In my previous post, I shared about our nice condo in Maui on our trip back in May, and one of the aspects that made this particular condo experience one of our nicest ones to date was beautiful Kapalua resort itself, where our condo was located.
Kapalua is the last resort area in the northwest corner of Maui, past the popular Kaanapali and Kahana resort areas. While those last two areas are more densely populated, Kapalua is further out and away from most of the heavier traffic, and it also sits in one of the prettiest areas of any of the Hawaiian islands we’ve visited. Various sites and places in Kapalua have won awards for quality, and we understand why now. Kapalua is a special place of conservation and preservation, not just a tourist destination. The Pu’u Kukui Preserve at Kapalua is one of the largest nature preserves in Hawaii, and unfortunately, we did not make it there on our trip.
Kapalua has so much to offer, including truly fabulous beaches, beautiful natural scenery and amazing landscaping, golf courses, two luxury hotels and condos/villas in two different locations – Kapalua Accommodations, good restaurants in varying price ranges in both the resort and the hotels, a nice store for groceries and souvenirs, concierge services, a free resort shuttle and a more upscale store for clothing and other items. There are also a couple of small churches, including one that was quite picturesque on Mother’s Day morning.
While other resort areas on the island have activity until well after dark, Kapalua is more peaceful and quiet, since most everything shuts down early in the evening, except the nicer restaurants. I should mention that the five-hour time difference from home, for us, was actually a great thing. While we adapted a bit to the time change, we had no problem getting up early in the mornings, relatively speaking, which enabled us to have the entire day without feeling like we actually got up early. Coming home? Well, that was a different story as far as jet lag!
We visited the three beaches in at Kapalua for the first time, D. T. Fleming Beach, Oneloa Bay and Kapalua Bay, and on a previous trip, we also went snorkeling at nearby Honolua Bay with friends. Honolua Bay is just north of the resort area and is a little harder to access, but it is a gorgeous place. Honolua Bay and Mokule‘ia Bay, both Hawaii State Marine Life Conservation Districts, are amazing places and with ancient lava formations, coral formations and great marine life. It is a must see place, in my opinion, but on this trip, we opted to see new beaches and forego snorkeling. We also visited Napili Beach on this most recent trip, which is not far from Kapalua Bay and is very nice.
We chose D. T. Fleming Beach for our one afternoon at the beach during our trip, and we had so much fun playing in the waves there. It was nice to also have big shade trees, picnic tables and public restroom facilities nearby there. If we return to Maui sometime, we will try to spend more time Kapalua Bay, if possible. Oneloa Beach is a bit rough for swimming with no life guard on duty, but it is amazingly beautiful with its beautiful protected sand dunes. We had a great view of Oneloa Bay from our condo, too.
All beaches in Hawaii are public beaches, even the beaches that front the nicest hotels, and we liked the beaches at Kapalua better than any other beaches we visited on our previous trips to Maui.
The two golf courses at Kapalua, the Bay Course and the Plantation Course, are amazingly beautiful, and the Plantation Course is a PGA course where the Hyundai Tournament of Champions is played. But not only are these courses beautiful, they are both certified sanctuaries by Audubon International, “protecting 23 species of birds and helping preserve native plants and habitats,” according to Kapalua.com. The tall Cook pine trees lined most all of the courses in both locations and are quite a sight to see.
I hope to share about the Kapalua Coastal Trail in a separate post soon, as it was a great hike along the ocean. It is not your typical hike, and we truly enjoyed hiking the entire trail twice during our stay.