Thursday, February 19, 2015

Family Trip to Maui - Feb. 19th to Feb. 27th - Part 1 of 2

(from the It's much better in the islands department)

Hi everyone,

To celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary, and our first trip to Hawaii together, Dana and I decided to go back to the islands.  However, rather than go back to Oahu - which I've visited repeatedly - we decided to go to Maui, which I've only been to once, and Dana has never seen at all.

After scrambling for airline tickets, arranging lodging, and frantically e-mailing everyone for advice, we found ourselves waking up early Thursday morning and heading to the airport to start our vacation.

Five or so hours later - we arrived at the Kahului airport:

and picked up our rental car.  Yeah - we rented a red convertible Mustang.  Hey - if you're going to drive around the islands, you might as well do it right:

I took that photo on one of our first long driving excursions - up the 'Iao Valley to the state park.  This is what we saw:

This was quite a contrast to the desert-like conditions we experienced where we were staying in Kihei.  Basically - Maui has a desert side and a rainforest side.  What you're seeing above is the rainforest side.

We did a few more things like visit a swap meet and get shave ice:

attend a Polynesian dance exhibition:

pose dramatically:

and take pictures of working, well-maintained payphones:

Our next big excursion was driving the Hana Highway.  This is not an exercise for the faint of heart.  Although it's only a 52 mile stretch, it takes 2 1/2 hours to drive without stopping - there are 59 bridges, 620 curves and many stretches where the road is only one lane wide.

Still - the scenery was amazing:

Finally - we got to the outskirts of the Hana area, and went to the Wai'anapanapa State Park with their famous black sand beaches:

While we were there - we found a cave lava tube (as Rose corrected me):

Then - back to the beach:

Finally - we reached the Hasegawa General Store in Hana, which is considered a landmark and a sign that you'd "completed" the Hana Highway.  I bought a celebratory t-shirt and mug, and took a couple of pictures:

We'd done it!  We'd made it to Hana!  Unfortunately - the remaining highway doesn't connect around the island.  So, to get back to Kihei, I had to drive the entire Hana Highway again - in the reverse direction.  Oh - and did I mention that the sun had set before we started back?  And - there are no streetlights on the Hana Highway, and it's pitch black?

Yeah - that was kind of nerve racking - 620 hairpin turns and 59 narrow bridges on an occasional single lane road in the darkest dark.

But - we made it with out any damage - except to my nervous system - and we were ready for the next phase of our Maui adventure.

To Be Continued in Part 2! --> The Ideal Copy: Family Trip to Maui - Feb. 19th to Feb. 27th - Part 2 of 2


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