In celebration of Maui being voted the #1 island in the world by the readers of Conde Nast Traveler for its 20th consecutive year, we are counting down 20 must-do activities for your next vacation to Maui. In the first part of this 4 part blog post, we covered 5 of the traditional Hawaiian vacation spots to visit on Maui. Section 2 explored 5 more must-do activities on Maui that will involve suiting up and diving in.
For this third part of the series, grab your sunglasses so you can enjoy these 5 must-see sights on Maui for your next vacation.
10. Whale Watching – South Shore, Maui
The whales come to Maui during our winter season to give birth and mate. They choose Maui because of the warm water temperature, our topography, and the lack of predators. Average adult whales are 45 feet in length and weigh over 90,000 lbs. The baby whales are born at an average of 12 feet and 3000 pounds. These are the most beautiful and intriguing mammals to see in person.
9. Watch Windsurfers and Kite Boarders – Ho’okipa Lookout, Maui
Located on the North shore of Maui just off of the Hana Highway, Ho’okipa is known not only for its amazing surf, but also as a world-class windsurfing spot. Five minutes past the surfer town of Paia is a world-renowned surfing and wind-surfing destination. Ho’okipa Lookout is a parking lot on the edge of a cliff overlooking the action. During the winter months, when the North Shore surf is up, this is a great balcony for watching the best surfers, windsurfers, and kite boarders in the world shred. Check out these pictures of great wipeouts at Ho’okipa.
8. Embrace a Breathtaking Sunset -
Whether you watch from the sandy beaches or up at the crater of the volcano, watching a Maui sunset is a blissful experience. Our SwellWomen guests embrace a breathtaking Maui sunset on a Dinner Sail aboard a luxury catamaran.
7. Watch World-Class Surfers at Jaws – Pe’ahi, Maui
Jaws is Maui’s biggest tow-in surfing wave, and the yearly Billabong XXL Global Big Wave contest has listed Jaws as the winning break more than any other place. This wave gets to be between 30-70 feet and is not for the novice. You need to be towed into the wave and it certainly draws crowds of people to watch. The top names in surfing flock to Jaws when it is going off – and mere mortals like us follow to watch in awe.
6. Luau Show -
Discover the remarkable stories, history, and culture of Hawaii through the songs and dances of Maui and the Pacific. Watch the show, taste the local cuisine, and enjoy the experience.
NEXT: Watch for Part 4 of this series coming in December 2013 – [#5 - #1] 20 Must-Do Activities for Your Next Trip to Maui – Part 4Read More »
SwellWomen Surf Vacations is located in Hawaii, the birthplace of surfing. With warm water temperatures, the world’s best waves, and plenty of Aloha, Hawaii is THE best place on earth to attend a women’s surf camp.Read More »
In celebration of Maui being voted the #1 island in the world by the readers of Conde Nast Traveler for its 20th consecutive year, we are counting down 20 must-do activities for your next vacation to Maui.
In this first part of this 4 part blog post, we covered 5 of the traditional Hawaiian vacation places to visit on Maui. In this portion of the series, we explore 5 more must-do activities on Maui that will involve suiting up and diving in.
15. Snorkel Honolua Bay – Kapalua, Maui
Surrounded by protective cliffs, this peaceful turquoise snorkel spot is part of the Marine Life Conservation District. Since fishing is not allowed and coral lines the sea floor, Honolua is a destination for both the fish and the tourists. Many have spotted turtles and even dolphins in these clear tropical waters. When the swell is right, Honolua hosts some of the most popular waves on Maui. Read more about surfing Honolua Bay here.
14. Take a Dip at Big Beach – Makena, Maui
Big Beach is a long, wide, and undeveloped sandy beach on Maui’s south shore. It is impressive with huge views and a large shore-break. Beware the strong break when the south swell is up, but don’t miss the show of locals doing tricks on their boogie boards. The sandy bottom beach with clear water and views of the surrounding islands makes for a blissful place to go for a swim.
13. Cliff Jump at Black Rock – Ka’anapali, Maui
Black Rock was formed from one of the last lava flows on the west side of the island. It is a rocky outcrop at the far North end of Ka’anapali Beach. Some daring tourists climb the rocks to take a nearly 20′ plunge into the waters below. If you’re not ready to take the plunge yourself, don’t miss the nightly torch lighting ceremony. The ceremony includes live music, a hula dancer, torch lighting, and a cliff dive.
12. Swim Under a Waterfall – Twin Falls, Maui
For an easily accessible string of waterfalls, Twin Falls is your best bet. It is located at the beginning of the Road to Hana. The parking lot can quickly get crowded, but with many trail options and plenty of waterfalls to share the space rarely gets overcrowded. Don’t forget to bring your towel and be cautious of rising water levels.
11. Try Surfing or Stand Up Paddleboarding – Lahaina, Maui
Stand-Up Paddle Boarding, also referred to as SUP-ing, is a rapidly growing global sport originating from – you guessed it – Hawaii. There is a reason why surfing and SUP-ing were born in Hawaii. The reason is the perfect waves and gorgeous turquoise warm waters! No wet suit required!
With the perfect surf break including views of the Maui west side mountains, both never-ever surfers and intermediate surfers are sure to enjoy their morning surf lesson and recreational surf opportunities throughout their week. Expect rolling waves to greet you each morning and glassy waves to end a perfect day. Suit up and learn to surf with some of Maui’s best surf coaches. The warm tropical waters and calm west side breaks are perfect for learning to surf. Hang ten and show your aloha spirit!
NEXT: Watch for Part 3 coming in mid December 2013 – [#10 - #6] 20 Must-Do Vacation Activities for Your Next Trip to Maui – Part 3Read More »
The Halloween festivities in Lahaina, Hawaii have earned the nickname, “Mardi Gras of the Pacific.” The popular celebration is one of the island’s largest holiday festivities of the year.
Each year over 25,000 people come to Lahaina’s Front Street in Maui. Crowds begin to gather in the late afternoon to kick off the event with annual Keiki Parade. The county closes off the nearby streets to all vehicle traffic well into the evening. As the sun sets, the streets fill with colorful costumes, contests, and plenty of entertainment.
“The outrageous costumes, the happy enthusiastic people, the good laughs with friends… From what I can remember, it was the best night of my life! “ -Jeff Scheer, Maui Resident
Check out the Lahaina Halloween photo gallery for great costumes ideas. If you think you have a prize winning costume, suit up and make your way to Banyan Tree Park to battle fellow contestants for a cash prize.
“I had no idea how big Maui is for Halloween! We arrived in Lahaina with what I thought were pretty good costumes. We then realized how serious people take this event after seeing all the incredible costumes. Next year, I’ll be doing a little more than throwing something together last minute. I want people to enjoy what I’m wearing as much as I do them!” -Susie Baker, Big Island Resident
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For all you girls huddled somewhere cold and landlocked, here are some fabulous reasons why you should never, ever think to attend a women’s surf vacation.
I mean, seriously, why would you want to go to a women’s surf camp when you can stay on your couch in your living room doing the same old, same old? Those old reruns on TV are pretty riveting aren’t they? I personally love the thought of watching Friends again, right from the very beginning.
Who wants to get on a plane and go somewhere nice and warm and tropical? Who wants to participate in a women’s surf camp week with yoga? If I haven’t managed to convince you yet that your next vacation should be spent in your living room, preferably still cooking meals and cleaning for the rest of the household, then here are some other excellent reasons to not attend a women’s surf camp.
1. You Will Get In Shape. Who wants to lose a few pounds and shape up? What a horrible thought! I kind of like my flabby bits on display in my bikini. Getting toned muscles and a fantastic physique is certainly not on my agenda. I definitely wouldn’t want to wow all my friends with a new figure and great looking arms. I welcome the middle age spread and the couch butt, even if I’m not middle aged yet. Going to a women’s surf camp and doing surf and yoga for a week could really banish some of that cellulite. Doesn’t ironing help with flabby arms?
2. You Will Make New Friends. Who has time for new friends? Who needs new friends? Especially ones with similar interests. What a drag having more people to e-mail Christmas and birthday cards to. Imagine having a new set of friends who would like to go to the same sort of places as you for your next vacation.
3. You May Quit Your Job. Aren’t you happy complaining about your boring job and your awful boss? Why would you want to go to a women’s surf camp and risk being inspired to change your life? I recommend sticking with the terrible job and being miserable. I mean, how many more years before retirement? What have you got to lose?
4. All Your Vacations Will Be Surf vacations. Once you get the surfing bug you will want to travel to places with beaches and sun and surf. Why would you want to put yourself through that sort of misery? Where would you rather vacation, Hawaii surf or cloudy London? Why would you want to pack a bikini in your luggage when you can just as easily force in a rain coat, umbrella and thermal underwear? Spending the rest of your life in surfing locations sounds really grim. Too much nice warm sparkling blue water for me. Give me smog, clouds and crowds any day.
5. You Will Get A Leash Tan. How inconvenient! That strip of white skin around your ankle that proves you have been off at a women’s surf camp and having fun. People might think you know how to surf.
6. You Might Develop A New Interest. Isn’t your day already full enough with cooking and cleaning for others? Why would you want to have an interest of your own? Don’t you have some shirts you can mend or some ironing to do? Multi-skilled women are not meant to be self indulgent creatures with their very own hobbies. You might start getting inspired to do other things outside the home.
7. You Might Not Want to Ever Go Home. Who needs to chill out? Who needs to be self indulgent while they get their massage? Why would you go to a women’s surf camp for all those things when you can easily cook, clean, shop, and care for others? Why would you want to have a break? Especially a vacation involving wellness, surf and yoga.
You can see how disastrous attending a women’s surf camp could be for your physical, mental health and well-being. Taking surf lessons, receiving a massage, and practicing yoga daily can be a bit much. Stay at home and catch up on the ironing (and the housework, and the reruns). Leave the women’s surf camp for someone else. The palm trees are not beckoning you, that is your boss, partner, and day to day life calling you. Are you going to answer?Read More »
I will never forget the day I caught my very first wave.
For a quiet morning, the little corner shop was bustling with activity. A giddy group of soon-to-be surfers gathered for a picture in front of a wall of surfboards. Just a few steps away, an older couple was trying on rash guards and lathering up with sunblock. A father and son scurried past to admire the enormous longboards lined up against the wall.
“Good Morning!” A smiling surfer chick greeted me as I stepped inside the store.
It was June of 2013 and I was about to take my very first surf lesson. I came to the lesson by myself, but never felt alone. From the photographer to the instructor and fellow surf students, everyone had come up and introduced themself. Our group included myself, a friendly middle-aged husband and wife on vacation, and our surf instructor, Kevin.
My anticipation and excitement grew as our group walked the path to the shoreline. Our blue surfboards were lined up on the sand ready and waiting to carry us out to the break. Despite the cloud cover, the view was inspiring. Who have guessed I’d get to experience my first surf lesson in the warm Maui waters?
I was doing my best to savor this moment. I noted Kevin’s calm and reassuring tone as he shared surf etiquette tips and proper stance. I felt the cool breeze and smelled the salty air. I dug my toes into the warm sand.
Before I knew it, I was laying on top of my surfboard looking out to the break and paddling diligently. Kevin encouraged me and coached me as our group coasted over coral through the clear tropical water.
Just before reaching the break we stopped. From here Kevin would paddle out to the break and call us over one by one to teach us how to surf. It was here, wading by the buoys, that I got a taste for the comradery and energy that must exist in a surf lineup. We would cheer for each other, laugh with others, and share stories.
Each time my turn came around, I was determined to paddle out to the break quickly and confidently. It is much tougher than it looks. Despite trying to prepare by doing push-ups on my living room floor the week before, my arms and shoulders were tired by the time I reached Kevin.
I looked back to see a small wave making its way to shore. I was perfectly positioned in its path. My instructor encouraged me to paddle hard. “Up! Up!” I could hear him say. Just as we had trained back on the beach, I arched my back, put my toes to board, and sprang up. My feet weren’t quite positioned right, my hips were facing the wrong way, and I nearly lost my balance – but – I did it! I was surfing!
As each turn passed, I grew more comfortable and confident. I learned how to position myself on the board, and tested out my skills with steering and pumping to try to make the ride last a little longer. There were wipe outs and missed waves, but there were also moments of sheer bliss.
It was exhilarating. It was confidence building. It was empowering. And that is why I will never forget the first time I learned to surf.
What was your first surf experience like?
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According to the New York Times Bestseller, The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin, there are four ways we all enjoy events in our lives: anticipation, savoring, expression, and reflection.
First, there is anticipation. These are the moments of dreaming and visualizing all that could be. Looking forward to what is to come is part of the journey. It has the power to motivate, inspire, and lift our spirits.
Second, we savor every detail. This is the experience itself. Being in the moment of that which we have anticipated. Seeing your vision come to life. In joyful times, take note of all the senses – tastes, touch, smells, sounds, and sights.
Next, there comes expression. This is the opportunity within the experience when we get to share our experience with others. By expressing our emotions we can heighten our enjoyment.
Lastly, we reflect. We look back on the joyful memories. Taking lots of pictures is a great way of keeping a visual record of the moments. Smells can also boost recall of memories often bringing up similar emotions.
Now, what prompts me to bring this up? Well, I am currently in the state of anticipation. In less than one week, I will try surfing for the very first time!
I find myself day dreaming about popping-up on my board and catching my first wave. I like to think I’m being pretty realistic about it, knowing I will fall many times before I find my balance.
Sitting on my living room floor, I’m motivated to do a couple of push-ups each night to build my muscle for paddling. Each set of push-ups ends with a practice pop-up on my imaginary surfboard while humming a tune that is meant to sound like a surf song, but reminds me more of the theme to Batman.
I’ve even been tempted to run out and buy a new swimsuit. But, alas, my budget and busy work schedule has kept me away from temptation.
As Gretchen Rubin explains on her website, “Everyone should be able to pull out a calendar and see at least a few fun things scheduled in the future weeks.” Having something to look forward to is half the fun. What are you looking forward to these days?
If you would love to spend a week reconnecting with the inner you…
If you could use an extra dose of positive feminine energy…
If you want to experience a surf and yoga adventure…
You should book a SwellWomen Vacation on Maui.
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Opening all the windows and airing out the house can be like a breath of fresh air for your home. The warmer weather invigorates us to clean out closets, garages, and basements. But there is one area most people overlook when it comes to spring cleaning – themselves!
Consider your ‘everyday’… How many pollutants are you exposed to? Pollutants include everything from air pollution and food additives to personal care products and cleaning products. One of the most common culprits clogging our bodies today is in the processed foods we consume. After absorbing and filtering these toxins day in and day out, it is no surprise that there are great benefits to giving your body a break every now and then.
For centuries, cultures have practiced detoxification of the body as a way to boost energy levels, relieve pain, and promote the body’s healing abilities. It’s like spring cleaning our bodies!
So, without further ado, here are 4 tips to help you detox your diet:
Whether it is 8 degrees or 80 degrees outside, drinking plenty of water is great for maintaining a healthy mind and body. When properly hydrated the body can thinking more clearly, act more quickly, and avoid feeling cramped up after an intense surf or yoga session. Below are some of our favorite BPA-free water bottles for easy and convenient water consumption.
Imagine standing at one end of a wave tank and running a wave-making machine at perfectly regular intervals. What would you expect to see at the opposite end of the tank?
This question inspired pioneer wave researchers to perform a series of experiments. When the researchers observed the waves forming sets at the opposing end of the tank, they assumed their wave-making machine must not have been working properly. After precisely calculated adjustments were made, the researchers repeatedly observed the same results. Their discovery? The train of waves created at regular intervals arrived at the opposite end of the wave tank in sets.
This result inspired engineers to take a second look at the equations used to predict wave motion. They discovered that tiny fractions of energy (often dismissed or overlooked) were slowly being transferred from the leading and trailing waves in a set to the center wave.
So, what does this mean for us surfers? Even on days when the winds are consistent and blowing uniformly, waves will still form into sets. This also means that waves sets that have traveled thousands of miles (like those hitting the Hawaii coast every day!) will be more organized than local windswells. Start building your travel fund and pack you bags, the beautiful and consistent Hawaiian swells are waiting for you!
Our mission is to provide inspiration for growth and renewal through surfing and yoga on the beautiful island of Maui. Read our blog or subscribe to our feeds and newsletter to prepare for your surf and wellness vacation or stay in the bliss if you've headed home. SwellWomen discusses surf, health and Maui lifestyle with news tidbits and useful tips.