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Lanai: Hulopoe Bay and Sweetheart Rock

While visiting the island of Maui, the island of Lanai is out on the western horizon, and a one hour ferry ride will land you on the relatively empty island! Hulopoe Bay was a short walk away from where the ferry lands, which was a beautiful beach that had calm waves rolling in throughout the day! If you are looking for a relaxing beach that will give you beautiful scenery and the opportunity to visit a new place then Lanai will be well worth the trip from Maui. ($30 dollars per person each way)

Just a small hike away from Hulopoe Bay, is the famous Sweetheart Rock, which is the symbol of love of a legend of two lovers, it is the Hawaiian's Romeo and Juliet. Pehe, a girl from Lahaina, and Makakehau, a young warrior from Lanai, were the lovers whom this rock holds tribute to. Legend tells that Pehe drowned under this rock before Makakehau was able to save her, and in his grief he called out to the gods to help him as he climbed the 80 foot tall rock with Pehe in his arms, he buried her on top, and after laying his beloved to rest he jumped to his death.

The hike may not be of interest to everyone, but the view was beautiful from up on top where you are able to view down at Sweetheart Rock.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There is a small crevice where you are able to climb down a small cliff and find two small beaches, that were completely empty when I visited, and supplied me an escape into complete seclusion, which is not something you will find on many Hawaiian beaches. It also supplied a different view of Sweetheart Rock (Above Right). I wandered around on these beaches and found shallow puddles within lava rock that housed small fish and crabs which had been brought in on the high tide. I did not get any pictures of the fish, but I did get some video. 

The island of Maui provides plenty of exciting and beautiful areas to explore and see, but if you have been to Maui before, or are staying for an extended period of time, the ferry ride to visit Lanai is well worth the time and money! We didn't get to explore the entire island of Lanai, but even the small area we did explore was absolutely beautiful. It is not uncommon to see dolphins swimming while on the ferry ride between the islands, we did not have that luxury on my trip, but something that may help sweeten the idea!

 

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Beach Spotlight: Big Beach, Maui

I recently visited the island of Maui, which is absolutely magical, and one of my favorite places that I have had the opportunity to visit! The list of vacation destinations isn't very long, but it does include five of the Hawaiian Islands, of which Maui stands above the rest. Each island has its own unique feel, and while the city of Lahaina in Maui tends to be a more tourist driven area of the island, as a whole, Maui isn't overly crowded (Oahu is very crowded). I have stayed in both Kihei and Lahaina while on Maui, Kihei was more centrally located allowing me shorter drive times as I explored the island (Airport, Road to Hana, Haleakala, Big Beach, to name a few destinations). The view I had while staying in the condo just outside of Lahaina was breathtaking, and the scene from my balcony appears over and over in my camera roll! However, Lahaina is about 40 minutes outside of Kihei, and begins to add to car time when going to the other spots on the island.

That being said, Big Beach which is located roughly one hour outside of Lahaina, on the south side of the island, is one of the most remarkable spots of Maui! The beach isn't called Big Beach for nothing, because the soft sand stretches on and on, which allowed me to find my own patch of sand despite many other visitors enjoying the beach as well! On the most recent trip to Big Beach (May 2017) there were giant crashing waves, which caused the lifeguards to warn any inexperienced swimmers to stay out of the water, so despite a few quick dips in the water, for the most part the waves kept me captivated from the beach while I listened to my audio book and soaked up the rays!. I watched many brave vacationers not heed the warning, and get rolled by rather sudden large waves.

This was not the experience I had on my first trip to Big Beach, which was in December a few years back, when the water was rather calm and allowed us to float around and swim with ease in the beautiful clear blue water. No matter when you visit, the black rock located on the north side of the Island provides an overlook for the beach, and produces a stunning picture! It is a slight climb up a worn pathway up the rock, but worth the climb to snap a quick picture that you will look at as you daydream of going back. Disclaimer, if nude beaches aren't your thing, don't spend too much time exploring on top of the rock, as Little Beach is located out of sight and just a little bit of a walk from the top of the rock.

Overall, Big Beach is one of my absolute favorite places in the world, and if you have the opportunity to experience it for yourself I highly recommend it. It is located in Makena State Park, and is also referred to as Makena Beach, which just so happens to be the name of this small boutique, so you could say that we kind of like it there!

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