The Kessler Family Adventure in Hawaii

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In April 2010 we took a family vacation to Hawaii.
We stayed 4 days on the Big Island and then flew to Maui for 7 more days.

This was our 4th family trip to Hawaii - in the past we've gone to Kauai,
Oahu and a different trip to Maui.

The Big Island

        On the Big Island we stayed in a condo near Kona from which we travelled to black sand beaches and the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park .

Punalu'u Beach is a fantastic black sand beach on the south shore of Hawaii.

Punalu'u Beach usually has turtles lying around. We loved to watch them
sun themselves and then crawl over the rocks into the ocean. If you touch
one there is a $25K fine and there are bounty hunters hanging out with
cell phones in the parking lot. Stay back 15 feet.

Here is a short video (10Mb mpeg) to go with the photos.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park had plenty of steam but no surface
lava flows that we could see this time.

The Place of Refuge (Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historic Park) was an interesting spot:

Maui - The Valley Isle

In Maui, we stayed at the Papakea resort . It was a relaxing place that
allowed us to visit the sites around Lahaina such as the old prison and
the Banyan Tree park.

We took a guided tour on the Road to Hana . It was part cultural and
political history, part geology and botany lesson, plus a tour of the star's homes.
We saw where George Harrison, Sammy Hagar, Laird Hamilton, Jim Neighbors,
Oprah, Mike Love, Woody Harrelson, Pat Benatar and others have had homes.

Charles Lindbergh spent his final years on Maui and is buried there. I've always admired him as an aviator and love the way Jimmy Stewart plays him in the Spirit of St. Louis .
He was definitely somewhat of a mystery with his beliefs in Eugenics and Nordicism . A case could be made to say that he was racist, anti-Semitic and a Nazi sympathizer. At the very least he was an isolationist and a public spokesman for the America First Committee.
You can listen to one of his speeches on this recording (10Mb mp3) and judge for yourself.

He has a beautiful grave on hill overlooking the Pacific Ocean outside of Hana. The inscription on his tombstone says:

                  Charles A. Lindbergh
Born Michigan 1902           Died Maui 1974.

"...If I take the wings of the morning,
and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea... C.A.L."

The back side of Maui was a special treat. Rental cars aren't allowed
back there. We were lucky to catch some fantastic rainbows.

The beaches near Kaanapali were disappointing. There was a shallow coral
reef right off shore - or the beach dropped right off and the waves broke on
shore. This made it very difficult for the kids to swim.

We ended up driving to Kihei and to Kapalua where we knew the beaches were
ideal for the family.

A Luau is always a place for good food and fun ...

So that was our family adventure !

The funny thing is that the more time we spend in Hawaii the more we want to go back.

I guess we'll just have to start planning our next trip ;-)