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Trip Report - Travel and Day 1 - Rain!, Northwest Maui

Portland, Oregon
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255 posts
7 reviews
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Trip Report - Travel and Day 1 - Rain!, Northwest Maui

Well, we have returned from our first trip to Maui and now it is time to pay it forward. Trip reports for each day coming out.Thanks to everyone who posts here.

Flight was delayed almost an hour due to strong headwinds.....didn't see that coming and was a bit disappointed that we didn't make it to the water before sundown. Flight was supposed to land at 5:19 and I think we touched ground about 6pm.

Rental car - Budget FastBreak - very smooth. The only advice I would give here is that the rental car shuttle was not as obvious as I thought it would be. You have to walk past baggage claim and then go behind the rental car desks building. Signage wasn't great....only caused a slight delay as we just missed the shuttle.

By the time we got to Kaanapali it was raining pretty steady. Not exactly the way you want to start your first Hawaiian vacation when coming from Oregon.

Smooth check in at Kaanapali Beach Hotel. We had requested a high floor in the Kauai Wing and we got it. Dropped our bags and headed down to the Tiki Bar for our first Mai Tai. Then dumped ourselves into bed.

Actual Day 1:

Well this mornings weather was lousy. Raining when we got up (awake at 4:30 am!) but we decided that once the sun came up at 6:30 we would go a run....so we did.....in the rain. Fun, warm, and very wet. Not a drizzle either.....full on rain....pretty much all morning. While we were at breakfast we had quite the downpour and we're told that it was highly usual....great.....lucky us.

We decided to try to make the most of our time and we needed to pick up some rental gear....beach chairs, beach umbrella, and boogie boards. So we headed 10 minutes into Lahaina and picked them up at Boss Frogs. Also poked around a shop or two and then decided to go exploring.

Since it was still drizzly and cloudy we drove north up to the Nakalele Blowhole on the northwest corner of the island. Kinda cool. We didn't walk all the way down to it as it was really windy and we weren't wearing the right shoes (it was further from the road than I expected based on pictures I had seen). From a distance we could see it in action....very similar to what we have seen in Oregon so we didn't feel like we missed too much by not hiking down.

The drive up was beautiful and tropical. But it is funny, living in our own rainforest and along our own coast, things aren't that different. At least from the standpoint of beauty. Different foliage, but amazing how similar the rugged coastline can look

On the way back we stopped at an overlook at Honolua Bay and watched some surfers for awhile. That was fun to see.

We also poked our way back by checking out some other beach access points that I had heard could be good for snorkeling or boogie boarding (Kapalua, DT Fleming). So overall the drive was totally worth it and a good use of our time as we now have a better lay of the land if we decide to venture beyond our own beach.

Our last stop was lunch.....we had mahi mahi fish tacos at the Honokowai Fish Market. Seasoned and grilled then served with a poco de gallo and cabbage slaw. Super tasty.

Once back at the hotel the weather was still iffy. We were seeing more sun, but still a bit of drizzle and we were resigned to a day on our lanai. Which really wasn't so bad given that we splurged on the beach front room. But then it suddenly seemed like it was going to be okay and people were starting to flock outside and to the beach. So we pack up books and sunscreen and took up residence on two lawn chairs on the hotel grounds (the beach was a little too windy for our tastes - sand blowing and all). Two hours later we had had enough and headed back to the room.

Dinner at Lelani's Beachside Grill was just okay. I think my expectations may have been a little high based on how much everyone seems to love it. We did catch that nice sunset right before dinner. Then back to the hotel to meet up with some friends who were also staying here for a couple nights.

Not an ideal first day, but ended up being pretty good.

Mentioned in this post
Oregon
Oregon
United States
Lahaina
Lahaina
Maui, HI
Nakalele Blowhole
Nakalele Blowhole
892 Reviews
Maui, HI
Honolua Bay
Honolua Bay
730 Reviews
Maui, HI
Kapalua
Kapalua
Maui, HI
Tempe, Arizona
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1,956 posts
28 reviews
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1. Re: Trip Report - Travel and Day 1 - Rain!, Northwest Maui

sounds like you accomplished a lot on your first day despite the rain- I think getting to know the area makes all the difference when staying for awhile somewhere so you have a better idea of what to do when you suddenly feel like going out to do something spur of the moment. Looking forward to your upcoming TRs!

Edited: 29 March 2014, 19:31
Philadelphia, PA
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4,106 posts
8 reviews
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2. Re: Trip Report - Travel and Day 1 - Rain!, Northwest Maui

I think it has been a different year for weather in all 50 states ;) Yeah, you just try to make the best of it and it sounds like you did that day (hope it got better for you). We used to love Leilani's but felt let down a bit in more recent years. Interested to see if you tried Hula Grill and, if so, how you felt it compared. Nice report.

Kapaa, Hawaii
Destination Expert
for Maui, Hana, Oahu
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50,005 posts
3 reviews
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3. Re: Trip Report - Travel and Day 1 - Rain!, Northwest Maui

Thanks for the report, even if it was raining!! Not that unusual, in fact, in the winter and early spring it happens more than people think. Maui has been in a long drought and this winter the weather is back to "normal"!!

Milwaukie, Oregon
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4,216 posts
22 reviews
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4. Re: Trip Report - Travel and Day 1 - Rain!, Northwest Maui

As a fellow Oregonian, I share your opinion of the similarity between the rugged coastlines. Perhaps it is why the drive to Hana doesn't have that "wow" factor for me that it does for so many others. Maui has palm trees and Oregon has Douglas firs. Otherwise much of the same black lava and pounding seas..both beautiful. I hope to read in future reports that the weather improves for at least part of your vacation (particularly since this is your first visit to Hawaii)

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Hana
Hana
Maui, HI
Oregon
Oregon
United States
Portland, Oregon
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255 posts
7 reviews
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5. Re: Trip Report - Travel and Day 1 - Rain!, Northwest Maui

Barbara - thank you for your comments regarding the Road to Hana not having the "wow" factor. Before we left I really wanted to make that trip happen, but weather and other factors eliminated it from the itinerary. I had made my peace with it for this very reason.

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Hana
Hana
Maui, HI
Nanaimo, Canada
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27,073 posts
103 reviews
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6. Re: Trip Report - Travel and Day 1 - Rain!, Northwest Maui

And now you have a reason to go back to Maui! The RTH certainly isn't for everyone, but we have still enjoyed the drive three different times, still trying to experience all the different stops along the way.

We have never traveled to Maui during the whale season, so we haven't experienced all the rain that they got this winter.

Kentucky
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531 posts
56 reviews
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7. Re: Trip Report - Travel and Day 1 - Rain!, Northwest Maui

I loved the RTH but did not get that WOW factor, I think due in part to living in the mountains. My husband and I really did enjoy it though. The weather our first day wasn't the best but it cleared up and became that beach vacation we wanted. We used our first real day to scout our spots for snorkeling as well. Can't wait to read more!

8. Re: Trip Report - Travel and Day 1 - Rain!, Northwest Maui

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