One of the really cool things we saw on Maui was an area known as the "Dragon's Teeth" on the North West side of the island.
Now, it is not a difficult area to find. Our guidebook told us exactly how to find the parking area and to "walk toward the shoreline along the golf course next to the short hedge to a long point of lava that separates two large beaches".
From the parking lot, we could see the golf course on one side and a long, low hedge running along next to a sidewalk. I had thought this might be something of a hike and was surprised to see that we would be walking on a sidewalk through the manicured grounds of the nearby hotel.
Let me tell you now: if you are walking down the sidewalk, you are going the wrong way.
When you wander down the sidewalk you will eventually come to a very pretty beach.....
.....with a great view of a rocky area jutting out into the water.
I stopped a lady who was walking by and asked her how to get to the Dragon's Teeth. She told me I was on the wrong side of the island, and that the Dragon's Teeth were way, far away from there.
I figured she was wrong because the guide book had given us perfect directions to the parking spot. Plus, we had followed that short hedge and spotted the golf course. We couldn't be that far off.
We decided we must need to walk down the beach and clamber over the rocks up to it. Only after we had climbed over a good chunk of rock did we realize we couldn't possibly scale our way up to the top. We could see people walking around up there, so we knew there had to be a way.
Finally through lots of backtracking, and trying to cut through the woods (which turned out to be impossible), we managed to stumble out onto a big green field and wind our way back to the van.
Then we re-checked the guidebook and realized it must mean we should actually walk across the golf course. And we also realized the grassy field we had walked along the edge of was an ancient Hawaiian burial ground which was forbidden to the public. Yeek.
Once we got our directions straight, we came to the Dragon's Teeth, so named because of the way the lava juts straight up like teeth. When the volcano was active and the lava was busily flowing down to the ocean, the wind and waves knocked it backwards and as it cooled it formed these "teeth".
Very cool. And free.
And that lady was wrong about it being way far away.