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Maui, 17 days in Paradise

Updated: Feb 28, 2021


MAUI


We took our honeymoon in 2009 to Maui and we said we would return for our 10 year anniversary with our family. We returned in 2019 with our 9 yr old son (yes a Maui baby!) and visited many of the same places we fell in love with on our first trip.


During this time they do require a negative covid test even if you have the vaccine. Please check before you go as these rules can change. At this time you must have it 72 hours before and only from certain companies.


I will talk about all we saw and hope they are open when you visit. Make these reservations as soon as you know you are going: Mamas Fish House, we liked an hour before sunset so you can see it at day time and night. Old Lahaina Luau, Sunrise on the Volcano. I will talk more about these below.

Flight I saved up all my Delta points to fly us all out first class for free for both trips. I use my Delta American Express card for everything and racked up just under 900,000 delta miles in 9 years for the second trip. This allowed us to fly first class with the beds! I highly recommend you do this too as this was one less big expense.


Click on the links below for pictures from each:

Delta One from LAX to ATL LAX Delta area LAX Delta Skyclub Skyclub A in Atlanta


Car Rental We booked our rental car through Costco, they carry most of the name brand places. You need a membership but you do not pay when you book. If the price changes you can cancel your reservation and redo it for a cheaper rate. We have used them a couple of times and always found them to be the best value! They also allow two adults to be on a reservation without the extra charge.


Check your car insurance and see if they cover rental cars or if you need to buy the insurance. I always take pictures of your car when you get it, the mileage and inside and when we return it with the pictures showing we are in their lot. The company we used, (not Costco) did send us a letter 6 months later saying there was damage and they charged my husbands card a huge fee but after sending pics we proved we did not, so they came in handy. You can rent car seats through the company. Our son was old enough to not be required to use it but we want him to have one so we ran to Walmart and got a cheap one and donated it when we left. It cost the price of one day rental for the seat. As for GPS rental, our phones worked for most drives (not Road to Hana) so only rent a GPS if you like the big screen. We brought our cell phone holder with us for the rental car.


We first rented a jeep, but then it was a pain to put the top up when it would randomly rain so we traded back for a convertible like we had on our honeymoon.


Costco If you know my husband you know his love for Costco and how every trip we always have to hit Costco first thing!


Speaking of cars and Costco. They usually have the cheapest gas at Costco so we would fill up there anytime we were on that side of the island.


They do sell gift certificates to some places to eat and some events, for cheaper but we did not purchase any as well we didn't think of it and saw them the last day! lol


Suntan lotion

Hawaii now has about reef safe suntan lotion so we just waited to buy ours there. I figure they sell it, it must be approved.


Breakfast To save money, we ate most breakfasts in the condo. Although a loaf of bread is roughly $7-9, so not as cheap as eating at home. We stocked up on foods at Costco for the over 2 week stay.


Where to stay The islands has different areas. When you sight see, try to stay in the same area to save time. Kihei and and Wailea are close to each other. We stayed in Waliea on the honeymoon at the Marriott there and we loved it. This trip we stayed in a condo in Kihei across from the beach to be able to make our own breakfast and now have 3 people stuck in a small room for 17 days and to be able to do laundry. We loved the kihei and Wailea area. Some like closer to Lahaina. We also got a great rate on a 2 bedroom condo for $125 a night. It was not ocean front, but the subdivision was across the street from the beach so very convenient. We decided to spend money and stay longer then to pay for a view for a shorter trip.

There is Upcountry that has the Volcano, Lavender Fields, Pineapple fields, Kula Lodge, Goat Farm, glass blowing and more. The IAO area and area and Bailey House are another area. Paia, Hana, Baldwin Beach, start to the , start to the Road to Hana, Mommas Fish House, and , and Ho’oikpa(where the turtles are) is another area but near the UpCountry area some. The Airport area has Costco, Walmart, Sugar Museum, Target etc. Maalaea is the area of the aquarium, the bumper boats and where you get some snorkeling crusies. Lahaina is another area about an hour from the airport and Kaanapali is past it.

Here are some tips: *You may want to bring shopping bags from home as Maui is plastic free and you have to buy bags here. *It gets dark early here. In June it was dark around 7:30/8 in the winter months earlier. I noticed they do not have many street lights, so it is dark to drive. *Interesting fact: there are no snakes in Maui *They are using mostly paper straws and you need to ask for a straw if you want one. *We are from Atlanta, while we were there, it was a heat wave. Most places are open air and not air conditioned. If you rent a place make sure it has air conditioning if you want it. Most have just window units too. *Do not take nature from the island. Please leave all shells, lava pieces etc there.


*Stay 20 feet away from turtles. It is a law and you can be fined.


*Items I suggest to bring: Water shoes (keens/tevas/Chacos to hike) pool shoes hat if you want to block the sun water camera or Go Pro We used the Black Hero 7 Go Pro with the floating handle stick for the water. Dry pak cell phone holder-this is a must. Great to keep hotel key and cell phone in at the beach and if you drop your phone in the water while swimming or doing water sports it floats. I only trust this brand! Everyone should have one fore each phone! *everything is more expensive here so I always try to bring my necessities from home *cheap raft to float in and leave there *bug spray for Hana, top of the volcano and IAO ( other areas we never noticed any bugs) *rain gear ( we brought umbrella, rain coat and disposable rain coat) *reef safe sun tan lotion *backpack cooler ( we got one at Costco in Maui) or you can get this one off Amazon

*Warm clothes for the top of the volcano. They say general rule is 30 degrees cooler than at the bottom. We brought old stuff for this and left it in the condo for the next renters.

*two piece suit ( I am heavy and never wear them but got one that covered up most of me but was so easy to take off in the porta potties at beaches and road to Hana)




Apps: I suggest the following Maui Happy Hours app. This will tell you what part of Maui has happy hours. Shaka Road to Hana $9.99 or Gypsy Road to Hana $9.99 Great to hear history and know about stops.

*Amazon affiliate


DAY 1 We landed about 6:oo Pm Maui Time. Before you land they will have everyone fill out one declaration per household asking if you are bringing in any fruit or animals. Make sure to have a pen handy and know where you are staying when you fill these out on the plane. You then turn them in on the plane. You deboard and leave like any other flight. I really wish they had people here selling Lei’s! I found this company on line while on the trip.I wish we had know about this as I would have had it done as my son so wanted one there. https://leigreeting.com/ We did grab some at Costco the next day. There is a store I found when we left, if you do not go to baggage claim from Delta area when you deboard. Pass the turn right to baggage claim and walk straight. Walk to the area with stores. Take a left like you are going to the other gates and there is a little store on the left. They are in a fridge on left they were 2 for $20 when we went home.

Maui now has a nice new car rental area that just opened when we went on 2019. You get your luggage and then you will see a sign for the tram to car rental. Cross the street, board the tram. You get off at the second stop. Stop one is for ticketing. You go to your car rental place and check in. There are very nice bathrooms here, if you need them and then go downstairs. They will tell you a spot your car is in like A 25 and you go find it. When you leave they ask for your rental agreement and the license of the person who rented it. Make sure you know how to take a top off a jeep or convertible if you do not know how before you leave. When you pull out get far right to exit the airport area. (Don't forget to take pics of the car!) Just an fyi we had to go back the next day. If you ever need to drop someone off at the rental area, you can go in and drop them off and not have to show the papers to get out and continue on your way.

Now it is time to go enjoy paradise. There are a few places to eat around here, a Costco and a and a Walmart.

I love all the neat items you can find there are they have covered seating to eat under. Walmart (and McDonald's) are near by too. We ran in here too to grab some things too.


FYI roosters walk around every where so don't worry.




DAY 2 We started the day at a favorite place from our honeymoon, Fred’s in Kihei for breakfast. I think technically is it called Mooses for breakfast. It amazing food and cheap if you find the buy one get one free coupon. Fred’s over looks the ocean so its a nice view while you eat. There is a great little store next store with jewelry and gifts.

We then went to Big Beach also know as Makena Beach6600 Makena Alan, Kihei, Hi 96753. This beach is beautiful to look at, but very dangerous to swim in. They have big waves that crash at the beach and read many reviews not for children and dangerous. A man died there the day we left. There are lifeguards here till 4:30. There is not much shade here either. They do have portable bathrooms here and 3 lifeguard stations. I still recommend going here for the beauty, but please be careful if swimming here. Next to it is Little Beach, Maui's nude beach. You can not see it from here. When you drive up its the stop before. We just put in google maps Big Beach to get directions. Read Day 4 adventure as just up the rode is a lava field!



We then went to We then went to Matteos Osterio for dinner, again another place we went to on our honeymoon. It has great Italian food and is located in for dinner, again another place we went to on our honeymoon. It has great Italian food and is located in Wailea. They do have a children's menu and were great about getting my sons food out first for him.

DAY 3 My cousin lives in the Island of Oahu, so she flew in for the day as I had not seen her in a while. We picked her up at the airport. Easy to do if you need to pick up people. Go passed ticketing and the next section is to pick people up. We then went to the We then went to the Mill House/Maui Tropical Plantation for a 11:30 reservation. This whole place is a must but heard during covid it shut down. I really hope it opens back up! I fell in love with it right away and can not believe more people do not recommend this place. We made a 11:30 reservation. We got there about 11 and went to the fruit stand they had there. My son wanted coconut water so we got him one. We found out, get a green one to drink and the brown ones are better for the meet. It was delicious! We then went to the little store to look around as we waited for our reservation. We had bought ahead of time tickets for the tour at 1:00. I highly recommend you do this! I checked in and got a pamphlet with our time on it. I also got 2 bags for $2 each of duck food for my son and cousin to feed the ducks. located behind the restaurant. We then went to the Mill House to eat. Make sure to try to sit outside. It is such an amazing view. The pictures could not capture the beauty! It makes you feel like you are in Jurassic Park minus the dinosaurs! The food was amazing and so was the service. Mention Kihei Dinning Magazine for a free desert. We got the Toasted Pavlova and it was Devine! We then went to find the tram. We loaded and were off for our 45 min tour. They do a great job of showing you what they have on property such as apple bananas, papaya, mango, macadamia nut, coffee, plumeria, coconuts and more. They then stop and you learn how to husk a coconut.

You end up back where you started and they give you a fruit cup sampling of some of the fruits you saw today. This place is amazing and a must in my book. It is very rare my son, husband and I all agree on a place and we all give it a 10!! My cousin also enjoyed it!! It was the perfect place!! They also do a farm to table Chef dinner here too! I hope we get to go back for it! Children under 11 are not permitted so adults can enjoy the experience. They also do zip lining here too! We then went back to We then went back to Big Beach to show my cousin.

For dinner to balance the expensive lunch we went to For dinner to balance the expensive lunch we went to Coconuts. We had heard they had amazing fish tacos so we decided to try it. There are 2 locations. This one was located upstairs near Kam Beach II. You order when you first walk in then seat yourself at cute little surf board tables. The fish tacos come in 2's and they have 17 items on them. They are messy to eat! From this location you could watch the sun set out the windows.

We then went to try to find shave ice. The place we wanted to go was closed, so we then went to try to find shave ice. The place we wanted to go was closed, so we went to Peace, Love and Shave Ice. Its located in a parking lot of a strip mall. We stumbled upon this place. They have different flavors and you get these cool containers they sit in while you eat. You then return them to an area when done. They have maybe 10 bar stools around it to sit at and eat.

DAY 4 We started our day driving to the Kihei Fruit Stand. We loved eating fresh fruit everyday!

When we arrived we saw the place Sugar Beach Bake Shop next door had next door had Malsadas. My neighbor back home had told us how amazing they were so we got in line to order some. They have different flavored ones. We liked the regular sugar ones the best. They make them fresh so you may wait a few minutes and then you get them at the shave ice window. They also had amazing macadamia nut sticky buns!


We then ran to ABC Store to shop next door! I spent way to much money here over our whole trip! I love it here!

We then went to drive to Big Beach and then went on to the and then went on to the Makena Lava Fields. Since our honeymoon they have paved the roads and added a real place to park and stop to look. Just pass Big Beach and keep driving and you will come to them. Make sure you have good hiking shoes here. I did the walk with a broken foot down to the water. We saw many snorkel here too.



Maui Ocean Center

We missed this our first trip to Maui, so now with a son we were excited to go. I had read do it on a rainy day but most of it is outside so, I just know that if you go on a rainy day. They do have an amazing new humpback whale 3d movie inside. There are only a few exhibits here I am.. We are from Atlanta, so we compare a lot to our aquarium and it was just ok but still glad we went as it was different. In our opinion it was not wroth the $100 for the 3 of us in our mind. I do know if you buy tickets online you get a little discount. Again, we had the GA Aquarium so its hard when we compare it to it. They do have a snack place, a place to hold a star fish, and a little playground. In out minds it was to pricey for what little they had. (Sorry just being honest) They have a great gift shop too. When you go in they are to give kids a paper they can go around and do rubbings on. We were never given one and my son saw it at the end and was disappointed. So be sure to ask for one. Outside the aquarium is some shops and places to eat. We then drove to Lahaina. Look around for coupons for $5 off or coupon for a free gift. We got a card with all the fishes on it.


The aquarium was half way to Lahaina from Kihei. So we journeyed on the scenic route to there. There is a place to pull over and look at the ocean.

We had dinner at Fleetwoods. This is another must in our books and make sure to get a reservation at sunset up top!

Fleetwoods is located on Front Street in Lahaina. They open for dinner at 5:00. We made our reservation on Opentable.com. While I think anyplace would be fine to sit, you really want a rooftop table! They luckily could accommodate us! The view of the water is stunning and would be great to actually watch the sun set there. We had left before it did. They have at 5:45 a sunset ceremony up here. A native comes and teaches you a few words in Hawaiian and then he lights the torches.


The service was fab and the food was amazing. Again, rare all three of us love a place and this is one. You must get the pineapple pie for desert and my son loved the raw cookie dough cookies!!



Lahaina Luna Cafe,we did not eat here but looked like good food at reasonable prices. It is right next to Ululani's.


My son wanted a shark necklace and Whalers in Lahaina is the place to go. He had one on and she told him about the one he had one. He had been saving his money for one and got a nice one. Most are not cheap! I mean who knew you could spend $90 on a tooth? No, we did not!



They do have some cheap ones for $5 if you want a cheap one. The lady was wonderful and very knowledgeable here. If you want a shark necklace this is the place to go!


We then wondered the street looking in the shops, stopped to watch the sun set and see the Banyan Tree.

We then had to get the famous We then had to get the famous shave ice from from Ululani’s This is the best shave ice in Maui! This is the Lahaina location and there is one in Sugar Beach too. The ice literally melts in your mouth! You chose a size small, medium or large. Then choose a preset flavor or mix 3 of your choice, You can add ice cream or a cream on top for an extra price. I loved the topping!. Then sit back and enjoy heaven! Be prepared to stand in line. We waited over an hour. But it is worth it!





Day 5

We went on the Maui Pineapple Tour. When we came for our honeymoon 10 yrs ago, we went on this tour. My son was so excited to go on this tour after we told him about it. Purchase tickets here: http://mauipineappletour.com. They were $65 an adult and $55 a child when we went. You can also add on the distillery for $10 more. We did not have time to do this option. I would encourage you to maybe call and see what day they do their picking, When we went 10 yrs ago, they were working in the fields working which we thought was really cool to watch. This time they were not. It would also be cool to see them working in the area where they box the pineapples too. Another note, go on a weekday. We went on a weekend and I had wanted to eat at the restaurant Hali'imaile General Store across the street but they did not open till 5 on weekends. http://www.hgsmaui.com. They do have a food truck here for you to purchase food if needed. Buy your tickets on line ahead of time. Plan to get there 15 min before the time. It was very easy to find. My Verizon cell service went out right before we got there, so remember which way you came and the GPS worked in 1 mile. It was a very easy drive. Check in and then sign the waiver for your family. We then used the restroom and boarded the bus. We had brought waters with us, but they have a cooler on board with waters. I will say, I do not get motion sick easily and because it was hot and the roads are bumpy, I was feeling a little queasy. Maybe take a Bonnie or Dramine if you get car sick easy. Also we came during a heat wave, but I wish I had had my portable fan on the bus as it was still hot with air conditioning on. Our tour guide was JC. She was awesome and had a great personality. She was very "sweet!" Get it, like a pineapple! Did you know Maui Gold's are the sweetest pineapples in the world!?! You start driving by going into the fields. She will stop and tell you how they plant them, then a second stop to see the cute baby pineapples, and the third stop to see them almost full grown and she will cut up a few pineapples for you to sample. When we went years ago, they actually let us in the fields to pick our own. She said they stopped this about 2 years ago as you can now bring your pineapples on the airplane with you and will not count as a carry on. They have to be prepared before you can fly with them, so this is why you can no longer pick your own. Please make sure to declare your fruit! We heard you can take 4 pineapples a piece on the place. We had 7 in one checked bag. Next we left the fields and went into the area where they box up the pineapples and this is where you get one pineapple per person. If there are two people in your party you get one box with two. There are a few steps into the area to go to see the boxing, but could easily be skipped if you can not do steps. I had a boot on a hurt foot and did it fine. She then takes you back to where we boarded the bus and this is the you could do the distillery if you have that ticket. We learned a lot about pineapples and were impressed to learn they only have 56 employees! 7 people do all the planting which is beyond amazing to me! They have a shop in Lahaina and she will give you a 10 percent off coupon for that store at the end of the tour. Make sure to tip your guide!! This is an amazing experience and one that you should not miss on a trip to Maui!


We then went to We then went to Fred's Mexican for dinner. It is great place to get good food on the cheaper side. Check out taco Tuesday when you can get fresh tacos for $4 each. They have some awesome fish ones! It has amazing views of the beach from inside the restaurant.We then went to Kam II Beach and my son swam as we waited for sunset. This is a great place to watch a sunset.





Day 6

Top of the Volcano

Stopped at Costco a few minutes out of the way to get the cheap gas! We saw no gas stations once we started driving to go . Also once you get into the park, there is no place for food. We had originally booked a reservation for sunrise on the volcano, but that was the only day my cousin could come so we skipped it as we thought it would be to long a day. Only for sunrise do you need to make a reservation. Reservations are now available, online only, up to 60 days in advance of your sunrise visit. It costs $1 to reserve and then $25 the day of to get in. It is that price no matter when you go. Click here to make a reservation. https://www.nps.gov/hale/planyourvisit/sunrise-and-sunset.htm You can call the reservation line at 1-877-444-6777 to make a reservation over the phone.

A small number of last-minute tickets are released online two days beforehand at 4:00 PM HST. The website will show tickets as sold out until 4:00 PM

Please note that calling the park directly, or visiting in-person, will not result in a reservation since staff at Haleakalā National Parkare unable to make reservations for you.

No reservations for sunset are required at this time.

If you do sunrise, dress warmly! It is usually 30 degrees cooler up there than when you leave your place. No matter what time of day, dress warmly. Have hats, gloves, coats and blankets for sunrise. You also want to get there early to get parking at the top. If not you have to park about 5 min down and walk up, so bring flashlights. Once through the gate where it is $25 ( cash or charge card) it is about 25 more minutes. The road is windy but nothing like Hana. There is a gift shop with bathrooms and a picnic table up there about 10 mins after you paid. We then went up the rest of the way. There was some kind of weird nat type bugs that day. We went to the very top, but sadly it was cloudy so not a great view. I will also post pics from 10 yrs ago with the good view. There is a telescope up here that many scientist wait months to get to use! It is not open to the public. There is an area to go into look out if you are to cold. There is also an elevation sign. We then went down to the other area. Again bathrooms and a smaller gift shop. We then began our drive down. It was about 11 am and there was a huge cloud for almost the whole way down. There is not much railing near the road so I was a little nervous. My husband said it was fine. We were also in a convertible with the top down. On the way up there is not much room to pull over to put a top up so do it at one of the gift shops. The road did feel like 2 lanes though.




After we drove down we stopped at After we drove down we stopped at Kula Lodge. It has an amazing view out back and the food was great. There was only one other place we saw near here to eat. I had seen someone post about a place to eat on the way to/from the volcano. By the time we were down to this point, we were starving so we stopped here I am so glad we did. We were lucky and walked in. 20 mins later there was a wait. They have clean bathrooms and free wifi too! The food was amazing! I got the crab cakes, my son the prime rib sandwich and my husband the Ruben. They made home made pizzas in an oven outside that looked amazing too! The view is amazing. They have a little area you can go stand and look at the view. My so walked near the little huts and found a little pond. They have an art gallery here too and a cute little shop. Again another place we all loved. It is not cheap though. Each meal we got was $18-22 each. They also had a cute gift shop and art gallery.

The lavender fields and and Goat Farm are near here to so you could go to one of those after, but we were to tired. You also pass the street the Maui Gold Pineapple tour is on and the Hali'imaile General Store is. you could wait and eat there too. We did stop at the We did stop at the Sugar Cane Museum while my husband ran to Walmart to get a few items. It was $7 for adult and my son was $2. It had lots of old pictures on the Sugar Cane history and a few interactive things. They also give you a paper to stamp as you go through the museum and then kids get a small little paper book if they finish it. We were not given one and had to ask when we saw others with it. This is does note really hold kids attentions much and my son and I both thought it was ok. It is geared to history buffs. My son and I both thought my brother would love it. They do have restrooms and a small gift shop.




Day 7 Today we went to Kam II in the morning to swim. There are 3 beached in Kihei Kam I, II, III. We just seemed to like II better, no real reason why. We usually had breakfast or lunch at Freds as it is so easy to walk across fro the beach. They have a shower, bathroom, lifeguard stand, and street parking. We saw turtles swim past us every day we went here by 1. The have an area on the end that is good to snorkel in too. Reminder to stay 25 ft away from them.

We then went home to change and got ready to drive to Lahaina about 45 mins away to the We then went home to change and got ready to drive to Lahaina about 45 mins away to the Old Lahaina Luau. This is your time to dress up in those Hawaiian shirts!


Make reservations way in advance. We made them right after we made our plane tickets so over a year ahead. We paid for the premium seats so we were right in front. My son loved this. These you sit on a pillow on the ground to watch. All the other seats are tables. The give you seating preference in order of when you bought your tickets. There really is no bad seat.

You pay for your tickets when you reserve your seats. It is a limited open bar and and it is included but don’t forget to bring cash to tip your server.

They great you with a Mai Tai and a lei They do have virgin ones made too.


There is plenty of free parking there or across the street. You can go in at 615 and walk around They have hula lessons with music sticks, see how a coconut is cut and eat a sample, visit vendors of home made items, take family pictures with a professional photographer with the amazing sunset and learn about how they roast the pig and see it taken out of the ground. This starts at 6:45. Get to this spot a few minutes before to get up close.

Then dinner is served. They go in order of seats so we were the first to eat at the buffet. They also put bread and a yummy butter on the table. They will tel you when you can go back up for a second share.


The show starts about 8:00 They bring desert right before this.


It was hot in the sun till the sun goes down. The show ends about 9. (Please note these are the summer hours, winter months it starts earlier.) When you drive back to Kihei, please note the roads are dark.

Day 8 My son and I got up and did a little shopping. I wanted to see what the Kihei Market Place was like. It was just ok.

We then went to get my husband and go to a new beach, We then went to get my husband and go to a new beach, Baldwin Beach. I am not sure why, but this is the one beach I felt like we always had to keep an eye on our belongings. We did see turtles here, but it seemed a little rougher than Kam II. They had bathrooms, lots of parking and a nice picnic table house.


We then went a few miles down the road to We then went a few miles down the road to Ho’olpia Beach. Some refer to it as turtle beach. We stopped at the top to watch the surfers. There is a food truck there with great smoothies and amazing Mango bread! We ate it before we even got home.


Then we drove down to see the turtles below.



At this time my son was swimming near that area, along with many others and the next thing you know he is like uhm mom and a turtle swam right up next to him. He then moved to make sure to stay far away from them. Again please keep 25 ft from them.





Day 9 Road to Hana


Click the arrow on the picture to see all the amazing places you will see! (Its middle on the far right side, its black so you cant see it well)


The info below is from really 3 trips on this road. We got up early to drive to the roan to Hana. You need to prepare ahead before you go. Have a cooler with drinks, we were our suits to begin with, download the Shaka or Gypsy app, have snacks, sunscreen and bug spray, bring rain gear if you want it, a towel to dry off with and hiking/water shoes. I did let my mother know what day we did this so she was aware. The cell service stopped for my right after Mammas Fish House and I have Verizon but the apps still work. We used the Shaka app. It starts around the airport. It gives history to tells you of stops along the ways. It told us to stop to get lunch in Pai. We got there at 7 and walked in and were only ones. Another day my husband went around 8 and there were 40 people in line. I suggest you get gas before you leave, maybe the night before as the gas stations are not open early. Again Costco has it the cheapest. Have food encase this place is busy as there are not many places to stop for a meal along the way. We got some great sandwiches here and we all were hungry at different times so each ate when we wanted to.



This road trip can take a long time and really depends on how many stops you take. My son and I loved stopping at the food places along the way. It is a very curvy road. I took a Bonnie before we left. I have anxiety from a car accident since my last trip on Hana and had a hurt foot so we were not sure how far we would go. The road is not bad driving wise in my opinion, it is more if you get car sick. Spending hours doing over and over curves. There are a few one lane bridges too, but just slow down and wait your turn. We had a convertible and were there during a heat wave We had the top off from 6 am till 11:30 when I got over heated and realized most hikes I could just not do. We then turned around 10 miles before Hana. I felt horrible making them turn around, but knew I could not go any farther in teh heat and my husband wanted teh top off. He ended up renting a car another day and going back on his own. I saw be cautious, there are many spots I have heard where people go off trail and die. The day we went a man died 1 hour after we went to the Twin Falls. Then a few days later another man died there too. We saw people jump where I felt it was not safe and tour guides said many get helicoptered out of there. Use good judgement and all should be good. I do not say any of this to scare you but to remind you that anything can happen even on vacation. Please respect the land if any private property signs are up please do not cross them. I heard more areas are being closed to tourists.

Here are some stops we made: Aunt Sandys The best Banana Bread!!!

Kaena Road

Kaumahina State Wayside This is one of the few bathrooms and it is open 7-7 and they have a picnic table

Rainbow Trees

Twin Falls

Three Bears Falls

If you want to stop at Black Sand Beach, you must now reserve a spot. Entry is $5.00 per person, but is included with parking. There are four parking time slots, and you must purchase a $10 parking ticket for each time slot or portion thereof when you will be parked. The time slots are:

Morning I: 7:00AM - 10:00AM Morning II: 10:00AM - 12:30PM Afternoon I: 12:30PM - 3:00PM Afternoon II: 3:00PM - 6:00PM

So, if you plan on being there from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM, you must purchase TWO parking vouchers - one for Morning II and one for Afternoon I.

https://www.gowaianapanapa.com/carts




We then went home and took a nap and then went to Maui Brewing Company for dinner.

Day 10 The reason we came to Maui was for our 10 yr anniversary This was this day. We started the day at Kam II swimming, then my husband wanted to explore new beaches so we drove over an hour to try to get to a few but there was no parking so we ended up at The reason we came to Maui was for our 10 yr anniversary This was this day. We started the day at KamII swimming, then my husband wanted to explore new beaches so we drove over an hour to try to get to a few but there was no parking so we ended up at D T Fleming Beach. It was very pretty and located close to Lahaina area and where the Ritz is. We saw turtles here. On our honeymoon we saw 0. This year I felt we saw at least one a day! It was voted best beach in 2006 I think it was. There are showers, parking, bathrooms and lifeguards.


We then drove home to get ready for dinner. Mamas Fish House We made our reservations here the day I booked our flights, almost a year ahead. Yes do it as soon as you can. When you pull up there is a valet, Keep your card out as the check in hostess wants the valet number. You then walk down to the beach area to take pictures. It is amazing at sunset. You will walk on sand so make sure you have shoes for the sand. We took some pics before dinner then at sunset. I made a 6:15 reservation to get sun and the sunset. You then check in again at the other end of the beach area. We had a very little wait here and were seated. We were greeted with a Happy Anniversary Card. The service is top notch. We orders some drinks. Virgin ones were $14. Then ordered. My husband got an appetizer and we all got free a little mushroom soup to cleanse the pallet. Then the food came. We had talked for years about this place with my son. He did not think it would be good and he was like it is better than I thought! The menu says the fish and where it was caught on the island and by whom. I got lobster from the most remote island in the Island in the world near Antarctica. The food can seriously not be any better anywhere. The waitress, Spin, was amazing and even got my tail the minute I took it off the lobster! Desert was amazing and the creme brulee is world famous and was on a few TV shows. Everything was top notch here. It is pricey so save up , but we think one of the best places we have ever eaten at (twice) and we knew ahead we would spend a lot here.

Day 11 Went to Kam II again today. Then we went to Fabianis for lunch. We found this little place off S Kihei Road. I loved how they have a little outdoor area for kids to play in. My son was sad he was told old lol They had great pizza and great deserts!


We then drove to see the IAO. It was easy to find you pay $5 to park and they have restrooms near the parking. They were under reconstruction when we were thee so they did have portable bathrooms to use. You go over a little bridge and then walk up 150 steps. It was not bad, except my foot was in a boot so took me a little longer than the boys. The top there is a great view of the valley and the IAO. There is also a little covered house up here to sit in. The best spot to take a selfie is outside the house to the right of the house. There were people swimming in the rocks below but we chose not to. Not sure how safe it was. It did rain while we were here, and heard it rains here a lot.


On the drive back we stopped at the On the drive back we stopped at the Bailey House,you drive right past it. . My husband loved seeing Kahanamoku's surfboard here.

For dinner we went to For dinner we went to Monkeypods. Make sure to make a reservation for here. They make “the best Mai Tais on the island. I will say for a 4:45 reservation, it took forever for our order and they messed it up, but they ended up comping our meal. We did not ask, they did it automatically and we really never complained, so thought that was amazing they did that. The food was delicious. If you go before 5:30 they have a great happy hour. Appetizers were half off and drinks were a few dollars off each. It must be put in the system by 5:30 for these discounts.

Day12 We chose We chose Lani Kai for our snorkeling company. We chose them because they take a small amount of people out. Think it was 54. Most took 100 plus. We also do not drink when we go out. If you want to drink a lot they have other open bar cruises. I had read take the morning cruises as it gets choppier in the afternoon. They were great telling us when it would get choppy. We sat out front in the sun on the way out and I had taken a Bonnie before we left , but did feel a little sick and a few others did. I think the hot sun added to it. Remember if you get sick you are stuck here for 5 hours! Ours served breakfast and lunch. They also gave free Mai Tais on the way back. They had soda on board too and water. The staff was super friendly! You book online then show up at the dock in the email. Please note we parked at the beginning of the lot and most docks were on the other side so park near your slip number One side is even, one is odd. the bathroom was on the to other side too. We then took an hour to go out to We then took an hour to go out to Molokini Crater. The water was clear and we saw lots of fish. They also offered They also offered SNUBA. I think it was for 8 yrs and older. This was an additional fee. We also rented wet suites for $10 each they even had my plus size I needed and kid sizes. For free they lent my husband prescribed googles. All googles and gear are lent to you to snorkel in your ticket price. We brought our own snorkel as I did not like the thought of someone elses mouth on it. We used their fins and googles. We were her and hour and it felt like 10 mins because you are having so much fun. The water was super cold so glad we got the wet suits. They also have a slide off the back of the boat the kids can go down. It was a little small for most adults. We were then to go to Turtle Island but due to winds went else where. It was farther our so we had lunch first (cold meats) and then snorkeled again for 45 mins. The water was murkier here but some saw a turtle and close to land saw colorful fish. They also had a boogie board with a see through window they let me son use. Then it was time for Mai Tias and cruising back. Make sure to tip your crew when you get off!

Day 13

Ula Beach was to be a family beach but the waves were real big they day we went. We then went to the Marriott Wailea for lunch where we had our honeymoon to show my son around. When you pull up a valet greats you. I noticed they now give leis to guests who arrive to stay there. Something I was so disappointed with from our honeymoon as they did not do that then. We walked around the beautiful grounds and showed him and then went to have lunch at the pool bar/restaurant, Kapa. It was very pricey for lunch over $110 for 2 meals and one kid meal and 1 drink and 2 virgin. Kid meals are $16. They had a nice reserved table for us as I said it was for our anniversary, but the waiter never mentioned it or did anything special for us. Just thought he could have said Happy Anniversary at least, but will say I felt the same on our honeymoon They did nothing for us not even a card in the room. I guess most go there for honeymoons, but still felt it should have been acknowledge back then when we stayed for 20 days. Guess I watch to many movies! They now have nice outdoor swings and little areas to lay on in the common area and a cute Aloha sign. They also have an escape room here ( see day 14 for info on it). Don’t get me wrong we loved this hotel, just felt like they need to acknowledge special occasion even just with a verbal “Happy Honeymoon or Happy Anniversary” or note but that was 2009.

After this we went to After this we went to Maui Golf and Sports Park to do Bumper Boats. We wore our swim suits there and brought a towel. Also bring a bag to keep things dry in, if you have no one to hold your items. They have also put put golf, a climbing wall, and a trampoline. Looking back I should have gotten my son the pass that covered them all. We had a great time here. Each area you get 5 mins.


Day 14 This day must husband rented a car for us so he could take ours to go to the road to Hana. My son and I started out driving to Lahaina and stopping at the fruit stand near Leodas. We both loved the fresh pineapple juice they put in a real pineapple here for $10. They even make a hole for the straw! We got some fruit here, some bamboo straws and then went continued to drive.


We then went to We then went to Slappy Cakes here you make your own pancakes at the table. My son and I loved this. When we went there was a 30 min wait, but my son said it was so worth it! Highly recommend if you have kids! I do suggest you get chocolate and reg mix so you can make cute designs in different colors. I do like how they have plenty of seats to sit inside or out while you wait and there were toys for little ones to play with while they waited!




We then went to Lahaina to go shopping. We could not find parking so parked in a lot It was like $6 for 2 hours. So we hurried through Front Street as fast as we could shopping. We stopped at the Maui Gold store for a snack, they put pineapple in a blender and turn it into ice cream and then add a pineapple slice in the shape of a pineapple. We then hurried to the car.


We loved the store We loved the store CocoNene. Shout out to Maria who helped us there. We then went to Leodas for lunch. They have amazing pies here and the line can get long! I got the chicken pot pie for lunch and it was so yummy!

Then we went to the Marriott to do the high tech escape room. Submerged Maui. I will say it was a little stuffy in there, but the best escape we we have been to yet. They have laser beams, smoke etc. We then went to 5 Palms for dinner. It was an amazing place to watch the sunset and the food was amazing. For desert I got a creme Brulee in a pineapple!! We then went to see the sun set right after dinner. I had a lobster special and they had kid meals. Truly a great way to end a trip!


Day 15/16 The day had come and we must return to reality and say Aloha to Maui! We ended up paying for an extra day so we did not have to leave the condo by 10 am as we had a 9 PM flight. My son and I got up and went to Kam II for a little bit. Then we had lunch at Then we had lunch at Cafe O Lei. After that got some last minuted gifts at the ABC store. We then went back to the condo and finished packing and did one last Taco Tuesday at Fred’s. They will not seat you until everyone is there. We then drove back to the airport to drop off the car. Look for the car rental signs and its easy to follow. Pull up then check the car, give you a receipt and you are on your way. Walk to the elevator/escalators and go up. Again, nice bathroom here. Take the tram one stop to ticketing and get off. It is a weird fit here as you have to turn your suit case sideways to roll it down the side walk. Then all checked luggage goes through agriculture and gets a pink ticket. Then you get it and take it to your airline. Delta double checked we had the stickers on them. We checked the luggage and went to security. FYI this airport is outside so it was very hot and we were so sweaty by the time we got to this point. They randomly asked for my cell phone and said I was randomly chosen. I had my sons Benadryl with me which is over 3 oz and they had to wipe the bottle to test it to. Then you go up the escalator to the air conditioning. Again, it is open air so never felt cold to us at all. I then shopped a little and then we went to the gate. Deltas was at the very end so a long walk. Somewhere they made our carry on go through a agriculture check too. You can buy Pineapples 3 for $30 in a box here and there was a Starbucks and few places to eat at the top of the escalator. Not much after this area. By the Delta terminal there is a small bar and restrooms. We then got on our flight to LAX and headed home. We had a 3 hour layover in LAX. From LAX to ATL we had the nice Delta One Seats. The day had come and we must return to reality and say Aloha to Maui! Place we did not have time for, so guess we will just have to go back! Maui Wine Lahaina Cannery Mall Reef Dancer Pi’ihola Ranch (Horseback Riding) Aquaball/Dragon Fruit Tour Bike or hike the Volcano Warren and Annabelles Magic show ( it is for ages 21 and up) Lavender Farm Surfing Goat Dairy Shops at Wailea Ukele lessons in the Ukele store from 5:30-6:30 on Mondays and Fridays 3-4 Jazz from 5:30-7 On Wednesdays Island Carvings 10:30-1 Wed, Fri 12:30-3:30 Market 2 and 4th Wed of Each month Dance lessons Tues and Thursday 5:30-6:30 Wailea Walk Way (Did this on honeymoon but could not find pictures)

Atlantis submarine Botanical Gardens Places we did not have time to eat at: Chef Table at Maui Plantation Down the Hatch Flatbreads (Pai) Merimanns Pai Fish Market Lanai You can take a Ferry over from Lahaina. The two Four Seasons Resorts here: https://www.fourseasons.com/lanai/ and https://www.fourseasons.com/koele/ We went in 2010 and just felt there was not much to do. You can ride horses here, rent ATV and stay at the two Four Seasons hotels here. ( Chris Pratt was on his honeymoon here when we went.) I do caution if the waves get bad they cancel boats back to Maui and you are stuck on this island and can try to get a pricey room at the Four Seasons. People all recommend the Cat Sanctuary Check Groupon for deals too!


Check back each Tuesday to learn tips for your families trips! Check here for other trips I have posted about! In this every changing world, this information is to the best of my knowledge accurate but things can change daily, so I suggest you always double check before you visit.


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