We arrived in Maui to perfect sunny weather! We enjoyed lunch in Lahaina at Cheeseburger in Paradise, with an ocean view and the salty air blowing in our faces. We enjoyed some rockin burgers to boot.
The view during our first lunch in Maui
We took a helicopter tour of the whole island the next day. What an awesome experience! We flew up to the Haleakala crater and were in awe of the Mars-like landscape. We saw the rainforest, bamboo fields, the famous Jurassic Park island and waterfalls, the waves where Jaws was filmed, the road to Hana, the hole of Maui, the ranch and winery of upcountry Maui - it was all amazing. Our pilot Janette was great, her commentary informative and fun. We had the front seats next to the pilot and had a great view, perfect for lots of photos.
Flying above the clouds, approaching the crater
Jurassic Park island – pre-CGI
Jurassic Park waterfall
Beautiful view from the helicopter
We drove to Paia to watch the surfers, windsurfers and kite surfers. This is what I imagined Hawaii would look like and I wasn’t disappointed!
We drove up to the crater – Haleakala National Park and enjoyed a different view (from the ground instead of the air) and it was breathtaking!
The drive up through the clouds.
Eerie but beautiful
Above the clouds now
Taken from the summit
And the drive down through the clouds… :)
A huge Banyan Tree took up 2 acres in a park in Lahaina. Gorgeous.
Oh yes we did.
One of the nights we went to see a magic show called Kupanaha. It was actually pretty good and the comedy was hilarious.
Another night the hotel had a seafood buffet where I learned how to eat crab legs It was quite good – lots to choose from including fish, shrimp, mussels, crab legs, clams and lots of sides, as well as a prime rib carving station and lots of desserts.
The day we took the famous drive to Hana (we took a tour that started at 6:35am and we got back at 5;30pm), we passed through Paia again and I was glad to snap this pic of a line of surfboards (which was pretty typical around the town):
We visited a black sand beach:
And we stopped at another park to visit the Oheo pools – a series of pools that flow into each other via waterfalls – very scenic.
We took a short hike to the pools – we did the Kuloa one.
Photo taken during our hike – the leaves from the trees are huge!!
Me at the pools!
We stopped for a picnic lunch at a flower farm, then stopped by Charles’ Lindbergh’s grave – he was buried in Maui.
Along the drive, we saw lots of wildlife. Only a few roosters here compared to Kauai. We saw lots of cattle; a couple of calves were even running alongside our tour van for a bit. We saw goats as well.
Run Forrest Run!
A tree on the winery grounds – gorgeous!
Because our flight was at 11:40pm, we spent our last day by the ocean (we rented a gazebo for some shade) and lounged all day, reading and whale-watching. We had some really good meals in Maui as well, at Longhi’s (twice), the Hard Rock Café Maui (had to do it), Bubba Gump Shrimp Co (what a fun place – we got to shake our own margaritas! My favourite sign posted in the resto said “Born Free – Now I’m Expensive” lol), Café Mambo in Paia and a local Mediterranean spot near the hotel.
During our whole trip, we ate a lot of fish (mahi mahi, ahi, monchong), fish tacos (anywhere they served these for lunch, I ordered them – love fish tacos. We had some amazing braised short ribs at Keoki’s in Kauai and the tapas place we visited in Kauai also had some great selections including an awesome Sangria cart, ceviche and a great hoisin glazed short rib.
Life List items achieved in Maui:
- Ride in a helicopter
- See a volcano (albeit dormant)
- Swim in the Pacific Ocean
- Learn how to eat crab legs (although I still need some practice)
Our trip home was really long: 5 hour flight from Maui to Vancouver (where the flight attendant announced the score of the Olympic hockey gold medal game where Canada shut out Sweden – woohoo!), then a 3 hour layover in Vancouver, then 4 hours to Toronto. Finally made it home, safe and sound, and tired, rested and glad we took Monday off.