Monday, December 28, 2015

Top 10 Stops on The Road to Hana (Maui, Hawaii)

The Road to Hana, as everyone knows, is the number one thing to do on the island of Maui. The drive is one of the most beautiful drives you'll ever do with plenty of great sights to stop at along the way. You can't make all the stops possible on the Road to Hana in one day, so you need to prioritize! Everyone has their own lists and favorites, but there are my top ten stops on The Road to Hana:

1. Twin Falls (mile marker 2)
When the water flow is too high, the upper part of the falls and trail may be closed, so be warned. Otherwise, a short and easy hike will lead you to a waterfall - the first among many on this road. There are also Porta Potties to the left of the hiking trail, and a fruit stand is ready to sell you juices and freshly cut pineapples near the entrance.

2. Huelo Lookout (between mile marker 4 and 5)
There's a nice ocean view from this lookout, but mainly because you can sit and enjoy the view while you're having your breakfast. There's another stand here serving acai bowls, smoothies, and sugar cane juice.

3. Rainbow Eucalyptus Grove (near mile marker 7)
To call it a "grove" is an overstatement, since the grove only has a few trees, but these rainbow eucalyptus trees are worth seeing (and snapping photos of!)
Rainbow Eucalyptus

4. Keanae Peninsula (mile 16.8)
To get to the Keanae peninsula, you have to turn onto the Keanae Peninsula Road around mile 16.8 - you wont' see if from the Hana Highway itself. I almost missed it but I backtracked to find the banana bread shop and so glad I did!

We even caught a beautiful rainbow from the peninsula.

5. Aunt Sandy's Banana Bread (just past Keanae Peninsula)
The banana bread they serve is kept warm, and arguably the best on the island. They also serve kahlua pork sandwiches and other items if you wanted to grab lunch.

6. Coconut Glen's (mile marker 27 1/2)
This whimsical shack has some of the best vegan ice cream. The ice cream is made of coconut milk (the coconut flavor is the original).
We loved the chocolate chili flavor! Be sure to stop here to cool off, these ice creams are well worth trying.

7. Hana Lava Tube (mile 31)
I had wanted to visit the Hana Lava Tube on my first trip to Maui, but I never made it! Finally, this time I dragged my mom and aunt to the tube. The lava tube is a self-guided tour through the cave formed by lava flow. A $12 admission lets you borrow a flashlight and you can wander as much as you want.
Hana Lava Tube
There are stalactites and stalagmites, and other interesting formations made of lava

8. Wai'anapanapa black sand beach and 9. the blow hole (mile 32)
OK, this may technically be the same stop, but the two spots are in the opposite direction of the parking, so don't miss either.

I walked down to the black sand beach first. You can see the beach from the walk down. The beach is small and there are a lot of people, but there are still plenty of spots to get a nice shot. The black sand, as you'll see when you get there, is really more of black tiny pebbles.
On the other side of the trail is the blow hole.

We thought the best part is the fact that a rainbow forms after it blows! You can see the rainbow in the video below.

If you're in need of some grub, Barefoot Cafe is a pretty good spot serving poke bowl, ribs, and such, with a view of the ocean in front of you. 

10. Ohe'o Gulch (mile 42)
Ohe'o Gulch or the Seven Sacred Pools is technically past Hana. It's quite a bit past Hana, too, so you'd only have time to get here if you leave really early, or don't spend too much time at other spots. There are way more than seven pools, actually, but the name stuck anyway. There are two waterfalls, and the trail to get to the second one is a 2-mile hike.


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