Thursday, October 30, 2014

Part 7: Aloha Hawaii - Days 14, 15, 16 & 17

We decided to have a quiet day on the Thursday. There was a little whole foods cafe I wanted to try out just down the road for us so we walked down to Joy's Place which was about a 20 minute walk.




I really wanted to try one of their Collard Wraps (marinated tempeh, crunchy veggies and Indonesian peanut sauce in a green collard leaf), but knew that would be a little extreme for Tony, so we shared a sourdough fresh tuna sandwich. I had a kale smoothie, which I am now addicted to!! Every day after work, I make myself a kale smoothie! 


Look at that tablecloth!!!






We obviously got too accustomed to the air-con so decided to walk for a little more. Again, we should have learnt from the other day! Far too hot for that sort of carry-on.  We ended up going back to the hotel and collapsing. I think I may have even had a nana nap! Then of course we needed to have a swim to cool off again!

We watched the sun go down again...




Later, that night, after consulting my trusty Trip Advisor app, we decided to go to Coconut's Fish Cafe for tea. It had such rave reviews and so many positive comments, I thought it must be a winner and we were not disappointed.  It is has custom designed surfboard tables, lots of bright colours and a funky, casual feeling to it.  The tables are communal so you basically just plonk yourself beside someone and wait for your dinner to come out. 




Their specialty is Fish Tacos, so it would have been wrong not to order this.  Oh my, fresh fish in coconut milk, combined with a spicy coleslaw, and mango salsa all on a tortilla base...so yum! 




And then it was back to the condo for a bit of stitching while we planned Friday...




We decided to explore the Western side of the island...Lahaina, Kaanapali and Napili.  It was going to be about a 45 minute drive.  We stopped about 20 minutes into the drive at a lookout  and looked back towards Kihei. It was a cloudy kind of day so there was quite a  haze around.




Lahaina is a small, historic town that used to be a whaling village. It apparently gets very popular in summertime as the beaches are lovely and it is the gateway to all the resorts further north.  We drove through it before we realised it was Lahaina! So we pulled up to a Borders, had a look there and then decided to walk to the main street...why have we not learnt that we shouldn't walk in the middle of the day in Maui? It was a couple of kilometres, it nearly killed us, but we saw some nice sights along the way.  We headed for the beach as we thought it would be cooler walking along there, but the water was warm and there wasn't much of a breeze! Not even any air conditioned shops to dive into for 5 minutes to cool off!!


Mountains at Lahaina


Lahaina beach


The main street


Awesome little juice bar...I got a kale smoothie!!

We psyched ourselves for the walk back to the car, and then continued heading north to Kaanapili.  This is a resort beach and there are just huge hotels and condos here. It felt very sterile and touristy.  You couldn't even really get down to the beach as there were guards on all the roads. We ended up parking at a hotel and wandering down anyway, but it's not my kind of thing....I much prefer the less touristy areas.

We had had enough of the heat by this stage so just decided to drive back to Kihei, just in time for another gorgeous sunset...the best one yet




We didn't feel like going too far for dinner so found Bistro 808 about a 5 minute walk from the condo. It was lovely... It had no walls, so felt like you were sitting outside, which we kind of were. Beautiful meal ... I had wasabi seared tuna, which was just divine. It just melted in my mouth. I wished I could have had another plate of it again!




Saturday, we decided to have a relaxing day again. There was one more quilt shop I wanted to go to which was The Maui Quilt Shop, so we headed up there. It was a 5 minute drive from the condo.










It was a small shop, but boy they had crammed a lot into here. Lots of Hawaiian fabrics and batiks and some modern ranges, but they were tucked here and there throughout the shop.  I left with some interfacing and some needles!  

We then drove down to Wailea, another resort beach. Again, it reminded me of Kaanapali so we kept driving...we found a little beach that looked like it was a beach for the locals...no tourists here


Not sure what this beach was called


Wailea Beach

Wailea Beach


And of course what would Maui be without a  sunset....




And a bit more stitching...




Sunday was our last day on Maui. I was ready to be going home...It was a bit of a dreary day...still hot, but very overcast. We had decided today to drive up Haleakala Crater, which is in the National Park, however the cloud was low and it was raining the whole way up.  The summit is at 10,000 feet, so it took us a couple of hours to drive all the way up. Interesting how the landscape changes as you go up the mountain.


At the top...very lunar like landscape


Cool little alpine plant


Obligatory photo at the top


At the summit


Loads of these little birds around.


Lunar landscape


Heading down

Old lava flow coming down the mountain

We called into Safeway on the way home to get the necessary bags of sweets for the kids and friends back home...




And then time to sit and enjoy our last sunset on Maui before we began the mammoth task of packing for the flight home on Monday!




Hope you have enjoyed the virtual vacation.... 

Monday, October 27, 2014

Part 6: Aloha Hawaii - Day 11, 12 and 13

So it was Goodbye and Thank you NYC...


The police box in Times Square


Farewell until next time,  and there will definitely be a next time, as you still have so much to show me 




And hello to Oahu, Hawaii, where I met up with my hubby who had flown in from New Zealand that morning.  




We caught a flight to Maui a couple of hours later...



A little different to Oahu!




It was about 6pm when we got there. I had booked a condo online Hale Pau Hana and by the time we had picked up the rental car and driven to Kihei where our condo was, it was getting on for dark, so we got to see our first sunset. Our condo was fabulous...on the 4th floor with marvellous views.  It's always hard picking a spot when you have never been somewhere before, bout I am glad we picked Kihei and not one of the resort beaches. We went for a drive later in our time there and the resort beaches like Wailea, Napili, Kaanapali, while very pristine, had a sterile feel about them



 We just decided to have a relaxing day and spend the time looking around our neighbourhood the next day.  Bad idea! It was soooo hot...Most days there were about 35 degrees C (95F). It wasn't so much the heat that bothered me; it was the humidity.  I love the heat, but I really struggled with the humidity. I was talking to a local later in the week and she said that she couldn't recall a September that had been as hot as this. Even the locals were struggling with it.  We ended up coming back to the condo and staying there for the rest of the day.  The one downfall here was there was only air-con in the bedroom and not in the lounge, so I spent the rest of the afternoon reading in the bedroom!


Looking left from our balcony down the beach the next morning

We used this pool a lot!!


Hale Pau Hana


Hale Pau Hana


Our gorgeous beach

So Wednesday looked like more of the same temperature wise. It was a day for air-con we decided!  We set off for Kahului, the main township and headed for Queen Ka'ahumanu Center, which had,  most importantly, a fabric shop, a Sears for Tony and a variety of other shops.  It's an open air shopping mall, with a Farmer's Market on every Wednesday.








It didn't take long to find Sew Special. It's not a big mall! I had fun looking but didn't buy much; some OOP fabrics by AMH and Rashida Coleman.




It's a big store with a huge collection of batiks, Hawaiian fabrics, quilting cottons and notions

Sitting on our balcony













And then it was off to the next fabric store...Discount Fabric Warehouse. It looks a bit dodgy from the outside, but I was pleasantly surprised when I went inside.  A lot of stuff was crammed into this store!  Lots of Hawaiian fabrics, garment sewing fabrics, notions and sewing machines. I did find some Soft and Stable which I grabbed, but the fabric wasn't really to my taste.














The next store was Fabric Mart which was mainly Hawaiian fabrics as well.  I didn't buy anything here.














So we decided to drive the Road to Hana after this.  It connects Kahului and the little town of Hana and is only 64 miles (103 kms), but is incredibly torturous! It goes through lush rainforest and there are lots of things to stop and see on the way. In actual fact, it is more about the sights on the way rather than the actual town of Hana.  I wasn't sure what I expected, but I should have taken note of the website when it said there were 620 curves in the road and 59 bridges, many of which are one lane only.






We stopped at Paia, which is a laid back wee town with a population of around 2600.  It's the last town before hitting the highway properly.  We had a wander through the town, which took us all of 30 minutes. I did pop into Mana Foods, a fabulous little whole foods store which I just wished I could transport back to NZ!! I became totally addicted to kombucha while I was in Maui, which is a fermented tea that can be flavoured with all sorts of yummy things, so I grabbed some of that for the journey ahead.



Mana Whole Foods with Tony


The main street of Paia


The next stop was Twin Falls which is a waterfall about a half hour walk from the road. Some beautiful rainforest, birds and plants were seen on the walk. I imagine when it's been raining the falls are a lot more spectacular.












We continued our drive to Huelo Lookout. To our surprise 2 NZ girls were manning the stall, so we had a natter to them. They sell fruit, smoothies and juices.






We drove on a bit further, but both of us were getting rather tired of the turns and curves and the snail speed so we turned around at the 10 mile mark. We were also aware we did not want to be on this road in darkness!


Haleakala Crater


Haleakala Crater from the main road back to Kihei

And so it was back to the balcony to see another beautiful sunset 



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