our favorite place | maui

In November, we escaped the chilly weather North Carolina to visit Hawaii. We went for the first time together in 2008, and saw our UNC Tarheels play in the Maui Invitational basketball tournament. As much as Jordan loves basketball, and we both really really really love adventuring and beach time, we vowed to come back the next time UNC played in the tournament. They’re scheduled to play in Maui every four years, and we’re going to try our best to get to Maui every time the Tarheels do. Here’s a glimpse into the gorgeousness that is Maui, via our camera & iPhones.

Surfers at Honolua Bay

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 There’s something so calming in the cool blues of a pool.

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 We saw many sea turtles. They swim in and out of Black Rock to munch on algae every morning.

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Jordan swims with fishes! 

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 Our friends Rob & Amanda joined us on this trip. This is one of those shots that I know we’ll be nostalgic about….oh who am I kidding, I already am! Candid adventuring. Nothin’ better.

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 Spectacular sunset beyond the bay

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 A little coffee before heading out to Black Rock to find the turtles…

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 Found one!

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 “WARNING! FALLING COCONUTS

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 We traipsed through the jungle to get to our snorkeling spot in Honolua Bay. The trees were incredible.

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 Jordan really wanted to pluck that blue fin tuna out of the sea and gobble on it right there. Hawaii is heavenly for sushi & sashimi lovers.

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 Cuties, Rob & Amanda

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Not a bad lunch view while you’re eating fish tacos and hula pie. Right? 

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 On Thanksgiving Day, we roamed the various points of West Maui. It’s a little less lush and green than when we were here four years ago, but still gorgeous.

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I assure you, I’ve done nothing to enhance the blues in the water in these photos. It looks exactly like this in person, and I miss it so. 

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 Visiting the blow hole. Can’t say we’ve ever said that before this trip!

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Nothing like some local yummy beers after adventuring. Thanks, Maui Brewing Company! 

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We drove up to Haleakala Crater, but at first took the wrong route. We almost ended up on the forbidden-for-all-rental-vehicles back road to Hana. But I’m so glad, because we caught some amazing mountain scenery. 

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 We had an idea that something wasn’t quite right when we spotted this cow in the road. He did move for us though, thankfully.

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 When we finally made it to 10,000 feet in elevation to the crater, 2/3 of it was covered in clouds. Shortly after we arrived in the 44 degree air, we felt rain. Shortly after that, the rain turned into a downpour, with hail. So in one day, we experienced 85 degree swimsuit-appropriate temps at sea level, and 44 degree sweatshirt-weather at the crater.

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 Visiting Pe’ahi, down yet another road that wasn’t made for non 4-wheel drive vehicles. After three miles of rough driveway, we ended up here. “Jaws,” it’s nicknamed, for the big waves that can be seen a few times a year here. Nothing too big today, maybe 12-15 footers. But, we were the only people there. And we adventured down the side of the cliff to get to the water.

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Pieces of surfboards can be found everywhere in these rocks at Jaws. Along with quite a bit of solitude, on a calm wave day. 

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 Beautiful view from the Grand Wailea at night. It almost got us in the Christmas spirit. :)

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Here is proof that spam and eggs exists on McDonalds’ menu in Hawaii. Every visit, we go to McD’s just once, usually for breakfast (which only Jordan eats - I went to Home Maid for french toast on this day). Simply because one of Jordan’s favorite memories with his grandmother, Junie, was visiting Hawaii with his family and eating at McDonalds while she babysat him. So, we always go and pay tribute to Junie’s love of McD’s, even in Hawaii. 

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 This is Nigel, our roaming gnome. He enjoyed Big Beach.

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This is one of many chickens that roam free. They’re everywhere, and so are cats! 

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Nigel also enjoyed seeing his first black sand beach (though when dry here it’s a bit closer to brown than black). Gorgeous stuff. 

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 Our final night in Maui, we saw the most beautiful sunset of our entire trip.

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And, a beach cat. Love him. 

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 Our last view of Maui, at least for another four years.

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I’m adding some photos of us that were taken by the wonderfully kind and talented Nate & Jenna. This is just a tiny handful of our favorites, a few from the gorgeous upcountry (where we saw the cow in the road just a few days before), and some by the water of course. (Psst…Nate is also a talented videographer. Check out Sunlit Films, too!)

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We’re so happy to have met Nate & Jenna, and thrilled to come back with plenty photos of us in our favorite place. And we didn’t have to bother with asking our friends to take so many photos of us together during the rest of our trip. We had so few photos of us together on our last trip, that we knew this was the way to go this time. So we got to meet some of the sweetest photographers of all time, and came home with more images. Win win. :)

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Can’t wait to get back to these blues! Until next time, Maui. See you in four.

~JAM

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