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Monday, July 29, 2013

Trip to Hawaii (part 2)

Day 3 - flight to Maui

Early in the morning we went to give back our car to Enterprise and went by taxi to the airport. Our taxi driver turned out to be an ex Vietnamese War soldier. Apparently there's lot of them in Hawaii and they spawned quite high percentage of current population there.





Flight to Maui was very short and comfortable, Hawaiian Airlines rules! In the plane we learned from the newspaper that some people in Hawaii make their living from searching for wedding rings and other jewelry on the shore using a metal detector. The one that was interviewed by a newspaper claims that he tries to find the owners first at local hotels (but does he?). We got some photos of both islands from bird's-eye view:

O'ahu

Maui (can you see wind turbines?)


We got to Hawaii and having learnt from our mistakes we got a car immediately. We drove to the city where we stayed (Lahaina). On our way we saw marvelous views, example:


  






Upon arrival to the hotel we were greeted by an extraordinary nice french lady, that explained a lot about what we can see in Maui, asked us about our plans and borrowed us Maui travel guide. 




We dumped our stuff in the room and went to restaurant near the hotel (for which we got 15% discount from the hotel lady). 
We ordered what was listed in a menu as "Today's catch". It was really tasty, but quite expensive. Which eating we notice we start to sweat. Maui was much hotter than O'ahu. My personal hypothesis: Maui is a much wilder island and there's not so much carbon dioxide emissions, so the sun is not blocked. 


We took a short walk along main street in Lahaina - there was a lot of art galleries, organized tour stands (btw. some of the tours had very weird age requirements - the minimum age of 30 years old - especially the ones called swimming with dolphins). We also saw Chinese art museum which also had cinema room showing 40s movies of Tomas Edison:


At the end of the street there was a Forrest Gump themed restaurant:



After that we decided that we will end the day by just snorkeling on some beach. After short internet research we chose Kapalua bay, which later turned out to be an excellent choice. The water was crystal clear, there was almost no people, small waves - ideal for snorkeling. We saw plenty of sealife: crab colonies on the stones near the shore, large schools of big and colorful fishes further from it and finally as we were just about to leave the beach we saw giant 1-1.5 meter long turtle! It was very friendly and it was not swimming away even when we got close to it and touched it. Also which we were swimming we saw a Hawaiian wedding on the beach!





We ended the night by going to another local restaurant where we ordered cookie pizza and a milkshake.





Day 4 - way to Hana

The day before while walking around Lahaina we noticed some people trying to sell this t-shirts:


Naturally, we decided to go for it. The road was awesome. It felt like need for speed game. The views were spectacular and we had a few interesting stops on our way. I loved it. Agnieszka not so much:




Also here are some of the views we saw on the way:









Our first stop were beautiful private gardens, that somebody decided to make available for public, but places smoothie and fruit stand at the entrance. It sounds like the business is great all the time we same them they were busy serving customers. We ourselves ordered an pineapple smoothie and it was delicious.


 We walked on short 1 mile trail inside the garden and while the trail itself was interesting...





...the final attraction was amazing - the twin waterfalls:




Next stop we attempted to visit local lava cave (which as we learned is owned a one person and he makes my out of it by lending flashlights) and botanic garden, but first one was too much time, second one was closed. 

We also visited local airport near Hana, but it wasn't too exciting:



On our way we noticed a lot of fruit stands, which would be boring on it's own if not the fact there was no person guarding it. You just come take fruit, put money in the box and leave. That would definitely not pass in Poland :)


At that point we decided that it would be nice to swim a bit, so we headed for the interestingly named black sand beach. We weren't dissapointed - it was a beach and the sand was black. I also personally like the strong waves - stronger than any other place in Hawaii that we visited:





That and getting some gas in Hana was one of our last stops after which we decided to head back after getting some gas and buying a dragonfruit:



 Not to repeat the way we decided to go south of Hana. The way was much more curvy and wild and also as we later learned much more dangerous due to falling rocks. To add to it when it rails the rocks usually fall down and block the road (as we later that day learned from the local taxi driver) and while it was raining when we drove there, nothing like this happened to us. 












On our way back we passed a road that is periodically closed due to river that sometimes appears. We also almost hit some animals, which we frequently passing the road and almost invisible at night. 

We finished out day by ordering a Hawaiian Plate at Da Kitchen Cafe in Kahului, which despite good opinions on yelp we did not like. In town they had a festival, but sadly it finished before we arrived.

Day 5 - the volcano

In the morning we checked out of the hotel and we proceeded to visit a volcano. The way to volcano was awesome and so were the views:



For some reason it is very popular there to bike down the way from the top of volcano:

 

At the very top it looked like mars surface you see in the movie - large plains of red stone. There was also an astronomical observatory, which was apparently due to its remote and high location one of the best ones in the world:




After staying for a short while on the top of the mountain, we headed back to Enterprise to give back our car. Rest of the day we spend walking around Kahului. Started with a walk along the beach, where we saw a lot of kite surfers:



When we got to the downtown, we went to Thai Restaurant, we tried to mail some postcards, but Post Office was closed. We ate some homemade pineapple icecream - the best icecream I ever eaten in my entire life. After that we tried to sunbathe for a bit, but the sun was hiding behind the clouds.


So we went back downtown and watched a movie - Pacific Rim - it was very bad and nobody should ever watch it. After the movie we took the cab to the airport and flight back to O'ahu, spend the night on the airport and flew back home.

In general the trip was amazing and I highly recommed it to anybody. If I were to change one thing I would chose less known island to visit, because it seemed like the less known it was, the nicer it was to visit.

The end

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