You know how we all work all year long at the gym or hitting the streets to run/walk so that we look great in a swimsuit? Or at least look decent? Well, I know that going to Hawaii is one of my incentives for keeping in shape. I look forward to enjoying all that the island life has to offer- the scenery, the great seafood, and the beautiful beaches. Whether you’re taking a helicopter ride over the volcano on the Big Island of Hawaii, hiking one of Kauai’s nature trails, hanging out with the family at Disney’s Aulani on Oahu, or taking in the complete experience on Maui, the Hawaiian Islands have so much to offer! Maui is one of my personal favorite islands. My husband and I had the pleasure of spending a week there in February and had such a good time we plan to take the family back this summer!
Sunrises and sunsets are big in Maui. Over the years, my husband and I have seen a lot of sunrises courtesy of our early-riser-children on vacations! Because there is a 4 hour time difference and their internal clocks don’t reset the first day of the vacation, we make the most of it and usually drive to the east side of the island or the highest point of the island for the best vantage point. I recommend having this early morning trip mapped out in advance because it is very dark at 3 or 4am when you are setting out on those windy (that’s wind-y, as in snake like patterns, not windy as in when the wind blows although it’s that, too, usually!) roads to see the spectacular sunrise. Partly cloudy is the optimal weather because the sun plays off the clouds as it rises making it more amazing! Haleakala, the dormant volcano on Maui is said to have THE BEST sunrises anywhere on earth. On my most recent visit, the weather did not cooperate and we ended up with a completely cloudy morning. So, when the weather doesn’t cooperate, you find a charming restaurant with a great breakfast and a beautiful garden, at least that’s what I do! Now, about sunsets, my best recommendation is to find a beach, bring along your favorite beverage and your camera, dip your toes in the water and your…Wait, this is a G-rated blog, but you know the rest of the song! Spend a couple hours and take a million pictures! You won’t regret it. And as the remnants of the sun drops behind the water on the horizon, give a little cheer for the beauty God creates every day about that time in Hawaii!
There are SO MANY activities to enjoy on Maui; you’ll need at least a week to really enjoy it. Obviously, there are some of the world’s best beaches to enjoy. Make sure you pack the sunscreen! There is always a Wal-Mart if you forget, but don’t go out to the beach without sunscreen. You will be sorry! While on the beach (wearing your sunscreen), you can take surfing lessons, scuba diving lessons, or snorkeling. There are some individuals who offer these services right on the beach or through your resort concierge or your travel agent can help you find them! (See, there’s a benefit to using my services!) We often rent snorkel gear from a local service for the entire week. That way we can visit a beach and then just jump in the water and look around under water. On our most recent trip, we found an authentic Hawaiian who took us out on his outrigger canoe. We didn’t paddle far, but had some up close and personal encounters with the whales that come to Hawaii every winter to have their babies. Our outrigger captain knew much about the history of the island and taught us some things.
There are also jungles to explore. There are some great hikes through these jungles. One in particular leads to seven wonderful waterfalls. One of the most famous drives on Maui is the road to Hana. It’s a very scenic drive that takes most of the day. The road is extremely twisty (wind-y again!), but beautiful. If you make it all the way to Hana, stop and enjoy the view, have a burger at the one place to eat there, and then begin the long drive back. Warning: do not attempt this drive if you have a problem with getting carsick. Do make this drive is you want to spend a leisurely day in the car seeing spectacular scenery. There are some fun little places to stop along the way, too. You can pick up souvenirs or fresh baked banana bread.
One of my favorite places on Maui is the historic fishing village called Lahaina. There you will find some great shopping, a massive banyan tree, Cheeseburger in Paradise, and if you’re lucky, an arts and crafts show with local artwork. Also, in Lahaina, you’ll find a port where you can take a boat out to do whale watching or deep sea fishing.
If it’s your first visit to Hawaii, make sure you attend a luau, but if you’ve attended one luau you’ve attended them all. The poi and the dancing make it worth it.
I love Hawaii! I love all of the islands I have visited- Kauai, Oahu, Big Island, and Maui, but Maui is my favorite. There is something for everyone in the family or perfect for that couple’s getaway.
Contact me today so I can help you plan your Hawaiian dream vacation!