Brendan and I both travel frequently for our jobs, but it’s rare that we get to travel together. When we do, I’m incredibly thankful because it is one of our favorite things to do together. We had the opportunity to go to Maui for Derek + Theresa’s elopement, and we spent a few extra days exploring the island. A few of our favorite memories (mostly from my phone)…
We spent the first two days with Derek + Theresa! It was such an honor to be the only two people invited to their wedding (and to photograph it!), and we had a blast exploring the island and dining with them.
I had been to Maui once before with my family many years ago. One of the few memories I had was going on the Road to Hana. However, taking Brendan again was almost like experiencing it for the first time (except the roads were paved this time around!). Theresa + Derek gifted us a guide book, and we explored some off-road trails that were magical.
One of the trails led us to this small town with mailboxes sitting in front of the biggest Banyan tree I had ever seen. We walked through the jungle and came out to the waves crashing over the rocks. We just stood there in silence for a bit, feeling the rain misting on our faces.
In Hana, we found this beach that is known to be the best for bodysurfing. I really didn’t want to go swimming, knowing I would spend the next three hours in the car soaking wet. Brendan convinced me to jump in, and I was grateful that I did. The ocean was warm, and the current was strong. We bodysurfed and laughed like children. On the way home, we spontaneously stopped at a Thai food truck and ate some of the best food of the week.
We were concerned that Maui would be too touristy for our liking, but we were pleasantly surprised. Yes, there are lots of fancy resorts, but we found a happy place in Paia. It’s historically a surfer town (and still is), but there are also many, many vegan/clean/organic restaurants and lots of hippies like us :) We loved it. We didn’t have much luck finding any airbnb’s that were affordable, so we decided to stay at a yoga retreat center (Lumeria Maui) outside of town. We only did yoga one day, but the resort had an incredibly peaceful vibe. The wind continuously breezed through the palm trees, organic food was served all day, and people were kind. We thoroughly enjoyed reading on the hammocks under the trees, listening to the wind blowing off the ocean.
On our last day, we drove along the west coast of the island. I don’t think this route is as popular as other excursions on the island, as we had the road to ourselves most of the day. We saw whales dancing in the ocean and the craziest Banyan tree in Lahaina. Per recommendation from D+T, we hiked the trail to the Nakalele blowhole. The trail winded along hundred foot cliffs while the ocean slammed into the rocks. For about a mile, it felt like we were lost because no one else was around. We kept walking and found the part of the trail that looks like chemical warfare, as most of the rocks have wild indentations. It felt like we were on Mars. We finally heard the blowhole and breathlessly stared at this crazy natural existence that God had created. The ground reminded me of a whale, pushing water out of the earth like it was gasping for air.
The route ended at the airport, and we spent the next two days traveling back to the east coast. I felt bad for the people around us because we were covered in sunscreen, sweat, and dirt from our final adventure. But, it was totally worth it.