This is a tough one. Kihei isn’t exactly a walkable town–sidewalks are rare and portions of South Kihei Road more closely resemble a street racing course than a local thoroughfare–and it’s pretty much the best definition of “urban sprawl” I’ve yet found in Hawaii. Indeed, much of the South Maui coast is hidden from view behind rows of Kihei condominiums. And yet, so many people are moving to Kihei that land developers are preparing to put up thousands of new homes and some of the largest outlet malls in the state. The reasons, as far as I can tell, are simple: the sun shines pretty much year round in Kihei, the water (at least in the south portion of the town) is clear and clean and the place is home to many of the island’s best bars and nightclubs. Kihei, for all of its problems, is actually a fun place to live.
Photo: Forest & Kim Starr/Wikimedia Commons