The months of October, November, and December are a fantastic time to visit Maui. The islands tend to be a little less crowded this time of year, with the exception of the holidays of course, as the kids go back to school. In addition to quieter beaches and an easier time making restaurant reservations, there are some great fall Maui events that you may want to plan a vacation around. Take a look below at some of the unique autumn happenings on Maui.
1. Hawaii Food & Wine Festival (October 13 – October 15): This statewide festival has a collection of over one dozen food and wine themed events happening on the various islands in October and early November. On Maui, there is a golf tournament with famous island chef Roy Yamaguchi, a wine sampling event under the stars featuring bold wines from across the world paired with innovative creations from creative chefs, and lastly a “Livin’ La Vita Vino event which will feature Michelin-starred chefs from Italian restaurants and wine from Italy’s most famous regions.
2. Maui Steel Guitar Festival (October 14 - 15): Hawaiian music is made up of some beautiful-sounding string instruments such as the ukulele, slack key guitar, and steel guitar. This two-day event celebrates the sounds of the steel guitar and is free to the public. It will feature master steel guitar players from across the Hawaiian Islands. Performances will be held at both the Shops at Wailea and Queen Kaahumanu Center. Immerse yourself in the sounds of Hawaii and discover new musicians you may not be familiar with.
3. Rocky Horror Picture Show – Live (October 1 – 31): Get in the Halloween spirit by attending a live performance of this cult-classic musical. Just ten performances are planned at the historic Iao Theater located in Wailuku. The small theater that can hold just over 400 attendees has been in operation since 1928 and will no-doubt be sold out for many of the nights. A local legend, Eric Gilliom, who has performed on Broadway and the Grammys, has a starring role in the performance celebrating its 50th anniversary.
4. Kula Pumpkin Patch (October 1 – October 31): Add some color to your vacation condo by picking up a pumpkin at the seasonal pumpkin patch located at Kula Country Farms. Open for the entire month of October, visitors can select their own pumpkin from a variety sizes, colors, and styles. The farm also has fun wooden cutouts and fall decorations that create the perfect backdrop for a family photo. In-between your pumpkin hunting, take a minute or two to admire the stunning views of the Maui valley below you. Drinks, snacks, and food will also be served!
5. Lahaina Front Street Halloween (October 31): Back before COVID, Lahaina often was featured in lists and articles written about the best places to celebrate Halloween in the United States. Lahaina’s main drag, Front Street, would close to vehicles, allowing pedestrians to enjoy events like a children’s parade, outdoor concerts, costume contests, and themed beer gardens. Thousands of visitors and locals would be out in costume to celebrate the festivities long into the night. The town party had a scaled down version in 2022, complete with a children’s costume contest and numerous live performances at Lahaina bars and restaurants. Who knows what fun activities will be planned for 2023!
6. Made in Maui County Festival (November 3 & 4): Celebrating its 10th year, this two-day festival is the premier shopping event of the year when it comes to finding unique local crafts and goods. Over 9,000 attendees flock to the Maui Arts & Cultural Center where 130+ vendors sell items made on Maui, Molokai or Lanai. Talk directly to vendors and support local businesses. Some of Maui’s favorite food trucks and top musicians will also be in attendance.
7. Maui Jim Basketball Invitational (November 20 – 22): Sports fans and passionate college alumni make the pilgrimage to Maui each November to attend college basketball’s most prestigious early-season tournament. The Maui Jim Invitational is celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2023. This year the tournament field of teams includes Chaminade, Gonzaga, Kansas, Marquette, Purdue, Syracuse, Tennessee, and UCLA.
8. Maui Banyan Tree Lighting (Month of December): The Lahaina Banyan Tree takes up a full city block and is stunning to see during the day. Just imagine seeing it at night lit up with thousands of colorful lights! If you are visiting Maui in December, you can experience this beautiful illumination nightly.