In 2011, we took another vacation with the same family friends from the Puerto Rico trip. This trip was extremely exciting for me because it was the first time I was able to do a lot of physical activity after a major surgical procedure the year before. I got to feel like a kid again, playing around on the beach and wishing upon every sunset.
All of us stayed at the Grand Wailea Beach Resort in Maui on the west side of the island, perfect for sunsets. The resort had a pool and offered tons of activities to partake in, such as canoeing, water boarding, swimming with turtles, snorkeling, etc . The food was amazing every where we went, even the hotel’s food was fantastic, I definitely recommend the breakfast.
We spent every single day at the beach. The water was extremely cold, but it didn’t stop us from playing in it until the sunset. While snorkeling with my sister and friends, a few sea turtles swam up to us. It was probably the coolest experience I have ever had while swimming in the ocean. They were so friendly and calm and so beautiful! We captured some pictures with an underwater camera, but I couldn’t find a picture with a decent resolution quality to post. On our first night, we attended a luau at the hotel. We were showered in floral leis and mesmerized by the dancing of the fire show. The next day, we decided to try zip-lining through the eucalyptus forest in Haleakalā, Kula. It was my first time zip-lining and it was the highlight of our trip. I was scared at first, but after first line I got used to the height. The trees and foliage was really distracting, so it doesn’t really feel like you are high up in the air. Later, we continued up the mountain to the top of Haleakalā National Park, elevation 10,023 feet, where the dormant volcano is located. It was a beautiful view with extremely chilly winds, but it was worth it. Our last night was spent touring the town of Lahaina to shop, eat some authentic Hawaiian cuisine, and get a henna tattoo (mine was of turtles 🙂 ). Of course, every single night we tried to catch the sunset with our smart phones and cameras. Actually, most of the photos below were captured with an iPhone 4s, amazing quality right? And none of these photos were filtered in any way. This is all raw footage, courtesy of mother nature. Yes, the purple sunset was real!!
I would definitely come back to Maui in the future and hopefully travel to the other Hawaiian islands. A part of my soul was left here, so I must return!
Photography by Sophia and Katerina Kountakis