When thinking of the Hawaiian islands, the most popular fruit to come to mind is usually the pineapple, but at the Maui Dragon Fruit Farm the dragon fruit is taking over the island of Maui as a healthy, sweet treat. Located in Lahaina on 27 acres of lush land, the farm gives guests the opportunity to not only taste the delectable fruit and learn of the history of the fruit, but also participate in the most fun activities of zip lining and aquaball, as it is the official location of Paradise Eco Tours. Whether taking a tour through the scenic landscape of growing fruit or tumbling down the hill hamster style in a giant ball, the Maui Dragon Fruit Farm is an experience for the entire family!
Dragon fruit is native to South and Central America, where it is known as “pitahaya”. Growing best in tropical and subtropical regions around the world, most of the varieties are currently grown in Vietnam, Thailand and South China. With production across the globe growing it has begun to be grown in Micronesia, the Philipines, Israel and Australia. Dragon fruit is a member of the cactus family and is known as a super fruit. The taste being similar to a watermelon mixed with a kiwi, the taste goes from sweet to tart as it is eaten.
The plant produces creamy white flowers, with a thick three sided stem and a purple or white flesh covered in an easy to remove peel. Dragon fruit is known to be rich in fiber, antioxidants, and vitamins, making it a nutritious fruit. It can prevent colon cancer and diabetes, neutralizes toxic substances and reduces cholesterol, high blood pressure and bleeding. Dragon fruit is also said to promote good dental healthy by developing strong teeth as well as bones and skin.
As part of the tour of the Maui Dragon Fruit Farm, guests are shown the entire growth process from seedling to eating! A fascinating process, unique as the fruit itself, the plant vines produce a bud which is tied and connected to the moon cycles. As the bud matures into a flower over the course of 10 to 14 days, it blooms for only one night, from late afternoon to early morning, being fully open by around 10pm. Fruit emerges as the flower dries up, once it has been pollinated, and the base begins to sweet as the petals dry up. Fruit grows and matures to ripeness after about 30 days, ready to pick when the skin color is vibrant.
The one hour tour guided by expert staff will show off the 16 varieties of dragon fruit grown on the farm as well as the other fruits grown on property along with tropical flowers. Surrounded by views of the ocean and mountain walls, visitors will be educated on Maui’s agricultural history, Hawaiian plant life, the farm’s founding story and all of the benefits behind consuming the fruits. Depending on the season, the tasting piece of the tour may feature the dragon fruit, which grows primarily from July to November, pineapples, bananas, starfruit, guava, lilikoi, mango, avocado and many more other varieties of fresh grown produce, as well as products made from the farm ingredients.
In addition to the farm tour, at this West Maui property guests may also choose to visit the Maui Mountain Café, known for the chilled organic dragon fruit lemonade and nestled in complete panoramic ocean views. The café honors the traditions of “Aloha Aina”, meaning island love, in both cooking practices as well as sources of ingredients. Or for a more adventurous experience, take a zip down the 450 foot zip line over the farm’s crops and landscape. The aqua ball adventure sends guests zooming down a 500 foot stretch of course in a plastic bubble shaped ball. With so many possibilities, its hard to choose just one!
The Maui Dragon Fruit Farm, USDA certified organic, offers a wonderous day to any and all visitors of all ages. From witnessing the special growth pattern of the tasty fruits to becoming a human hamster in an aqua ball, or flying through the sky above the island. Its no wonder the farm has four plus stars across Google, TripAdvisor, Facebook and Yelp. A beautiful scene to host a wedding or an event, the farm remains close and loyal to the community and the whole island of Maui. Go Rent A Car Maui has vans, trucks, suv’s and sedans prepared to take you straight to the best dragon fruit around!