Maui’s reputation as a trendy vacation spot gets a little incoherent when you factor in the immense popularity of its Saturday morning Swap Meet. The swap meet has been humming along for 28 years with about 200 vendors. Earlier this year, it made a big leap and moved to a new location on the Kahului Harbor side of Maui Community College.
The new location is a 4.5-acre site with paved pathways, an entrance ramp for people with disabilities and more than twice as much parking as the old Pu`unene Avenue site near the Kahului Post Office.
The swap meet attracts a mix of locals and visitors who have come to expect a festival-like atmosphere and a wide range of goods. Maui-grown produce like vegetables, fresh taro, flowers, ethnic foods, crafts and household items are part of the draw. Good deals on things that would cost more in island shops are another incentive. So is the possibility that somewhere in all that stuff there’s something you’ve been looking for forever.
Motor vehicle access is via the Maui Community College parking lot entrance at Wahinepio Street, across from the Maui Arts & Cultural Center. The Swap Meet opens at 7 a.m. and continues until 1 p.m. Go early if you want to get a sneak preview. But you’re still going to pay 50 cents to get in.