Of all the Hawaiian islands, Maui seems to be the easiest to get to, especially from California. And it’s very family friendly too, for a number of reasons. I have had the good fortune to travel there a handful of times through the years, and even though it’s a small island, on each visit we explored something new, whether it was the spectacular volcanic monolith of ‘Iao Needle or the rarely traveled rugged north shore of West Maui.

'Iao Valley State Park

On our last two trips, what made our vacation especially fantastic were the affordable beachfront condos we were able to rent right on the sand in beautiful Napili Bay. Just south of Kapalua (known for its fantastic golf course), Napili is a breath of fresh air. With a white sand beach and excellent swimming and snorkeling, it is dotted with unintrusive, low-rise condos in a relaxing family environment. 

We were ecstatic to discover the Napili Bay Condos a few years ago, and while they aren’t new, and aren’t luxurious, they are clean and comfortable and offer one of the best beachfront locations I have seen on all of Maui. Last time we stayed in a second story oceanfront unit for $140 a night! We have also stayed in the complex for as low as $100/night, in a ground floor room with a less desirable view. Hot tip: you can find last-minute deals for Napili Bay condos on VRBO.com.

With its tranquil tourmaline bay and vistas over to the island of Lanai, Napili is a place we’ll be sure to visit again. Each unit we’ve stayed in has accommodated four, with a queen sized bed and two twin beds or trundles — all in a cozy studio-type room with complete kitchen, a bathroom and patio or balcony. Check out the spectacular balcony view we enjoyed on our last trip:

View from our $140/night Napili Bay Condo balcony -- priceless!