Delaney is from Maui, and he moved to Los Angeles to go to design school when he was 18 years old. So, when we met a couple years later, I really wanted to go to Maui because I had never been, and Delaney didn’t want to go at all, haha! He was over being on the small island, but we went anyway!
Flash forward to opening a bake shop and we weren’t able to get back for over 16 years! Until last month, when we finally went back for a visit. Since Delaney is local to the island, I wanted to share some of our favorite things incase you plan on visiting Maui soon. It is a beautiful place and we spent two weeks there in June, and we promised that we’d go back again in one year.
We stayed in an AirBnb in Haiku for the first week. That’s where Delaney’s mom lives so we got a little house just a couple miles from her. It had an amazing ocean view, and it was nestled on a quiet little street with the sweetest fruit stand as one of our neighbors! The bonus about this house was it was fenced, so no chickens woke you up in the morning!
I was joking the whole time with Delaney about how there is just free food running around this entire island. There’s chickens everywhere, apparently they’ve gotten much worse since Delaney lived at home. If you catch some, you can have fresh eggs all the time! There’s also an overpopulation of deer, so you can hunt as many deer as you want. Not to mention all the free coconuts coming down off trees, and that you can plant and grow mangoes, bananas, papayas and more in your garden here! I told him if we retire here we’ll be eating well.
The first week while staying in Haiku we went to Baby Beach in Sprecklesville. This was Delaney’s beach growing up. It’s a small beach that has a big reef that creates a little swimming cove. The water is so warm, and if it’s windy, this actually helps protect you from the wind if you want to be in the water.
The second week of the trip we went to the West side of the island. Delaney’s mom manages two VRBO condos in Kaanapali Villas. Her dad bought these condos when they were first built, he is even responsible for planting the large lime tree on the property right by the grills! So, Delaney grew up going to these condos as a kid. This is the view when you’re sitting on the Lanai of the condo we stayed in!
The condos are Hawaiian vibes all day long. They’re both studios which is perfect for a couples retreat. They’re very close to each other as well, in the same building, so it’s perfect if you’re traveling with friends or family to rent both. We stayed in the one with the ocean view, and my dad stayed it the one right by the pool. Jeanne decks out the condos with flowers, a welcoming basket, and so much more! Her presentation is like no other. Check them out and message Jeanne on VRBO if you’re planning a Maui trip!
At Kannapali Villas there are multiple pools, but the smaller one is right by the condos so it’s kind of like your own private pool. They are also just steps away from Kaanapali Beach, and just a few minutes away from Lahaina which is Delaney’s favorite surf spot. So, they’re in a great location.
They have full kitchens so you can cook as well, which is super important to me as I always like to be able to cook while out of town. I love being able to cook breakfast and I don’t like to eat out for every single meal, so we did a lot of grilling. We even made a traditional Hawaiian dinner for my dad one night! And I’ll have my own recipe for Lomi Lomi Salmon soon, as that was one of my favorite things I was introduced to on this trip, along with Coconut Candy!
When we go out of town on vacation, Delaney and I like to make a short list of a few things we want to do. This way, we don’t loose track of what things we want to do while vacationing. I like to keep the list to three things or less, otherwise it doesn’t feel relaxing to me as I like to chill and go with the flow when we’re out of town too.
The first thing on my list was go snorkeling because I have never been! We didn’t get to go last time because the first day I jumped off a cliff and bruised my eardrum and I couldn’t go in the water for the rest of the trip! So, that was on my list for sure. When we were staying on the condo, Kaanapali Beach was just outside our door. And there’s some nice snorkeling right there. We went almost every day when we were staying here, and I saw so many amazing fish and we even saw a turtle one day.
The second thing on my list was to eats lots of fresh poke. We don’t get to eat a lot of sushi or fresh fish living in Mammoth, haha. So, whenever we’re out of town we always go to sushi. But, being on Maui, I wanted to eat all the poke! A locals secret is that Food Land (one of the main grocery stores there) actually has a really large poke bar with tons of different flavors. And it’s so good! So, that was an easy one to check off.
And the last thing on my list was to drink fresh coconut water every day! I love coconut – anything! It’s probably my favorite flavor of all time. And I drink coconut water regularly, but there’s nothing like a fresh coconut that is also free! Delaney’s brother trims coconut trees with his friend for work so he brought home a bunch one day for us. We also grabbed some off the tree just outside the condo. I really miss having coconuts in the fridge!
On top of fresh coconut water every day, I got to eat Apple Bananas which are now the only banana I want to eat! The fruit stand by our house had them, and we hit a couple other Farmer’s Markets throughout the trip where I was able to buy more. These little bananas have an entirely different flavor than our traditional bananas. They are more sweet, less starchy, and have a firmer texture. They’re so good! Shop my sweatshirt here.
We took my dad to Ho’okipa one day to see the sea turtles. The Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles have been on the endangered species list for a while. But recently there has been a large increase in population. And, they all like to congregate at Ho’okipa Lookout. They have a section blocked off here, so the turtles can lay in the sun, which is so nice!
The few spots we went out to eat that I’d recommend are Alchemy Bistro in Lahaina. They have organic kombucha on tap – I was obsessed with the Huckleberry flavor! They also had the best organic fish tacos ever! I’d also recommend checking out Pauwela Beverage Co. in Haiku, you can buy their locally made kombucha in most of the grocery stores but we also stopped by the factory and got a little tour and filled up bottles there.
And, my all time favorite thing I ate was coconut candy from Hanakine Snacks. Delaney’s mom stopped by the Sunday Market and picked me up a bag as she thought I’d like it, that was an understatement! So we called his little brother who was still there and made him get more! You can look her up on Instagram to see what market she’ll be at, and go find her! She makes the best coconut candy using organic sugar and fresh coconut!
Our trip was sprinkled with pool days, beach walks, and sunsets. Delaney was surfing most mornings, and I would lay by the pool and read a book or swim laps. Every night at the condo, we walked just outside down to the beach and watched the sunset. It was a great vacation, and we can’t wait to go back soon!
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