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Maui packing list: 35 Essential items to pack for Hawaii

Stuck on what to bring to Maui? Guest contributor Kyle Kroeger can help you get unstuck. He loves Maui – here’s his guide on how to pack for Hawaii.


So you looked at Oahu, the Big Island, Maui and Kauai – and ultimately settled on Maui for your holiday.

Great choice!

The combination of the Hawaiian sun, picture-perfect beaches and honeymoon-worthy hotels in Maui makes the “Valley Isle” a popular tropical destination for a vacay (and easy to visit for Americans and Canadians).

You’ve even prepared your Maui itinerary.

However, have you drawn up your Maui packing list yet?

If you think you can cram all the things to take to Maui into your suitcase last-minute, you might come to regret that decision later.

Say you forget to take a snorkeling skin or the right footwear. You’ll either be very uncomfortable during your trip (oh, that sunburn smarts!) or waste valuable vacation time shopping for things you need.

Or worse, imagine that you forget you put your phone in your swimsuit pocket – and you dash into the sea. (That almost happened to me once.)

Have I got your attention?

If you’re wondering what to pack for Maui, check out this ultimate list to ensure a hassle-free trip.

Contents: Essential packing list for Maui

Tips for things to pack for Maui:

Packing list: Maui – 35 items you’ll want to take!

Tips for things to pack for Maui

Before I get started on my comprehensive packing list for Maui, you’ll want to keep certain factors in mind when planning your Hawaiian vacation.

Apart from personal needs, things like the weather, the month you travel, vacation duration and your planned activities will all affect what goes on your list of must-haves for your Maui trip.

Consider the weather for the Hawaiian Islands:

The Hawaiian weather doesn’t fluctuate a whole lot throughout the year. Still, it’s better to be safe than sorry when deciding what to bring to Hawaii.

And this may come as a surprise, but one of the important things to know about Hawaii is that it’s not always hot and sunny.

In fact, if you travel to Hawaii during between November and January, you should be prepared for somewhat chilly nights (even though days will mostly be warm). These are Hawaii’s “coolest” months. Pack a thin sweater or jacket for the coolish evenings.

November to March (winter) is also Hawaii’s rainy season, and occasional rains can be expected. So you should be prepared with a light rain jacket, suitable footwear and waterproof protection gear for your valuables.

However, during the summer season (May to October), it can get quite hot during the daytime – pack as many light and comfortable clothes as possible.

No matter when you go, though, you’ll need a high-SPF sunscreen and sun protection gear to avoid sunburn. 

Things to pack for different activities in Maui

What adventures are you going to get up to in Maui?

Are you traveling as a couple and looking for romantic things to do in Maui? Or are you planning adventurous excursions with your family? (Hello waterfall hikes!)

Your planned activities will dictate your Hawaii vacation packing list.

For example, if you’re going snorkeling or scuba diving, essential gear will naturally include a snorkel mask, fins, bathing suits and extensive sun protection.

If you have your own dive gear, you may want to bring that with you too. For diving, you should also have travel insurance with a good scuba policy to ensure you’re properly covered.

Similarly, there are numerous awesome places to hike in Maui. (Check out this top-rated guided hiking tour of Haleakala Crater.) You’ll want proper hiking sandals or shoes so you don’t get blisters or twist an ankle.

Now, if you’re planning a laid-back relaxing vacation with fine dining, ladies will probably want to take some casually chic clothes, jewelry and perhaps some dressy sandals – because it always feels good to dress up a bit, right?

Don’t stress too much about all this, though.

Most of the time, the basic clothing items you’ll need are beachwear and casual clothes. And as for gear, you can always rent snorkel, scuba and fishing equipment.

Pro tip: I suggest you pre-book your outdoor activities for your Hawaiian vacation. Make restaurant reservations well in advance too. Maui is very popular right now – and you risk missing out if you aren’t proactive.

How much luggage to carry? Organize your Hawaii essentials

Remember, you won’t necessarily need everything mentioned here.

But you might find it helpful if you organize items for your Maui packing list according to the following categories:

  • Clothes – Casual wear and some dressier resort clothes
  • Footwear – For the beach, hiking trails and casual wear
  • Beach stuff – Beachwear, beach essentials and sun protection
  • Toiletries
  • Gear for water activities – Waterproof phone case, etc.
  • Other essential stuff – Portable charger, day pack, etc.

I’ve organized the 35 items below according to these categories.

For the plane, be sure to set aside carry-on essentials (like medications, ear plugs, etc.) and pack those in your carry-on luggage.

The ultimate Maui packing list

Okay, ready now to dive into packing for Maui? Let’s get started!

To make things easy for you, everything here can be bought on Amazon.

Prices shown are in US dollars. As an Amazon associate, Sand In My Suitcase earns from qualifying purchases.

Clothes: What to wear in Hawaii

From T-shirts and shorts to a light rain jacket, the following are the essential Hawaii vacation clothes to pack for your trip:

Footwear: Best shoes for Maui

Water shoes for Hawaii? Sandals? Check out what you need here:

Maui packing list: Beach stuff

What to pack for Hawaii for the beach? Here are the must-haves:

Essential toiletries to pack for Hawaii

Don’t forget these toiletries!

What to take to Maui for water activities

When you go to the beach on Maui, you’ll be grateful you packed the following:

Other essential things to pack for Maui

Other Hawaii trip essentials include:

Has this packing list for Hawaii helped you?

Hopefully you feel more prepared for your beach vacation now.

By the way, you’ve probably already figured out that this Maui packing list applies for packing for any Hawaiian island vacation.

Anyway, enjoy your trip. And mahalo for reading this post!

Experience more of Hawaii!

Read our posts on:

Lanai | Rock these 9+ awesome things to do on Lanai. (Get off the grid too!) And if you’re trying to decide which Four Seasons on Lanai is best, don’t worry, they’re both fabulous (but the Sensei resort is more unique).

Kauai | What to do in Kauai? Hike, sail up the Na Pali Coast and go SUP on a river. Also check out Kauai’s beautiful botanical gardens – enchanting! You’ll love all the great places to stay in Kauai too, from grand resorts to a boutique adults-only hotel in Poipu.

Ready to book your trip?

See the following helpful services:

Our Travel Resources Guide | Get airline booking tips. Discover great travel, tour and car rental companies. And find crazy useful trip planning info!

Booking.com | Score a “wow” hotel – or at least a decent one.

GetYourGuide | Check out local guided tours and book tickets to attractions.

Our Travel Shop | Find the best travel gear.

CDC | We follow CDC travel guidelines to see what medications and vaccinations are needed for trips. You can get vaccines at your pharmacy, travel medical clinic or doctor’s office.

Pssst! If you make a booking or purchase through our site, we may earn a small commission (at no cost to you). Thanks!


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What to pack for Hawaii

About the author:

Kyle Kroeger is a travel blogger for his site ViaTravelers. Offering travel tips, hacks and itineraries, this modern travel blog aims to get you out of your comfort zone – and help you have an amazing adventure.