Sunday, June 27, 2010

Maui – the Magic Isle

Many places claim the power to create memories that will last a lifetime, but few fulfill the promise like the Island of Maui. If its relaxation you’re after, we’ve got it, with near-perfect weather, great places to stay, uncrowned beaches and a setting that inspires awe and a sense of wonder. If you are looking for adventure and new experiences, we’ve got that too. Discover Maui, where whale-filled seas meet heavenly beaches. A place where the sun warms tropical trade winds that will blow your troubles away. Snorkel in crystal-clear waters or play golf on world-class courses of green, velvet perfection. Aloha and welcome t Maui, the Magic Isle.
The ancient Hawaiian chants tell the story of the demigod Maui who harnessed the sun from atop 10.000 foot Haleakala to slow its progress across the heavens. He made the perfect day on his namesake island last just a bit longer.
From that same perch today you can look out over this splendid island to survey its terrain. Along the beach-lined South Coast lie the resorts of Ma’alaea, Kihei, Wailea and Makena, each fronting gentle waters perfect for swimming.
To the east, turn your attention to the forested mountains and countless waterfalls that surround Hana. The road to Hana is a series of hairpin turns and single-lane bridges where you’ll discover breathtaking panoramas around every corner.
On the slopes below Haleakala are the grassy ranchlands and flower farms of upcountry Maui. Sublime views and cooler temperatures prevail here. Upcountry is a state of mind, characterized by large family-owned ranches and Hawaiian cowboys who share the beautiful area with the many artists who’ve settled here in a landscape of endless inspiration.
Looking over the central plains, you spy Maui’s other volcanic mountain, Kahalawai. In its morning shadow you’ll find historic Lahaina and the famous resorts of Ka’anapali, Kahana, Napili and Kapalua. Lahaina was once the royal capital of Hawai’i and later a rowdy whaling port. Today, Front Street retains its old world charm while offering a collection of shops, art galleries, entertainment and restaurants just steps from the waterfront.
Maui’s central valley is anchored by county seat Wailuku at the doorstep of ‘Iao Valley and bustling Kahului. Find local-style eateries in Wailuku along with a collection of antiques shops. Kahului is the commercial center of the island and home to the Maui Arts & Cultural Center and Maui’s largest mall, the Kaahumanu Shopping Center.
It’s hard to imagine a place more relaxing than Maui. But if, as some say, the key to relaxation is activity, few places compare to Maui. On the ground, in the air, on the water, in the water or under the water. Maui is arguably the world’s greatest playground.
Hike trails equal to none, go for a horseback ride, kayak, and snorkel or dive in the pristine waters. Not done playing? Surf made-in –Hawai’i waves or windsurf the tropical trade winds. And always, the beach. Forty-two miles of uncrowned and sublime beaches to be exact. Add tennis, golf, helicopter tours, history, art, nature, shopping, dining, touring and countless cultural attractions and you’ll want to extend your stay.

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