I can't really remember if I've mentioned this, but my family is Hawaiian at heart. My mom lived on the island of Kauai for a few years, and we've always had relatives who live in Hawaii, so I've been visiting the islands since I was 10. The photos below are from my trip to Maui in 2005 when I was nineteen [oh, only TEN YEARS AGO...I feel nauseous just thinking about it!].
Maui was always my favorite of the islands. We spent most of our trips there, and it really does feel like a second home. Just last week, we decided to finally make our way back to Maui after years of being away! I AM SO EXCITED YOU HAVE NO IDEA.
What's even better is my bestie Katie is joining us for the trip. There's nothing like experiencing Hawaii with someone who hasn't been there before. Everything feels brand new and exciting! It's been five years since I've been back to the islands, and I was basically a kid the last time I was in Maui, so I know I'm going to fall in love with it all over again.
I mean, LOOK AT THAT WATER. I forgot how much I love being near the ocean [Atlanta's a good four hours from a trip to the beach, sigh...] especially an ocean in the most beautiful sapphire blue.
I love Maui because every part of the island has a different topography and climate, so you can experience all sorts of places in one trip. The drive from the airport to Kaanapali [where we usually stay], is just stunning.
We're definitely making our way onto the Hana Highway, a famous drive chock filled with breathtaking views, lush foliage, waterfalls at every turn [there are A LOT of hairpin turns, so it's not for the faint of heart or those prone to carsickness, meaning I have to do ALL the driving or else I'm useless].
Even the shopping malls are beautiful. I distinctly remember taking a photo of this tree [nope, don't know the name of it] while walking through the shopping center nearby our hotel. I think I'd like to paint this one day...
The one thing we'll miss out on during this trip is whale season, my most favorite part of Maui! The whales make their way back to Alaska and cooler waters by the end of May, so we'll have to settle for dolphins and sea turtles and tropical fish [ok maybe I shouldn't complain!].
This spot is one of my favorite places to take photos. The waves are impeccable and the trees and lava rock are really quite something.
I've never had a proper camera while visiting Hawaii, so I know I'll be quite trigger happy with my DSLR on this trip. Expect LOTS of photos in the near future...
I can't remember where exactly I took this photo, but I only have the sepia tone version of it. Sometimes I look at this and think I must have gone back in time and took this photo. I'm desperately hoping to recreate this shot when I'm there next month.
The Sunsets. Maui sunsets speak for themselves. They're varied and beautiful and never get old.
To think in three weeks time I'll be headed to this view. I'm a little overwhelmed with all the happy feelings. I'm having to work a bit overtime right now to prepare for being away for a week [the joys of owning your own business...], but it's all worth it. Everyone needs to visit Hawaii at some point in their life [and not for your honeymoon, too cliche guys!]. I'm unbelievably thankful that I get to return here every so often and take part in the beauty and spirit of Aloha. Ok, back to planning the trip!