5 Ways to Spend your Maui Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving on Maui is a very special time of year.

It is very easy to be thankful to be in Hawaii, especially during the winter months! The Humpback whales have returned to our Maui waters by mid November and the winter rains have turned our mountain slopes into lush shades of green that stands out against the incredible blue sky. The north swell is up and the beaches are primed for a day of play. Be thankful and make your turkey-day incredible!

Here are the top five ways you can choose to spend your magical holiday season this year on Maui.

#1 Choose a Thanksgiving Luau

Experience a kalua turkey cookout that is prepared and coated with Hawaiian rock salt, wrapped in taro leaves and wrapped again in banana leaves.  The turkey is then put on top of the hot rocks in the bottom of a rock pit and covered with a burlap sack.  After being covered with dirt it is left to cook underground all day long.  When the cook off is done you get a Thanksgiving turkey that is the most tender and moist bird you’d ever encounter.

#2 Restaurants Serving Thanksgiving Dinner

If you’re on vacation in Maui, or a long time local, there are a lot of restaurant and resort options to choose from. there are a lot of restaurant and resort options to choose from.  Almost every restaurant on the island has a Thanksgiving day special. There are far to many to list but you can check out who is serving what by visiting our blog page ——

 #3 Thanksgiving Day Dinner Cruise

Change up your dinner plans and book a dinner cruise with Pacific Whale Foundation. Enjoy live music, whale watching and of course a Thanksgiving feast while cruising the coastline of Maui. Many of the dinner cruises on Maui have a Thanksgiving day tour so if you have a favorite boat make sure to give them a call.  Chances are they’ll have your turkey on board November 28th.

#4 Pick up Thanksgiving Dinner to Go

Most local grocery stores, including Wholefoods in Kahului, and some of the resorts will package up a full turkey day feast that can be taken to your favorite beach parks around the island. One of the best south Maui beach parks to spread your feast is at Kamaole Beach Park 3 in Kihei.  Also known as “Kam 3” this park has a big lush green lawn area making it perfect for the holiday party and chill’n with the locals. With picnic tables and shade you can’t miss the sunset views over the great Pacific blue.

#5 Cook a Turkey Yourself

Vacationers staying in condos are fully equipped with a kitchen with the basics to prepare an amazing feast. With Maui’s local spices and marinades at your disposal you may end up making a more incredible version of a Hawaiian turkey dinner yourself.  Pick up Hawaiian sweet bread and don’t forget the pineapple before roasting – it can be used as part of your Hawaiian stuffing.

Need a Hawaiian turkey day recipe? Bring Island flavors to your table this holiday season with a Maui style smoked turkey.

  • 1 Twelve pound turkey
  • 16 Large ti or banana leaves
  • 1/3 Cup softened butter or margarine
  • 3 Tablespoons Hawaiian salt
  • 2 Teaspoons liquid smoke

Rinse and drain turkey.   Line a large baking pan with foil.   Wash ti leaves in a sink of cold water with a few drops of dish soap then rinse.   Remove fibrous part of the veins.   Line baking pan with ti leaves radiating from center.   Place two additional ti leaves across the middle of the pan.   Place turkey on the ti leaves.   Rub butter, salt, then liquid smoke on inside and outside of turkey.   Place 4-6 ti leaves over the turkey.   Fold leaves around the turkey.   Crimp foil around turkey and cover pan tightly with additional foil.   Roast in electric oven at 375 degrees F for 6 hours.   Shred turkey and add in pan liquid to moisten meat.   Makes 8-10 servings.