One year ago today, we were in Hawaii, glamping our asses off. And since this year I'm sick as a dog with bronchitis, I thought I'd retouch on what we did.
I always meant to write down what we did and then basically kept forgetting to do it. Good thing my resolution for 2018 is to write stuff down!
We went to Camp Olowalu in Maui. If you don't know where that is, it's basically between Lahaina and Kihei. If you don't know where that is, then it's on the western side of Maui. If you don't know where that is, let me Google that for you.
Camp Olowalu is a beachfront campground with tentalows and cabins. We stayed in a tentalow for $80 a night. It has an attached shower and a front porch... and is perfect for people wanting a chillaxing vacation. I should add -- at the time, I looked at vrbo and airbnb and all of them were close to $200. If you're lucky, you might be able to find better deals!
Who stays there? Lots of locals, families and hipsters. It felt like it was our little secret because there were so many people from Maui who were just spending some down time on the island. Occasionally we'd see campers and hikers passing through. There was also some sort of youth group staying in one of the main cabins. That looked cool for a family reunion, actually.
Because we stayed there so inexpensively, we were able to spend money on things we wanted to do and not worry about it. We went biking down a volcano, went whale watching, and ate out with little care.
Two local places that kicked ass were Leoda's Kitchen and Pie Shop, which is right by the camp. Another was the little grocery mart it's attached to -- they have THE BEST SHAVE ICE on the island. Seriously, some little Asian lady makes this ginormous shave ice for like $5. I would buy shave ice all across the island and would always want to come back home to see our lady.
In the end, here's what worked for us -- our first day we spent getting gear at Goodwill and Walmart. (Walmart was just what was close.) We bought two mugs, cups, soup plates, utensils, food stuffs and a camping stove. When we left Maui, we dropped it off at Goodwill!
The last day we checked out of Camp Olowalu and bought a spa package at the Willow Stream Spa at the Fairmont Kea Lani Maui. Um, thank you Groupon.
This was the best way to end our vacation -- totally pampered in the spa and showers plus you can have access to the hotel and beachfront. We got a couple's massage and then hung out until about 5 or 6 and grabbed an awesome dinner at The Mill House right before we took off for the airport.
So my lasting thoughts on glamping: Do it. Hands down, do it. It's great for families and it saves so much money (and now they're building family tentalows.) We loved making lunches and heading to the beach or cooking by the campfire. Going to bed under the stars with the ocean waves in the background was dreamy. We still had our laptops and phones, but we limited ourselves to technology. Ending the trip super glam was a very nice treat and one that we could afford with all the money we saved in the earlier part of our trip. In all, there's nothing quite like nature to bring you back to a peaceful state of mind.