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- Leave for Maui.
- Check-in at Kaanapali Beach Hotel – We landed at Kahului airport and rented a car. This is the most reasonable, beautiful and the most “Aloha-spirited” properties at the Kaanapali Beach Strip. The rooms have a great view of the ocean and pool. They also have an amazing grill & bar and direct access to the beach.
- Sunset dinner cruise from Lahaina Harbor – The cruise was the high-light of my trip. The weather was beautiful. Mild breeze in the air and setting sun, live music on the deck…. it was so romantic! Just perfect because we were celebrating our anniversary. The food was great and there was an open bar. We gulped on several mai-tais and pinacoladas :D! The captain turned off the lights in the middle of nowhere and we danced to some jazz, glittering sky and cool maui breeze. Such a great way to celebrate your anniversary! 🙂
- Breakfast: Leonard’s bakery
- Lunch – late lunch at hotel’s bar and grill
- Dinner Cruise– Prime rib and mahi-mahi on the cruise.
- Chill at the Kaanapali Beach. Get some hammock time.
- Take an afternoon siesta
- Watch Hula performance in the evening in the hotel. Our hotel had several activities throughout the day from weaving, making leis and garlands to learning traditional Hawaii singing and dancing. Check with your hotel concierge.
- Lunch: Hotel grill and bar
- Dinner: Star Noodle (2800 reviews 4 stars)
- Road to Hana: We left for road to Hana at 9:00 am. That would be late, if you want to take several stops in Hana. Leave at 6:30-7:00 am if you want to stop at more than a few scenic spots. Usually hotel will have a recommended list. Many reviews will tell you to stop at Paia. We found this town extremely over hyped. We just quickly passed by it. We stopped at:
- Twin falls
- Waikamoi nature trail
- Half-way to Hana
- Wailua Valley State Park
- Lava tube
- Kahana garden
- Wailua Falls
- Seven sacred pools
- Bamboo forest
- Note #1: Charge your phone batteries to full. Take phone charger.
- Note #2: Take lots of water and snacks for your journey.
- Note # 3:Be sure to leave back from Hana by 3:30 – 4:00 pm max. We made the mistake of leaving at 5:30pm when the sun was about to set and we drove for 4 hours in dark. It was really risky and scary.
- Note #4: Also, if you have motion sickness, please take meds. The roads are really curvy.
- Note #5: There are several stops in Hana and you would want to do all but be practical. Check how much time you have and plan accordingly.
- Breakfast: We had a quick grab and go breakfast of yogurt and fruits.
- Lunch: Ate burgers and hot-dogs, banana bread at half-way to Hana
- Dinner: Indian Express at Lahaina downtown
- Morning to afternoon, chill at the Kaanapali beach
- Haleakala Summit – leave by 3:30pm. Verify sunset timings and try to be there at least 20-30 mins before sunset. Find parking and find yourself a nice spot to enjoy the burning ball disappear through the horizon. We chose to checkout sunset vs. sunrise for 3 reasons:
- The evening sunset are just as beautiful as the morning sunrise.
- Mornings are extremely crowded and I read you have to fight for a spot to watch sunrise. Parking is not available in the mornings and you have hike for 2 miles or so uphill.
- We are not the ones to get up at 3:00 am and drive 😛
- Lunch: Hotel’s grill and bar. Hogged on some wings, teriyaki pineapple burgers, potstickers, mai-tais and beer
- Dinner: at a random Thai place between Haleakala and Lahaina
- Snuba at Molokini Crater and Turtle Town – We booked through pride of maui. This was something I had not experienced so far. I have snorkeled multiple times but this was nothing like before. The molokini has the most pristine waters. The water-life isn’t as varied but I was stunned by the how clear and blue the crater water was. We did Snuba that let us dive down 10-15 meters. The clarity was unbelievable. Unlike Scuba, you don’t need a license for Snuba. Snuba is a cross between snorkeling and Scuba. In Scuba, you are let lose with your oxygen cylinders where as in Snuba, you are attached to oxygen cylinders (that are above water) via pipes.
- Post snuba, stop at a local farmer’s market for fresh coconut water and cane juice (Mumbai style)
- Lahaina downtown – stroll in the evening
- Shaved ice at Ululani’s Shaved Ice (1300 reviews 5 stars)
- Lunch: On the snuba cruise
- Dinner: Bubba Gump Shrimp Factory