When people travel to Maui, they tend to gravitate right towards the beaches – and who can blame them? The golden sand sparkling in the sun, the crystal blue waters beckoning into the cool of the Pacific—an idyllic day in the tropics—but Maui offers so much more than soft-sanded beaches and time spent splashing around in the water.

Affectionately known as the Valley Isle, Maui is a land of eclectic terrain from the semi-arid south of the island to the deep, lush valleys of the West Maui Mountains. Located at different elevations—and different climate zones—on the slopes of Haleakala are two places that travelers need to break away from the coastal sands to enjoy; two peaceful getaways that show that an island like Maui can be so much more than a surfer’s dream.

Kula Botanical Garden

Protea flowers

Made up of many different forms of plants and exotic wildlife, the Kula Botanical Garden is an 8-acre wonder that’s colorful and serene. On display is a vast collection of indigenous plants that flourish in Hawaii. Others, like the protea flowers, were transplanted from Australia and South Africa to thrive in the temperate climate of Upcountry Maui.

In addition to the plants, Kula Botanical Garden is also home to a sanctuary for the Nene, a native species of goose unique to the islands that has found itself on the endangered list.

Walk the grounds of Kula Botanical Garden either as part of a guided tour, or for those who prefer to explore at their own pace, a self-guided tour, which allows you to stop and read about the plants you see whenever you like.

Sacred Garden of Maliko

Serenity at Sacred Garden of Maliko

Located at a much lower elevation is the Sacred Garden of Maliko. Designed to be a sanctuary and place of healing, it features a 10,000-square-foot greenhouse featuring orchids, medicinal herbs, edible plants, and more.

Outside the greenhouse is an ocean of greenery surrounding man-made formations including the Mother Shrine and two labyrinth walks that invite quiet meditation. A walk through the labyrinth is a journey of self-discovery and self-awareness an opportunity to reflect on life.

 

Many people travel to Maui to relax and get away from their troubles and there is no better place to do this than at one of its beautiful gardens. Get to know the natural side of Maui with time spent at either of these beautiful locations.