Maui – The Road to Hana

A picture of Ashlee Taking pictures at the Black Sand Beach
Ashlee Taking pictures at the Black Sand Beach

After an incredible stay on the island of Maui, we are sitting in the airport waiting for our flight to Kona on the big island of Hawaii. Since our last update, we have taken the road to Hana, climbed to the falls at O’heo’ Gulch, and Watched a sunset on the beach in Lahaina. It was so incredible I don’t even know how to describe it, so let’s just start at the beginning.

We crawled out of bed before the sun Saturday morning and loaded our stuff back in the car in preparation for our coming adventure before heading to breakfast. The Mauian Hotel serves up an awesome spread of fresh fruit and an addictive Cinnamon french toast.

Photo of our Lanai at the Mauian hotel
Breakfast on our Lanai at the Mauian Hotel

We took some food back to our room and sat on the porch (Lanai) to enjoy our meal and process the last of our pictures from the day before while listening to the sound of the ocean.  After breakfast we headed for the Hana Highway in hopes of finding something beautiful.

Our first stop along the road was the small town of Piea on the west side of the island. In Piea we found many small shops to explore and we enjoyed walking the town with our first shaved ice on the island. One small restaurant, the Piea Fish Market, caught our attention, so we headed in for some lunch. We asked the girl at he counter what was good and ended up ordering things we had not tried before. If you haven’t eaten Opah (Moon fish), I’d recommend you try it if you get the chance – it was delicious, and a great way to fill-up before our hike to the falls.

Picture of Small falls near the road
Small falls near the road

North of Piea, the road becomes scenic, and there are many small waterfalls flowing into the ocean. We noticed several cars stopped on the side of the road and thought we should see what it was all about. It turned out that there was a local farm stand and the man running it told us there were two waterfalls we should hike to. Without second thought we grabbed our camera gear, and up the trail we went. The first waterfall we saw was hiding out in the thick growth just beyond the farm stand. After spending some time taking pictures, we continued our hike to the second falls. At the base of the falls was a rocky stream crossing.

Picture of David in front of the falls
David in front of the falls

It’s good thing David was warming his Merrell trail running water shoes, because they were perfect for the rocky terrain and the deep crossing. I decided to stay on the dry side with the camera bags. It was a great stop along the road to Hana.

 

Picture of some Waterfalls in Maui
Waterfalls in Maui
A picture of the View from the Road to Hana
View from the Road to Hana

The second half of the drive brought us even more amazing views as the road got narrower. After a few stops to view the beautiful Maui coastline we arrived at our destination in Hana. The Hana Kai Maui Hotel is located just above a rocky cove with an incredible view of the ocean.

Picture of our feet on the black sand
It really is black!

When we checked in the lady at the office suggested we explore the Black Sand Beach at Wainapanapa State Park just a few miles North, so we did. If you are ever in Maui, and as far south as Hana (which you should be), this is a must see destination. The tiny beach is as black as can be and there weren’t many people there when we arrived.

Picture of Black Sands Beach
Black Sands Beach

We stayed until the sun went down and then stopped for dinner at a small place in Hana before grabbing a few things at the market and heading back to our room. The rest of the evening was spent sitting on our Lanai eating chocolate gelato and processing pictures from the day. There’s nothing quite like enjoying the warm breeze in Hana after a long day exploring one of Maui’s most scenic drives.

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