Maui Stories and Tips

Road Trip North of Lahaina

Trail head Photo, Maui, Hawaii

We were located in Lahaina, which is a perfect jumping off place for day trips in many directions. One day I promised my friend a real surprise from our usual sightseeing. We headed North on Hwy 30 (Honoapiilani Hwy). The drive itself is interesting leaving the aged and rustic buildings on Front Street and passing modern strip malls, condo complexes, and Norfolk Pines. We turned back toward the ocean on Office Road. Where that meets Lower Honoapiilani Road we turned right and quickly turned into a parking lot beside a golf course. We had reached our surprise destination. Now we walked. By hiking along the edge of the golf course we first paused to observe a hedge enclosed ancient burial grounds…no trespassing. Continuing on we stopped to admire DT Flemming Beach in Honokahua Bay. This is one of the highest rated beaches on Maui…and pretty too. Onward we hiked on the trail until we reached the lava. Walking across the lava is tricky business. I would recommend wearing tie shoes or sandals that can be tightly cinched so you have less problems on rough terrain. Why I brought her her was to see the amazing lava formations called Dragon’s Teeth. Formed when hot lava flowed into a churning storm driven waves and winds. The shapes that formed are tooth shaped and stand in a row along the edge of the cliff. The lava also is a peculiar white color also probably caused by aeration of the molten rock. Not only are the teeth interesting to look at, the very rocks we walked on and by were a geologists joy. After lots of exclamations and explorations it is a long walk back to the parking lot. We met others heading out and they asked if it was worth the walk. Oh, yeah!
We had worked up an appetite and our next stop was at the Gazebo in Napili at the Napili Shores condo resort. We had another long walk here, but it was on sidewalks through the resort’s common ground and you could see our objective. This very small restaurant has a good reputation. People stand in line for 30-45 minutes to get a table. But then they have a wonderful view to enjoy. This narrower part of the channel between Maui and Lanai is a favorite place for whales and of course whale watching. We missed whale season, but enjoyed the beautiful dark blue waters framed by palm trees. They are only open from 7:30 am to 2:00 pm, which accounts for the long lines. Back to the food. Once seated inside we enjoyed a number of their specialties: pineapple pancakes, banana pancakes, and Portuguese sausage. Oh yes, they have POG to drink. My favorite Hawaiian drink is a combination of passion fruit, orange and guava. We have also eaten lunch here and it was terrific, too. The waitresses all are lively and seem to enjoy chatting with table after table of tourists. While we were eating our waitress undid a rope tied back on a support pole and lowered a big fake spider down onto our table. No one jumped, but we all laughed. A table groaning breakfast for two with tip cost us $36. After eating we walked along the shore overlook tide pools and beach.
Refreshed from a good meal we continued on Lower Honoapiilani Road, enjoying glimpses of private homes, condo and resort complexes. Every once and a while off to the East we would see a small shopping area. We stopped at one in the same shopping area as McDonalds (Kahana Gateway Center). There is a store here. Leslie’s Family Funwear, that sells reasonably priced aloha wear and other souvenirs. I think this place is also popular with the local population, too. Many years ago I bought a dress here that I have worn on this trip. Today I found one the same style and in another lovely print. Sold!
The third highlight of our day trip was the UPS pack and ship store at 910 Honoapiilani Hwy. They are open 8:30 am - 6:30 pm. We were preparing for our eventual departure to the mainland and knew our suitcases would no longer weigh under 50lbs. Even if I could get all my stuff in the suitcase I wouldn’t be able to lift it! UPS is the shopper’s best friend. We have used them on Kauai, Oahu and Maui. Check the local phone book for hours and locations because we found that changes. Every UPS pack and ship we have used has taken great care with our precious possessions. Nothing has ever been lost. We did break the head off one turtle candy dish, but I salvaged it with super-glue. I should have pointed out he needed special headgear. They also help keep the costs down for you. We needed an oversized box for length but not height. The clerk cut the box down so he wouldn’t need to add bags of packing peanuts. We were grateful.

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