So one of the highlights of the past few months was celebrating our second wedding anniversary in Maui! Tyler and I of course love to travel so we really wanted to go somewhere special that neither of us had been. Once we decided on Maui, I spent hours researching the best place to stay, the best places to eat, the best things to do, and had an itinerary for each day we were there - yes, I'm a little crazy - but I'm so glad we had everything planned out so we didn't feel like we missed anything. I'll start with our first day:
We flew out at a decent time, so even with the 8 hour flight we landed in Maui early afternoon. It was a direct flight too, so that was awesome. It was the longest flight Tyler had ever been on, but gotta prepare him for when we go to Europe. :) Right when we got there we picked up our convertible and went straight to Costco to stock up on essentials for our week. We knew we didn't want to eat out for every single meal, and wanted to be able to just pack an easy lunch and bring it down to the beach so we didn't waste time going out for lunch and it ended up working out really well. Our condo at Honua Kai was SO nice. Stainless steel appliances, washer and dryer, huge lania - it was so great. We'd definitely stay there again or recommend it to anyone traveling to Maui. Its just north of Lahaina on the west side of the island on Ka'anapali Beach and really close to town and restaurants. Speaking of restaurants, we got unpacked and settled just in time for dinner and went to Star Noodle. It was AMAZING. Just a cheap little noodle place, but neither Tyler or I have ever had noodles that good before. Yummmmmm.
Since we were still used to Dallas time, it was the easiest day for us to wake up early so we planned on driving all the way across Maui to see the sunrise at Haleakala. We woke up at 3am to make the 2 hour drive across the island. Getting to the volcano only took a little over an hour, but once we started traveling up it, it took about another hour and was a little unnerving. It was pitch black and hairpin turns the entire way. When we got to the parking area we were shocked at how many people were already there - people everywhere!! At the bottom of the volcano it was about 73 degrees, but once we made it up the entire 10,000 feet elevation, the temperature had plummeted to about 40 degrees with 40 mph wind gusts making it feel below freezing! Everyone was in down jackets with blankets and hoodies and gloves. We found a little spot by the edge and waited for the sun to come up. It was quite cloudy, which I was actually excited about because I knew the sunrise would reflect on the clouds and make for some amazing views. And, boy, was it amazing. I'm so glad we made the trek to see it. The pictures speak for themselves.
After the sunrise, we made our way down the volcano. And with the sun out, we could see that a lot of the side of the road had 90 degree dropoffs with no barrier - good thing we couldn't see it on our way up!
We then stopped at Hula Lodge for breakfast. I got hot chocolate (yes, hot chocolate in Hawaii!) and the views were amazing.
After breakfast, we drove to Ho'okipa Beach on the north shore to check out some windsurfers. Since this beach is on the north shore its quite rough so its really popular with windsurfers and boogie boarders - lots of locals hang out here. One of the windsurfer's dogs was on the beach and he kept us quite entertained. He'd grab coconuts and then shred them with his teeth! Such a beach dog!
After such an early morning, we grabbed lunch at Gestes Shrimp Truck (another must visit, SO GOOD) and then spent the afternoon at the beach. The beach at Honua Kai is so nice - white sand, clear water, and lots of coral so it was good for snorkeling.
Honua Kai also has really nice grounds and a grilling area with brand new Weber grills, so we decided to enjoy the scenery and nice weather and grilled out that evening. There were beautiful sunset views!
Such a great start to our trip. I'll finish out the rest of our trip in a couple additional posts. :)