Kapalua Car Rentals

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Kapalua, located along the northwest coast about an hour’s drive from the Kahului Airport on the island of Maui, is a prime resort area, nestled at the base of the West Maui mountain range. The shoreline consists of five bays, and three of the best white sand beaches.

This area was originally known as the Honolua Ranch in the 1800’s, growing into the Honolua Plantation, and finally the 23,000 acre Kapalua Resort, home of the Ritz-Carlton Kapalua which was built in 1992. Kapalua Bay was named by the readers of Conde Nast as “Best Beach in the World”, and sits alongside Oneloa Bay and Honokahua Bay, both backing onto the resort. To the north, you can find Mokuleia Bay and Honolua Bay in Honolua, with Napili to the south. Kapalua Beach was previously known as Fleming Beach in the plantation era, named after David Thomas Fleming, the Honolua Plantation manager before the resort was built. He passed away in 1955.

Kapalua has a population of around 500 permanent residents. The weather in this area can be similar to the north shore of Kauai, with tradewinds bringing in showers. These showers can sweep in with the winds, stay short periods of time, and then move on, leaving the area refreshed and sunny for the rest of the day.

In 1987, the small Kapalua Airport was built to the south in Honokowai, which replaced the even smaller Kaanapali Airport. Flights arrive here from the other Hawaiian Islands, using smaller planes, and often suit those who stay on the west side of the island.


Renting a car is a must for traveling around the island of Maui, and even visiting the areas of West Maui, such as Kaanapali and Lahaina. Some visitors prefer to take a taxi, Uber/Lyft or shuttle from the airport, get settled into their accommodations, and just relax on the local beach, and walk to shops and restaurants close by, then rent a vehicle for a few days to traverse the outer areas of the island.

There are Kapalua car rental companies located in the neighbourhood for those days when adventure is calling. Cars can be rented for individual 24 hour periods where needed, to drive the Road to Hana, or experience a sunrise on Haleakala. A cheap rental car in Kapalua will take you anywhere you wish to go – as long as you stay on paved roads and follow the rules of the Kapalua car rental company.

Most visitors will pick up their rental car for Kapalua when they arrive at the Kahului Airport, saving themselves the extra costs of taxis, shuttles etc., allowing for more spontaneous visits to other areas of Maui.

There are Kapalua car rental locations near the airport as well, and sometimes you can find cheaper prices here as these locations are not on airport grounds, so do not charge airport taxes. However, the rates here may be higher as this area is considered a resort destination, and often car rental rates in Kapalua are higher than the Kahului airport rates. This is one of the benefits of having two airport locations on Maui, both having car rental facilities nearby or on airport grounds.

The best way to decide where to pick up your Kapalua car rental, or what type of vehicle to reserve, is to talk to your traveling party and find out what they would like to see and do. Make sure your vehicle will hold all of your passengers and luggage to and from the airport, and possibly a few beach toys during your stay.

Kapalua, Hawaii


Road Distance from Kapalua to Kahului Airport – 33.7 miles
Kapalua is known for having the “Best Beach in the World”
Known for its Eucalyptus, Cook and Norfolk pine trees
Home to more than 100 miles of hiking trails
Pu’u Kukui Preserve is home to 20% of Hawaii’s native plants, and one of the largest private nature reserves in Hawaii.


Kapalua Wine and Food Festival.

- happens each June on the grounds of the Kapalua Resort. This festival started in 1981 and now hosts some of the world’s most elite commeliers, win makers and chefs, offering demonstrations of cooking, wine seminars and tastings. 3500 guests take part in this 4-day Festival.

Snorkeling in Napili Bay

- Green Hawaiian Sea Turtles are one of the sights as this bay - known for some of the best snorkeling on Maui.

Honolua Bay & Marine Preserve

- located off Highway 30, 20 minutes north of Lahaina, you will see a sign for the Marine Conservation District, and the beginning of the protected Honolua area.

Car Rentals in Kapalua FAQs

What is the cheapest way to rent a car in Kapalua?

The best rates are often found farther out from your arrival date. Book your car rental for Kapalua as soon as your flights have been confirmed. Cancelling and rebooking is always free - so you can book early, and hold that rate. If rates get lower closer to your trip, you can easily rebook on our website, and cancel the existing reservation. If rates go up, you already have the best rate locked in, and if they do come down, you can take advantage of rebooking at a lower rate with no penalties.

Should I book my Kapalua rental car before arriving?

If you already have your plans arranged, and wish to rent a car for the entire trip, it is wise to rent in advance. When you arrange your flights, your next step would be to arrange your cheap Kapalua car rental. You then have the added benefit of taking advantage of lower rates that often show up months before you travel. Last minute bookings often cost more, as the car companies anticipate these last minute bookings, and can charge accordingly.

Why should I book my Kapalua rental car through Discount Hawaii Car Rental?

We have very competitive rates with the major car rental companies located at the Kahului Airport, and Kapalua Airport area as well. We offer benefits that can include free extra drivers, and reduced young driver rates with some car companies. Our great staff are available to answer your questions, and help you pick out the right Kapalua rental car for your needs.