We were in Maui for a week in December.
After Dubai and before starting our life in San Francisco.
Hawaii has always been our milestone destination. For our fifth anniversary we were in Oahu ( after Australia) and our first baby moon we were in Kauai. It made sense to continue with our Hawaii theme for our 10th anniversary as well as second baby moon (if a vacation with an active 3-year-old when you are at fag-end of second trimester can be called as any kind of “moon”).
Maui has always been an elusive destination for us. We have planned to visit many times before Varun. We almost had purchased tickets but something or the other was always in the way. This time we wanted to visit Maui as we started our second phase in US.
I wasn’t sure how I would fare the long flight from India to US. I wanted to see if I could manage another 5+ hours flight so we booked our tickets fairly late minute.
Where We Stayed
Since we had “researched” the island earlier, we knew where we wanted to stay. It was either Lahaina in West Maui or Wailea in South Maui. Both have excellent sunset views, calm crescent beaches and luxury resorts catering to every whim you would have. We didn’t really plan to do much of sight-seeing anyways so we didn’t really care to be in center of things.
Based on the deals that we saw at that time, Four Seasons, Maui was booked. And boy was it a fantastic choice or what. Luxurious expansive rooms, water views, top-notch service and little details that make your stay memorable. Its expected at a resort like this. What really blew me away was their kid friendliness.
Little robe for Varun? Check
One Planet Lotion/Shampoo/ Bath wash for kids and babies? Check
Complimentary Pool/Beach toys ? Check
Complimentary kid friendly books, video rentals? Check
Kids for All Season – A complimentary play area with activities (gecko hunting, swimming, beach combing etc) and toys for kids including meals and snacks ? Check
The last one was so loved by Varun. Between that and the beach he couldn’t decide where he wanted to go.
But it was not overrun with kids. There was a separate adults only area with swim up bar and infinity pool , up and away from the chaos of kid and family pool.
We enjoyed that as well thanks to the babysitting service that we could avail from Four Seasons concierge. The baby sitters are carefully shortlisted and checked so you can actually enjoy your vacation without worrying about your kid not being in safe hands.
We met so many families by the pool who return here every year around the same time every year from various cities in US to enjoy the warmth and hospitality of Four Seasons. They have formed friendships over their vacation and are excited to see them. I think that speaks the most about the resort.
If you have a child and are looking for a chilled out resort in Maui, really look no further than Four Seasons. I would go again in a heartbeat.
What did we do?
There is literally a ton of activities to do in Maui. Shortlisting ones to do given the limited time you have on the island is a challenge. We didn’t plan to do much other than drive to Hana and Snorkel. Rest was pool and beach time.
A drive unto Haleakala summit was out of question as was some of the other activities we would typically have indulged in on such a vacation – hiking, learning to surf or even scuba diving.
Luckily, Varun didn’t mind the drive to Hana. He actually loves waterfalls and was excited to visit one after the another. He didn’t snorkel but we took turns snorkeling by the Molokini crater. The reef is alive and teeming with colorful fishes. Very vibrant and reminiscent of our scuba diving experience in Cairns.
By the day, Varun played in the pool with other kids or played in the sand digging our feet in on the beach.
Or chasing birds
Afternoons were either in the kids for All Season or napping.
Evenings were spent watching pink sunsets along the beach or the board walk.
Tiki torch lighting ceremony and Hula dancing at the resort was followed by dinner.
A movie or books reading time for Varun and then bedtime.
Sometimes its an adrenaline packed vacation that you remember for ever. Like our time in Costa Rica. Other times its relaxing vacation that makes wonderful memories. Varun talks about waterfalls and beach from Hawaii. He remembers how we had to get back from Hana before it got very dark. And the beautiful pictures of Varun and Vipul are something I will cherish forever.
I got to chill out, enjoy a massage and sleep in before the fast pace of life took over again. I would so not trade our time in Maui for anything.
They say Hawaii spoils you forever. The greenery, the laid back pace of life, coffee, soft sand, waterfalls, seafood, naps in middle of day and the Aloha spirit. We have visited three island so far and I agree, we are spoilt. Can’t wait to go back again – this time with two kids in tow!
Before I sign off on Dubai posts, I have to write about the place where Varun laughed and squealed the most – Dubai Dolphinarium.
We had spent the earlier part of the day at Ski Dubai so this was a befitting part 2 of the focussed day. The Dolphinarium is in Children’s City – a little bit further from Dubai Mall. Mostly we saw locals, kids celebrating birthdays and other little kids with their parents on vacation.Varun has a small blue toy dolphin that he loves. He used to play with it in India and I think it’s probably lost somewhere in the move. So when he saw pictures of the Dolphins in various brochures his eyes went wide as he literally yelled “Look, mama, Dolphins”!
The show is in an indoor air-conditioned auditorium. It is about 90 minutes long and has a musical and magic tricks ( they call it illusions) part which IMO was totally unnecessary and boring for kids. It was hard to keep kids engaged during that part despite the beautiful acrobatics.
Varun kept asking me when the dolphins and seals would arrive. Finally when they did, he was jumping up and down in his seat, clapping and cheering like I have never seen before.
If you do have little kids, do take them here. The Children’s City has other kid friendly things to do like slides, park, planetarium, nature and space center etc. Its worth heading out that way even if you have seen Dolphin shows else-where. Keep in mind transportation back after the dolphin show is a bit iffy and you have to wait for a cab to show up.
We headed from here to see the musical fountains. I think we saw them thrice all in all. As we stayed fairly close to the Dubai mall it was one free indulgence which we loved.
A very kid friendly, safe and cosmopolitan city, we truly loved Dubai. We hope to visit again when the kids are older and we can do some crazy adventure the emirate has to offer: Zorbing, Indoor Sky diving, Hot Air Balloon Ride over the desert, just to name a few!