We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Trip report Oct 13-20 with 22 mo toddler

Kansas City
Level Contributor
136 posts
34 reviews
Save Topic
Trip report Oct 13-20 with 22 mo toddler

I don't typically write trip reports but when I was preparing for our vaca with our toddler, I found so many negative posts that I wanted to pass along positive feedback about our trip and the fun you can have with a youngster!

We flew from KC to CA and spent the night in Oakland both ways. We added 2 days to the above dates so we still spent 8 nights on Maui. This really helped break up the long plane ride and made for a much less tiring and stressful trip. For the flight, we packed lots goodies including: lacing cards, bristle blocks, books, DVD player, pipe cleaners (great for stringing Cheerios), sticker book and lots of treats - Cheerios, pretzels, cheese/pb mini ritz, etc. His fav were the bristle blocks.

We stayed (with points) at the Marriott in Wailea. It was fine but not much in wailea for families so we spent most time driving to Kihei for food. The Ulua beach though was great and so close by!

Day 1 - Arrived in mid-morning. Went to K-Mart to pick up sand toys and ate a quick bite at Burger King. Checked into hotel and spent time getting settled and exploring resort/grounds. Then off to Ulua Beach. Bought a few provisions (milk, cut pineapple, etc) at Whalers at the Shops at Wailea...including some panini's for dinner.

Day 2 - Breakfast on balcony then off to Ulua beach again. Husband did snorkeling spotting lots of fish and a large sea turtle. Tried Jawz Fish Tacos in Kihei. Just ok. We all took an afternoon nap then off to Lahaina for a stroll and shopping. Dinner at Teddy's Better Burgers, Lahaina.

Day 3 - Found Kihei Caffe - great outdoor breakfast place. Busy but fast service with yummy breakfast potatoes. Today, we go to Palauea Beach. Snorkeling here just OK. Lunch at Maui Tacos. Decent but not blown away. Afternoon drive to Wailuku to check out ukulele's at Mele ukulele. Then we took route 340 over the top and around west Maui. What an exciting and nail biting drive. Mostly one lane - great scenery. Stopped at a little stand for chocolate chip cookies, a walk on a black sand beach and watching some surfers. Dinner - bento boxes from Whalers.

Day 4 - Kihei Caffe for breakfast. Ulua beach for more snorkeling - opposite reef...more sea turtles. Quick nap followed by lunch at the parked taco truck on Kihei rd. Took a stroll down past the other Wailea resorts. Found those beaches to be quite crowded. Dinner at Da Kitchen. Good fish and chips.

Day 5 - Breakfast on balcony. Family photos on Mokapu beach. Beach time on Ulua...more sea turtles and a family of large sting rays seen while snorkeling. Lunch - best find! There is a food truck parked about 100 yards off main Kihei road, in front of Worldwide Wyndham reort. Best fish and fried calamari ever tasted! Then on to Iao Valley for hike. Followed by stroll through Paia. Our toddler loves spaghetti so we did takeout from Manoli's and ate on the balcony.

Day 6 - Up early and off to explore road to Hana. Enjoyed several stops, waterfalls and scenic overlooks. Fresh pineapple and banana bread. Mediocre fish lunch near Hana. Vendor gave our toddler a fish on rod made out of a palm frond. He loved it! We pushed through and went all the way around southeast Maui. Interesting changes in scenery and roads! We are glad we did it but it is a long drive. Entire drive took about 10-11 hours...(door to door). Dinner at Da Kitchen - fish tempura (huge portion...enough for 2)

Day 7 - Breakfast at Kihei Caffe. Up country to Surfing Goat Dairy. Enjoyed tour, feeding goats and cheese tasting. On to Makawao for lunch at deli...then walked through town. Checked out kids pool at Marriott and adults enjoyed water slides! Watch sunset on Ulua beach and a wedding. Dinner from Manoli's.

Day 8 - Last day :(. Lazy day...Kihei Caffe, Ulua Beach, great food truck, Manoli's for dinner.

The secret to our great trip was a little pre-planning and just going with the flow. No, we didn't eat at Mamas but we did eat well. We came home rested and relaxed with some great memories! I encourage all parents to adventure with your young ones! There were lots of families with young children there. And enjoy!

Level Contributor
749 posts
24 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Trip report Oct 13-20 with 22 mo toddler

Great info! :) Our good friends took their 4 kids, 7 and under to Maui and had a wonderful time. I see you had a few breakfasts at Kihei Café! We never get tired of that place!

San Diego...
Level Contributor
2,484 posts
Save Reply
2. Re: Trip report Oct 13-20 with 22 mo toddler

Heading out Friday for our 4th trip with the granddaughters 4 and 6. They like us have fallen in love with Maui. They love the beach and have learned to snorkel. Wonderful family times and tons of pics for the memories

Level Contributor
67 posts
8 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Trip report Oct 13-20 with 22 mo toddler

Thanks for posting! I see a lot of negativity about travelling with little ones too. Not just here, but different destination forums.

We travel with our littles and have a blast! Were heading to Maui next spring.

Level Contributor
10,494 posts
21 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Trip report Oct 13-20 with 22 mo toddler

Well, I will be the voice that disagrees with the opinion that this forum is "negative" in regards to traveling with children. Maybe realistic, in regards to lots of driving, especially when it involves driving in areas that could be considered dangerous. And the potential for no cell coverage, so if that's considered negative.....then yes, call me negative. You make your "around the west side drive" sound like no big deal.....well, I haven't driven that drive, but having seen it quite up close from a low flying helicopter, I can tell you it wasn't wise, in my humble opinion.

I'm glad you had fun and can tell you now I think Maui is a wonderful destination with kids!!! I would have loved to spend our vacations there, but we visited grandparents on the west coast. So many beach parks and parks to explore. Just swimming in a pool with toddlers is a blast. That's great you have a kiddo that was patient with so much time spent in the car. Lol....my 24 year old son would have been less patient with some of your drives. But then again he no longer naps.

Thanks for the trip report and sorry you felt this forum was negative towards traveling with kids. I go to great lengths to suggest memories made playing on beaches are special. Deb

Destination Expert
for Maui
Level Contributor
11,590 posts
47 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Trip report Oct 13-20 with 22 mo toddler

I don't think people are negative about kids on here either. A lot of us have kids at different stages. I think we are realistic about what kids can handle in our recommendations and what is fun for them. The only issue I have is when parents ignore the crying/tantrums and I and others have to listen to it. I never allowed my kids to act out in public and it seems like that can be the norm sometimes. I also couldn't recommend doing the north road that is very dangerous or the south road where if something goes wrong, you may be in trouble for awhile. Especially with a little one. It does sound like you had fun though and that is good. Thank you for posting what worked for you.

Nanaimo, Canada
Level Contributor
23,421 posts
82 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Trip report Oct 13-20 with 22 mo toddler

You obviously never got to read this report before your trip!


Glad you were able to have a good time!

Level Contributor
34,509 posts
890 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Trip report Oct 13-20 with 22 mo toddler

Sounds like you made some very nice memories. I enjoyed reading about your time on Maui! :).

Milwaukie, Oregon
Level Contributor
3,958 posts
22 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Trip report Oct 13-20 with 22 mo toddler

Thanks for your report. Glad that you had a lot of beach time between your long drives.

I like the way the kids pool area is off to one side of the Wailea Marriott property so there is still plenty of serene space elsewhere on the grounds. The slides and other features are particularly good for younger kids.

Level Contributor
1,222 posts
24 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Trip report Oct 13-20 with 22 mo toddler

We started taking our daughter to the island when she was five or six. (she is 19 now.). The real key for us was to realize that doing all of the 'usual' visitor stuff was just not going to happen and to go with whatever worked....be flexible.

When she came down with a cold on the first day of a two week trip, we had to toss all the beach activities out. We opted to ride the Sugar Cane Train, never an item on our list. We went to the park and played on the grass and returned the next day for the swings and slides. We just took the time to hang out...we were on vacation!

It was challenging for sure and a little frustrating....somehow it worked out! Glad you had a good trip and here's to many more.

Philadelphia, PA
Level Contributor
4,094 posts
8 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Trip report Oct 13-20 with 22 mo toddler

So did you buy a ukulele? :)