Maui Sailing

This page helps you make several decisions about Maui sailing:

• What type of Sailboat - fast racing yacht or comfortable sailing catamaran?
• Depart from which location - Lahaina, Maalaea or Kaanapali?
• What is the best time to sail - morning, afternoon performance sail, or evening/sunset?
• Sailing only, or combine sailing with other activities - snorkeling, watching whales or dolphins or turtles, champagne and chocolates at sunset?
• Sail to another island - Lanai, Molokini, Molokai?

We have sailed on racing yachts and catamarans, from different locations on Maui, under different weather conditions and at different times of the day - and they have shared one consistent theme - we've always had fun.

Sailing on Maui Racing Yachts

Racing yachts provide a traditional Maui sailing trip. They are built for speed rather than comfort, and speed is what they deliver. You have to hang on when they make a sharp turn, and you may get wet as you race along so close to the surface of the ocean. The Scotch Mist racing yacht out of Lahaina Harbor on Maui was fast and fun.

Two racing yachts berth at Lahaina Harbor:

Pure speed is what the crew delivered on our sunset sail on the Scotch Mist, a 50 foot racing hull which won the 1984 Victoria-Maui International Yacht Race. Their speedy motto - Fast is Fun.

Enjoying a peaceful moment aboard the racing yacht America II out of Lahaina Harbor. On our morning sail on the America II, we were thrilled to sit on the same deck and sail in the same racing hull that had participated in the America's Cup in 1987.

Both of this sailing yachts have been a part of world class racing. Choose their afternoon Performance Sail when winds are highest for a unique sailing experience.

Maui Sailing Cost and Schedule

Expect to pay about $30-$60 for a morning. afternoon, or late afternoon/sunset sail. You can often combine sailing with snorkeling or whale watching.

Maui Sailing Catamarans

Many Maui sailing catamarans are about 50 feet long and carry up to 50 passengers. So you will have more people around you on a catamaran than a racing yacht.

The Kapalua Kai sailing catamaran goes right onto Kaanapali Beach to load and unload passengers. Many catamarans sail out of the harbors at Maalaea and Lahaina. Some catamarans don't bother with deep water harbors - they go right on the shore at Kaanapali Beach for you to board and exit.

Because of their wide double hull structure, sailing catamarans offer smooth sailing compared to racing yachts. The larger size and boarding platforms on cataramarans also makes them a good base for other ocean activities such as snorkeling and scuba diving.

To discover what a Maui sailing catamaran is like:
• Our early morning Dolphin Snorkel Sail on the Gemini sailing catamaran
• Our Snorkel and Whale Watch Sail on the Kapalua Kai sailing catamaran

Best Time of Day to Sail?

Most Maui sailing trips are two hours. The same Maui sailboat will often offer a morning combo activity, an afternoon Performance Sail, and an evening sunset sail.

The time of day you sail can be more important than the sailboat you select because each time offers a unique experience:

Morning sails are usually combined with some other activity such as whale watching or snorkeling. Because there is usually not much wind early in the day, the first part of the trip will be spent motoring rather than sailing because of lack of wind and the need to perform the non-sailing activity. Sailing speeds up as the morning progresses and on the return trip. Morning sails are often discounted because most vacationers don't get up early.

Afternoon trade winds assure faster sailing later in the day. This is the time when many sailing charters often their Performance Sail - the focus is on speed more than anything else.

Sunset sails start fast with the strong afternoon trade winds. When the winds die down, the sailboat generally motors back to the dock.

Maui Sailing Video

The Maui sailing video below is on the America II racing yacht out of Lahaina Harbor.

Click on the PLAY button in the image below to view the video.

Return to Maui Vacation from Maui Sailing

Sailing Maui

Randy Willis on Maui
My Maui Sailing overview

West Maui

Kaanapali Beach

Kaanapali does not have a harbor or dock, so catamarans pull up right on the beach and you wade through a few feet of shallow water to stairs that are dropped from the catamaran.

• The Hula Girl sailing catamaran usually sails to Honolua Bay for snorkeling and scuba.

• Trilogy uses a sloop rigged sailing catamaran for a Kaanapali Snorkel and Sail.

• The luxury catamaran Shangri-La sails private charters for day trips and overnight sails where you can sleep in the cabin.

Lahaina Harbor

• The racing hull Scotch Mist sailboat won the 1984 Victoria-Maui International Yacht Race.

• The ten million dollar America II racing yacht was a contender in the 1987 America's cup.

• Trilogy Excursions offers a Discover Lanai island catamaran sail.

• Trilogy Excursions offers an Ultimate Seafari to Lanai island full day catamaran sail on Saturdays.

• Paragon offers a sailing catamaran full day Lanai performance sail, snorkel and beach picnic.

Maui Sailing Charters

Central Maui

Ma'alaea Harbor

• Trilogy offers a Discover Molokini Island sail and snorkel.

• The sailing catamaran Paragon II has a morning sail and snorkel to Molokini, and an afternoon performance sail and snorkel to Coral Gardens.

• The fifty foot Columbia ocean sailing yacht Cinderella sails private charters - performance sails, sunset sails snorkeling, and whale watching - for up to six guests.

• The fifty seven foot sailing yacht Island Star sails private charters for up to 28 guests, and can sleep up to 10 guests on overnight charters.