Friday, July 19, 2013

Maui's Makena State Park: A Tail of Two Beaches



Though throngs of tourists and locals fill several huge lots at Makena State Park, the beaches retain a wide-open and wild vibe, with fine sand, foamy waves and a backshore that rests below the lower green slopes of Haleakala. Most people head to Big Beach, nearly a mile long. A shore break invites skim boarders, while snorkelers flipper around the point on the north side. The sunsets are fab, with a view of Kaho'olawe (island) resting on the horizon.



Little Beach is, yes, much smaller. It's also magnet for people hankering to expose bare bottoms to the Hawaiian sunshine. Though nudity is unlawful of all beaches in the Islands, you'd never know it after making the steep walk over the point at the north end of Big Beach to this sister cove. Spinner dolphin, perhaps into people watching, are known to circle around offshore. Separating the two beaches is Pu'u Olai, a historic volcanic cone that gives you a view of the coastal spectacle from about 350 feet.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Twin Falls Botanical Preserve: Choice Tropical Fruit on Maui



Don't stop at Twin Falls Botanical Preserve, at the beginning of the Hana Highway, if you plan on making the daytrip to the Pools of Oheo. Better to plan on spending half a day here exploring eight waterfalls with pools, connected by trails through wild botanical gardens. Be forewarned: Weekends can be a zoo, ecpecially during peak tourist times. People swing from ropes and jump from cilffs of varying heights. Some of it is pretty hairy, so newcomers should not get too zany. The popular stop is at what was formerly the Twin Falls Fruit Stand. At the very least pull in and bag some apple bannans, papaya, and avos. And if they are still taking donations, you might want to toss them a few bucks. There aren't many private lands that are as visitor friendly in Hawaii. Maui Trailblazer has more details on page 119.