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Maui December 2018 Trip Report

Flights were booked from a great Dan’s Deal post $370 each RT (w/o any checked luggage) United ( flew economy plus on the ogg-la leg of the trip)  we decided to split up the trip in half rather than flying to honolulu since we didnt want as long of a flight.

I did some black friday shopping shipping a few items via amazon to our hotel including a $20 toaster which worked well for us and a $6 snorkel mask that i didn't use.

First leg of the united flight was very nice booked window and aisle seat with no one between us so we got to spread out arrived in sf  with very little time so did not get to enjoy the priority pass restaurant (for free drinks) right outside of our gate.  Sadly we sat on the plane after boarding for almost 2 hrs with no real reason why they were holding us there. 

We finally landed in OGG and arrived at the alamo car pick up we rented a convertible for $400 from hotwire. (I paid for it with my chase sapphire reserve, I was under the impression that this car would be covered under the insurance, I called chase and they told me otherwise, i do not know if this was actually true or not but i wasn't risking it and i paid the $240 for insurance)  the convertible was great, though my DW did not love the convertible top down.  We stopped at safeway on our way to the Ritz Carlton in kapalua our first hotel.  The safeway was right above Lahaina and lots of kosher options (but of course very pricey on certain things just like everyone says).





We finally made it to our hotel at around 11pm luckily we still got our lei greeting (which at the ritz is a necklace with small sea shells) This was my cheapest hotel of the vacation at 18,000 UR Points per night this was for a garden view room, but at check in they upgraded us to a ocean view room for our four night stay  they also gave us a late check out on shabbas at 6pm.  The ritz was a very nice hotel well appointed and very nice size rooms (unlike what some people told me.)  The pools were very nicely tiered and the walk to the beach was not that far away. (they even have a golf cart to take you if you don’t want to do the walk) There is water with fruit in it all over the hotel and free sunscreen available at all of the pool houses.  The hotel did live up to its reputation with very windy skies that did keep it colder than wailea (and made it much more difficult to light chanukah candles).  We were not very impressed with the concierge services, they never once had a better deal than us booking online on our own and even told us that the snorkeling tour that we were going to book for the following day was sold out (turns out after going online a little later it was most definitely not sold out and even had 20 unfilled seats on the boat so that was pretty upsetting)  They did direct me to a very nice little farmers market in Lahaina. ( https://www.facebook.com/FarmersMarketMaui ) and an even smaller one in Napili that wasn't really worth while. 




We spent our first day relaxing at the pool and beach, my DW was getting over jet lag and slept half the day I got up early and hung out at the pool and beach then went to the farmers markets.  After this we hung out at the pool before heading to Lahaina for sunset chanukah candle lighting on Front st. a nice little area to walk around with lots of shops and a lot of kitch.  As soon as we pulled up we realized every single cosmetic store here hires Israelis as their sales people. (they new we were jewish right away)  We had a very nice time walking around and watching the tiki torch menorah being lit on the water.  We also found that there was an ice cream place that sells Lappert's ice cream (all under the oahu kosher) and dole whip soft serve which was OU-d.  We called it an early night and went back to the hotel.

Our second day was spent sitting by the pool and relaxing all morning until our 2:30 pm whale watching tour on the Pacific whale foundation boat leaving from Lahaina (https://www.pacificwhale.org/cruises/maui-whalewatch/classic-whalewatch/).  This was a very nice tour with a naturalist that definitely tried to make what can be a tedious activity more exciting.  We saw five whales and watched as the surfaced and then dove every ten minutes.  This was very early in December and I was just happy to see any whales at all.  After whale watching we got lappert’s again and then my wife got a mani/pedi while i got a terrible foot massage not worth a single penny i spent, but my wife was very happy.  We then stopped for pre-shabbas shopping at safeway in Lahaina, we found bartenura wine, bread, and lots of snacks and fruits for shabbat.   

Friday we woke up early and drove down to ma’alea harbor for our snorkeling trip to molokini.  I would have to say that this day was probably the highlight of my trip. We chose a boat company sail trilogy, they have been doing this for the longest out of any company and they really do it right http://www.sailtrilogy.com/tour/molokini.  This trip was a little bit more expensive than some like the calypso, which is also very highly recommended by many but the trilogy is a much smaller boat and does sailing for the last portion of the trip.  We made it out to Molokini quickly and we very much enjoyed the snorkeling though the marine life was not very diverse in this area.  A word here about snorkel masks, i bought one of the full face masks and was recommended not to wear it by the dive instructor another group used them and turned around 5 seconds after getting off the boat because they had trouble breathing, so it felt like a good decision not to use it.  We then got back on the boat and sailed over to turtle town aka Mekena.  This area had much chopier water but it was also very cool to see the turtles, most people just floated at the top while the turtles just sat at the bottom of the water but towards the end I was lucky enough to actually swim with a turtle only a few feet away from me.  We then went back to the boat and had our tuna bagel sandwiches that we brought and an open bar. We decided to buy the professional photos that they took for us they were $65 for two people for about 24 pictures, otherwise we wouldn't have had any photos from the water at all.  It was then very nice to sail back with the sails up on the boat.  We also booked a couples massage at the spa with for after the sailing trip we used a spafinder gift card (which we bought at a 30% discount on black friday) after the hotel refused to give my pregnant wife a massage we were ready to cancel but instead they offered her a free facial treatment while i received my massage, so we only paid for the massage.  We thought both services were very good, but did not like the upsell on other products that we didn't sign up for and both services the providers had long conversations with us, which took away a little bit from the mood.  But it was definitely an amazing pre-shabbas experience.  You are able to stay in the spa all day when you get a treatment until 5pm.







Shabbas was very relaxed for us, we had a late checkout until 6pm which was amazing, we brought down everything we didnt need right before shabbas to be stored.  We spent the day walking the beautiful grounds and taking long naps.  The weather was not great and we it was very windy and raining off and on all day. 

We checked out of the hotel motzei shabbas and headed over to our second hotel, the Andaz Hyatt in Wailea.  A word on Wailea, it is very true what they say that the weather in wailea is much better in wailea it was much calmer and warmer even at night time.  I was able to get two free nights at 25,000 hyatt points for this hotel which was nice to also not have to pay the resort fee.  We got to our mountain view room which was tiny and as stated had zero view.  We decided to call the front desk bite the bullet and pay $50 a night for an oceanfront room with a soaker tub.  This was so much better of a room and we were much happier with a view overlooking the pools and a direct view of the molokini crater during day time a beautiful view of the sunset and a perfect view of the luau if we wanted to watch it from the lanai.



The hotel was a great place to hang out,  I got up early sunday morning and went down for a free Stand up paddle boarding lesson (i failed epically at this) and then my DW and I did a free outrigger canoe trip all on our own with an instructor since the other families cancelled.  These two activities plus the kayaking trip, and free snorkel gear really take the andaz above and beyond with what is included in the resort fee.  We were also able to borrow a free gopro for the day.  There was also free coffee outside of the restaurant every morning,   I was able to watch my football games at the bar by the top pool while my DW sat by the pool.  We spent the entire day relaxing by the pool and the ocean.  We met some friends that were also staying at the hotel and hung out all day.  We went snorkeling on the beach at 2pm (be aware the beach side stand closes at 3 but they clean up even before that and try to leave very quickly) the woman working there was pretty rude to us.  After hanging out some more at the pool we went up to get ready for sunset and watching the luau from the side of the luau area.  They conveniently have a bunch of lounge chairs right there next to the luau area that we sat in and ate our dinner.



We the went to the shops at wailea to go to the actual lapperts ice cream shop which had great ice cream again.  We walked around the shops a little which were all very nice. 











We woke up very early the next morning for an early check out and a long day doing the road to Hana and sunset at Haleakala.  This was a very long day and i don't recommend doing this for everyone but we really didn't want to miss either.  We had to turn around by 2:30 to make it back to Haleakala for sunset.  We started out to road to Hana at 7 am from wailea.  It was a very nice drive with all the twists and turns, if you have a convertible drive with the top down but be ready for intermittent downpours.  We decided to download the gypsy app ($5.99) which was recommended to us, this app uses gps to follow along your route and tell you important sites and facts as your driving, it tells you exactly when to turn and where there are good places to park along the road and on the way back it tells you a nice history of Maui/Hawaii.  We did a bunch of small hikes/walks.  Went to the twin falls waterfall, only the first two waterfalls were open.  We stopped at the painted bark eucalyptus tree, which we saw much more of later on. 


We then went to the garden of eden arboretum and botanical gardens - this was $15 per person, and it was one of our favorite sights on the road to hana.  The flowers were beautiful, the views were really nice, and the ducks and peacocks it felt worthwhile to pay the $30. 







We stopped at the kaumahina state park picnic area, it was pretty unimpressive, but a nice view.  We stopped at the Ke’anae arboretum, it was not very interesting, it was a nice easy walk but not very impressive gypsy app said it was a must see, we didn't really feel this way.  We stopped for a moment a the Wailua overlook and saw the taro patches.  We went down to ching’s pond to eat lunch and then stopped for a second at the upper waiku falls.



We then stopped at the Nahiku roadside food stop for coffee and fruit.  Then we went to waianapanapa black sand beach. 



This was our last real stop on the road to Hana when we realized if we didnt turn around we wouldn't make it to Haleakala for sunset.  We tried to stop at Hana fresh for some return fruit and drinks but it was closed early. So we turned around and stopped at Hana Farms for this.  Our drive back was quicker and we made it all the way up to Haleakala for sunset,  we made it by 5:30 for a very cold and beautiful sunset (we debated a lot whether or not to go up for sunrise and everyone we encountered told us it's not worth it)





We arrived back at Wailea and picked up our bags and went over to our final hotel the Wailea Marriott Resort.  This hotel was very nice and we liked the redesign.  This hotel is much more spread out then our other hotels but we enjoyed it.  We asked for an upgraded room and they put us in a partial ocean view.  The room was nice, but the bathroom was small and poorly designed.  The pools were nice here and more spread out.  This is also an ocean front resort not a beach front resort so you have to walk over to the side to  get to the ocean front, wailea beach.  This hotel has some very nice amenities including receiving free drink certificates, a game room (with classic arcade games), free beach chairs on the water, and a very short walk to the shops at Wailea where we got lapperts ice cream again (if your keeping count thats time #4).  They have a starbucks on property, and a nice little market.  The whale tail beach side food shack is pretty bad foodwise, the fruit that they sell there is not very worthwhile.  We sat by the pool our last morning and took advantage of the water slides which were both fun.  We felt that the marriott had the friendliest and most helpful valet/bellhops they were much more friendly and welcoming than the other hotels. 



 

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Destination Guides And Trip Planning / Re: Maui Master Thread
« on: December 11, 2018, 02:37:01 PM »
Does anyone want a dairy toaster oven left for them? I am checking out in one hour from the Marriott in Wailea and will leave it for you at the front desk

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Deals/Deal Requests / Re: iPad Pro 12.7 in. - $579 normally $799
« on: December 05, 2018, 11:05:41 AM »
Ok you got me, that was much more down thread than I looked.

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Any idea which is the better one?

from what i understand the pro is the nicer version, but dont have a link

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Deals/Deal Requests / Walgreens 5 free 4x6
« on: December 03, 2018, 01:05:11 PM »
Walgreens offers 5-Count 4" x 6" Photo Prints for Free with promo code SANTAFREE when you order via the Walgreens App. Select free store pickup where stock permits.

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https://www.macys.com/shop/product/j.a.-henckels-7-rocking-santoku-knife?ID=7934772&ranMID=3184&ranEAID=lw9MynSeamY&ranSiteID=lw9MynSeamY-Rp7Gs1m3HKR8Tyo1AoFWKw&LinkshareID=lw9MynSeamY-Rp7Gs1m3HKR8Tyo1AoFWKw&PartnerID=LINKSHARE&cm_mmc=LINKSHARE-_-5-_-63-_-MP563

Zwilling J.A. Henckels Pro 7" Rocking Santoku Knife on sale for $49.99 - $15 with promo code FRIEND = $34.99. Shipping is free when you purchase a beauty item (from $2.55, sample items will not work) or on orders $99+

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