Maui Christmas 2019 – Special Holiday Events & Things to Do

This page shows events for Christmas 2019. It will be updated in November and December for Christmas 2020. Subscribe to our free updates to be notified when this page is fully updated.

In the meantime, take a look at the events from this past Christmas to get an idea of what will likely be offered again this coming Christmas.

maui christmas activites

Planning to spend this Christmas holiday on Maui? You’ll find the island decked out in lights, ornaments and Christmas cheer. Maui really knows how to celebrate the holidays with warmth and Aloha.

As you’re making your Christmas vacation plans, we want to give you some fun and meaningful ideas to celebrate the holiday season with Maui-style. Here are our suggestions for the top things to do for Maui Christmas 2019:

1.  See Lahaina’s famous banyan tree wrapped in Christmas lights
IMPORTANT UPDATE: The lighting of the tree has been significantly delayed this year due to issues with permits. If all goes well, the tree will be lit on December 19.

The sprawling banyan tree will be wrapped in thousands of Christmas lights. Where else but in Maui will you find such a sight as this one? The banyan tree is located off Front Street in Lahaina town. For parking near the banyan tree, we recommend the free parking lot off of Prison Street. The tree will be lit nightly throughout the holiday season.

2.  Shopping
Christmastime is a special time to shop in Maui. Consider buying locally made crafts and artwork for gifts. Where are unique places to shop on Maui? Lahaina’s Front Street and side streets have lots of shops. We also like Whalers Village in Kaanapali and the Shops at Wailea in Wailea. For other Maui shopping experiences, check out the shops in Paia. If you want to experience a cooler climate, go upcountry to the paniolo (Hawaiian cowboy) town of Makawao where you can browse through unique shops and visit the Hui No’eau Visual Arts Center. If you’re looking for the big box stores, you can find them in Kahului.

Here are special Christmas entertainment and events at Maui shopping centers.

  • The Shops at Wailea will host visits from Santa daily and special holiday musical entertainment as follows:
    • Santa visits daily from 1:00 to 7:00pm daily  through December 19. He then extends his visits to 11:00am to 8:00 pm from December 20 through Christmas Eve.
    • The Festival of the Harps on December 8, 14 and 21 from 5:30 to 7:00pm
    • Bonnie Newman leads sing-along caroling, “Joyful Hearts”, on Sunday, December 15 at 5:30 to 7:00pm
    • Valley Isle Quartet will perform on December 22 from 5:30 to 7:00pm
    • See this calendar for the full schedule of December events.
  • Lahaina Cannery Mall hosts special holiday Ukulele performances with Maui Music Mission on December 18, 19, 20, 21, 23 and 24 from 3:30pm to 5pm.
  • Outlets of Maui will host Christmas carolers on December 22 from 5:00 to 7:00pm.
  • Whalers Village hosts a hula show on Sunday, December 22 at noon in their lower courtyard.
  • Maui Sunday Market at Kahului Shopping Center – special holiday events TBD.

3.  Attend a Christmas Eve Church Service
When you arrive on Maui, pick up a copy of the Maui News as Christmas Eve approaches. They’ll have more information about church services across Maui. In the meantime, here’s what’s caught our eye so for Christmas Eve services on Tuesday, December 24th:

  • Maria Lanakila Catholic Church in Lahaina is holding Christmas Eve and Christmas Day mass.
  • Sacred Hearts Catholic Church in Kapalua is holding Christmas Eve and Christmas Day mass.
  • Seaside Chapel on the grounds of the Grand Wailea resort will host Christmas Eve services at 10pm. (Christmas Day services will be held at 10am.)
  • Hope Chapel in Kihei welcomes visitors for Christmas Eve Candlelight service with multiple service times at 4:00pm, 6:00pm and 8:00pm.
  • Keawala’i Congregational Church in Makena (South Maui) holds an outdoor Christmas Eve Candlelight Service at 6:30pm. In addition to the service, they present two outdoor floral Christmas trees and visitors are invited to bring a flower or lei to decorate the tree.
  • Kumulani Chapel in Kapalua holds two candlelight Christmas Eve services at 5pm and 7pm.
  • Ask your concierge and/or check the Maui News for more Christmas Eve and religious services.

4.  See Santa Claus as he visits Maui
Santa will be making a few quick visits to Maui before heading back to the North Pole to load up his sleigh. The following venues are hosting Santa’s arrival. (As a way to say mahalo to these businesses, we suggest purchasing a meal, drink, etc. during your visit.)

  • On December 20th, Santa arrives on Kaanapali Beach in front of Hula Grill at about 3:30pm. See this link for more information.
  • On Christmas Eve, Santa arrives by outrigger canoe around 9am at Wailea Beach in front of the Grand Wailea. He will then be available for photos on the Chapel Lawn. This event is free and open to the public.
  • On Christmas Eve, Santa and Mrs. Claus make a grand appearance via outrigger canoe at noon on Polo Beach in front of the Fairmont Kea Lani. See this link for more information. This event is free and open to the public.

5.  Enjoy a Christmas feast
Many resorts across Maui will offer scrumptious multi-course dinners and/or buffets with menus specially designed for the holidays. Most hotel-based restaurants will be open.  Check directly with your hotel for details. One quick source to search for restaurant availability online is via OpenTable. (Make sure you customize the search criteria.) I recommend you make reservations as soon as possible.

6. Take a train ride on the Holiday Express
Maui’s Sugar Cane Train becomes the Holiday Express for a festive ride that kids will love.  Enjoy Christmas lights, milk and cookies and a visit from Santa Claus! See this link for more information and tickets.

7.  Catch the Aloha Christmas Parade in Lahaina
The fourth annual Aloha Christmas Parade is set to take place on Saturday, December 21 at 10am. The parade route will run down Front Street in Lahaina.

We recommend you speak to your hotel’s concierge for more options that will be held onsite or nearby your accommodation.  Also, pick up a copy of the Maui News when you are on island for additional restaurants and holiday activity suggestions.

We hope you’ll have a wonderful Christmastime on Maui. While you’re there, make sure you know how to wish someone a Merry Christmas in the Hawaiian language.

If you’ll be staying on Maui through New Year’s Eve, check out our guide for Maui New Year’s celebrations.

  1. Bringing mom and dad to Maui for the first time and staying at Papakea.
    Where’s the best or closest place to take my four-year-old nephew to see Santa?
    What are some activities we should consider for my parents who are in their late 60s?
    What restaurants are close by for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day meals?
    Thank you!!!

  2. This year we have so many wide-eyed keiki added to our family over the past 3 years and they are the perfect age to take a drive by a street of holiday lights… but whea? We’re in Wailuku.

    1. Maybe see the lights on the big banyan tree in Lahaina. From what we’ve seen, the Grand Wailea has a lot of lights at the entrance that you could drive past. Hope that helps a little.

  3. Bringing my family to Maui fir Christmas….3 teens, dad, mom me(Grama). Where is a great place for Christmas Day meal? I would like to make reservations. Also, Christmas Eve church service? Other Christmas activities you might suggest. Thank you

    1. We won’t have this post updated until December. In the meantime, review what’s listed for an idea of what will likely happen again this coming Christmas.

  4. Don’t forget
    Keawalai’i congregational church candlelight service. One not to be missed. In the old church by the ocean in Makenna

  5. I’m looking for a nice show and/or dinner on December 24th. Is it more quiet that day on Maui or are there things going on? If so, which events can you recommend? Mahalo

    1. Some luaus operate on Christmas Eve. Here’s a list of luaus on Maui: Please consider that luaus often change dates, times, pricing, etc and we’ve not updated that list is a while. The links should all still be active for further investigation, checking availability, pricing, etc.

      Also, if you are staying in a hotel, check to see what they might be offering. Ask your concierge for their advice.

  6. Don’t forget holiday shopping at Ma’alaea! There you’ll find local retail stores as well as Pacific Whale Foundation’s retail store. Pacific Whale Foundation’s store has all kind of gift giving options, from apparel, to household to specialty foods. Many of the items are eco-friendly and/or made on Maui or in the Islands. Biggest benefit of shopping there is that all of the profits go back into research and education for protecting our marine animals and environment! Shopping to make a difference!

  7. We are planning to be on Maui for Christmas 2020. We are seniors, our daughter and son-in-law, and three teenagers. Our daughter worked at the grand Wailea during their opening years

  8. Coming to Maui to Celebrate Christmas 2020.
    Where can we have a nice Christmas lunch or dinner to celebrate the holiday ? How soon can we make the reservation ? Any concerts , parades or nay events scheduled ? We
    are close to Lahaina , Napili and Kaanapali.
    What activities are available ?

    1. Due to COVID-19, most hotels and many restaurants are closed right now. So, it’s far too soon to even guess what’s going to happen in Maui for Christmas 2020. Additionally, the islands are not even open for tourism without first quarantining for 14 days at the moment.

      Venues don’t typically announce what they’re going to offer until November or December. Subscribe to our free newsfeed to be in the know when we release the new holiday events.

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