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Old 11-13-2008, 03:47 PM
 
Location: Portland, OR
125 posts, read 532,333 times
Reputation: 51

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Hi all, another question. I see and hear people talk about this side of the island, that side of the island - can anyone tell me which towns/cities are on which "side" of the island, and what are the main differences of the "sides"? I'm referring to only Oahu & Maui - and for a vacation.

would I be able to drive around each island in a decent amount of time (3 hours or less) and see all the "sides"?

Thanks in advance, and sorry for my ignorance!
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Old 11-13-2008, 08:28 PM
 
1,046 posts, read 4,460,390 times
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The last time I posted a description of windward v. leeward, I was informed by the OP that it was "too technical." Windward simply means "catching the prevailing wind," and leeward means "on the calmer side, protected from the wind."

Since Hawaii's prevalent winds are the trades, windward is generally the north/northeast coastal areas and leeward the opposite. Windward sides generally get more rain in addition to the winds, and leeward sides tend to be drier.

That seems to work fairly well for Oahu (windward being maybe from Kaneohe north on Rt. 83 around the famous North Shore toward Laie and Kahuku). There are many knowledgeable posters from Oahu who can tell you lots more. I'll leave that to them.

Because of Maui's odd shape and terrain, the north/northeast certainly gets the wind and rain, but the area known as East Maui (Hana) actually gets the most rain. Both the areas known as West Maui (Lahaina, Kaanapali, Napili, Kapalua etc.) and South Maui (Makena, Wailea, Kihei, etc.) are typically hot and dry. Central Maui (Kahului and Wailuku) is quite windy because it comprises a valley that connects the two volcanic areas of the island. Maui's North Shore runs along from Spreckelsville/Paia to Waipio Bay (or nearby). The windward/leeward thing is rarely used on Maui.

GoogleMaps is an excellent reference for which towns are where and where there ARE and (importantly) ARE NOT ANY roads. If you really mean "drive around each island" in the all-the-way-around-the-perimeter way, three hours is not nearly enough for either island especially if you plan to stop to view waterfalls, black sand beaches, snorkel, etc. Many roads are two-lane, very curvy, and often include fairly steep climbs and descents. If you mean you want to "drive around" for three hours and see as much variety as you can, that's not so hard on either island. You can see a lot in 3 hours, but you will miss a lot of the most pristine and scenic views.

Last edited by whynot?; 11-13-2008 at 08:31 PM.. Reason: clarification, dull grammar corrections
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Old 11-13-2008, 08:41 PM
 
Location: Moku Nui, Hawaii
9,674 posts, read 18,864,072 times
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On vacation for either of those two isles you will be able to get to the other side when you want to. On Oahu most tourists stay in or near Waikiki so all tour buses go in and out of there. On Maui, Lahaina seems to have the most tourists. Pick a spot on the side with most of the things you want to see and then have excursions out from there when you want to see the other side.
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Old 11-13-2008, 10:02 PM
 
Location: fern forest, glenwood, hawai'i
850 posts, read 4,043,271 times
Reputation: 195
if you want to go to the north shore of o'ahu, be prepared for traffic. you didn't say when you were coming? right now, the surf's up and there's some competitions going on.....traffic.

"Since Hawaii's prevalent winds are the trades, windward is generally the north/northeast coastal areas and leeward the opposite. Windward sides generally get more rain in addition to the winds, and leeward sides tend to be drier."

that's how i'd describe it.
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Old 11-16-2008, 03:21 AM
 
Location: not sure, but there's a hell of a lot of water around here!
2,625 posts, read 6,507,281 times
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Eh, dats too techni, teki, teckna, eh, YOU NO WHAT I MEAN!!!!!!!! So, da windward side stay windy, and da leeward side gets da leftovahs. What could be more simple????????

Aloha
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Old 11-16-2008, 03:14 PM
 
Location: fern forest, glenwood, hawai'i
850 posts, read 4,043,271 times
Reputation: 195
north, south, east, west, mauka, makai, look for the hala tree and take a left.
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Old 11-20-2008, 08:16 PM
 
Location: Moku Nui, Hawaii
9,674 posts, read 18,864,072 times
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Well, the lauhala tree and mauka/makai make sense but what's with the "north, south, east & west"? Those are place names, they aren't directions - just ask anybody!
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Old 11-20-2008, 09:02 PM
 
Location: fern forest, glenwood, hawai'i
850 posts, read 4,043,271 times
Reputation: 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by hotzcatz View Post
Well, the lauhala tree and mauka/makai make sense but what's with the "north, south, east & west"? Those are place names, they aren't directions - just ask anybody!
just ask anyone who's local, you mean?

no one says take hiway <insert number> until you reach exit <insert number>.....

agreed. those are place names. where are you from? the north shore. down south. the east coast. the west coast. the pacific north west.
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Old 11-21-2008, 02:31 AM
 
Location: Moku Nui, Hawaii
9,674 posts, read 18,864,072 times
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See! Precisely! The North Shore is over near KuaAina, Velzy's, Pipeline and the rest of the North Shore stuff. It could be called Noodleners Shore and mean as much direction wise to folks around here. The East Coast is where the pale mainland folks come from and the West Coast is where the ones who want to be surfers but generally wipe out come from but it has nothing to do with the placement of the area on a map. For some reason, the folks in the middle of the mainland don't seem to visit here a lot. Dunno quite why. Now as far as island directions go, Mauka - which is towards the mountains - and Makai - which is towards the water - make a lot more sense when living on a pie plate in the middle of a really big puddle since no matter which way that silly compass needle points (like we have one of those handy all the time) you can always tell where the mountains and where the ocean is. Hmm, considering it is more like living on a huge chiffon pie than just merely the pie plate, that might help with the concept of "sides". There is usually a big mountain in the middle of the island so to get from one side of the mountain to the other helps tell one side from another.
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Old 11-21-2008, 02:25 PM
 
Location: fern forest, glenwood, hawai'i
850 posts, read 4,043,271 times
Reputation: 195
indeed!
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