Aloha from Kauai. I’m in Hawaii for a week to do reporting for some future Seattle Times stories, and I already have a Kauai secret to share if you’re headed this way any time soon. It has to do with timing your trip up the long, steep and winding road to one of the rainiest places on…More
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Raindrops on roses? Whiskers on kittens? I don’t know about those, but these are a few of my favorite things from this past week’s visit to Maui:
- Best little tourist town: Makawao. Lahaina has great historical sites and museums, but it’s looking a little careworn and in need of fresh paint, while the surfer-dude haven of Paia is overloved and traffic-jammed. The upcountry cowboy town of Makawao has fun local shops, a couple nice cafes and cream puffs from Komoda’s bakery.
- Kapalua Bay for snorkeling: Get there early for a spot in the public parking lot of this beautiful little beach with a protected and quiet cove that’s great for beginner snorkelers or old pros. Good reefs with some brightly colored coral, big scarlet-colored slate pencil urchins, and lots to see throughout the bay, including schooling fish like you saw in “Finding Nemo.” Fun to swim with them.
- Plate-lunch place: Ono Kau Kau Mixed Plate, 3481 Lower Honoapiilani Road, Honokowai. I liked the Lau Lau Pork, wrapped in taro leaf for a taste of the islands. Tip: Unless you’re there for a real FULL meal, get the “Mini” plate ($7.95). All items on the “Local Food” menu come with the typical macaroni salad and
Hawaiian rooster crowing lustily at dawn. Paradise; no sleep. (Roosters aren’t really the state bird of Hawaii, it just seems that way. Click on comments and submit your own Hawaii haiku.)More
Reporting a recent story for our Washington State Parks centennial series, I got tuned into the impressive petroglyphs at Horsethief Lake and Columbia Hills State Park in the Columbia River Gorge. So when a local tipped me off during my Hawaii visit this week to a “secret” place to see petroglyphs on Maui, I had to go.
Nobody really knows the full significance of these ancient drawings of human figures, animals, boats and other phenomena — whether they told stories or recorded some historical event or were just the idle doodles of that day. In any case, they’re intriguing glimpses of a primitive art style and seem to give some pointer to what was important to the people who did the drawing.
In the Columbia Gorge, native people drew coyotes and moons and deer. On Maui today, I saw 200-to-300-year-old drawings — in Hawaiian, they call them ki`i pohaku, or rock pictures — of what’sMore
Because of high surf, the weekly supply barge didn’t make it Wednesday to the Hawaiian island of Lana`i (population: 3,000) , so when I visited Saturday the market shelves were getting a little bare.
One lonely gallon of milk sat in the cooler at the Pine Isle Market in grandly named Lana`i City, which was the company town for Dole Pineapple during its 70-year reign here.
“It gets to be slim pickings!” said local resident Bruce Harvey, my guide for the day.
But reflective of Hawaiian tastes, one thing Pine Isle Market did have: the best selection of Spam I’ve ever seen — in 10 varieties. Who knew it came in such gourmet flavors asMore
A couple days on Maui have brought back to me how expensive everything can be — from the $4.59/gallon gasoline to the $5.99-a-pound butter and $14 cocktails — but it’s also heartening to be reminded that by state law all of Hawaii’s beaches are public, which means that when your holiday cash feels stretched, you can always take a day off from the tourist traps, put together some sandwiches and head for the beach.
If an island getaway doesn’t feel like it fits your budget once you’ve priced resorts and beachside condos, take a look at the places that aren’t right on the beach. And remember that Maui, for example, has loads of little beachfront parks with picnic tables and barbecue grills, so even ifMore
A current report says Hawaii’s tradewinds are waning, causing more muggy days without enough wind to blow away the “vog” — volcanic smoke from Hawaii Island’s volcanic eruptions. You sure wouldn’t know it from Tuesday on Maui. Stepping off an Alaska 737 in Kahului, I watched women’s hair get the full “Hurricane Uplift” hairdo as they…More
It’s my month for visiting the 49th and 50th states. Just got back from Alaska, and tomorrow I head to Hawaii. I’ll be on Maui — mostly — for the coming week, gathering stories for future Seattle Times travel stories. I’ll be spending “volunteer vacation” time helping on a taro farm restoration and joining in a…More
Has Maui gotten too commercial? Is Lanai a secret treasure? Is Oahu tops because of the surfer’s paradise on the North Shore? Northwest Traveler is starting every week with a new topic in our Monday Survey, and this week Hawaii-loving readers responded with their views on the best islands of aloha. Now, it’s time for the…More
The first time I went to Hawaii I was all excited about the “ocean-view” condo I had booked on the Big Island. I couldn’t wait to watch the waves and gaze at the setting sun with a Mai Tai in hand.
Reality bit when I arrived. The condo was ocean view if I stood in one sliver of living room and stared through a narrow gap between two other buildings in front.
I soon learned, when booking hotel rooms or condos in Hawaii, that the descriptive words really matter. “Ocean-front” is what you want for the real, close-up view of the waves. If it’s touted as “ocean view” or “partial ocean view” figure out what that really means. Phone the hotel directly (don’t rely on the reservations staff at the toll-free phone numbers) and ask how far back from the ocean the room is, and what’s between the room and the view. Try to find an online map of the resort, if it has multiple buildings, and figure out where your room would be.More