The more than century-old banyan tree is the centerpiece of Lāhainā. (©Tor Johnson/Hawaii Tourism Authority)
The most frequently visited spot on the island, Lahaina is the only town in leeward Maui with a genuine downtown. Its primary draw is Front Street, a crowded main drag where a variety of restaurants, shops and hideaway cafes tucked into side streets create a maze of quirky charm. Visit the Old Courthouse, an 1859 structure built from coral that once housed Kamehameha III. The courthouse is shaded by the island’s oldest and biggest banyan tree, planted in 1873 by missionaries. You can see more of these multi-trunked wonders in nearby Banyan Tree Park. Across the street is the Baldwin Home, the island’s oldest structure. Other points of interest include Lahaina Heritage Museum; Hale Paahao (a jail for drunken sailors when the whaling industry was at its peak in the 1850s; now a museum), and the Wo Hing Museum, where visitors can explore the impact of Chinese immigrants on Lahaina.