The 318-foot-long Olowalu Tunnel on the Honoapiilani Highway along Maui’s southwest coast west of Maalaea Harbor was built in 1951. It is the oldest highway tunnel in Hawaii. On the mauka (inland) side of each portal is wire netting to keep rocks from falling onto the roadway.
Mai’Poin’a ‘oe Ia’u Beach Park is a quiet beach located in North Kihei, on South Central Maui. The narrow beach runs a mile and is an extension of Maalaea Beach and Sugar Beach. Water is typically calm in the mornings making it excellent for swimming. In the afternoons, it can get quite windy making Mai’Poin’a a popular spot for wind surfing.
Ukumehame Beach Park is located near the 12 mile marker along the Honoapiilani Highway. The park takes its name from the huge valley which can be seen directly behind it which carves a spectacular “V” in the West Maui Mountains. These dangerous valley ridges eventually lead to the pass that that was taken by King Kamehmeha’s army of Spartan like warriors who successfully attacked Maui’s warriors from behind in the decisive battle of the Iao Valley.
A couple and their dog was enjoying a day at the beach playing. The dog worked hard at finding the ball and sticks his owner sent flying into the air. After a while the dog came in for a water break and to roll in the sand. He was having a good day.
The drift wood along the beach was very interest looking.
The Refuge, located on Maui’s south-central coastline, is the scenic wetland area encompasses about 700 acres. It is the site of habitat restoration projects as well as local environmental education, bird watching, photography, and other wildlife-oriented activities. The Reserve was established in 1992 and is a natural basin for the 56-mile watershed in the West Maui Mountains.
A boardwalk over the pounded areas gave us an close-up viewing of native Hawaiian water bird species as well as migratory water birds who come from as far away as Asia, Canada, and Alaska. We enjoyed wandering down the wooden path.
We stopped in at Beach Bums BBQ & Grill for lunch. It opened in February of 2007 and is Maui’s most popular oceanfront barbecue restaurant. Beach Bum’s features an all wood rotisserie smoker, (custom-built in Mesquite Texas) using only local woods: Kiawe, a mild mesquite & Guava, an exotic fruit tree, adding a unique island flavor to all their smoked meats. The food was great, the view was outstanding and signs posted were entertaining.
Located on the North shore, Paia started as a plantation town with the opening of Paia store in 1896 to serve the needs of the multi-cultural plantation workers of Paia Sugar Mill.
One of the sugar mills along the highway. It was interesting seeing all the sugar cane growing on the plantations.
The wooden buildings of this quaint little town are still reminiscent of the plantation era but now house some of the best shopping and dining on the island.
Paia town’s main drag is also just a stone’s throw away from one of the best windsurfing spots in the world, Hookipa, and the surf lifestyle has definitely had an influence.
We had two wonderful days on the island of Maui but it was time to turn in the car and return to the ship for an evening of entertainment. Since Pride of America is such a small ship we did not expect the entertainment to be very much. We were surprised on several nights.
The Lights, Camera, Music was an elegant tribute to the greatest moments of the Hollywood Musical. The costumes were wonderful as were the sets and production of the songs. We saw cinematic classics come to life from the romantic glamour of the 1940s, “Singing in the Rain” to the high-kicking can-can of the “Moulin Rouge. These are just a few of the songs represented on this wonderful show night.
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