Sunday, January 29, 2017

Heavenly Hana

We had a fantastic view of Big Island on the island flight to Maui, and saw the snow covered top of Mauna Kea, surrounded by green valleys and lava flows. A voluptuous landscape with so many curves. In just 40 minutes we were landing at OGG International airport.

We picked up our blue convertible, stocked up on supplies at the local Kmart, and then made our way to the Road to Hana.

views along Hiway 31
Highway 360 had many spots to pull over and admire the view, but they were often full and unavailable. No matter, because just passing through the scenery was a feast for the senses. It was a clear day so the top was down. The rainforest had a sweet, stirring scent. We often heard waterfalls but couldn't see them. We stopped many places along the way, including the vintage Hawaiian village Keanae.

7 Sacred Pools
It was easy to find our Hana cottage and unpack before heading to the beaches in Waianapanapa State Park and the Hana town. Then 'home' to make dinner and enjoy a hot tub on the porch.

Palapala Hoomau
Congregational Church
The next morning we made our way up the coast to Oheo Gulch and Seven Sacred Pools, driving alongside the ocean or high on cliffs looking down at the surf. It was a spectacular drive, but also nerve-wracking, with narrow roads and sudden twists. We ventured further to the Palapala Hoomau Congregational Church, to visit the simple gravesite of Charles Lindbergh. When he learned he was dying, Lindbergh requested that he be secretly flown to Hana where he had already planned his burial ceremony. He told friends at the time that he would "rather spend two days alive on Maui than two months alive in New York."

We had a delicious late afternoon roadside plate lunch before heading to the Red Sand Beach near Hana. The path down is treacherous and narrow with jagged rocks below making for dire consequences. Slippery with pine needles and scree in spots, we went slowly and cautiously, and were rewarded with a gorgeous respite. Others had made the trip, too. A trio of women and their small children digging in the sand; a crowd of naked tattooed kids jumping in the surf; an older man meditating; young girls doing yoga and taking selfies on the beach. Fellow travellers.

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