Happy Monday! Hope the weekend was a good one. We had an fantastic garage sale followed by some even better thrifting and then furniture building. Excellent weekend!
An excellent weekend certainly does help adjusting back to non-vacation life a little easier. Let's finish up our Maui photos so my mom doesn't yell at me for not sharing them. I aim to please. Or something.
We arrived in Maui on Wednesday afternoon. By the time we got to our condo it was around 5:30 PM. Also known as 10:30PM Iowa time. We ate supper in the condo and both went to bed at 7:00PM. We woke up bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at 3:00 AM ready to head to the Haleakala Crater. We debated doing sunrise at the crater. I read that it was cold and windy and obviously an early start to the day. We were looking to get away from cold and windy after the longest winter ever. It was also supposed to be the most amazing sunrise of people's lives. We decided to suck it up and do it.
The sunrise was incredible and it was extremely cold. So basically it was everything we expected it to be.
If you have plans to visit the Haleakala crater our tips are to dress warm. Very warm. Grab everything in your suitcase and a blanket from the condo. Head to the crater the day after you arrive. Getting up at 3:00AM wasn't a problem. Go early. We left Ka'anapali at 3:00AM. We would have had one of the last parking spots at the summit if we weren't sheep that followed everyone into the top visitor's parking lot. When you get to the parking lot, take the right and keep going!
Nate and I spent a lot of quality time with Mother Nature on this trip. The sun had this issue of not wanting to shine when we were there. Island of Sun my rear. The lack of sun made for perfecting hiking weather though. We were hoping for a little more beach weather but we were in Maui so it was hard to complain.
We did take morning strolls along Ka'anapali beach. This beach was about a mile from our condo and about 1.5 miles long. It made for a great wake up stroll.
We also made morning stops at the Farmer's Market that was just down the street from our condo. I fell madly in love with apple bananas. They are a small sour banana. The perfect size and the perfect flavor. The pineapples and papayas were also delicious.
We spent a good chunk of one day driving along the west coast of Maui. We purchased the Maui Revealed guidebook and used the Gypsy Guide Maui app to help us navigate the island. One of our first stops along this drive was these two tiered pools. The hike here was interesting. The Maui Revealed guidebook is a little vague on whether you're trespassing or not and their directions aren't super clear. We didn't see any "keep out stupid tourists" signs so we headed to the pools. The pools are best at high tide. Of course it was low tide during our trip. Still pretty though. You can also see that getting to the pools is a bit tricky.
We then scaled down a bunch of lava rocks to the Olivine Pools. These natural pools were pretty deep. I was going to swim but chickened out. The surf was pretty rough around the pools and it was sort of chilly. We did enjoy exploring the lava rock around the pools.
D.T. Fleming Beach was a short drive from our condo. We stopped here a couple of times. These photos were from our trip during the last two days when the sun decided to shine. This beach was beautiful. The beach was windy and the surf was rough but the views were stunning.
The only photo of the two of us together in Maui that wasn't disgusting. Go team.
We took two "beach days" when the sun was shining. We'd take our morning beach stroll and then lay by the ocean reading and watching sea turtles. Our condo had a nice area for sun bathing and a small beach to the side so we didn't feel the need to leave.
My favorite game to play was spot the sea turtles and tell Nate about every single one. He loved this game. I couldn't believe how gigantic they were!
We spent most evenings in Lahaina. Lahaina has a great main street full of restaurants, shops and people watching.
Our favorite restaurants in Lahaina were:
- Kimo's (Get the Hula Pie!!! The fish tacos, fish and chips and Mai Tai's were also excellent)
- Cool Catz (Amazing cheeseburgers. My mouth is watering thinking about them.)
- Kao's (Tasty seafood.)
- Lahaina Fish Co. (The Opah blew my mind.)
- Aloha Mixed Plate (Authentic Hawaiian food. This was a favorite for both of us. The food was cheap and delicious. I am having dreams of that Mochiko chicken.)
It would also be a crime to not mention Ono Gelato or Ululani's Hawaiian Shave Ice. We may have visited Ululani's enough that the employees recognized us. May have. They put ice cream on the bottom. How can you not go back multiple times?
There is a giant banyan tree in Lahaina. All of the treeness in this photo is one tree. How cool is that?
On our last day we planned a few activities to keep us occupied. We had to be out of our condo at 11:00AM and our flight didn't leave until 10:45PM. We ate lunch at Leoda's Kitchen and Pie Shop.
The pies were delicious. As was the decor. Nate had some pork, pork, more pork on top of pork sandwich. I immediately regretted my boring turkey sandwich after one bite of his. So I continued to sneak bites. Look over there Nate....gobble down massive amounts of pork.
We then set off for the Iao Needle. We read mixed reviews on this but had some time to check it out. The area is pretty. The history is interesting. (It's the site of a massive murder.) The hike is short. I wouldn't say it's a must see but great if you have some extra time to kill before your flight home. It's also an easy trail. No lava rock climbing here.
We ended our day in Paia. Paia is a quirky little surf town. It was described to us as an earthy community. The town has a nice main street with restaurants and shops. And a lot of quirk.
We watched some wind surfers at the Ho'okipa Lookout for a good hour. I'm also a fan of watching people get beaten by waves.
Our last stop in Maui was Mama's Fish House. I had heard raving reviews. It was pricey but we decided it would be a nice end to a great trip. The food was excellent and the atmosphere was even better. The place was seriously magical. The whole dining experience made us feel like real life grown ups. Much different than our normal Culver's or Steak and Shake dining.
Friends and family have asked how we liked the trip and if we would recommend it. We definitely recommend Maui. We loved the variety on the island (hiking, swimming, waterfalls, beaches). Although cloudy, the weather was still amazing. 80 degrees the whole week. Everything is open air. Patio dining. All things we enjoy. Would we go back? No. Only because we like to explore new places. We're considering one of the other islands (Kauai)! Would we recommend others to visit? Definitely!