We had a good week at the Ka’anapali Shores resorts…and rented through VRBO – Unit 161. If you want to face the ocean, have grass in front of your ground floor ‘lanai’ and be steps from the beach, ocean, fresh water shower and even pool, this is the place to try to get. It was clean, roomy for a family of 5 (4 adults and 1 toddler) and the extras for kids were really great to have in the unit. The kitchen was nicely stocked, but in all honesty, I would have liked a whole new set of drinking glasses…..the ones in the unit had lots of wear and tear…acrylic just gets like that after a year!! Loved the double door fridge and the hands free garbage bin!! Didn’t love having to strong arm the huge sliding glass doors though that was just me… Guess I’m a weakling!! Had a great Sunset watch from our ‘lanai’ each night (some people who could not see the ocean from their ‘lanais’, would come to our “lawn area” to watch the beautius colours each night!
Ka’anapali Shores resort is really quite lovely. Beautiful serene gardens to walk through and Koi ponds and small waterfall. We used the pickle ball courts and tennis courts (front desk supplied the pickle ball equipment) Super helpful front desk staff, the grounds workers always stopped and chatted to us, the coffee hut in the lobby is open at 7am and serves yummy homemade items with great choices for coffee. The grocery store, Subway, nail salon, boutique , Snorkel Bob’s is among a few place just across the street. I loved the quirky Java Jazz spot there too… retro cool. The beach is coming and going, so to speak…with the tide. We were told that a few months before our stay in July, the beach front was ½ as big….but as the waves roll in, the sand builds up and builds up leaving good deposits for a bigger beach. We had some good smashing boogie boarding waves to the right of our ‘lanai’ and the water temp in July is great. We saw surf lessons each morning to the right side of the beach too. There were a couple of plain sandy spots if you were standing waist high, but also rocks with some sea grass. The beaches in/ on Maui has lots of black lava rock…it’s obviously Maui is built from volcano activity.
The touring around with a car was easy – great maps are provided at the various stores or even at the baggage pick up carosel at the airport! Speaking of car rental… Every car rental company employee will try to upsell you. If you want to pay MORE, let them sweet talk you… but if you reserved a compact and liked that quoted price, just stay firm with them and then it’s more reasonable. Insurances are always going to be a kicker though! Ugh!
We drove the road (Lower ‘piliani hwy) along to Napili Bay. It’s pretty nice there- for us there was lots of beach/ great sand/ steep sloping shoreline and some FUN waves to board in . Sometimes parking is congested so I’d stay away from Sat/Sun/Mon….. (due to locals and also cruise ship tours) Along the way, we stopped at Kapalua Bay… Very nice waters!! We also enjoyed seeing all the beaches from high up…..the Oneloa Beach, D.T.Fleming Beach (great to sit at and play in…nice sandy and big waves the day we were there)… all depends on the winds. Best time to go for relaxation on the beach is 9am to noon. After noon, the winds tend to pick up and the choppy waters happen. We drove to and saw Honolua Bay where all the people said snorkeling was the best to the far right hand reef side, but some turtles seem to come into the bay on the lefthand side. I must say I was surprised that this gorgeous spot doesn’t have much in the way of sand…no lounging in the sand and since it will destroy the coral, don’t wear sunscreen. Just wear a t shirt ! Love seeing the Nakalele Blowhole…and safely made it down the 200 drop (goat trail) to stand beside it ! Got totally soaked! Next we hiked down to the Olivine Pools …another steep climb down and up, but doable for this Granny! The pools are only GREAT if there are FEW people there. Friends went and they were among 2 others visiting so it was really cool to have the ocean crashing right beside them in these deep pools. But when we went at 2pm, there were at least 20 people there all jumping in and having fun, making noise and it just took away from the austere beauty of them. For both climbs I think good gripping footwear is a must.
Another day we took the Van Isle Tour bus..Road to Hana. Great value for the price. Ah-mazing amount of info gained from Joe, our driver (12 seat comfy bus). I would not have enjoyed it half as much if hubby and I were navigating the narrow Cliffside roads! When we go back, we’d do it ourselves because we know EXACTLY where we would want to stop and explore. The Seven Sacred Pools are so very popular and again, they lose their ambience and glory when they are crawling with people. I’d go back in the earlier part of the day and again avoid cruise ship days. The flora and fauna along the Hana side of the island is just so wonderous with it’s colour and diversity! Wai’anapanapa State Park is so rugged with it’s shoreline and ‘dark’ beaches. The bamboo forest is so dense with 5-7 types of bamboo that was originally brought to the island by the Chinese and Japanese and also from the Philippines. 1/3 of all the plants or shrubs or trees in the rain forest are indigenous… the rest imported…and when you see all of the variety of plant like, you can’t help but be in awe. The rain forest gets approx. 260 inches of rain each year… on the Hana side….but an hour and a half away, on the Kaupo (south ) side of the island, it’s like a Nevada/Arizona rocky arid desert!
Lastly we explored all along Kihei and Wailea – Western side of the island. Wailea has amazing beaches like Makena- Big Beach, Wailea beach and Secret Cove. It’s got the reserve to snorkel at – A’hihi Cove. Awesome colourful fish with the odd Moray Eel spotted! South Kihei is super action packed with stores/shops/restaurants and parks for enjoyment. We loved Bistro 808 (byob) and the the 808 Deli. Great value for the $ and amazing home made fare. Really good. Gotta try their famous pudding…I know that sounds weird, but it’s a super yummy dessert for two!! South Kihei beaches are all very good. Lots of nice golden sand and fun waves. North Kihei is much more quiet and the water is almost a different colour due to somewhat darker sand.
A great trip was had by all. We WILL go back…so much more to explore and see on Maui!
- Also Known As:
- Resortquest Kaanapali Shores
- Kaanapali Shores
- Aston Hotel Lahaina
- Aston Hotel Kaanapali Shores
- Kaanapali Shores Maui
- Maui Aston Kaanapali Shores Condominiums
- Maui Aston Kaanapali Shores
- Aston Kaanapali Shores Condos
- Maui Resortquest Kaanapali Shores
- Kaanapali Shores Hotel
- Aston Kaanapali Shores Maui/Lahaina
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located beachfront on Kaanapali Beach, this magnificent condominium resort combines spacious, well-appointed suites with hotel-caliber services. Amenities include complete kitchens, WiFi, activity desk and a year-round kids program, Camp Kaanapali. This self-contained property also boasts a beachfront restaurant and bar, fitness center and spa featuring an indoor/outdoor massage service. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Travelocity, Booking.com, Otel, Olotels, Hotels.com, Priceline and Tingo so you can book your Aston Kaanapali Shores reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.