Kihei is a city located in Maui County, Hawaii. It covers an area of twelve square miles and has a population of almost sixteen thousand residents. The economy of Kihei hinges on two key areas, tourism and research. There are a number of research facilities which call the city home. These include Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary, DEKALB Genetics Corporation, Monsanto, Air Force Maui Optical and Super Computing observatory, Maui Research and Technology Park, and the Maui High Performance Computing Center.
As of the 2000 census, Kihei had sixty-one hundred households and thirty-eight hundred families. The population density of the city sits at sixteen hundred people per square mile and nine hundred housing units per square mile. The ethnic diversity of the city can be broken down in the following manner: forty-eight percent are caucasian, three quarters of one percent are African Americans, half a percent are Native Americans, twenty-four percent are Asian, eight percent are Pacific Islander and sixteen percent two or more ethnicities. Hispanics make up seven and a half percent of the population. Of the sixty-one hundred households, thirty-two percent had children under the age of eighteen, forty-five percent are married living together, ten percent had females as the head of household with no partner present and thirty-eight percent were non-family members. The median household income in Kihei is $46,200 and the median family income is $50,700. Per Capita income was $21,500.
A popular attraction in the city of Kihei is Haleakala. Haleakala is an enormous shield volcano that makes up about seventy-five percent of the Hawaiian Island of Maui. Its name means “House of the Sun” in traditional Hawaiian, probably because the sun can be seen rising over the eastern portion of the mountain. The depression of the volcano is seven miles across, two miles wide and twenty-six hundred feet deep. It has seen significant volcanic activity over the last few milleniums and as recently as four hundred years ago. This activity has occurred over the southwest and eastern rift zones. These rift zones join together and form an arc that extends from Perouse Bay to Hana. Encompassing the crater is Haleakala National Park. This National State Park is composed up of thirty thousand acres of lush wilderness. Key features of the park include the Summit Area, Wilderness Area and Kipahulu Area.
Other prominent attractions in the city of Kihei include Waimoku Falls, Elleair Maui Golf Club, Palikea Stream, Blue Water Rafting, Maui Eco Tours, Kai Kanani, Pride of Maui, Prodiver Maui, Mike Severns Diving, Maui Dreams Dive Co., Maui Dive Shop, Kelii’s Kayak Tours, Maui Classic Charters, Maui Snorkel Tours, B&B Scuba, Seafire Snorkel Adventures, Boss Frog’s Dive & Surf, South Pacific Kayaks & Outfitters, Dive & Sea Maui, Ed Robinson’s Diving Adventures , Wailea Watersports, Makena Stables, Makena Kayak & Tours, Lani Massage and Spa, The Scuba Shack, Sanctuary Education Center, Kihei Beach Resort, Shaka Divers and Spa Kea Lani. Hotels and restaurants in the city include Da Kitchen, Five Palms Restaurant, Sansei Seafood Restaurant & Sushi Bar, Sarento’s On the Beach, Sea Watch Restaurant, Lulu’s Restaurant, Stella Blues Cafe, Hale Kamaole Condominium, Aston Hotels & Resorts, Sunseeker Hotel-North Kihei, Sugar Beach Resort, Hotel Wailea, Maui Coast Hotel and Grand Wailea Resort Hotel & Spa.