It feels so good to be writing again! If you wish to follow my adventures to the minute, I’ve been sharing on Instagram HERE.
Anyway, my getaway thus far has proven to be very restful, and with even a little drama attached!
The weather was perfect when I arrived. Time spent dashing from beach to pool to lanai to different beaches to eating haunts to the Maui Swap Meet kept me enjoyably active and clicking pictures.
However, just a few days after I arrived, a huge storm blew in and shut down the entire island’s power. Oh my goodness does this place turn BLACK when not a light is to be found. You feel very disoriented. While the rain will last for another day, the power is (for now) back on again and it was amazing just to be able to make my beloved kona coffee once again. Small pleasures are indeed appreciated once you’ve lost them!
It’s also been a real treat to hang out with my sister! She and her hubby arrived a few days after I did, and it’s been fun seeing the places they gravitate towards.
Here’s what transpires when two wet coast Canadians spot a palm tree…
Anyway, I finally have some photos edited of a lovely place I came upon for the first time, which is a must visit in my book.
My attempt to visit the infamous Iao Valley was thwarted when I drove up to a closed sign. Apparently they JUST closed until December for improvements needed after a big storm. Egads!
Since this is a fav area to visit, I decided to stop at the place right in front of the valley called Kepaniwai Park. I’ve been there before and knew how magical it was, but what I found this time totally captivated me!
I’m so glad I parked where I did, otherwise I may have missed it. If you squint, you’ll see a bridge… That had me investigating.
Oh.. a rusty foot-bridge leading into a jungle-styled forest? You know I’m up for that!
So I packed up the camera and phone and set out to see what was there.
The rushing river and the sounds of birds totally captivated me. THIS is Hawaii. Natural and raw.
The very narrow foot bridge guided you over to the other side of the river. Well, that made this picture-happy Hawaiian-lover blogger happy I can guarantee you that.
There were actually lots of people on this walk most likely due to the Iao Valley closure. This is generally a fairly quiet park where the locals gravitate for family gatherings.
So after I waited until everyone was out of sight, well… isn’t this photo totally dreamy?
Once on the other side, a windy path cut through the forest led you all along the river.
It’s a very easy fairly flat walk (with a little incline) for anyone that is steady on their feet. (the path is littered with some roots and such).
It apparently goes for quite a ways. I walked until I got my fill of different views, then turned around. I wasn’t really decked out for a real hike but was up for a little new adventure all the same.
It really was pretty, and showed you a true, untouched Hawaiian landscape. The views of rambling vines against rushing water changed with every step.
Goodness. Now that’s a leaf!
This particular day was pretty humid, however the forest cut out the heat to resemble a comfortable summer’s day at home. Great way to beat the heat!
That said, I always like to ‘dress to sweat’, much like for a bike ride. Then you are ready for anything.
Here’s the view of the bridge coming from the trail back to the parking lot. This valley is just so stunning.
You really did feel like you were in the middle of nowhere yet you were steps to the parking lot.
After my fab trail find, I wandered through the rest of the park. It appears it is not just a park, but more a park set up in honour of some of Hawaiian’s history, which made it much more of a relevant visit.
Could you even imagine having lived here at one time?! It was a little salt box house set in the middle of this beautiful jungle backdrop.
You can read more about the New England Exhibit here.
From a photographer’s perspective, it was a beauty!
I don’t know anything about this amazing hut, however it sure attracted my tropically rustic infused eye! I’ll take one, please.
As much as I adore modern conveniences when travelling, it was just such a pleasure to feast my tourist eyes on something so authentically Hawaiian.
I don’t begin to know how it’s still standing with such slim supports, but I’m glad it is.
So yes… while this little area was not my intended destination, I’m so glad I made this stop! It’s quick and it’s free and it’s real Hawaii.
The next day, I went on a beach hunt… I’ll share a super special new one with you soon!
Other must sees while in this area:
Maui Swap Meet (on Saturdays)
Grabbing an acai bowl from Farmacy in Wailuku
Getting some malasadas from Home Made Bakery in Wailuku (to DIE for)
Dinner and a junk tour walk at The Mill House at The Plantation.