Hey there! Are you planning a trip to Ka’anapali, Maui in 2024? Well, we’ve got you covered with the top 5 things to do in this beautiful town. In this video by Hawaii Walking Tours, you’ll get a chance to swim with sea turtles, check out the renowned Kaanapali Golf Course, explore Whaler’s Village, and witness the Torch Lighting Ceremony that has been a tradition since 1963. And if that’s not enough, you’ll also get to enjoy the breathtaking Ka’anapali sunset. So sit back, relax, and get ready to discover the best of Ka’anapali Maui with us!

Aloha everyone! Welcome to the stunning Kopali Beach in Maui, where history and fun activities collide. Named America’s best beach, Kopali has something for everyone. From snorkeling with sea turtles to enjoying the majestic West Maui sunset, this beach is sure to captivate you. Located on the west side of Maui, Kopali is easily accessible and offers two sections – the South with popular resorts and Whaler’s Village, and the more serene North. Get ready for snorkeling at Black Rock, swimming at Canoe Beach, and even cliff jumping. Don’t forget to visit Whaler’s Village for shopping and dining experiences. And if you’re a golf enthusiast, Kopali Golf Course is a must-visit with its scenic championship golf courses. Last but not least, don’t miss the torch lighting ceremony at sunset, a beautiful tradition that pays homage to Maui’s last chief. So come on over and enjoy the best of Kopali Beach, where unforgettable moments await.

Black Rock


One of the top activities to do at Black Rock in Ka’anapali is snorkeling. The area offers several amazing snorkeling sites, with the most popular being Black Rock itself. Here, you can swim with the Hawaiian green sea turtles and admire the coral fish and other marine life. The crystal-clear waters provide excellent visibility, making it a paradise for snorkelers. Don’t forget your snorkeling gear and get ready for an unforgettable underwater adventure!

Cliff Jumping

For those seeking even more adventure at Black Rock, cliff jumping is a popular activity. This thrilling activity allows you to jump off the rock into the ocean waters below. It’s an adrenaline-pumping experience that offers a unique perspective of the coastline. Before attempting any cliff jumps, make sure to assess the conditions and take safety precautions. It’s important to exercise caution and follow proper jumping techniques to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience.

Torch Lighting Ceremony

One of the must-see events at Black Rock is the Torch Lighting Ceremony. This tradition has been going on since 1963 and is a nightly ceremony that honors the legend of Chief Kahak. Chief Kahak, the last chief of Maui, proved his spiritual strength by leaping from the sacred Black Rock into the ocean. The ceremony begins just before sunset, with a cliff diver lighting torches along the way to the top of the rock. Once at the top, the diver offers his torch and a flower lei to the sea below before diving into the water. This spectacular show can be watched for free from the Sheron Maui Resort or anywhere along the north end of Ka’anapali Beach. It’s a must-see event that immerses you in the rich cultural heritage of Maui.

Sea Turtles

Snorkeling at Black Rock

As mentioned earlier, Black Rock is a prime snorkeling spot where you can swim with the Hawaiian green sea turtles. These gentle creatures are a highlight of any snorkeling adventure at Black Rock. They can often be seen gracefully swimming through the turquoise waters, creating truly memorable and awe-inspiring moments. Keep in mind that it’s important to respect the sea turtles and their natural habitat. Maintain a safe distance and avoid any attempts to touch or disturb them.

Snorkeling at Canoe Beach

Another fantastic snorkeling spot near Ka’anapali is Canoe Beach. This beach park is located at the southern tip of Ka’anapali and offers excellent opportunities for snorkeling. Like Black Rock, Canoe Beach is frequented by sea turtles and other marine life. The clear waters and vibrant coral reefs make it a haven for underwater exploration. Be sure to bring your snorkeling gear and take in the stunning sights beneath the surface.


Kaanapali Golf Course

For golf enthusiasts, Ka’anapali Golf Course is a must-visit destination. This world-renowned golf course offers two scenic championship courses: the Royal Course and the Kai Course. Each course features 18 holes, a driving range, a pro shop, and professional golf lessons. Whether you’re a seasoned golfer or a beginner looking to improve your skills, the Ka’anapali Golf Course has something to offer. The beautiful landscapes, challenging fairways, and breathtaking views make it the perfect setting for a memorable golfing experience.

Golf Lessons

If you’re new to golf or looking to refine your skills, the Ka’anapali Golf Course offers professional golf lessons. Experienced instructors will guide you through the fundamentals of the game and provide personalized tips and techniques to help you improve your swing. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced player, taking a golf lesson at Ka’anapali Golf Course is a great way to enhance your golfing abilities while enjoying the stunning surroundings.


Located near the entrance of the Ka’anapali Resort area, the Ka’anapali Golf Clubhouse serves as the main facility for the golf courses. It provides a welcoming and comfortable space for golfers to check-in, rent equipment, browse merchandise, and relax after a round of golf. The clubhouse also features Roy’s Restaurant, where you can enjoy a delicious meal or drink while overlooking the picturesque golf course. It’s the perfect place to unwind and soak up the true essence of the Ka’anapali golfing experience.

Kaanapali Maui 2024 Top 5 Things To Do - Black Rock, Sea Turtles, Golf, Torch Lighting Ceremony

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Whaler’s Village


Whaler’s Village is a popular outdoor shopping mall in Ka’anapali. It offers a wide range of shops, boutiques, and specialty stores, providing an excellent shopping experience for visitors. Whether you’re looking for unique souvenirs, trendy fashion items, or Hawaiian-themed gifts, Whaler’s Village has it all. Stroll along the charming walkways, explore the various stores, and find the perfect memento to take home with you.


In addition to shopping, Whaler’s Village is home to a diverse selection of restaurants. From casual dining to fine dining, there are options to suit every taste bud. Enjoy delicious Hawaiian cuisine, fresh seafood, international dishes, and more. Whether you’re looking for a quick bite or a leisurely meal, Whaler’s Village has a restaurant that will satisfy your cravings. Take a break from your activities, relax, and indulge in the culinary delights of Ka’anapali.

Free Activities

Whaler’s Village also offers a host of free activities for visitors to enjoy. From ukulele lessons to movie nights, there’s always something happening at this vibrant shopping center. Immerse yourself in Hawaiian culture by participating in a traditional ukulele lesson, where you can learn to play this iconic instrument. Catch a movie under the stars and enjoy a family-friendly evening of entertainment. Whaler’s Village is more than just a shopping destination; it’s a hub of free activities that add extra value to your Ka’anapali experience.

Torch Lighting Ceremony


The Torch Lighting Ceremony at Black Rock is a beloved tradition that has been celebrated since 1963. This nightly ceremony pays homage to the legend of Chief Kahak, the last chief of Maui. Chief Kahak showcased his spiritual strength by leaping from the sacred Black Rock into the ocean. The ceremony serves as a reminder of his bravery and connects present-day visitors to the rich cultural heritage of Maui. It is a testament to the island’s reverence for its history and traditions.

Legend of Chief Kahak

According to the legend, Chief Kahak possessed supernatural abilities and was known for his incredible leaps from Black Rock. He was regarded as a guardian of the island and was highly respected by the local community. His leaps into the ocean symbolized his spiritual strength and connection to the natural elements of Maui. The Torch Lighting Ceremony commemorates his legacy and immerses spectators in the captivating story of Chief Kahak.

Ceremony Details

The Torch Lighting Ceremony begins just before sunset. A cliff diver lights torches along the way to the top of Black Rock, creating a mesmerizing path of light. Once at the top, the diver offers his torch and a flower lei to the sea below, honoring Chief Kahak’s legendary leap. The diver then plunges into the water, creating a captivating spectacle.

Spectators can watch this incredible show for free from the Sheron Maui Resort or anywhere along the north end of Ka’anapali Beach. As the sun sets and the torches illuminate the surrounding darkness, the Torch Lighting Ceremony creates a magical ambiance that is truly unforgettable.

Kaanapali Sunset

Best Viewing Spots

Witnessing a Ka’anapali sunset is an experience that should not be missed. The stunning colors painting the sky as the sun dips below the horizon make for a breathtaking spectacle. There are several prime locations for viewing the sunset in Ka’anapali. Whether you choose to watch from the beach or opt for a boat tour, you’re in for a visual feast. Some popular spots for sunset viewing include the beach itself, restaurants with oceanfront seating, and scenic overlooks. Find a comfortable spot, sit back, and let the beauty of a Ka’anapali sunset envelop you.

Boat Tours

For a unique perspective of the Ka’anapali sunset, consider taking a boat tour. Many tour operators offer sunset cruises that allow you to enjoy the colorful display from the water. You’ll have the opportunity to see the sun setting over the ocean while enjoying the gentle breeze and panoramic views. These tours often provide additional amenities such as dinner, drinks, and live entertainment to enhance the experience. Whether it’s a romantic outing or a fun group activity, a boat tour during sunset is a memorable way to cap off your day in Ka’anapali.


West Side of Maui

Ka’anapali is located on the west side of Maui, making it easily accessible to travelers. The area is less than an hour away from Kahului Airport, the main airport serving Maui. Whether you’re arriving from another Hawaiian island or flying in internationally, reaching Ka’anapali is convenient and hassle-free. The west side of Maui offers a plethora of activities, attractions, and natural beauty, making it a popular destination for visitors seeking a memorable Hawaiian vacation.

Near Kahului Airport

As mentioned earlier, Ka’anapali is located within close proximity to Kahului Airport. This airport services domestic and international flights, making it a major gateway to Maui. Upon arrival at Kahului Airport, visitors can easily make their way to Ka’anapali in under an hour, either by rental car, private transportation, or shuttle service. The short distance between the airport and Ka’anapali ensures that you’ll be on the beach and enjoying the sights and sounds of the town in no time.

Near Kapalua Airport

In addition to Kahului Airport, Ka’anapali is also near the smaller Kapalua Airport. This airport primarily serves flights between Maui and other Hawaiian islands. If you’re planning to visit Ka’anapali from a neighboring island, flying into Kapalua Airport might be a convenient option. The airport’s close proximity to Ka’anapali means less travel time between your arrival and your desired destination. Whether you choose to fly into Kahului or Kapalua, both airports offer easy access to the paradise of Ka’anapali.

South Beach

Sharon Resorts

To the south of Black Rock, you’ll find the Sharon Resorts, which are popular accommodations in Ka’anapali. These large, well-known resorts offer a range of amenities and services that cater to guests seeking relaxation and luxury. From pristine pools to beachfront access, the Sharon Resorts provide a unique and immersive experience. Enjoy the convenience of world-class dining, spa treatments, and recreational activities all within reach. Staying at one of the Sharon Resorts ensures a memorable and indulgent vacation in Ka’anapali.

Popular Resorts

Apart from the Sharon Resorts, Ka’anapali is home to a variety of other popular resorts. These resorts vary in size and style, providing options to suit different preferences and budgets. Whether you’re looking for a family-friendly resort with ample activities or a tranquil retreat with a focus on wellness, you’ll find it in Ka’anapali. The resorts offer an array of amenities, such as swimming pools, private beaches, on-site dining, and spa facilities, ensuring a comfortable and enjoyable stay for all visitors.

Whaler’s Village

Located in the vicinity of the popular resorts, Whaler’s Village is a hub of activity in Ka’anapali. This outdoor shopping mall is situated on the beach and offers a diverse selection of shops, boutiques, and restaurants. After a day of lounging by the pool or exploring the area, Whaler’s Village provides the perfect opportunity to unwind and indulge in some retail therapy or savor a delicious meal. With its central location and vibrant atmosphere, Whaler’s Village is a must-visit destination in Ka’anapali.

North Beach


To the north of Black Rock, you’ll find a bit more peace and tranquility compared to the bustling activity near the Sharon Resorts. The north beach of Ka’anapali offers a serene and laid-back atmosphere, making it an ideal spot for relaxation and unwinding. Whether you’re looking to escape the crowds or simply enjoy a peaceful walk along the shore, the north beach provides a welcome respite from the hustle and bustle of daily life.


In addition to its peaceful ambiance, the north beach of Ka’anapali is renowned for its natural beauty. The pristine coastline, framed by lush greenery and swaying palm trees, creates a picture-perfect setting. Immerse yourself in the beauty of this secluded paradise as you take in the breathtaking views of the turquoise waters and golden sands. The north beach showcases the untouched and unspoiled beauty of Ka’anapali, creating a memorable experience for all who visit.

Torch Lighting Ceremony Viewing

For those seeking an incredible vantage point to witness the Torch Lighting Ceremony, the north beach is an excellent choice. From this side, you can enjoy an unobstructed view of the ceremony as it unfolds. Whether you’re staying at one of the resorts or simply exploring the area, finding a spot along the north beach allows you to be a part of this remarkable tradition. As the cliff diver lights the torches and offers his tribute to the sea, you’ll be captivated by the magical atmosphere created by the Torch Lighting Ceremony.


Ka’anapali in Maui offers an abundance of activities and attractions that cater to all interests and preferences. From snorkeling at Black Rock to exploring Whaler’s Village, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Whether you’re a golf enthusiast looking to tee off at the prestigious Ka’anapali Golf Course or a sunset lover seeking the best viewing spot, Ka’anapali has it all. Immerse yourself in the rich cultural traditions of Maui by attending the Torch Lighting Ceremony or simply bask in the natural beauty of the area’s beaches. No matter what you choose to do in Ka’anapali, you’re guaranteed an unforgettable experience in this picturesque Hawaiian town.