Author Topic: SAM 28 COVID-19 HAWAII MAUI Trip Report Nov 2020  (Read 536 times)

Offline sam28

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Platinum Elite
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jun 2010
  • Posts: 1752
  • Total likes: 57
  • Hat Tips 0
    • View Profile
SAM 28 COVID-19 HAWAII MAUI Trip Report Nov 2020
« on: November 07, 2021, 01:54:05 PM »

Hawaii Maui TR


I was planning a trip to Hawaii for a while, it was on top of my bucket list for a long time but for some reason the trip never happened.
On Monday November 16 2020 I realized that maybe I can work out to go next week so I started working on all the plans. First I was looking for flights and hotels then Iíll work out my itinerary. Our Rav told us itís better not to stay in Hawaii for Shabbos so we decided to go for the weekend to LA. And Sunday morning we left to Maui till Thursday. There were no direct flights Thursday from HNL to NYC so we flew back with a stop in LA.

We couldnít decide where to stay in Hawaii but from reading Dans Deals we figured out that the west side has the best weather so we looked for a hotel on that side.


I booked JFK Ė LA with AA points since I have a lot of them. I found business class tickets for 45k each. Flight #AA3 had a full business class not a single empty seat. It was a nice flight. We had a plane that usually goes to Europe so we got lie flat seats. We sat in row 1 so the stewardess kept telling us to pull up our mask other than that we had a very nice flight. We left 6pm landed 9pm.

The flight from LAX to OGG was booked with AA points too. I paid 45k per business class ticket. The flight departed 8:10am and we landed 12:00 pm Hawaii time. The business class on this flight was nothing major, there was no entertainment system you had to use your phone if you wanted and the seats were just a little bit wider.

The flight from OGG to EWR was booked with cash with United Airlines since it was the only flight available to be back in NY in time for Shabbos. The flight left OGG at 2:15pm with a stop in LA and arrived Friday morning at 6:45AM. Ticket was $275? No saver rewards were available.


In LA we wanted to stay near the airport. We found a nice hotel called the Portofino. Itís by the marine and has a nice view. I booked it with cash.
In Maui we stayed in the Westin Maui Resort & spa in Kaanapali. Since covid one side of the hotel was closed so we got upgraded to beautiful brand new room but paid the price for the old room. We paid cash.
When I was looking online at car rentals they charged $100.00 a day for a convertible but I went through a broker and paid $75.00 a day
« Last Edit: November 07, 2021, 01:57:26 PM by sam28 »

Offline sam28

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Platinum Elite
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jun 2010
  • Posts: 1752
  • Total likes: 57
  • Hat Tips 0
    • View Profile
Re: SAM 28 COVID-19 HAWAII MAUI Trip Report Nov 2020
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2021, 02:21:04 PM »

Day of flying

We arrived to JFK about 4:45. Check in was fast, the airport was empty. Only half of the lounge was open but we went in, got some drinks and then it was time to board the flight. We had a new plane and in no time we were landing.

Our Flight for the day





We did not rent a car in LA since we didnít plan on going anywhere. We were just there for the weekend. There is no Uber at LAX you need to take a shuttle that takes you to the Uber station. You can walk a good 20 minutes to the Uber station too. We had so much luggage it was easier to walk than to haul everything up on a shuttle. We got an Uber and 20 minutes later arrived to our hotel. The hotel is in the Redondo Beach area its beautiful.
The hotel is boutique style hotel, big spacious rooms with great service.

Our Hotel in LA



Munchies Breakfast


View of our room


Shabbes arriving



Because we were going to Hawaii we needed a negative covid test. Before we left NY we tried getting an appointment by Walgreens or CVS but there was nothing available for Friday morning. We found an urgent care 1.6 miles from our hotel we called them and they said we can come there to do the covid test.

   We got to the urgent care at 10AM when they opened and there was already a big line. Once we were next they told us we have two options, first one can take up to 72 hours and costs $125.00 other you get results in 24 hours and costs $250. Since we were leaving Sunday morning I couldnít risk the 72 hour one so we took the 24 hour one and paid $250 per person. We had a 1 hour wait outside then some doctor came out called our name and did the test outside. They told us results are available in 24 hours online.

We took an Uber from the urgent care to Munchies for breakfast. Food was great. From there we walked to Ralphs bought some drinks and headed back to our hotel. We bought all the Shabbos food from Red Delicious deli in Monsey. They pack up all the food beautifully and safe for flying. So we had a full Shabbos menu we didnít need any food from LA.

Shabbos was very relaxing. We went out for walks near the marine and the beach. We woke up early Shabbos morning because we were on New York time. But before we knew it Shabbos was over and we ran to our phones to check our results. Our tests were negative and we started packing up for our trip. The hotel kept our milk in the freezer for us so we had to go pick it up before midnight so we can have it before we left.

Offline sam28

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Platinum Elite
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jun 2010
  • Posts: 1752
  • Total likes: 57
  • Hat Tips 0
    • View Profile
Re: SAM 28 COVID-19 HAWAII MAUI Trip Report Nov 2020
« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2021, 05:30:13 PM »
Sunday 11/22/20 Lax- OGG

Sunday we were up at 5AM. Drank some coffee and went to the airport.

When we got to the airport it was very full. But we checked in on time with AA. They made sure we have our covid tests. They did not let us go into the lounge even we flew business, they said itís for members only. So we stayed outside, I davened while I was waiting to board.

The plane ride to OGG was nice, there was no entertainment on the flight.

Our business class seat


Arriving in OGG




When you arrive to OGG the second you get off the flight they ask for your covid test, even though we couldnít leave LA without a covid test. Then they ask you to go the to fill out a form which takes a few minutes. You have to upload your covid test. You get a QR code then you can go in line to enter the airport. The line was crazy long we waited 1 hour and 10 minutes. But it was worth the wait to be able to see such a beautiful Island. At the end of the line there were many people working for the airport asking for your test and your form. They make you sign a pink paper and give it to you. You must save it you need it for car rental and hotel check in.

Long lines to show Covid test


We collected our luggage and took a train ride to the car rental which took about 3 minutes.

I booked my car with Alamo they promised me Iíll get a convertible. When I got there they said they donít have any convertibles since there was a recall. I told them itís not fair but all they said is I can choose a car from the parking lot. But I didnít just want any car so I went looking at the other car rentals if they have a convertible. Avis said I can have a convertible for $192.00 for 4 days. I was shocked at the good deal. So we took it and we were on our way to explore Maui.

Got our nice car


By the time we left the airport was around 2:15. The way to our hotel took 40 minutes. But we were told if we need stuff to stop by Walmart its 2 miles away from the airport. So we stopped bought drinks and stuff and then we were on our way to our hotel.
The driving in Maui is beautiful, really no words or pictures can describe the scenery. The wind was very strong at the time but we took in the views one side the ocean and one side beautiful green mountains. There is almost no phone service on the road but we had no problem finding the hotel.
We got to our hotel about 3:30. When we checked in they told us that the room we booked, (old room) that tower was supposed to open Sunday but it didnít so they upgraded us to a beautiful brand new room. They charge $750 a night for this room when you try to book it online. I donít think itís worth it. But we got it for the amount we paid for the old room. It was well worth it and beautiful. The room was fresh and the view from the room was magnificent. As we checked in they told us this tower just finished construction after 3 long years.

The hotel is beautiful, the service was great. They have many amazing pools.

The best weather on the island is in this area. So if you go its best to stay in Kaanapali or Lahaina.
We had a beautiful sunset right in front of our nose. Was stunning. And after such a long day we went to bed.
We tried getting tickets for Haleakala sunrise, but there was nothing available only for the next week. We checked with the concierge and they tried getting tickets for us but due to covid they didnít sell that many tickets. We found out you have to book a week in advance at 7am, so we had to give up on watching sunrise on top of the clouds. We thought of going for sunset but the weather wasnít nice. We were told that there is lots of rain in Hana and Haleakala. But where we stayed was nice and sunny.
Every day they said rain in Hana but we had no choice and decided to do the road to Hannah the next day and hope for the best.

Pictures of our room





View of our porch



Sunset first night



Offline sam28

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Platinum Elite
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jun 2010
  • Posts: 1752
  • Total likes: 57
  • Hat Tips 0
    • View Profile
Re: SAM 28 COVID-19 HAWAII MAUI Trip Report Nov 2020
« Reply #3 on: November 17, 2021, 11:32:38 AM »
Monday Nov 24 2nd day

We woke up at 3:30, we couldnít sleep. We watched sunrise from our room, davened, and packed up for the day.

We left our hotel room at 7am. Opened the roof of the convertible and started our drive to Hana. I used the Maui Revealed book and wrote down places where I wanted to stop. Once you pass the airport The RTH starts. It was pretty cloudy and the rain was on and off.
We passed The Rainbow Eucalyptus Trees on the side of the road I think it was on mile marker 7

Disclaimer about our pictures

 Most of our trip the weather was purring rain so the pictures wonít be that good . But we still have some pictures with the Sun out

See picture

Our morning view from our room



Starting the RTH



Our first stop was Keíanae Peninsula. I have no words to describe how nice it was. You watch the water crashing into the rocks. I would say itís not to miss even if it rains. We made a little picnic there, ate breakfast and continued our journey.





The 2nd stop was Chings Ponds. Itís a little hard to find but we downloaded the Shaka Guide App and the app told us where to find it. I would say the app is a must. It made our ride so much easier. They tell you where to stop, where to park and while you drive it tells you a little history of the island.

Path to go down little hard to find




It was raining when we got there so we couldnít go swimming. But you park your car before the bridge, you cross over to the other side of the road. Youíll see a narrow walkway follow that path, it was muddy and slippery because of all the rain in the last few days but then we got to see the beautiful pool and views. One more couple was there but left as we got there.

3rd stop was Waialua Valley State Wayside. You park your car there walk up many steps and you can see three nice waterfalls on one side and the ocean on the other side. Itís a nice stop even in the rain.




This is how the road looks over there

4th stop we passed 3 bears falls. It was pouring then but we saw some big waterfalls over a bridge. I donít remember the name.



5th stop was Nahiku Road. This stop is a must. You take a left turn on the road to Hana for about 2.5 miles. Itís a nice little village with lots of greenery and beautiful flowers all over. Itís a one lane road so you have to be careful how you drive there. Once you get to the church you park your car there. The road has been closed since 2015 so you have to walk down the road to a jaw dropping view of the shore line. The views there were amazing. We sat down there, relaxed, enjoyed! Then we walked back and drove back to the Road to Hana. The whole thing took   about a 45 minutes but itís worth every second of your time.

The road down






The 6th stop was Waiíanapanapa State Park. Also an amazing place to stop. On the left side of the parking lot you go down steps to the black sand beach. We spent some time there but didnít go swimming as it was raining. Once you go back up on the right side there is some nice blowholes. Donít go too close you will get soaked. Even with the clouds and the rain the view was spectacular.

We passed this on the way



Black sand beach empty




The blow hole


Just a by the way, the entire road is so full of greenery itís like a forest jungle. The smell is amazing. We were in awe of all the trees and the flowers.
Then we passed the town of Hana. It was raining so hard then. The best part of RTH wasnít meant to be on this trip. We arrived to Oheío Gulch, Seven Sacred Pools, and we were planning to do the Pipiwai Trails. We waited there for about 20 minutes for the rain to stop or slow down, but the lady told us for the past 4 days this is how it was raining. So we left, most people left but some people still went it.
We took gas and bought some cold drinks in Hana.

The 7th stop was called Venus pool. You stop on the side of the road and hike down to the pool/beach. It was so muddy and slippery to walk down but we made it. Itís a nice place to get a swim, some people were there at the time but we werenít tempted to go swimming in such a weather.



We passed many beautiful waterfalls on the way but I donít remember all of the names. We stopped at many waterfalls, got some nice pictures and moved on.



Now we were on the back road of Hana. Itís a one lane road and sometimes unpaved. I was told its very scary to take this route but I think anyone can do it. You have to drive slow and carefully. As we left Hana the weather became beautiful. It became very windy but the sun came out. We got to really enjoy our convertible.

Back road of Hana.






Weather got much better







We made many stops to take in the beautiful views. It was such a fun drive I canít see why anyone would skip it.

Overall Iíd say TRH is a must to do. We werenít so lucky and didnít have nice weather. We couldnít do any hikes or go swimming but I donít regret doing it one bit. All the waterfalls, the bamboo woods, the gorgeous flowers, these luscious trees all made it worth it.

We got back to our hotel at 5pm. It was cloudy but sunset was beautiful.

Sunset from our room



We ate supper and went to pool to relax a bit. Then went to bed early as we were still jetlagged and got up so early every morning.