16 Sep 2017

Maui: Two Weeks of Snorkeling and Sunsets

Starting our trip in Maui always seemed a bit indulgent. It also meant the trip to South Africa to start the first leg of the RTW ticket was going to take a bit longer (around 36 hours). Still, getting to stay with Nate’s parents for almost two weeks was too good of an opportunity to pass up.

12 Day Itinerary

  1. Land in Maui
  2. The Snorkeling off the beach in Kihei, 3 hour hike through the lava fields at La Perouse Bay, shave ice, tacos at Fred’s
  3. I finished teaching for the summer term(!), snorkeling in Kihei, long beach walk
  4. Glass bottomed kayaks, snorkeling at Turtle Bay, shave ice, Pita Perfect for dinner
  5. Sunrise at Haleakala, hiking and swimming at Na’ili’ili-haele waterfalls on the road to Hana
  6. Snorkeling at Ulua Beach in Wailea (turtles, rays, and an octopus!), Ioa valley walk, watch kite surfing
  7. Morning beach walk, snorkeling at Kihei, shave ice
  8. Snorkelong at Ulua Beach, Kealia Pond Wildlife Refuge and boardwalk, gelato
  9. Long beach walks, shave ice, dinner at Seascape
  10. Cinnamon rolls, snorkeling at Honoapiilani Hwy mile marker 14
  11. Snorkeling at Honolua Bay, walking through shops and seeing the Banyan tree in Lahaina, petroglyphs
  12. Long beach walk in Kihei, relaxing, packing


  • Hiking to Na’ili’ili-haele waterfalls
  • Snorkeling
  • Haleakala sunrise

It turns out that while we did some activities that were on the more expensive side, our favorites were relatively low cost beyond the need to have a rental car to reach them. The hike to Na’ili’ili haele was free, snorkeling was free because Nate’s parents brought snorkel gear from home (much cheaper to buy on amazon compared to 2 hour or daily rentals if you plan to use them regularly), and Haleakala was only $25 + $1.50 for the online reservation fee for all of us to enjoy the 2+ hour experience. These activities pale in comparison to the kayaking, guided tours, and luaus that are advertised everywhere you look.

What we might do differently

  • We would have skipped the glass bottom kayaks. Snorkeling is much more flexible, both in navigating and for seeing deeper below the surface. There is nothing wrong with kayaking but just get a normal kayak to enjoying paddling around and then snorkel instead.
  • We would have had more shave ice. We didn’t have it every day, so we really didn’t have enough.