We went to Maui to attend a wedding that was being held in Olowalu (west side), so we stayed in Lahaina for most of our vacation (also west side, where the resorts were). We stayed at the Royal Lahaina resort, which was BEAUTIFUL. I believe we booked through Costco travel, which was the cheapest and included a car rental.
This was our fucking view every day from our balcony. On the right is the ocean. AMAZING. BEAUTIFUL. UNREAL.
Number 1 recommendation: The acai bowl from BAYA BOWL in Lahaina.
The berry smoothie base, the insanely sweet fresh fruit, the crunch of the coconut and granola. UGH. So good we basically went back three times in one week.
I couldn’t really find a poke place that everyone recommended as a MUST GO. But lots of people said go to Foodland near our resort, and we did. It was great. SO much selection. Tastes like the sea! Ervin went nuts. We actually bought a lot of snacks, food, and beer at Foodland because food is expensive at restaurants.
Saw a cool giant banyan tree in downtown Lahaina. The in-laws took some submarine tour that we didn’t want to go on, so we wandered around Lahaina. Cool little walkable town.
We went to the Old Lahaina Luau. There were two to choose from in our area, but this one was supposed to be better. Make reservations. Bottomless drinks and traditional Hawaiian buffet with a great show! Lots of history, dancing, and right on the water. The food was good, the drinks were great, and the show was mesmerizing!
Here’s us being tourists!
The couple invited the whole family out to Kimo’s (Lahaina). The view from the patio was spectacular. Right on the water. Food was good iirc, but nothing reaaally stood out. I just remember it being good. We didn’t pay so I don’t know what the pricing is like.
Had shaved ice because apparently that’s the thing to do in Hawaii. It’s like Taiwanese shave ice except instead of being creamy, it’s more like sweet syrup fruity. I guess kind of like a sno-cone… but better? Pretty good but nothing crazy.
Cute shop pie shop. Pies were good. Nothing crazy, but good pie. We went here before leaving for the airport.
The only hike we did: The Waikhee Ridge Trail. Ervin only made it up about a half hour haha. But if you get to the top of the ridge, you get basically a 360 view of the island. SO BEAUTIFUL. Peaceful. We went really early, probably like 6 or 7 in the morning. No one was around. Not too hot. It was great!!!
ROAD TO HANA
We took a whole day to drive out to Hana – the eastern tip of the island. Usually people recommend staying the night in Hana before heading back because you definitely DO NOT want to be driving those roads at night. It’s very dark (no lights), and VERY windy (like switchback curves, not air flow haha). So our plan to do it in one day was to leave early and not stop at every stop on the way to Hana.
First stop was Ho’okipa Lookout. This is a world-famous windsurfing beach. Very cool to watch dozens of windsurfers flow in and out. Calming to watch from afar but focussing on each surfer gave an adrenaline rush.
We doubled back about 10 minutes for our reservations at Mama’s Fish House. It is the most famous/popular/best restaurant on Maui. The view is AMAZING. Romantic. Quintessential Hawaii. Lots of famous people go here. The food was GREAT – local, fresh, seasonal.
Fat, fresh oysters with a passionfruit mignonette. THE BEST OYSTERS I’VE EVER HAD. Period. Pointe finale.
However, super super expensive. We probably tipped about $40, so $220 for 2 apps and 2 mains, very much on the pricey side, but very good. I think I’d be happy with it if we paid $200 CAD but in USD, it tipped it over to the too pricey to come again. Maybe for like a 25-year or 50-year anniversary.
Twin Falls – there’s a cute fruit stand and it’s a short hike (5-15 minutes) to the Falls. It’s cute, picturesque, people having fun and swimming. Not the most beautiful waterfall I’ve seen, but it’s cool to see a tropical waterfall compared to the ones we have in Hamilton (Waterfall Capital of the World, what-whaat). You also get to see lots of small waterfalls trickling along the road as you drive to Hana.
So a small note about the drive itself. Lots of switchbacks – beautiful, fun, lush, green! Coastal views at parts. There are some blind curves, and some parts where you have to yield to opposite traffic because the road only fits one car. Fun drive, but definitely advanced driving.
Halfway to Hana landmark! Little shack. Sells banana bread. Bought banana bread for photo. Banana bread is basic and regular. Good, but not unlike any other banana bread you’ve ever had.
Next stop: Waianapanapa Black Sand Beach state park. Very cool! Checked this off my bucket list. We probably spent almost an hour here. At this point we’re pretty tired, and got talking to people who got to Hana. It was only ten minutes away, but they said it was just a small town with not much to see.
In our research, people are often saying it’s about the journey – the things you see on the way to Hana – not the destination that is important. So we decided at this point to turn around instead of driving all the way around. Maybe if you stayed the night in Hana, you could do a hike on the east end of the island.
So on our way back, we stopped at Da Kitchen in Kahului, which I think we saw on Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives. The portions were HUGE. And the prices were the most reasonable that we’d seen all trip (aside from Foodland). Like seriously gigantic portions. I ate to my heart’s content and didn’t even make a dent. Anyway, pictured above is a Loco Moco – a Hawaiian specialty. We probably ate like 4 of these on our trip. Fried rice with a hamburger patty, fried egg, and gravy. So so so so good and such a comfort food. We also had the deep friend spam musubi here. Very good. Very satisfied with our meal here.
I definitely recommend this place.
So we went out for a family trip out to Kihei. We went to what is touted as the best sushi in Maui -. The food was AMAZING. I don’t think we had a single bad dish.
But you know what was even better? We happened to go on a half price event. BY ACCIDENT. Here’s our bill:
This was the bill for 5 people for very high end sushi. SO GOOD.
So we went on a Sunday (but I believe the deal is for Mondays too). The restaurant opens at 5pm. From 5pm-6pm, it’s 50% off. Line up before 4:30 AT LEAST to make sure you get a table before happy hour is over. It’s an AMAZING deal.
We didn’t get to go to all the places we wanted to go:
- Geste Shrimp Truck – Everyone says you HAVE to get garlic shrimp from a truck, and this one came highly recommended. Unfortunately for us, we tried to go 3 times but it was closed all three times. Just bad luck for us because we just weren’t in the area at the right times.
- Aloha Mixed Plate – also was closed the day we were available to go
- JAWZ Taco Lunch Truck – Also just didn’t make it out there
Anyways, I think that’s it for our trip. Hope yours is just as amazing! We didn’t do much because of the wedding, but also because we wanted to try out a vacation where it wasn’t all GO! GO! GO!
Enjoy some of these other pics as a send-off. Maui was beautiful, relaxing, and fulfilling.
Apparently some sea turtles down here.
Sunset at the wedding.
Taking a pic of your husband VS
Your husband taking a pic of you…
Views for days.
Look how young and relaxed we are.