Parasailing is an easy exhilarating way to earn your wings: just strap on a harness attached to a parachute, and a powerboat pulls you up and over the ocean from a launching dock or a boat's platform. Parasailing is limited to West Maui, and "thrill craft"—including parasails—are prohibited in Maui waters during humpback-whale calving season, December 15–May 15.

Lessons and Tours

UFO Parasail. This cheekily named company offers single, tandem, and triple rides at 800 feet ($75) or 1,200 feet ($85). Rides last 8–12 minutes, depending on head count. It's more fun to take the "dip" (when the boat slows down to let the parachute descend slowly in the water). You'll get a little wet, though you'll probably catch more water while on the boat watching the others take flight. Observers are welcome aboard for $35. Trips leave from Kaanapali Beach, which fronts Whalers Village shopping center. No parasailing during whale season. 12 Ulupono St., Lahaina, Hawaii, 96761. 808/661–7836;

West Maui Parasail. Soar at 800 feet above the ocean for a bird's-eye view of Lahaina, or be daring at 1,200 feet for smoother rides and even better views. The captain will be glad to let you experience a "toe dip" or "freefall" if you request it. Hour-long trips departing from Lahaina Harbor and Kaanapali Beach include 8- to 10-minute flights and run from $85 for the 800-foot ride to $95 for the 1,200-foot ride. Observers pay $40 each. No parasailing during whale season. Lahaina Harbor, Slip 15, Lahaina, Hawaii, 96761. 808/661–4060;