Once known as Lele, which means “relentless sun” in Hawaiian, Lahaina is a historic town that has been transformed into a Maui hotspot with dozens of art galleries and a variety of unique shops and restaurants.
Once the capital of the Hawaiian Kingdom in the early nineteenth century, Lahaina was also a historic whaling village during the whaling boom of the mid-1800s. Up to 1,500 sailors from as many as 400 ships took leave in Lahaina, including Herman Melville, who immortalized the era in his classic novel Moby Dick.
We didn’t see Moby Dick during our whale watching excursion aboard the catamaran Trilogy. Although we did encounter quite a few whales, and saw four complete breaches, unfortunately because the crew was serving food and drinks the cameraman, (me), was slacking off and wasn’t able to take any good photos.
After the tour, we decided to check out the shops on Front Street. We passed by Maui’s oldest living Banyan Tree, a place people go to get out of the sun.
We made our way to Cheeseburger in Paradise. We were told this was the location where Jimmy Buffett wrote the song. However, that’s not the case, the restaurant was started by two women from southern California. And, the chain, which began in 1989, has no relations to Jimmy Buffett’s business. Buffett sued the owners in 1997 and after a four-year legal battle, a settlement was reached that allowed the women to keep the name at their existing restaurants in Lahaina and Waikiki but prevented them from using it at any additional locations.
Regardless, the food was really good and the IPA was outstanding.
Tomorrow we head over to Kona and check out the surrounding reef from a glass bottom boat. Should be another fun excursion.