Aloha!! This was our fifth trip to Maui and we came with friends that it was their first time, so we did a couple of things we had done before just because they hadn't. We stayed at The Whaler, booked through VRBO. Had an amazing ocean view from unit 1056. I love staying in a condo and having more room and being able to cook in for several meals. Our friends stayed at the Sheraton and liked our place better.
The pool and jacuzzi are small for the size of the property. The front lobby is very old looking. The grounds were pretty though. Our condo was a great size for my husband, my daugher and myself. The cabinets in the condo looked like they were originally from the 1970s. One thing that kind of irritated me was there were no amenities like shampoo and conditioner. Usually we don't bring our own but for some reason I packed it.
We took a snorkel cruise that left right from the beach next door to the condo. We went with Teralani because our friend's daughter chose it. It was a really great excursion, stopping to snorkel at 2 locations and serving a BBQ lunch. If you're done snorkeling, there's an open bar. I thought at first it was pricey (I think like $160 a person) but the crew did such a good job and we had a nice time.
We went to Leilani's for dinner after we got cleaned up from the snorkel cruise. Dinner was fantastic. My husband and daughter had fish in every restaurant we went to and they loved every meal. Leilani's was one of my favorite meals. Their prime rib "Texas style" was awesome. That night was July 4th and we unfortunately went in to Lahaina to watch the fireworks. What a mistake. The fireworks show was all right, but the traffic to get out of there was really, really bad. It wasn't worth it.
The next day we went to the ziplines with Eco-Adventures in Kaanapali. Another amazing excursion. The guides Loki and Patrick were so much fun and made it really worthwhile. They served us teriyaki chicken sandwiches for lunch.
Other than those two excursions, we just went to the beach and snorkeled a lot. Black Rock had tons of turtles out most of the time we went there. Loved that we could walk there from our condo. We also went to Kapalua and Napili Beaches. Our friends did a rain forest hike that they enjoyed but afterwards they realized they were bit from head to toe from mosquitos.
Other restaurants we went to were the Flat Bread Pizza Company in Paia when we got off the plane and had great pizza. Went to Kimo's for our first and last dinners (it's tradition) and it was awesome as usual. Went to Hula Grill and everyone thought it was their best meal but me, the only non-fish eater. Do not get the half chicken. It was one of the worst meals I've ever had. We bought fish at The Fish market in Honokawai (a steak from Safeway for me) and BBQ'ed at the condo, which I love doing. Everyone said the fish was excellent. Wento to Maui Fish and Pasta in Whaler's Village for breakfast one day and had killer but expensive pancakes. Breakfast ended up being like $80 for 3 of us. Stopped at Ohana tacos on the way to Kapalua and had great tacos. Went to Slappy Cakes on our way over to Napili. We only went there because Ohana Tacos is closed on Sundays. Went more out of curiosity. The concept was kind of fun, you make your own pancakes on a griddle that's part of the table. I wanted to try it but each of the things you want to put on your pancakes (banana, coconut, mac nuts, whipped cream, etc.) cost $3 extra so my pancakes were going to be like 20 bucks. I got bacon and eggs instead.
For the second part of our trip my family went over to Kauai for the first time for 3 days. Holy cow, what an amazing place. The beauty was incredible. I would love to go back, God willing.