Adventures in the Valley Isle – three part

I just went for lunch with a very good friend who is counting down the days to her babymoon in Maui, which made me think I need to get on this blog and keep going on my trip diary. There are so many places to go to and so many things to see that I could be writing for days and posting hundreds of pictures. One of our favourite areas to go to was Lahaina, which is located in west Maui and definitely one of the busiest areas we visited. It has a real downtown walking area with tons of shops and restaurants and you can sit at the restaurants that literally sit on top of the water’s edge for hours and hours. It is definitely touristy but it has a ton of history and I found it to have a lot of charm, ultimately we went three times!

One of the most famous sites in Lahaina is the banyan tree, the roots descend from the branches into aerial roots towards the ground where they form new trunks which results in growth of many trunks around the main trunk. It’s like a tree that just keeps expanding and growing down into the ground and back up again. The tree takes up a whole park.

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Cute little waterfront view from the balcony at the Lahaina Heritage Museum.

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Some shots of the town in all it’s cuteness!

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Beachside drinks!

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This was at Bubba Gumps, which is obviously super gimmicky and the menu was terrible for me because I’m allergic to shellfish and I think there was one salad that wasn’t shellfish. BUT the views were amazing and we had a really good time and sat for hours.

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This is Koa’s Seaside Grill, if you go to this restaurant try to get a table on the rooftop.

Fleetwoods, also on the rooftop. The food is great here and they do a lot of shows, events and specials. It’s super popular but it’s for a reason – we would recommend it. IMG_0625

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It was our three year wedding anniversary while we were in Maui. We spent part of the day on a “hike” (waterfront walk really if I’m honest) in Kapalua and most of the day at Hotel Wailea relaxing and then having our anniversary dinner. The hike was cool and there was lots to see, but the humidity you guys – it was pretty outrageous that day.

We started the walk at Dragon’s Teeth at Makaluapuna Point which is a rock formation created by one of the last lava flows in Maui. Many of the rocks have formed into sharp peaks, hence the name.

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We walked down the waterfront for about an hour, there are spots you can climb down the rocks and there are these quiet pools that sit up against the shore where the water is so clear, calm and quiet.

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We didn’t spend a lot of time in West Maui as we were staying in the south but I know a lot of people recommend the Kapalau/Kaanapali area. The views were gorgeous.

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Hotel Wailea is not on the water, it is set back and up a bit but has sweeping views of the ocean. We spent hours there just lying in a hammock in the breeze. It’s much quieter here then a lot of the beach front mega resorts of Wailea and whole beach town area of Kihei. We found it a great place to spend some of our anniversary, it was just so serene and relaxed with lots of greenery and floral.

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We also had our anniversary dinner at one of the restaurants at Hotel Wailea called Capische. It’s all outdoors and if you get good weather you can eat in the garden which is supposed to be super romantic. Unfortunately we had some rain that night, but still ate in the main open concept restaurant at a table with a view of the sunset.

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My favourite outfit of the trip, so comfortable but also got so wrinkled.

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Just havin’ a time!

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Just a few more of our favourite sights and odds and ends to round of this trip report. Next up a little babymoon to Disney, our long standing favourite and last chance to experience it kid free! Enjoy the rest of summer and these long days!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Adventures in the Valley Isle! Part Deux

I know the is a very long overdue part two of this trip, since I just noticed I published the first part a month ago. But you know how it is, growing a human inside you is tiring! I need to take several naps! There are seriously endless amount of sites to visit in Maui and there is a trip you can customize for anyone. Whether you’re looking for an adventure trip, a foodie trip, beach and relaxation – it honestly has something for everyone. Since it was our first time there, and we may not be back for a while as our lives are soon to change in a major way, we tried to sample a bit of everything.

We spent a day doing a lot of driving and went up country to the Iao Valley and to see the Iao Needle. Ryan videotaped some of it and said it felt like he was in Jurassic Park. You can see why they choose so to film so many movies and shows there, the scenery is so lush and the valley is all dense rainforest. The temperature changes significantly when you are upcountry compared to being at the beaches.

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The Iao Needle, a lava remnant rising 1,200 feet from the valley floor.

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It’s beautiful in such a unique way up there, totally different vibe than down on the water.

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Next we went to check out La Perouse Bay, which is the most recent volcanic site in Maui. You have to drive past Wailea and Makena to get there, and made several roadside stops for tacos and coconuts.

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Tacos have really been my only pregnancy craving.

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I loved La Perouse Bay, I thought it was so gorgeous. On the drive up you can see where all the lava flowed down and  basically got frozen in time. There is hardly any sand and you wouldn’t want to swim there but the water is so clear and blue and it was a great walk. One word of advice, it is very windy so don’t put your camera on a rock with the timer on to take a picture – if you’re like me it will fall and break.

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Look at that water!

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Indeed!

That night we went to dinner at our favourite hotel (again!) The Four Seasons at the restaurant Duo which was delicious (one of the best meals we had) and went for drinks at Ferraro’s which sits right on the water with incredible views and is a sweet and romantic setting. I would recommend both.

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One of my absolute favourite things we did the whole two weeks was take a snorkel excursion to turtle town (a spot with lots of sea turtles to snorkel with) and Molokini. Molokini is a partially submerged volcanic crater that basically creates a naturally protected habitat for sea life. It was incredible, I have never seen water that clear or that many fish so colourful and vibrant.  At turtle town I was snorkelling about a foot away from a huge turtle, if you stay calm they will just swim right on by you and check  you out – they’re so chill. I loved snorkelling, it is really a whole different world down there. Ryan did snuba which allowed him to go deeper while still attached to air on a float above him, he ended up being able to see a bit more than me that way but they say it’s not safe for pregnant women because of the pressure.

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Molokini in the background.

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We did the excursion through Snorkel Bob’s which was pretty bare bones, but I think it’s all you need. Doing a smaller boat I felt was better because it was not a party vibe at all and you got a basic breakfast and lunch, but really the same snorkel experience for a better price.

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Lots more to come! Stayed tuned, I’ll try not to make part three a month away!

 

 

 

Adventures in the Valley Isle!

Ryan and I usually like to take one big trip a year, we had talked about doing Italy and Greece in the fall and had even started researching and planning it. But surprise! There’s a baby in me and it’s coming early November! So after some discussion we decided to take a two week trip to Hawaii, somewhere neither of us had been but always wanted to go and went in May for our anniversary. I’ve never talked to anyone who hates Hawaii, for the most part people say it’s heaven and their favourite place in the world. After consulting our friends who are Hawaii veterans we decided on Maui, and it was the best choice! Amazing weather, great food, gorgeous beaches and so much to see and do. Two weeks went by in the blink of an eye and there are so many things on our list that we would go back for.

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We stayed in Kihei, but in a condo in North Kihei where it’s a bit quieter but still really close to the bustling town in South Kihei. We were on Sugar Beach, which isn’t the most gorgeous beach of all that we went to but has miles of beach that we went on several walks down. The above photo is the view from our balcony.

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I’m just starting to get used to having a changing body for baby so there will be a long showcase of loose tops in all these pictures!

This first day we spent some time walking the beach by our condo and drove into Wailea and Makena, stopping at Makena Cove for some swimming.

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A friend of mine suggested we go to Costco and buy snorkel gear then go to different beaches to snorkel. Do it! Some of the snorkelling is so incredible, it was one of the best things we did.

We also went for our first taste of shave ice! In the heat and humidity it is an absolute must! I don’t usually like sweet things so the couple of times we went I got half watermelon and half lime, it was so good and refreshing! There are hundreds of shave ice places in Maui, you just have to find your favourite!

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That night we went to check our more of Wailea, which I would basically describe as the Beverly Hills of Maui. It’s where a lot of luxury resorts are, it’s beautifully maintained, gorgeous beaches and views. We actually got lucky when we were there because it was Wailea Restaurant Week, so a lot of the restaurants have special preset “taste of Wailea” menus that are heavily discounted and a portion goes to charity, so we took some advantage of that. This is the Four Seasons, which was by far our favourite of all the hotels we went to.

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The fabulous four seasons! We went back several times for dinners and “drinks.” We look like sorbet in these outfits!

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It was really nice to stay in a condo because Maui can be very expensive, being able to go to Cotsco and Safeway for groceries makes a huge difference. We went out for quite a few dinners but also barbecued at the condo and ate our own breakfast at home everyday but one.

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On our 2nd or 3rd day we went to the Alii Kula Lavender Farm, I’d say it was probably our biggest disappointment of all the things we did. Some of it is beautiful but it is very underwhelming and not nearly as polished and maintained as we expected. The weather was also extremely overcast in upcountry that day so that didn’t help either.

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We went to a Luau that night and it was really fun, definitely a highlight from the trip! There are a lot of options for different Luau’s throughout Maui, we went to the Marriott where they do it on the roof top so the views are gorgeous. The entertainment is fun and we enjoyed the food, they don’t do the ceremonial pig in the ground so that was really all it was missing. We really had fun, I would recommend doing one.

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Before we went to the Luau that evening, we parked at the Marriott then went on this long stretch of beach walk in front of the hotels in Wailea, it’s some of the most gorgeous natural beaches. It connects a lot of those luxury hotels in the area and you can walk and walk, which was difficult in the outfit I had mistakenly chosen but worth it for the beauty.

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There are so many gorgeous beaches, all public, to explore in Maui. Some of our favourites were Kamaole 3, Wailea Beach, Makena Beach State Park. But there are really endless options to try.

Kamaole III

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Wailea Beach

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Serious burn to that little baby bump!

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Makena State Park

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There was so much more to see and do on this vacation! Soon I’ll post about our fun in Lahaina, the Road to Hana, snorkelling at Molokini and more. Have a great week!