** See 4/30/03 UPDATES! **
There are unlimited dining opportunites in Maui. Here are some of our favorites (and a few clunkers):
Burger King, Downtown Lahaina -- If you want a Whopper, you might as well get it in this funky BK across the street from the famous banyan tree.
Whaler's Village -- The Hula Grill and Leilani's are fine (especially the beachside outdoor seating at the Hula), but STAY AWAY FROM THE RUSTY HARPOON unless you like high prices, mediocre food, and slow service. We put up with it once because we were starved and they had the ball game on the TV, but the second time we left before the water was even served. ** UPDATE** -- Leilani's and Hula Grill are still very good. Lighter fare outside by the beach is still preferable to the inside, fancier menu. In the food court, Mr. Sub has excellent sandwiches (a lot more meat than Subway!). Pizza Paradiso is comparable to their Honokowai location. Avoid the Korean BBQ place. McDonald's is there, too, if the kids need a happy meal. Limited seating.
A Pacific Cafe -- Excellent! This is our favorite dining experience on Maui by far! The restaurant is in the shopping area across the street from the Embassy Resort and features casually elegant local cuisine.
Fresh seafood, great service, moderate prices make this a real winner. And the kids liked it too! ** UPDATE! ** Unfortunately the Honokowai location is now closed. There is another location in Kihei but we didn't get a chance to check it out.
Subway and Pizza Paradiso -- Both of these are also across the street from the Embassy.
Subway was a welcome alternative to the higher priced hotel fare - just right to bring back to poolside. Pizza Paradiso has great pizza plus a few salads and pastas. They also have ice cream. The kids really enjoyed this place but it's fairly small and the pizza ovens heat the place up, but still a fun place. ** UPDATE ** Both still good values for takeout back to the pool.
Napili -- Check out Napili Shores either at the Gazebo for breakfast or their other restaurant (sorry the name escapes me) for sushi and Thai food. The Sea House restaurant on Napili Bay is a short walk on the beach from Napili Shores and is also very good.
Tourist traps -- Bubba Gumps and Moose McGillicuddy's both in downtown Lahaina.
Crowded but surprisingly good and the kids loved both of them. Gumps has a nice waterfront location and is reasonably priced. ** UPDATE! ** Went to Bubba Gumps again because our son really likes the Coconut shrimp. The Mahi Mahi in lemon garlic sauce over rice is also very good. Still a fun place in a great location.
Maui Tacos -- the one in the Napili Marketplace is the best of the ones we've been to.
Food Courts -- The one in the Maui Mall is very good, while the one in the Lahaina Cannery is so-so. ** UPDATE ** The food court at Lahaina Cannery Mall is much improved. Try the Orange Chicken (if fresh) at Chopsticks Express or a Gyro at the greek place. Good place to grab a (fairly) cheap dinner and watch the free Polynesian show on Thursday nights.
Kula Lodge -- A great place for lunch with an excellent view overlooking the Kula farming area. Go later in the day after all the Haleakela bikers have been there and it will be a lot more relaxing. Order a sandwich on their homemade bread or a salad using local greens and produce.