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    The Night Before Christmas

    I Still Believe

    Location: The Night Before Christmas

    I was only five years old when I learned there was no Santa.  I remember it clearly.  I actually wasn’t even five yet…just a few weeks shy.  It was Christmas morning 1964.   The little neighbor girl who was friends with my seven year-old sister came over to see our gifts.  My sister was showing her this cool play kitchen Santa had brought when Jodi said to my sister “you know Santa is really just your Mom and Dad.”  Those were her exact words.  I remember it 56 years later like it was yesterday.

    Well Jodi was the youngest child of a large family, where apparently, her older brothers and sisters had not managed to keep the big secret from her.

    I’m not sure either my sister or Jodi even realized I was standing right there.

    I remember my sister’s reaction – she cried and was very upset.  And I remember my reaction.  I thought to myself “Well, that makes perfect sense.”  And I never doubted it or worried about it from there on, although I didn’t let my parents or siblings know I possessed this knowledge.

    The Night Before Christmas

    Hawaiian version

    That same Christmas was the year I received my first book.  We had lots of books in the house, but I had never been given a book that was all mine.  Just for me.  That book was a beautiful copy of “The Night Before Christmas” by Clement Clark Moore.  It’s ironic that I received this book the same morning that I learned there was no Santa Claus.

    I adored that book.  I cherished it.  It had a rich, beautiful red cover and beautiful illustrations that I looked at for hours and hours and in later years read cover to cover.  I didn’t let my siblings touch it and it luckily got packed away and preserved in the decades that followed.

    When I was a young Mom I once again fell in love with the book as I read it each year to first my first-born son, and later both my boys.  I easily could recite the poem without the book and often did.  One Christmas my two children and I put on a play of the poem for the family, complete with costumes and scenery.

    The Night Before Christmas

    Some of the older copies in my collection

    It was in these years when my children were very tiny that I picked up an interesting book at the library (yes this was way before Google) all about the history of our Christmas traditions.  I learned so many fascinating things from that book, including the amazing history of the poem “The Night Before Christmas”.  It wasn’t until then, that I understood that many of the holiday traditions I took for granted, including Santa Claus himself, were fairly new developments in recent generations and the poem “The Night Before Christmas” was largely responsible for the image of St. Nicholas we know today.

    The Night Before Christmas

    The flocked version

    Until Moore wrote the poem in 1823 as a gift for his children, St. Nicholas had a Christmas Day arrival not Christmas Eve.  Moore’s image of the “jolly elf” arriving under darkness on Christmas Eve is one we still accept today, elaborated and secured for all time by the Coca-Cola image of Santa in the early 20th Century.

    Moore’s poem also brought into cultural acceptance the idea of Santa’s reindeer as he named them individually for the first time.  And of course the popularity of the later poem “Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer” added additional holiday fun to that aspect of our Christmas cultural icon.

    Once I began to learn and understand the history of Santa Claus in the United States and around the world I became infatuated with the story and the history.  I started purchasing new and antique copies of “The Night Before Christmas” each year and through out the year.  As my love for the story grew as an adult, I also began to receive antique copies of the book from friends and family.

    I currently own more than 30 copies of the book.  My oldest of the collection is a 1905 edition.  I have some fun versions including two Hawaiian versions, a Mickey Mouse version, Holly Hobby and two illustrated by Grandma Moses.

    I have flocked version, a pop-up book version, and one of the most fun versions is a revolving picture book.

    But my favorite will always be the original one I received that Christmas in 1964, published in

    The Night Before Christmas

    My favorite – The book I received for Christmas 1964

    1960.

    The same day I received this amazing storybook of Santa Claus was the same day I learned there is no Santa Claus.  And perhaps my love and adoration for this poem all these years was my way of accepting that truth, while still believing in the Christmas spirit.

    So let’s believe together;

    A Visit from St. Nicholas

    AKA The Night Before Christmas

    By Clement Clark Moore

    “Twas the night before Christmas, when all thro’ the house

    Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;

    The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,

    In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;

    The children were nestled all snug in their beds,

    While visions of sugar plums danced in their heads,

    And Mama in her kerchief, and I in my cap,

    Had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap-

    When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,

    I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.

    Away to the window I flew like a flash,

    Tore open the shutters, and threw up the sash.

    The moon on the breast of the new fallen snow,

    Gave the luster of mid-day to objects below;

    When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,

    But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,

    With a little old driver, so lively and quick,

    I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.

    More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,

    And he whistled, and shouted, and call’d them by name:

    “Now! Dasher, now! Dancer, now! Prancer and Vixen,

    “On! Comet, on! Cupid, on! Donder and Blitzen;

    “To the top of the porch! To the top of the wall!

    “Now dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!

    As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,

    When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky;

    So up to the housetop the coursers they flew,

    With the sleigh full of toys – and St. Nicholas too:

    And then in a twinkling, I heard on the roof

    The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.

    As I drew in my head, and was turning around,

    Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound:

    He was dress’d all in fur, from his head to his foot,

    And his clothes were all tarnish’d with ashes and soot;

    A bundle of toys was flung on his back,

    And he look’d like a peddler just opening his pack:

    His eyes – how they twinkled! His dimples: how merry,

    His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry;

    His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,

    And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow;

    The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,

    And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath.

    He had a broad face, and a little round belly

    That shook when he laugh’d, like a bowl full of jelly:

    He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,

    And I laugh’d when I saw him in spite of myself;

    A wink of his eye and a twist of his head

    Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.

    He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,

    And fill’d all the stockings; then turn’d with a jerk,

    And laying his finger aside of his nose

    And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose.

    He sprung to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle

    And away they all flew, like the down of a thistle:

    But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight –

    Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night.

    We thank you for all your support and wish you all the brightest and best holiday, despite all the hardships of this past year.  Stay safe and healthy and patient.  We will not have a blog post next Friday.  Merry Christmas to all.  Peace, Joy, Health.

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    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review Sold on a Monday by Kristina McMorris

    If you enjoyed The Orphan Train or Before We Were Yours, you will probably like Sold on a Monday by Kristina McMorris, although it’s not as good as either of those. But I still enjoyed it. Here is my Book Review Sold on a Monday by Kristina McMorris.

    McMorris creates a story around depression era newspaper reporter Ellis Reed and a photo he took of kids and sign that says “Two Kids For Sale”. McMorris uses a real life historic photo to create fictional story of breadlines and hardships in 1931.

    The story weaves through a mother’s dieing wish, a heartbroken but wealthy family, newspaper men (and women) of the era and kids. Many kids whose lives hang in balance and only are searching for love.

    Love is a theme throughout the book, romantic love and family love and you will find yourself cheering for the good guys, feeling mournful for the needy and even sorry for the greedy. A easy and enjoyable read.

    ****Four stars for Sold on a Monday by Kristina McMorris.

    Read last week’s review of The Mirror and the Light by Hilary Mantel

    My current read Celestial Bodies by Jokha Alharthi

    See this week’s top performing pin here Maui Top Five Things to Do

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    Food & Drink  --  Island Life

    Cooking Hawaiian at Home – Mahi Mahi

    Fresh, Local, Delicious

    Location: Maui Hawaii

    While spending more than two months in Maui we were blessed with the freshest most wonderful local seafood. When back in Washington State we get a monthly fish delivery from Alaska. That fish is incredible. And luckily in Maui we came upon a fish delivery service that sends the catch of the day right to our door – making it simple to cook Hawaiian at home.

    Fresh Fish Maui is an awesome little business with a superb product. You can also buy frozen fish and even fish that has been partially prepared such as coconut crusted or teriyaki. But we stuck to the fresh catch of the day. Each day I received a text telling me what the boats were heading in with. What could be more fresh than that? During our time on Maui we enjoyed fresh onaga, mahi mahi, ono, mong chong and ahi. It was all amazing.

    So today I am sharing two Mahi Mahi preparations here, a video I did for my weekly Tasty Tuesday series on YouTube. Both of these turned out so delicious and both recipes are unique and easy. As good as the local restaurants if I may say so myself!

    Mahi Mahi

    Check this out – Mahi Mahi two ways;

    Steamed Mahi Mahi

    Two 6 oz mahi mahi – steam on stove top for five minutes

    Lightly saute 1 T chopped garlic, 4-5 shiitake mushrooms and one chopped leek. Put on top of steamed fish. Finish cooking vegetables by pouring 2 T hot sesame oil over each piece of fish.

    Macadamia Nut Crusted Mahi Mahi

    Soak two 6-7 oz pieces of mahi mahi for 20 minutes in 1/3 cup coconut milk. In food processor combine one cup panko with 1/3 cup macadamia nuts and a little salt and pepper. Dip wet pieces of fish in the crust. Fry on stove top, medium heat about five minutes each side. Top fish with toasted coconut for last minute of cooking.

    Side Dishes

    To round out your Hawaiian fish dinner consider this salad that I have made so many times while here in Maui. I found this recipe in a forty-year old Hawaiian cookbook in our condo. I had to modify it but boy is it ono (delicious)!;

    Papaya and Greens Salad with Cantonese Vinaigrette

    Greens and Papaya Salad with Cantonese Vinegarette

    1 head leaf lettuce, half papaya chopped, 1/4 cup walnuts or almonds, 1/4 cup toasted coconut.

    Mix above ingredients just before serving. Toss with vinaigrette.

    Vinaigrette

    2 T Sesame Oil, 1 T Olive Oil, 1 T soy sauce, 1 T brown sugar, 1 T rice wine vinegar, 1 T Stone ground mustard, 2 t minced ginger and 2 minced garlic cloves. Make an hour ahead and refrigerate.

    And here is another delicious side dish for cooking Hawaiian at home;

    Okinawan Sweet Potatoes (often called Hawaiian Purple Potatoes)

    Mahi with Okinawan Sweet Potatoes

    I made this dish with both purple and orange sweet potatoes for our Thanksgiving Hawaiian feast. So good;

    2-3 sweet potatoes, 1/3 cup coconut milk, 4 minced garlic cloves, 1/3 t sea salt, pepper to taste.

    Peel potatoes and boil about 45 min (they will take longer than regular potatoes to get soft).

    Drain and return to pan. Add coconut milk and mash to desired consistency. Stir in garlic, salt and pepper.

    Cooking Hawaiian at Home

    Although there are so many wonderful restaurants here on the island of Maui, we cooked and ate most of our meals at home during our nine weeks on the island. Partly to stay on budget, partly to social distance but mostly because this is the way we travel, making each destination feel like home.

    Steamed Mahi Mahi with Veg in Sesame Oil

    Delicious Maui. Delicious, fresh and local. Mahi Mahi – Cooking Hawaiian at Home. Ono.

    Read our Maui Top Five Things to Do here

    Read Going to Hana Backwards here.

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    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review The Mirror and the Light by Hilary Mantel

    You know it’s something special when a book ends and you just can’t stop thinking about it. My heart has been heavy all week since this remarkable novel ended…I loved it. Here is my book review The Mirror and the Light by Hilary Mantel.

    I must preface;

    First this is a trilogy and a masterpiece. You could do only one book, but honestly why would you? Of the three, this final one, The Mirror and the Light was the creme de la creme. Everything about it was brilliant.

    BUT, I must tell you that I listened to all three of the Mantel’s Thomas Cromwell novels on Audible. For me, this kind of deep and historic novel is perfect for Audible. And The Mirror and the Light unfolded like a beautifully choreographed play (a 36 hour play) – captivating me with every word. Of all the Audible books I have enjoyed in my life, the reader of The Mirror and the Light, British actor Ben Miles, could not have been more perfect. Miles’ incredible talent of giving voice to the multitude of characters throughout the book was astonishing. And most astonishing was the depth at which he was able to develop the main character of Thomas Cromwell, even as Cromwell changes through the years.

    The Mirror and the Light chronicles the final years of the life of Thomas Cromwell, right hand man to King Henry VIII in the 1500’s. In Mantel’s earlier works (Wolf Hall and Bring Up The Bodies), Cromwell has witnessed the triumphs and tragedies of England, the Church, and Henry- including the debacle of four of his six wives.

    The story of Cromwell and indeed Henry VIII, is well known in history, but the talent of Mantel’s writing brings us into 16th century England, into Court and indeed at the elbow of these fascinating giants of history during a time of violence, poverty, power and greed.

    The Mirror and the Light now falls in my top books of all time, alongside All The Light You Cannot See, Pillars of the Earth and the Harry Potter series.

    Thanks to Mantel for finishing this trilogy in such a beautiful way and thank you Ben Miles for bringing it to life on Audible. I might just listen to it again.

    *****Five Stars (and more if I could) for The Mirror and the Light by Hilary Mantel

    Read last week’s review of Daisy Jones and the Six

    My Current Read The Vanishing Half

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    Island Life  --  North America Travel

    Maui Top Five Things to Do

    Best of the Best, Maui Hawaii USA

    Location: Maui Hawaii

    Hawaii has strict Covid-19 restrictions. Know before you go. Learn more here.

    Maui is hands down my favorite of all the Hawaiian Islands. We have now been on Maui for seven weeks and still have two more weeks to go! Everything about it I love. And despite the fact there isn’t anything negative I can say about this beautiful place, I do have some favorites. So today I thought I would share with you my Maui top five things to do – best of the best.

    Top Five Beaches

    Maui
    Secret Beach Makena
    1. Keawakapu – our most frequented beach in South Kihei offers a wide sandy beach, warm clear water and gentle waves
    2. Makena Beaches – Makena also in the south, is dotted with public access to dozens of beautiful and often secluded beach. Secret Beach is worth finding. MaKena Beach State Park is a wonderful huge expanse of a beach and rarely busy.
    3. Black Beach Hana – for the sheer beauty of it, Black Beach on the road to Hana is worth a visit
    4. Baldwin Beach – on the north shore Baldwin Beach is great for body surfing
    5. Napili Bay Beach – I have not swam at this beach but it is so beautiful and has easy access at the north end of the island
    Maui
    Maui Beaches

    Top Five Snorkeling

    Maui
    Keawakapu, Kihei
    1. Black Rock Kaanapali – the beach in front of the Kaanapali Sheraton known as Black Rock is one of my favorite places to snorkel. Clear and full of fish and turtles.
    2. Turtle Rock – On a guided snorkel trip a few years ago we had the most amazing time at Turtle Rock – hundreds of turtles here.
    3. Molokini – Though sometimes crowded, a snorkel tour to Molokini is a must at least once in your life to see the abundant marine life here.
    4. Makena Beaches – there are several public access beaches on this long stretch of south Maui with some of the best and easily accessed snorkeling on the island.
    5. Keawakapu – my favorite beach, and the one closest to where we usually stay, has an easy access into the water with snorkel options at the far north of the beach around a large lava reef. Wonderful sealife, turtles and fish.

    Top Five Activities

    Maui
    Maui Zipline
    1. Old Lahaina Lu’au – the creme de la creme of Lu’aus, Old Lahaina has just recently reopened after being closed for 8 months due to the pandemic. I have enjoyed this Luau several times, and although expensive, it is worth every penny. Reservations are required.
    2. Maui Zipline – Maui Zipline is where it all began, the first zipline in the USA. Safe and fun and now reopened with even more safety features.
    3. Whale Watching – from November to April Maui is home to some of the earth’s most amazing creatures, the magnificent humpback whales. A must-do activity while visiting Maui is enjoy a guided tour with the Pacific Whale Foundation.
    4. Ghost Tours Lahaina – more of a history lesson than a ghost encounter, this walking tour with a local will open your eyes to some of the hidden history and mystic Hawaiian lore. Very informative and entertaining.
    5. Chef Prepared dinner – many local chefs are available to bring dinner to you, cooking and serving a beautiful Hawaiian meal for two to ten or even more in your condo or local hale.

    Top Five Hikes

    Maui
    Kapalua Coastal Trail
    1. Waihee Ridge – mid island, five mile roundtrip with incline to spectacular views but weather can be unpredictable.
    2. Kapalua Coastal Trail – hugging the coast from Kapalua to Napili this rugged and beautiful hike has views of Molokai, Lanai and the ocean. Windy.
    3. Halemau’u Haleakala – hike down into the crater starting at 8000 foot level where you will find easy parking. The trail is a switch back and easy for most fit hikers. Temperatures can be very cold at times.
    4. Sliding Sands Haleakala – this is a work out let me tell you, but if you are fit it’s spectacular. Bring lots of water, be prepared for wind and cold or heat and sun you never know. A great place to see the rare and beautiful Silver Sword plant.
    5. Hoapili, La Perouse – past Makena where the road ends you will find parking and the trailhead of the Hoapili, the historic Kings Road. The rough trail takes you over a 300 year old lava field to the far south end of the island. Bring lots of water, it is a hot and dry trail.

    See a great article here with more great hikes from Pride of Maui.

    Top Five Fine Dining

    Mamas Fish House Maui
    Mamas Fish House
    1. Mama’s Fish House, Paia – one of the supreme dining experiences anywhere in the world
    2. Mala Ocean Tavern, Lahaina – Tiny but local chef has created a wonderful menu
    3. Sea House, Napili – One of the best pieces of fish I have ever had
    4. Roy’s Kaanapali – Celebrated chef Roy Yamachuchi’s restaurant never disappoints
    5. Ko, Wailea – we celebrated our 38th wedding anniversary at Ko. It was incredible. Beautiful location and great service.

    Top Five Casual Dining (six in this category!)

    Star Noodle Maui
    Star Noodle, Lahaina
    1. Sam Sato, Wailuku – tourists don’t know about this hidden local gem. Best noodles anywhere
    2. Paia Fish Market (Kihei, Paia and Lahaina) – favorite among visitors and locals
    3. Three’s Bar & Grill Kihei – creative menu of delicious small plates
    4. Maui Brewing (Kihei and Kaanapali) – simple pub food with a healthy twist
    5. Star Noodle, Lahaina – simply incredible. Be sure to have the Vietnamese pancake
    6. Cafe O’Lei – Various locations. Great food, great price and prix fix menu daily.

    We have also heard great things about Kula Lodge, Kimo’s and Down the Hatch.

    Top Five Take Out Foods

    1. L & L Plate Lunch, Kihei – quintessential Hawaiian plate lunch
    2. Maui Taco, Kihei – fish tacos!
    3. Island Gourmet Market, Wailea – great selection of local cuisine as well as sandwiches, pizza and more
    4. Honolua Store, Kapalua – similar to above as well as a great gift shop
    5. Food Trucks, Everywhere and for every taste bud

    Top Five Breakfast Places

    Paia Maui
    Island Fresh Cafe, Paia

    There are several breakfast places we have heard are great (The Gazebo Kapalua and 808 Grindz Lahaina to name two) but these are the ones we have enjoyed so far.

    1. Kihei Cafe, popular, casual spot in Kihei
    2. Sugar Beach Bake Shop, North Kihei – you gotta try the malasada donuts
    3. Kula Bistro, Upcountry great Eggs Benedict
    4. Island Fresh Cafe, Paia worth the trip, healthy and inexpensive
    5. 5 Palms, Kihei, a great view of Keawakapu. Try the lox and bagel.

    Top Five Places for Drinks

    Lahaina Maui
    Waikiki Brewing Co, Lahaina
    1. Maui Brewing, Kihei
    2. Merriman’s for Sunset, Kapalua
    3. Hula Grill Kaanapali
    4. Waikiki Brewing Co, Lahaina
    5. Tommy Bahama’s Wailea (try the Mai Tai here)

    Top Five Just For the Heck of It

    Maui
    Nakalele Blow Hole
    1. Ocean Vodka, tasting and tours, Kula – an innovative entreprenueal effort on Maui worth your support. I love the gin.
    2. Spend a day shopping in Paia and Makawao
    3. Nakalele Blow Hole, Napili – a wonderful site. Don’t get too close.
    4. Sunrise or Sunset Haleakala (sunrise reservations required. Learn more here.)
    5. Drive Hana Backwards (counterclockwise) – miss the crowds by doing this drive the opposite way most people go. Read what we wrote about Going to Hana Backwards here.

    Top Four Inexpensive Golf

    Maui Nui Golf Club
    Maui Nui Golf, Kihei

    Golf can be very expensive on Maui, but if you know where to go, you can play nine or 18 holes on a budget. Here are our favorite budget friendly courses (we can’t find five, so four will do).

    1. Maui Nui, Kihei – well cared for grounds at a great price
    2. Waiehu County Golf, Wailuku – county run course with a magnificent ocean view
    3. Pukalani, Makawao, upcountry course with beautiful views, sometimes wet
    4. The Dunes at Maui Lani, Kahului, beautiful course built on natural dunes.

    That’s My List

    So if you are thinking about visiting Maui for the first time, or are planning to return for another visit, check out some of my top fives – you can’t go wrong with any of them.

    Maui
    Wailea Sunrise

    Be a Kind & Generous Visitor

    And remember, Maui took a big hit during the 7-month closure during the pandemic. The local people lost jobs, income and businesses closed permanently, on this island that depends on tourism. If you can afford to visit Maui, you can afford to make a donation while you are there. Many local agencies can use your support now. The Maui Food Bank is one that is helping some 32,000 local residents who don’t know where their next meal is coming from.

    Help breathe life back into the local economy by shopping and dining at locally owned stores, supporting locally run activities, taking time to talk to and understand the local people and their culture, and donate to a local non-profit agency that is helping the local people.

    Mahalo!

    Read My Favorite Islands Around the World here.

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    Reading Wednesday

    Book Review Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

    Reading Wednesday

    Such a fun story. A quick and easy read, and for anyone who grew up in the sixties and the seventies rock and roll period, a must read. Here is my book review Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid.

    Reid creates a fictional tale (but loosely based on real characters) of the whirlwind rise of an iconic rock band, thier gorgeous, carefree and talented lead singer, and the “handlers” and promoters who make it all happen.

    Raucous and heedless Daisy Jones is young teen without parental supervision who, though underage, frequents the LA club scene fraught with drugs and alcohol and rock and roll in the early 1970’s. Eventually she will connect with the up and coming rock band known as The Six and they all will skyrocket to fame and success.

    But it all comes crashing down when success takes it toll, mixed with an abundance of drugs and alcohol leading to addiction. But underlying it all is a simmering love story and a sad fate for young kids thrust into a world out of their control.

    *****I really enjoyed Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid. Five Stars.

    Read last week’s review of The Island of Sea Women

    My current read Sold on a Monday

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    Island Life

    Going To Hana Backwards

    Location: Maui Hawaii

    We weren’t going to do the road to Hana this time – we’ve done it before, more than once.  So it wasn’t on our list. But somehow we ended up driving it today – backwards. Let’s talk about Going to Hana Backwards.

    Well, not actually backwards, but the opposite way that most people do the road to Hana.  And now, I’ll never do it the other way again.

    The Road to Hana (Canva)

    We were just going to go to Oheo Gulch and do the four mile round trip hike to the waterfall.  This hike is also known as the Pipiwai Trail (formerly known as the Seven Sacred Pools, which are neither sacred nor seven).  So we thought we would go in the backdoor, up through Kula and along the roughest part of the Hana road which many people never see.  By the way, many people still think this road is impassable.  It is not.  And also many people think the rental car agencies say you can’t take your car there.  Most do not.  Read your agreement to be sure.  The road is perfectly drivable in the Hundai rental car we have.

    Driving that part of the road you get to have it mostly to yourself.  The views across to the Big Island are beautiful on a clear day, and even on a cloudy day the crashing waves on the jagged rocks below are magnificent.

    We planned to return to Kihei on this same stretch of road, but decided after our wonderful hike to go visit Black Sand Beach just North of Hana.  And then it seemed to just make sense to take the road all the way around.

    Black Sand Beach (Canva)

    When you head north from Hana back to Paia late in the afternoon you are moving with the majority of traffic, given that most people turn around at Hana and head back late in the afternoon.  This actually works in your favor because the caravan of cars going the same direction makes for easy access on the many one lane bridges you cross on the Road to Hana.  Very limited traffic heading south at that time of day makes the crosses easy.  You rarely need to stop for oncoming traffic.

    Combine that with the nearly deserted section of road we drove in the early part of the day, we made really good time doing the entire Hana Loop.  In addition we got to enjoy breakfast in Kula, beautiful vistas of Kihei, Makena and the Big Island.  Early birds at Oheo Gulch made the parking perfecto and because we were traveling in the opposite direction of most people, we were arriving at Black Sand Beach in the afternoon just as most people were leaving there to go to Oheo Gulch.

    Maui

    Oheo Gulch

    So Backwards is the new Forwards.

    Well, when it comes to going to Hana anyway.  Try it!

    Learn more about Maui Now – Open for Business  

    Learn more Hana options here.

    Hawaii has strict Covid-19 restrictions.  Know before you go.  Learn more here.

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