On Friday, March 5, just three weeks after our wedding, my high school had a full week of vacation for spring break. We decided to take advantage of every minute and left immediately after work that Friday evening to spend the night in Indianapolis before flying to Hawaii. Because we were paying quite a bit for the honeymoon, I decided to try to save money by booking the cheapest hotel I could find for the night prior to our flight. That was definitely a mistake and a lesson learned! Our room ended up being by a truck stop, the bottom of the door was practically kicked in, and I was afraid to take my shoes off. Not the way I wanted to start our honeymoon and a very long night! Luckily, our flight left early the next morning and we were out of there in record time.
Our flight stopped at LAX before continuing to Maui. We arrived in Maui mid-afternoon on Saturday and went directly to rent a car. I’d booked online and rented the cheapest car possible. Mike went in to pick up the car and upgraded us to a Jeep Wrangler. Apparently he’d had enough of my penny-pinching ways and knew we’d need it if we wanted to explore the back section of the road to Hana. Before we drove to our resort, we stopped at a grocery store for snacks and coconut shampoo.
We stayed at the Maui Prince, and at check in they offered us towels. I remember they smelled like cucumbers and felt so good after our awful night and long day of travel. The nice part about the resort is that it was more secluded than many of the larger hotels there – probably because it was a good 45 minute drive from the airport. It was perfect for a honeymoon. The beach was private and usually empty. The hotel grounds were gorgeous.
We explored the resort a bit and went to dinner that evening in the hotel. I don’t remember what I ate, but I remember that the strawberry daiquiri was the best I’d ever tasted. I think it had ginger in it! I’ve tried in vain to recreate it. I also remember I was very uncomfortable after so much sitting that day!
I don’t remember the exact order of what we did each day (and I can’t seem to find anywhere that I wrote it down – shocking, I know), but I do remember many of the highlights of our trip. Everything we ate was amazing (of course it comes back to food…). I remember an avocado omelet at the hotel that was to die for. We also found a little hole-in-the-wall not far from the hotel where we went for breakfast several times – I think it was called Amy’s Cafe. I had the best banana pancakes there and I found it so strange that breakfast came with rice! The most memorable lunch was one day when we were out shopping – I can’t remember the name, but I’d know it if I saw it. It was a local place down the street from Bubba Gump Shrimp. Mike had an Ono burger that he still talks about and I had fish tacos. Mmm…
We spent at least two days driving around and exploring the island. The road itself is curvy, steep, and right by the ocean – I remember holding on to the grab bar several times during the drive. There were tons of bridges, amazing views, and stop points where we were able to park and explore. We picked up snacks and had a picnic lunch close to the Seven Sacred Pools. The eco-system there is just amazing! We passed cattle, chickens, pineapple plantations, and lots of rainforest.
Another day, we drove to the top of the volcano. It was amazing the temperature difference at the top. I’d never been remotely close to a volcano before so I was in total awe. The view was pretty amazing too! We were above the clouds. I wish now we would have biked down.
We spent some time at the beach, but Mike isn’t a big beach bum. He hates being sandy. Our relaxation time was spent in the shade by the pool, reading novels and drinking cocktails, which was also enjoyable. Of course, we couldn’t sit still for long and had other adventures while we were there. We went whale watching (phenomenal!!), went to a Luau (something you have to do if you go to Hawaii, but I wasn’t impressed with the food – except for the purple potato rolls), went shopping (I bought my first pair of Merrells at the mall there – my feet hurt badly from so much walking!), ate good food, and explored all of the towns and parts of Maui.
We flew out on Saturday and returned home early in the morning on Sunday, March 14. Before we left, we ate a cheesy shrimp pizza. Yum! When we arrived at the airport, we found that Mike’s Jeep had a dead battery, but eventually were able to get the Jeep jumped and head home. My mom and grandpa were at our house to meet us and mom made us a big breakfast that morning.
The trip was everything a honeymoon should be and we hope to go back for our 10 year anniversary in two years. I’d love to renew our vows on the beach – and who knows, by then we may even be brave and take the kids.