The road to Hana has 617 hairpin curves over a total distance of 52 miles that’s about 11 curves per mile and a lot of tummy rumbling. Lots of places to pull over, catch your breath and sightsee but sometimes you need something more. I've gathered these suggestions off of Facebook from fellow travelers. My daughter gets sick on regular roads and loved the Hana Tonic which is sold all over. We found it at ABC stores.
When you pull over to explore a water fall or rest your tummy choose wisely. If the sign says no parking there is a reason and even if others are stopped keep going. Remember what your mom said when you told her everybody's doing it? Don't be stupid because somebody else is.
You won't get it until you get there .............
Two artists arrived in Lanai and while taking in the peace of the island they realized most of the native birds were being eaten by the thousands of feral cats on the island. Loving both cats and birds they looked for a way to keep both of them safe and happy. And so the story goes of the birth of the Cat Sanctuary.
We loved it. The cats were so friendly. Five or six were waiting right at the gate to say hello. We rode from the Harbor in one of the two island taxi's which you need to call ahead and schedule. Really interesting driver with lots of local information. I've made a slide show from just some of the photo's we took on our visit.
Mele Kalikimaka In Hawaii
As I'm sure you can guess, Christmas came with the Christians, The Protestant missionaries who arrived in 1820 introduced the story and celebration of Jesus's birth but long before the Hawaiian had a 4 month celebration with the essence of peace and goodwill and all wars were forbidden. The early Hawaiians were a brutal group so getting them to all agree to a temporary truce was an early Christmas miracle.
Mary Dominis brought a Christmas tree and Santa Claus or Kanakaloka to the Hawaii's first Christmas party on the 24th of December 1858. King Kamehameha IV declared in an official holiday in 1862.
We can now enjoy decorations and lighting ceremony's throughout all the islands. A real stand out is at the Grand Wailea in South Maui which is available to the public. For those so lucky to be in Maui for Christmas - Enoy.
The Whales are Here!!
Aloha Stokes makes great videos about just about everything on Maui. This is one of my favorties as is the Pacific Whale Foundation. Wonderful tours from experts.
You can easily see Lanai island across the channel from Kihei and Wailea. Smaller, slower paced and easily accessible; you can experience a different island life in an easy day trip.
There are different tour boats that can get you there, mostly out of Lahaina, with BBQ's , snorkeling and helpful staff. I haven't been on any of them so I won't make any suggestions. There is also a ferry which goes back and forth between Lahaina and Lanai. It's the most cost effective but it is a ferry so you'll be getting a ride without a helpful guide. If you choose the ferry pack a lunch because the only place to eat lunch along the beach on the island is Four Seasons, which is wonderful, but extremely expensive.
However you get there you will pull into the small harbor of Manele which is a short walk to a wonderful snorkeling beach, Hulopoe Beach. There are other island beaches: Shipwreck Beach and Polihua Beach. Both require a 4 wheel drive or a heavy hike. Polihua is the most beautiful but can have rip currents so venture out with great caution.
The most surprising fact I found is Lanai is a primarily a private island. 97% of the island's 140 miles is owned by Larry Ellison, the founder of Oracle Software Company. I've often wonder what type of person owned an ocean front home in Maui. It never crossed my mind somebody owned one of the Hawaiian Islands.
The landscape you see today isn't what Lanai would naturally look like without man's hand. In 1778, one of the Chiefs from the Big Island tried to expand his holdings by taking over Maui. His attacked failed and in retaliation he killed all 6,000 inhabitants of Lanai and burnt down the island. Barren Lanai was dry and arid until the arrival of ranch manager George Munro in 1911.
Munro discovered that Lanai’s lone Norfolk pine was pulling moisture straight out of the clouds. (Planted in 1878, this tree still stands in front of the Lodge at Koele) Since clouds would frequently gather in the uplands, but rarely drop any rain, Munro ordered that pine trees be planted to pull water out of the sky. Hundreds of Cook Island pines were imported and planted to cover the island. Each pine tree can collect up to 200 gallons a day and is changing the island.
Not only is Lanai the only privately owned Hawaiian island but it has one of the most unique sites you will see in all of Hawaii.
Lanai's Cat Sanctuary is home to some 600 cats. Visitors are welcomed to come scratch a few ears at the outdoor enclosure created by two transplanted artists. They were surprised by the over abundance of feral cats on the island and they wanted to do something to care and protect both the cats and the native birds which were becoming cat food. Thus the birth of the Cat Sanctuary.
There’s another resident that you may see on the beach, if you’re especially lucky: The Hawaiian Monk Seal.
They are critically endangered, with approx. 1,100 survivors. They are only found in Hawaii. Monk seals are the oldest of all the phocids, or true seals, on the planet in terms of their evolutionary history. Their cousins the Caribbean Monk Seal are now extinct.
If you see one on the beach, it’s not in trouble. Its most likely sleeping off a very big meal (sushi coma). If they are disturbed and forced back into the water, they are particularly vulnerable to tiger shark predation. Another reason not to approach: as cute as they are, they smell awful (like fish oil gone bad) ;)
We are legally required to keep a healthy distance and not disturb them. Please report any sightings to NOAA. In many cases a volunteer will come out, stake out the area and keep watch.
To report monk seal sightings: Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call Maui’s Marine Mammal Response Coordinator.
• Maui/Lanai: (808) 292-2372
This beautiful female is a regular around Launiupoko.
I love to hike in Washington and I brought that love to Maui. Twin Falls is an easy yet exciting hike just past Paia. You can easily see the Twin Falls from a short walk from the parking lot but if your willing to get your feet wet in a few streams keep going to the next falls for a swim under the falls. You can keep going up to a third and final set of falls. Keep the spirit of Aloha alive and respect the No Trespassing signs you will see along your way. Enjoy my home made video - I'm no master but I have fun.
You can't miss Black Rock or Pu' Keka'a, from anyplace on Ka'anapali Beach. Formed by an old lava flow it divides Ka'anapali Beach in half creating a haven for fish and snorkelers. A popular site for cliff diving too.
To ancient Hawaiians, Pu'u Keka'a was known as leina a ka ‘uhane which means “leap of the soul”. Legend says this is where the departed souls leap over into the spirit world. For this reason many battles were fought here since it was so convenient for the dead warriors soul to find its way into the spirit world.
King Kahekili, Maui's last ruling chief, was known for his skill at lele kawa, meaning to jump from a high cliff or rock into the ocean. Both Oahu and Lanai have places known as Kahekili's Leap, cliff ledges where Kahekili was known to jump from but Maui's Pu'u Keka'a was his favorite spot and it was where he made his most impressive jumps.
Ka'anapali Beach is a long strip of gorgeous sand, packed full of sun burnt tourists. It's a hassle to get to because of the miles of hotels lining the beach. Parking is a challenge but it's definitely worth a day trip from Kihei. Bring your snorkel gear and reef safe sun screen and if you're feeling bold, join the departed Hawaiian souls and jump from the top.
Dating back to the 13th century this ancient Maui site is the largest Heiau on all the Hawaiian Islands. Covering almost 3 acres about the size of two football fields its stone platform measures more than 415 feet in length and 340 feet in width. The heiau is located on a bluff in East Maui, 4 miles north of Hana, and has been incorporated into the Kahanu Garden, which is part of the National Tropical Botanical Gardens.
The construction style can't be found in any other heiau on the islands and the exact history isn't known. It may have been built by one of the Hana chiefs during the time when Maui was divided, with two ruling chiefs, one in Hana and the other in the rest of Maui. The name Pi'ilanihale means “house of Pi'ilani” in the Hawaiian language and was given this name after the heiau was rededicated by chief Pi'ilani in the 16th century when he united all of Maui.
Though entry to the heiau is not permitted you can see it from the distance while at the Kahahu Gardens off of the Hana Hwy. in East Maui.
Part time Maui resident sharing my Kihei condo with guests when I'm staying in my mainland home.