On this day, the plan was to be up bright and early, get off the ship on arrival at 8am and hit the Road to Hana. Unfortunately we were both up a little late working (so many benefits/pitfalls to working for ourselves and working from anywhere!) so we didn’t get out as early as we’d have liked to but we picked up our Jeep and drove away from the dock by about 9:15am.
The Road to Hana is a twisty turny affair which many opt to see on tour but my husband loves a driving challenge so it was a no brainer decision for us. I knew about the CD guides to the trip but had read we’d be able to easily pick one of them up in Paia. We stopped in Paia for water and snacks but could not find a CD guide and not being able to download the app guide (limited data overseas) we carried on with just our trusty Lonely Planet guide.
There are 600 or so hairpin turns and about 60 one way bridges so it is a hairy drive at the best of times but this particular day? Treacherous. The weather was shocking and although it rains most days in East Maui I have seen plenty of photos that confirm it doesn’t rain this much every day. Along the way we encountered flash flooding, torrential rain, road debris, trees down (including one road closure) and the worst one; a poor cow had fallen from above the road, presumably slipped in the bad weather. It must have happened in the minutes before we passed, as panic stricken locals were milling around not quite sure what to do, I don’t think the poor animal had quite passed away. It was just awful.
In saying that, we were also afforded some absolutely incredible, awe inspiring vistas. We braved the downpour for some stops but for some others the rain magically held off for a few minutes. Our journey on the Road to Hana was difficult but oh so worth it and incredibly rewarding! And Hana is just about the cutest town that ever was! I would love to come back for a proper visit and stay here one day.
On the way home we stopped at the Ka’eleku Cave to check out the lava tube. Although the section open to the public is actually only a 1/3 of a mile, it was much bigger inside than I thought and fascinating! This was a stop we were very glad we made however let it be known that there are portaloos here, not real bathrooms, and on our visit their condition was so horrible I decided to hang on for a rest stop. And the rest stop bathrooms are not exactly like The Plaza so that’s definitely saying something! Seriously though, they were something else – just hang on, trust me on this one. You’re welcome.
This laughter is caused by the TORRENTIAL rain we braved to get a shot of Three Bears Falls. Not the best photos we’ve ever taken but worth it for the memories.
Into the lava tube…