Friday, June 5, 2009

Wailea Deluxe

A paved path connects the five beaches of ritzy Wailea, all curves of golden sand separated by low lava finger-reefs and flanked at the backshore by the lawns, gardens, and poolside paraphernalia of some of the world's most highly rated destination resorts.

The Four Seasons and Fairmont Kea Lani aren't too shabby, but the architecturally wondrous Grand Wailea (pictured here) is the choice to wander about and check out sculpture gardens, theme-park pool, and museum quality artwork. Then haul the book and snorkel gear down to one of the always-safe beaches and live the good life for the day. The coast walk, round trip, is nearly four miles, and can be extended to double that if you take the Eddie Pu Trail north to the Kamaole Beach Parks (three of them), which anchor the more prosaic tourist town of Kihei. But you really don't have to walk far at all, since a half-dozen parking lots provide access for the public.