Posted by: monsonmadness | June 18, 2012

Hawaii

Aloha!

When we flew to American Samoa last year, we earned a lot of air miles. Transferring them all into one account equals a free round trip ticket from Pago Pago to Honolulu (normally $900). All I had to pay was $17 for the taxes, so I headed to Hawaii to meet my Mum for a quick weekend break before she came to American Samoa.

Since I have already been to Oahu, big island of Hawaii, and Kuaui, my Mum very graciously agreed to come to Maui with me. At 727 square miles, Maui is ten times the size of American Samoa, and oh what a difference there was. It was a gorgeous paradise in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Beautiful settings with the luxury of all things American. Perfect combination.

The scenery was fantastic. We loved the beautiful waterfalls, the arches, and the bright colors everywhere. Other than the beautiful beaches, one of the main tourist attractions in Maui is the Road to Hana.

The Road to Hana is more than 60 miles of highway, carved into the cliffs of one of the most beautiful rainforests in the world. There are over 600 hairpin turns crossing more than 50 bridges. Its curves hug the coastline of the blue Pacific, and its dramatic landscape  takes your breath away… it is nicknamed the “World’s most beautiful drive”

We were not expecting a 15 mph speed limit with a 10mph limit whenever we reached a tight bend or crossed a one lane bridge (TONS of them) It made for a very long day of driving. We put 60 miles on the rental car and were out on the road driving for 9 hours, including our stops. We saw so many of these signs…

First stop…Twin falls. For some reason we got lost on the trail, and it took us a while to find the falls, but that’s ok, because I got to take this artsy farsty photo of a little tunnel…

…and then we arrived at the falls. So beautiful.

I had some delicious fresh pineapple in front of the awesome bamboo grove.

We got back on the road and saw so many beautiful things on the drive. The were some magnificent trees and waterfalls, the pictures don’t do them justice.

Probably our favorite stop was The pools of Oheo, aka Seven sacred pools. It was just gorgeous.

While we were driving we kept seeing these weird animals running across the road. We still aren’t sure what they were, looked like a weasel or a ferret or something similar, but at the stop at Pua’a ka’a state wayside there were several of them enjoying the tourist’s leftovers at the picnic table. We also saw lots of cool birds.

It was cool to see the Pailoa Bay Natural Arch…

What else? Hmmm. Food. Now it wouldn’t be right if I didn’t tell you how excited I was to eat real food. Yes, I went crazy and must have put on several pounds. Since we were in Hawaii it was only normal that we had to get shaved ice. It was yummy, and Mum’s first time.

We went out to dinner the first night and ordered two courses including a huge steak. I inhaled it pretty quickly, but wasn’t finished yet. Next I had to introduce my Mum to the wonderful world of frozen yogurt!

Yogurtland was great. Not only did they have great tropical flavors of frozen yogurt and tons of fresh toppings, but they had fancy couches to relax on. It was wonderful.

What better way to end such a great day than checking in to the hotel and finding that they had a bath tub! Yee-haw. First bath in over a year…so relaxing.

We had checked in after dark, so it wasn’t until the next morning that we discovered the view from our bedroom window. Not bad eh? A few minutes later and we saw that there were a ton of canoes going out paddling. It was neat to see loads of little kids having paddling lessons.

We decided to go to Denny’s for breakfast. Their menu is huge! So many choices. After that we stopped in at K-Mart. I needed to buy a few things, and those few minutes turned into almost two hours as I struggled to control myself wanting to buy clothes and shoes etc for the kids that I can’t buy in American Samoa.

The biggest question of all was how to fit everything that I bought into my suitcase. It would be a challenge, and I knew I might have to sacrifice my pajamas or something else to make room for the new things!

We stopped at Iao Valley State Park to see The Needle, 2250 ft basalt monolith shoots out of the ground like a skyscraper.

Next it was off to Lahaina, a nice touristy town across the island. We saw a huge Banyan Tree, an Indian tree that was planted in 1873 and shades more than one acre.

We did a little more shopping and then decided that it was time to go for a swim. You can’t come to Hawaii and not get in the ocean! The water was a lot colder than what I am used to, but it was nice to be able to get all the way in the ocean without worrying about rocks, coral, and rip tides.

The day was coming to an end so we went to a grocery store to buy our breakfast and lunch for the next day. We ate dinner (sharing entrees and desserts because it was too hard to narrow down choices) and then managed to squeeze in a couple of games at the hotel before we crashed. I even got my Mum to do some hilarious dares.

On Sunday morning we went to church, and were invited to sing with the other women to the Fathers for Father’s day. We were welcomed cordially and people were very interested in where we had come from, and how we ended up inMaui!

After church we ate lunch in the hotel, then took our rental car back and spent the rest of the day at the airport.

What a great little getaway. Great company, great food, great activities, and beautiful scenery. I’ll always remember trying to get into the wrong rental car, daring to put things into someone else’s shopping cart, pretending there was a hurricane, Mum throwing pineapple down her back, and lots more.

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Responses

  1. Great pictures, looks like you had tons of fun. The little animal is a mongoose.

  2. Oh, it sounds like so much fun. If I make it to Hawaii, Maui is where I want to go.

  3. Ok, all these vacation posts are making me want to go on a trip with you again!!! Let’s meet up in Hawaii!!!!

    • Want to help me move back with all the kids next June???????


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