Pa'ia: Artistic Oasis, Ocean Paradise
Whether you’re visiting Pa’ia on vacation, or if you’re headed to Maui’s North Shore for the 2016 8th Annual OluKai Ho’olaule’a
, you’re in for a big treat!
Just eight miles Northeast from the Kahului Airport sit’s Maui’s #1 favorite beach town, Pa’ia. This historic Maui town has so much aloha flavor exuding from it, you won’t know where to start. As the main hub of the North Shore, Pa’ia is where the community gets together for shopping, dining, bar hopping, dancing, experiencing local culture, perusing art galleries, and otherwise enjoying all Maui life has to offer.
Counter Culture History
Like other beach towns throughout the Hawaiian Islands, Pa’ia has a rich history in Hawaii’s plantation past, with a retired sugar plantation, historic buildings and storefronts. After San Francisco’s "Summer of Love" of 1969, many counter culture-loving hippies migrated to Maui’s North Shore to find gorgeous beaches, and a perfect place to settle down. At that time, Pa’ia was mostly just a local community of plantation workers and their families. Once the hippies came in, Pa’ia started to see unique galleries and cafe’s opening up as the community started its first major transition into being the bohemian like town it is today.
As surfing and windsurfing began to grow in popularity during the 80s, Pa’ia started to see another influx of new residents. This time it was an international crowd of water athletes that started to flood towards Maui’s North Shore, in quest for the best waves and wind conditions at the infamous Ho’okipa Beach Park.
How to Visit
When in Pa’ia, make sure to check out the Pa’ia Stupa, blessed by His Holiness the Dalai Lama in 2007. You’ll love all the fun things to do in Pa’ia and can easily check out a yoga or dance class at the Maui Yoga Shala, or book an amazing lomi lomi
massage at North Shore Chiropractic & Massage. All visitors should enjoy a meal at Cafe Des Amis, and afternoon cocktails at Milagros (the Lilikoi
Margarita is amazing). Shop for locally-made arts and crafts at Maui Hands, be amazed with all the cool local photography at the Cesere Brothers Gallery, and make sure to do a loop through town to check out all of the locally owned boutiques and surf shops.
Make sure to cruise by Simmer Style for all your men’s and women’s apparel and gift needs. This Maui surf boutique has deep roots on Maui’s North Shore, and it all began when brothers, Klaus and Malta Simmer, began to make windsurf sails in 1981. In 1996, Simmer Style opened its flagship store in Pa’ia, and for over 20 years it has remained as the best surf boutique on Maui. World renowned as a hardcore windsurf shop, Simmer is also the place to go for casually elegant beach lifestyle clothing and accessories. In fact, Simmer is one of the first retailers in the world to carry the OluKai brand, local promoters of the 8th Annual OluKai Ho’olaule’a, and are the exclusive dealer for OluKai footwear on Maui’s North Shore. If you’re searching for a big selection of OluKai on Maui, check out Simmer Style at 137 Hana Highway.
Pa’ia has always been a popular place in Hawaii for visitors and residents, and now the community is pretty much a smorgasbord of people from diverse backgrounds: native Hawaiians, locals, people of various European countries, South American’s, Canadians, and of course, transient ‘mainlanders.’ When exploring Pa’ia and the North Shore, don’t forget to visit Baldwin Beach and Ho’okipa Beach Park. These are two of the most beautiful beaches in all of Hawaii, and you won’t want to miss out on a chance to see all the North Shore water women and men while they’re doing there thing on ocean playgrounds.