A “MAKAI” (WATER/BEACH) DAY ALL THE WAY

Day 7, Jan 5, 2018 – TURTLES IN KIHEI, SHOPPING IN LAHAINA, WHALE WATCH AND SUNSET SAIL IN KAANAPALI

Another perfect day in Paradise on Earth!

It started with a walk on the beach and swim with the turtles in Kihei. And it continued with walking and shopping in Lahaina, followed a wonderful whale-watching and sunset gazing sail off Kaanapali beach. It was a “Makai Day” (Water/Beach) all the way.

Walk on the beach leads to surprising visitors

TURTLES AHOY!

After our usual morning walk on the beach, Elizabeth and I went for a swim on our beach. And we encountered some surprising native visitors: three big turtles in their natural habitat.

We should also savor this shot of Elizabeth fully submerged in the ocean. You don’t often see her smiling like this when she gets in. 🙂

Walking and shopping in Lahaina

This is an activity in which Elizabeth shines. So we will kick it off here with her under the world-famous Lahaina Banyan tree, the old Courthouse and in a fancy shop (not many of them in Lahaina!).

IMG_3710

We also managed to get a new pair of Crocs each in the same store in which we had been shopping for years. It was Elizabeth’s idea, of course, to do so. 🙂 And a selection of famous (and also our favorite) Honolulu cookies.

“Riding shotgun” in front of Lahaina Courthouse 🙂

…and other interesting sights.

At Kaanapali Whalers Village, before our sunset sail, Elizabeth joined a Hula class. Before she did some more shopping.

And then we walked to the beach to get ready to board the Hula Girl, the name of our catamaran sailboat.

BOARDING…

Our catamaran Hula Girl is a front-loader. You board it from the beach. You get your feet and legs wet while stepping through waves to get to the ladder and then on board. It’s all part of the fun of catamaran sailing. No dock, no harbormaster needed.

A WHALE OF A SHOW

After we boarded our Hula Girl catamaran, the captain gave us the mandatory song and dance safety and informational sermon. He talked about the dolphins but never mentioned whale sightings on their recent trips.

Yet Elizabeth and I knew that this was a high whale-watching season. So we were not a bit surprised when, as soon as we got a few hundred yards away from shore, I sighted one while taking a photo of Elizabeth (the last one here).

“A whale!” I yelled.

And suddenly everyone on board converged around us.

Three whales were putting on quite a show for us. Suddenly, one of them jumped out of the water and did a full breach right in front us, no more than a 100 yards.

We have seen them do that before, but never this close.

“Guess they are welcoming us back to Maui,” I said to Elizabeth.

And what happened with the dolphins?

Nothing. Guess they had the day off. 🙂 They must have known they could not compete with this amazing whale of a show.

PS: When that giant whale decided to do a full breach, I had my iPhone camera in my pocket. So I borrowed another file photo to illustrate what happened.

YIN-YANG: MAUI vs. CANADA, EUROPE

As we were getting ready to sail, I got an email from a good friend in Canada. He said Toronto temperature was -25°C (13 below F).

He joked, “yesterday was the coldest day in Toronto since the Ice Age. Actually, yesterday is now our latest Ice Age.” 🙂

When I told him we were about to go sailing, he replied, “so now you can enjoy it even more!!!”

Indeed. It’s quite a contrast, like these Yin-Yang photos of us on board the Hula Girl. 🙂

And in Europe, killer winter storm Eleanor wreaked havoc with winds of over 120 mph, I had also read before we sailed today.

SAILING…

BACK-TO BACK BEAUTIFUL SUNSETS

And then finally, the sunset – the purpose of this sailing trip. It was only a second time that we witnessed it from a sailboat. The first time, it was in August 2014, also here off Kaanapali coast.

But this time, it was a back-to-back sunset. Last night, we watched it from the 10,000 ft Haleakala volcano summit. And now, we were seeing the sun set over the island of Lanai.

Maui sunsets Bob Eliz

BACK-TO BACK BEAUTIFUL SUNSETS

Grand finale… 5:51 PM

The sun here at ocean level set about 12 minutes earlier than as seen from the Haleakala summit last night. Partly, that’s because it set over the island of Lanai. And also because of the lower viewing angle.

Then, as if scripted by the Divine, a sale boat crossed under the setting sun at just the perfect aloha moment.

And that’s all she wrote about this magnificent Makai (beach/ocean) day.

Overall, this was my #2 experience of the whole trip – ✮✮✮✮ (Bob)

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