you can swim or snorkel in the warm waters that line Maui’s coasts. Lahaina and the West and North Side of Maui host winter surf swells, making it a go to spot for epic surfing during the winter season. If you are lucky you might see an early firing of “Jaws” the greatest big wave surf of the Pacific (this usually happens in mid to late winter each or every other year).
Bottom line— if you are looking to travel to Maui there is no better time than the winter season!