Sunday, October 16, 2011

Days 3 & 4 of Our Tropical Getaway

Day 3 - Pools in the morning, Lahaina at night

We took it easy in the morning by walking along a path that lead from Polo Beach at our hotel to Wailea Beach at the Grand Wailea, two resorts up from us.  Paul stayed at the Grand Wailea when he was a kid and has always raved about the pools, so we wandered around checking out the grounds a little before hanging out on their beach.  We didn't take a single photo the whole morning.  After spending some time enjoying the sand and the sun, we headed back to the pools at our hotel for a while before getting cleaned up to head into Lahaina.

Walking along Front Street in Lahaina was so much fun.  It is one of those quirky little places with tons of kitschy shops.  Paul and I love browsing these kinds of stores searching for a souvenir Christmas ornament (we got a hula girl to hang from our tree).  Paul took me into a scrimshaw shop where he bought a carved knife when he was a kid.
By the time we made it to our dinner reservation at Kimo's, Clara and I were both exhausted.  Please ignore the totally ridiculous thing that my bangs are doing in these photos.
 Clara was very interested in Paul's virgin pina colada. 
 VERY interested.  Paul let her lick the side of the glass where water had condensed and she loved it.
If you are going to Maui, you have to try the carrot muffins at Kimo's.  Anyone who knows me knows that I loathe carrots, even in carrot cake.  But I am always trying to overcome that aversion and finally I found something with carrots in it that I love.  The muffins are fantastic - not overly sweet and cinnamony like carrot cake but instead more honey-ish and almost a little savory.  I ate way too many and then took some back to the hotel for breakfast the next morning.

We watched the sun set while we ate our mahi-mahi and shared a slice of hula pie (oreo crust with macadamia nut ice cream). 
Day 4 - The Road to Hana

I was concerned about doing this drive because everything I read about it talked about how winding and wild the road is, and I don't exactly have the strongest stomach in the world when it comes to fighting motion-sickness.

I was so glad we went for it though.  The views were spectacular and we stopped a lot along the way to see waterfalls or beaches, and that broke things up for me so that my stomach could settle.  Plus, I did the driving, which always helps.

We had seen a photo of these trees in the Peter Lik gallery (a photographer who Paul and I really admire) in Lahaina the previous night, so when we came across a grove of them we pulled over and jumped out to snap a few photos.

This photo is the only one I have that does a good job of showing what the road itself looks like as it clings to the curves of the northeastern coast of the island.
One of the stops we made was at a little waterfall and pool known as Ching's pond.  It was a pretty idyllic spot.  Our friends Charlie and Carrie were also driving the road to Hana on the same day but they had left later than we had but caught up to us here.  We leapfrogged most of the rest of the day between waterfalls and beaches, stopping to feed the babies whenever they got hungry.
Clara was more interested in chewing on the Baby Bjorn than smiling for a photo in front of Ching's Pond.

Clara was a GREAT little traveler though and either slept or entertained herself with Sophie the Giraffe most of the day. 

We stopped at a roadside stand called "Halfway to Hana" to pick up some snacks along the way.  The banana bread was really good, but I was wishing it had walnuts in it.

My favorite waterfall was this little set of three falls called "Waikani Falls" or "Three Bears Falls".  This was one of the spots where Carrie's family caught up with us and she took this photo for us.  I don't know why we didn't take more photos together.

We almost missed this black sand beach and actually had to backtrack to get to it, but I am so glad we did.  There actually was hardly any sand (it was mostly black rocks with just a teeny little section that was sandy) but the setting was stunning with a dramatic cove, cerulean water, and lush vegetation.

I don't know what these trees are called, but they were fascinating.  I love that Clara and Paul were gazing up into its branches together.
Our last stop of the day was at O'heo Gulch, otherwise known as the "Seven Sacred Pools".  It was getting to be a long day at that point but I wanted to swim in one of the pools so badly that I changed into my swimsuit and took a quick dip in one of the upper pools.  I know that the pools weren't actually sacred to the Hawaiian people but there was a very special feeling here of peacefulness and joy.  I loved it.

There were a number of people jumping off the rocks into this pool.  I sort of wanted to and probably would have if somebody else had been there with me to do it together, but Paul was watching Clara and I talked myself out of doing it alone.  Instead, I had fun watching these people do it.
And even though the guidebook said that most people turned around at the Seven Sacred Pools and went back the way they had came, we took the less traveled (and much bumpier) road around the back side of the island which lead through windswept lava fields furred with golden grasses.  We finished the drive just as the sun was starting to set.  It was a beautiful, but long day.


  1. Those rainbow trees are stunning! We didn't see those and in fact I've never even heard about them except when you mentioned them. I will have to hunt them down next time we are on Maui. Oh, and the other trees that Paul & Clara are exploring are called walking trees, and they actually use their roots to "walk" and move towards water sources.

  2. what a fun trip! And I think its awesome that you took Clara with you! So many advice giving people keep telling us to go on trips now before we have a child. Apparently people think you can never do anything fun post children. I say it makes vacations even funner! I love the picture of both you and Clara yawning at the same time :) And......Happy birthday!

  3. Hula pie sounds really delicious...

  4. I would have to agree, the picture of you and Clara yawning is so cute! I also loved the one of Paul and Clara looking up into the trees together!

  5. This looks like an amazing vacation you had. I love vacations that involve a little bit of wandering around.
    I have noticed that, though I have never met Paul in real life, he is looking more and more familiar to me. I figured it out. Paul, you remind me of John Oliver:
    Also, excellent use of the word "cerulean."

  6. The seven sacred pools... "The water is so aerated that it feels like a gigantic tounge licking your entire body" (from the Meg Ryan movie IQ)

    Does it really feel like that?


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