Arriving to Lahaina, Maui


Lahaina Panorama — Lahaina, Puunoa Point (left), and Hanakaoo Point beyond

Lahaina Panorama — Lahaina, Puunoa Point (left), and Hanakaoo Point beyond

One of my favorite places in Hawaii is Lahaina on the island of Maui.  It’s a great place for informal yet fun dining, lots of art galleries and crafts stores, and a very picturesque park almost completely shaded by the largest banyan tree in the entire state of Hawaii.

Lahaina Banyan Court Park — Home to the largest banyan tree in the Hawaiian Islands

Lahaina Banyan Court Park — Home to the largest banyan tree in the Hawaiian Islands

Those may look like individual tree trunks in the photo above, but they are not.  Those are in fact adventitious drop roots all originating from the same 142-year-old tree.  That’s right.  This tree was planted in 1873 to commemorate the arrival to Lahaina of the first American Protestant mission fifty years earlier.

Lahaina Banyan Court Park — Banyan tree planted in 1873

Lahaina Banyan Court Park — Banyan tree planted in 1873

Behind and south of Lahaina we could see the tall peaks of the West Maui Mountains.

The mountains of Western Maui

The mountains of Western Maui

While these mountains may look impressive, they simply do not compare however to the massive Haleakalā on the eastern side of Maui.  Alas the 10,023-foot/3,055-meter Haleakalā is not visible from the Lahaina side of the island.

Mountains overlooking Lahaina

Mountains overlooking Lahaina

Lahaina Harbor is shallow and suitable only for smaller vessels.  So, once again we found ourselves tendering into port.  I find tenders a bit bothersome, but on the upside we did have some spectacular views from offshore.

Lahaina Harbor

Lahaina Harbor

Lahaina

Lahaina

By the way, I mentioned earlier that Lahaina had some fun yet informal dining establishments.  One of these establishments featured prominently in the final scene of my critically acclaimed murder mystery Decisions.  But back when we visited that restaurant in the late 1990s it was a really fun place known as BJ’s Chicago Pizzeria (part of a national chain now known as BJ’s Restaurant & Brewery).  There’s still a pizza place at that second-floor location overlooking Front Street, but now it’s called Lahaina Pizza Company.  We didn’t dine there this trip, but the online reviews indicate that it’s still a great place from which to watch the Lahaina street life passing by — Same owner, similar menu.  The balcony would probably be a great place on which to spend time with a beer, a pizza, and your Kindle or Kindle-enabled device while reading Decisions.

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