Looking for some dream-come-true tropical beaches to walk where there are wide stretches of golden sand lined with palm trees and crowned with rainbows?… where crystal-clear waves caress the shoreline with gently swirling kisses… distant islands beckon… and humpback whales cavort in the bays? If you can make it to Maui, then you’ll look no more, because—as Andy Doughty says— Maui has “an embarrassment of riches” when it comes to fabulous beaches. For whatever reason, Maui residents talk about the “South Maui Beaches” when they’re referring to the treasure trove of gorgeous beaches that run from Maalaea Bay to La Perouse down Maui’s southwestern (leeward) side. We only had one day to explore, so we began our journey before sunrise and headed to our southern-most point (to minimize traffic and maximize pleasure). The road deteriorates before you can actually get to La Perouse, but the scenery is outstanding. This is where Maui’s last fresh lava flows reached the sea (1790), and fields of lava rock and boulders line both sides of the road. The coastal side of the road is an unending feast for the eyes… jagged beauty and profuse wildflowers blooming wherever there’s enough soil to take root. There are no fewer than 17 major, named beaches on the map, but I’m really only going to tell you about our two favorites. “Big Beach” (aka Makena or Oneloa) is a 100-foot wide, 2/3 mile long crescent that is considered by many to be “the beach” in Maui. I concur with that opinion! It’s a state park with facilities and is said to be crowded, but early in the morning we had the entire waterfront to ourselves! Big beach is one of the premier spots for swimming, snorkeling, beach combing, or just basking in the sun. The other incredibly beautiful beach is Wailea, and there’s a boardwalk that follows the coast for 2 miles, linking 5 beaches & a string of world-class resorts.We were able to park for free at Polo Beach and found the walk to and fro utterly delightful! This is the most expensive area in Maui, and rumor has it that to rent a cabana for a day can cost $450. That’s right. $450.00! So…we didn’t. However, by then we were pretty much starving, so we stopped for a late lunch in Kihei, where were served the most humungous mahi mahi steaks we’ve ever seen. Prices are high, and we had to wait in a very long line, but it was worth the wait!The day was full of both sunshine and showers…with lots of rainbows and flowers. “Just another perfect day in paradise,” I think he said. If there are places on earth this beautiful, what will heaven be like?
I can hardly wait!
“But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” (1 Corinthians 2:9)