My last post about the Road to Hana wasn’t my final experience in Hawaii and even though it’s taken a long time, I wouldn’t feel ok until I closed up the Hawaii posts with this wrap-up. 🙂 Here are photos from the various places we explored on the last two days Samantha and I spent visiting with Shara and Mike before we returned to the mainland.
If you’re just tuning in, I’m finishing up posts of the beauty I experienced on my spring break trip to Maui with my high school friends Samantha and Shara. Near the end of our trip, Samantha and I took a day to explore the Road to Hana on Maui (Shara and Mike have done that trip quite a few times, so they sat this one out). Sadly, the weather didn’t cooperate with us for spectacular blue sky photos, but it was still a memorable day exploring such a gorgeous area.
The Road to Hana is a remarkable road full of twists and turns and over 45 one-lane bridges (which usually coincided with a beautiful waterfall right next to it) that leads to the town of Hana on the east side of Maui. It took a few hours to get to our destination, Kipahulu in Haleakala National Park, with many stops along the way to enjoy the gorgeous beaches, waterfalls, and other unique sights.
The end of our trip (before we took the road back in the evening) included a four mile hike through the National Park (and a breathtaking bamboo forest) in POURING rain (hence the lack of amazing bamboo and waterfall photos since I wanted my camera to survive) to Waimoku Falls. They were pretty spectacular, especially with all the recent rain to make them more powerful… totally worth the rainstorm hike. As Sam and I lamented the weather initially, we decided to embrace the day we were given and the chance to make so many memories. Check out the sights below!
Welcome to another day from my trip in Maui. This one happened to be a very long and full day. We work up around 3:30 A.M. to head up to the Haleakala summit to watch the sunrise. My friends who live there have seen much more spectacular displays of the sun rising over the clouds, but I was content to see the sun break through a few times. I was amazed at how different the landscape is up by the Haleakala Crater… it eerily felt a bit like Mars up there! On the way down the mountain we saw a rainbow… there’s a reason Hawaii is known as the Rainbow State!
Since we were already on that side of the island, we decided to explore a couple of the early stops on the Road to Hana (I’ll be doing a separate post on our Road to Hana journey which happened the day after this one). We stopped to see the rainbow bark on some eucalyptus trees and then we explored a bamboo forest. Both sites were really beautiful.
That evening, Shara and I decided to go to a beach not too far from their place in hopes that there would be a pretty sunset. God didn’t disappoint us at Keawakapu Beach near Wailea. Check out His beautiful creation as seen on this great day in Maui back in March!
It’s a really unique plant- check out more info on Wikipedia.
I had hoped to combine events so I wouldn’t bombard you with Hawaii posts, but I’m having trouble because it was such a beautiful trip. I have way too many fun things to show you here, so bear with me. 🙂 Today I’m going to show you pics from the day that epitomizes a Hawaiian vacation- adventures at the beach and a luau.
We went to Ukumehame Park in Lahaina on a gorgeous afternoon for some water adventures. I decided to attempt paddle boarding because it looked a little easier than surfing. Unfortunately it wasn’t quite easy enough for me to master in a mere 20 minutes on the water, but it was fun to try it! Shara’s husband, Mike, was incredibly patient with me and my meager attempt to balance on that large board. And Shara and Samantha did a great job cheering me on from shore and capturing a few photos that made me look relatively skilled at staying up on the board! They also captured my failed attempt to stay up on the board for any prolonged amount of time. (See photos below).
After the paddle boarding/sitting on the beautiful beach adventure, Sam and I went to the quintessential Hawaiian tourist experience- the Old Lahaina Luau. They have that thing down to a science- complete with a mid-meal light rain shower with a double rainbow for our enjoyment! 😉 It was a fun, educational experience with some delicious Hawaiian food, leis, a pig roast, hula dancing lessons, cultural demonstrations and hula show topped off with a beautiful beach sunset. Sometimes you just got to embrace the whole tourist thing and go all out! It was a fun time and gave me all sorts of flashbacks to TV shows that filmed Hawaii episodes like The Brady Bunch and Saved by the Bell. 🙂
Here is the photographic evidence of all the fun!
When I was on my way to Maui, walking around farmland wasn’t the first thing I thought about doing. I think that was one of the most surprising things about my trip- Maui has so many different types of land and sites… there was so much more to see than just beaches!
On one of our first days there, Shara, Samantha, and I explored a few different areas of eastern Maui. We started out with a visit to the Upcountry Farmers Market in Pukalani. It was definitely the most picturesque farmers market I’ve ever seen! We tried some Kombucha tea and lilikoi (passion fruit) butter while picking up some avocados and veggies. We followed that with a delicious brunch at a french restaurant. Then we visited the farmlands off of Thompson Road… farmlands that happen to belong to Oprah! I had no idea she owned so much farmland on Maui. It was a beautiful road with great sites going uphill and looking out at the coast below.
From there we went to the Ali’i Kula Lavender Farm and got to explore a bit before the downpour. See the photo below taken after we made it back to the car… should’ve brought a raincoat!
We finished off the adventure by stopping at a couple picturesque spots on the journey home- the Hui Noeau Visual Arts Center in Makawao and the Makawao Union Church. Check out the photos below!
I haven’t had much time since my return from spring break to get my photos posted (it’s testing season at school), but don’t worry, there are many to come! This trip was a pseudo high school reunion for my friends Samantha, Shara and me. Samantha and I set off from Ohio to spend a week visiting Shara and her husband who live in Maui and I couldn’t have asked for a better spring break adventure. I’ll start with our first day in Maui for this blog post, which I posted a preview of while I was there.. Our first morning there, (with jet-lag’s assistance for a somewhat early wake-up) we went to Maaelea Bay and took a whale watch cruise with the Pacific Whale Foundation. I was very impressed with how they do tours and how informative the guides are throughout the watch. I think my favorite part was when they put a microphone into the water below us and we were able to hear the whales singing below the surface of where we were. I also enjoyed that we saw a brand new calf often (though he/she didn’t show off much for photos) and quite a few pairs of whales. I just found this video someone took in February in the same area (silly me forgot my drone equipment to better capture the event!), so check this guy’s video out if you’d like to see what it looks like from above. A big thank you goes out to Shara and Mike for loaning me their zoom lens and polarized filter so I could get optimal photos of the whales!
Here are a few highlights from the expedition. Hope you enjoy them!
I’m still in Hawaii visiting a friend of mine from high school and we were able to enjoy this sight the other night. I couldn’t help but think of this verse from Psalms while we soaked in the beauty of it all. God does good work.
Guess who’s traveling again! Get ready for some beautiful photos from Maui coming your way soon. 🙂