An Aloha State of Mind on Maui

Posted by - July 27, 2015 | Category: Escapes, North America, United States

I’ve been thinking a lot about my time in Maui lately. Not sure why, but I think I’m due for a trip back there. Maybe it has something to do with these cold Australian nights. It’s winter here, so most mornings there’s a fine dusting of frost over the grass. A few night ago we actually had snow. Snow. A local newspaper ran a photo of a kangaroo hopping through it. Let’s just take a moment to digest that. A kangaroo, in snow. That’s akin to a polar bear in a hot tub. The two images just don’t jive. In any case since I’m already in an Aloha state of mind and Expedia asked me to share more about my time on the island, so indulge me for a moment while I take a look back at my time on Maui.

Paragliding

Paragliding Maui Hawaii

I had a brief hang gliding lesson many years ago in Calgary. It was a Groupon thing, and you know what means — it was full of Groupon people. While it was fun, it was a beginner’s lesson and a little crowded with folks that…now how shall I put this nicely…folks that likely couldn’t tell a hang glider from a hangnail. In short, there wasn’t actually a lot of time spent hang gliding. I think for most of the day we watched a video. Paragliding in Maui was a welcome antidote to that mostly sour experience. It was a tandem paraglide, so someone else did all the heavy lifting, and I got to have all the fun. Proflyght Paragliding operates flights from Waipoli Flight Park on the slopes of Mt. Haleakala., and with Maui’s generally stellar weather (and perfect winds) year-round, it makes the perfect spot to give the sport a go. Although the clouds weren’t cooperating the day I was there, I still got to get higher than I ever did in a hang glider.

Road Tripping

Waterfalls along the Road to Hana Maui Hawaii

For me, one of the best experiences on Maui was a navigating the Road to Hana. Before I arrived on the island, whenever I told folks who had been there I was going to drive the Hana Highway I was met with the oohs and ahhs usually reserved for newborns or Bentleys. People unanimously loved the experience. Since there are 620 curves over 59 bridges on this 109 kilometer stretch of pavement, it’s pretty slow going, but the scenery is waterfall-lovers, lush-jungle aficionado’s dream. The only downside is that since it’s so pretty, it’s hard to actually keep your eyes on the road.

Traditional Hawaiian Canoe

Hawaiian Traditional Sailing Canoe Maui

I love being on the water, and the afternoon I spent in a traditional Hawaiian outrigger canoe – called a wa’apea, was no exception. The tour takes in Maui’s stunning Wailea coast with snorkelling, swimming, and plenty of sea creature spotting. While I didn’t get to see any whales or dolphins (that’s season dependent), I did spot a few sea turtles, and any day with sea turtles in it I’d call a win right there

I know I’ll make it back to Maui one day, but until then I’ll have to remain content knowing I’m not shivering my tail off like those poor kangaroos outside my window.

 

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2 comments - add one
  1. Living on O’ahu I have had the opportunity to travel to Maui a few times and absolutely love it. Thanks for sharing some of the off the beaten path things you experienced there. Next time I visit Maui I may have to look into paragliding.

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