Spend a Day in Paia Before the Road to Hana

If you have ever done the Road to Hana in Maui, then you have probably spent some time in the funky town of Paia. This is the city that is most commonly known as the starting point to the Road to Hana, but it is so much more.

Paia is a surfers paradise with a laid back population of just over 2,700 people and is only 55 miles from the town of Hana. This makes it the perfect stop before the picturesque trek to Hana.

We started our Road to Hana adventure with an brief overnight stay at the hip Paia Inn, that we wished lasted longer.

Paia Inn Hotel Maui

The Paia Inn is a trendy boutique hotel with only fifteen rooms. Not only do they serve the best breakfast in town, their backyard is the gorgeous Paia Bay beachfront where you can surf or watch the sunrise. Conde Nast also named them as having one of the World’s Sexiest Hotel Staffs. And it is true. They are all super hot. Maybe I should have skipped the donut this morning. Or for the last six years.

If you travel to Paia, there are two eateries that must be on your bucket list; Flatbread Pizza and Mama’s Fish House.

We hit up the pizza joint for a quick lunch upon arriving into town. There is almost always a wait at Flatbread Pizza and once you eat there you will know why. Their pizza and salads feature the best of local products.

Paia Town

The most popular pie, the Mopsey Kalua Pork, is made with the most tender Kiawe smoked free-range pork shoulder. Add in an organic mango BBQ sauce, along with Maui pineapple and you have found perfection in a pizza.

That same night we went to the overly recommended Mama’s Fish House.

If you want to splurge, paying an average $50 per entree (just the entree…not including drinks, appetizers or dessert), then head over to Mama’s. Though my mama would never charge as much. 

It is totally overpriced, but the breathtaking grounds and open air dining are reason enough to go. And the fish is pretty damn good too.

After dinner we strolled the two-block downtown area peaking into the pricey clothing boutiques. The shops exemplify the lifestyle in Paia; cool, casual and comfortable.

Before heading back to the Inn, we needed a little something sweet and stopped by One Gelato Company for a Sandy Beach Gelato. It is made from peanut butter, sea salt and, my new favorite Hawaiian food, coconut candy. Don’t miss any Sandy Beach in Paia.

Pai Bay Maui

Though this is a town you can see yourself spending many days relaxing in, we are now ready for a memorable Road to Hana adventure. And forgive me, but I will not be missing the super-sexy surfer chicks in abundance. My husband will.

Have you visited the town of Paia? Have you traveled the Road to Hana?

This post was provided in a partnership with Maui Tourism Board and Paia Inn. All opinions my own. This post may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase through my links, I earn a commission that helps to keep this blog running—at no extra cost to you. For more information read my full disclosure.


Maui Bucket List: 40 Best Things To Do on the Top Hawaiian Island
Attend a Hawaiian Luau in Maui
Walk a Black Sand Beach on the Road to Hana
Facing Pineapple Gluttony in Hali’imaile
Swim with Sea Turtles in Olowalu
35 of Maui’s Best Road to Hana Stops for a Fun Driving Tour

20 thoughts on “Spend a Day in Paia Before the Road to Hana”

  1. I am bookmarking this.  I am headed to Maui next year for my best friends wedding!  Definitely gonna try to hit up some of these spots!

  2. Not sure if I'll ever make it to Paia but if and when I do I'll be sure to try some exotic Sandy Beach Gelato.  It doesn't resemble anything I've ever had and  I'm a sucker for amazing sweets, especially if coconut's involved.

  3. Been to Maui twice but haven't done the road to Hana or been to Paia, but I hear the town is amazing and the drive breathtaking.  When we were there in February, we drove the other side of the island.  From Kapalua to Kahului it was the scariest drive I have ever done.  Some great photo opportunities, but a lot of white knuckle driving too.

    • The first time I was in Maui we did the road from Kapalua to the blowhole with was beautiful. But, I did hear that if you go any further it gets pretty scary! We did the entire loop of the Road to Hana and it wasn’t too bad and absolutely stunning!

  4. Even though on our tours we don't stop in Paia.  It's a great place to check out.  Many of us live upcountry and head down to Paia for shopping and grabbing a bite to eat.  We always recommended to all our guests that they come back for an afternoon / evening to check out the town.

  5. We are staying near Paia for our Maui visit which is not the usual for tourists, but glad to know there’s a lot to look forward to there! Thanks for the tips :)

  6. You’re right on about Paia. Don’t forget the Paia Fish Market. We ate there 2 or 3 times and it was fantastic. The shops are adorable, the shaved ice from Ulu’s…ya can’t go wrong.


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I'm Annette.

I’m a goal obsessed mid-lifer, traveler, experience collector, fear crusher, digital marketer and author with big bucket list dreams. Let's Connect!

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