5 Adventures to take on a vacation in Maui

While its usually ideal as part of an itinerary, not everyone wants to sit next to the pool for their entire vacation or sunbathe on the beach until the sun disappears. In fact, tour operators and suppliers have been forced to make major changes in recent years to accommodate the more adventurous travelers, who enjoy getting into the outdoors just as much as they like to sit back and relax.

In terms of variety and things to do, it would be difficult to find a location more suitable than Maui, from the mountain biking, hill climbing, white sandy beaches, rugged coastline, to the bustling towns and more secluded areas on the island.

Here are 5 adventures to take on vacation in Maui:

Visit Hana for the journey

Hana is a town approximately 5 hours drive from Maui, but the attraction of taking this route is the journey itself. Cascading waterfalls and rugged cliff tops, walking trails and sweeping views across the ocean; the route to Hana is a spectacular coastal drive and the perfect opportunity to get away from the resorts, into the outdoors and find a little secluded pocket of the island for yourself.

Naturally, this option will involve having access to a car but thankfully renting is very affordable in Maui and with car rental discounts, it can cost very little at all.

Climb to the top of Haleakala

Rising early is not an easy thing to do on vacation, especially when given the choice, but had you known the extent of watching a sun rise from the summit of Haleakala Crater, it would not even be an option.

Spectacular views surround the crater itself, but on a clear morning you can also see Big Island or even Oahu. However, as with the previous activity, climbing the crater is where the real enjoyment of this adventure will lie and watching the view become more and more dramatic the higher you climb, is an unforgettable experience.

Mountain bike down the volcano

If climbing to the top is not on your list, then taking a wild downhill mountain bike ride on Haleakala certainly should be. More than 10,000 feet of descending over 40 miles, this is ax exhilarating tour which will delight even the most extreme adventure enthusiasts.

Not only will you get to coast the entire way down the volcano, but you will also get to see the sun rise that morning before setting off, without having to climb, or get out of bed as early as before.

Take a Ziplining Adventure

Located on Haleakala and the West Maui Mountains, this Ziplining adventure offers an opportunity to escape the beaches for an afternoon and feel the rush of adrenaline in the mountains. With unrivalled views of luscious landscape and the surrounding island, Ziplining is both fun, scenic and affordable.

There are 8 different ziplines across 4 valleys, all of the guides are highly experienced and the operator has an impeccable safety standard.

Walk the Pipiwai Trail

Aside from the snorkeling, diving, windsurfing and other things to do in Maui, hiking is the ideal way to explore the island and the Pipiwai Trail is a very convenient, yet highly rewarding trail.

Through Taro fields, dense forests and across peaceful cliff top trails overlooking the ocean, the trail itself is worth the hike, but there is also an enormous reward at the end, a 400 foot cascading waterfall. Pipiwai is suitable for all levels and easily accessed, although you do need to carry all food and water for the afternoon or morning.

Vacation discounts for Maui along with car rental discounts and hotel discounts can be found on Hotels Etc.

How to spend a weekend in Chicago

Named after the full-of-hot-air politicians in the past, the Windy city is undoubtedly one of the best weekend destinations in the US, from the incredible array of world class restaurants, the fascinating Field Museum, the green and leafy Lincoln Park, to the endless designers stores and enormous shopping malls.

Here are few ideas for how to spend a weekend in Chicago:

Have breakfast at Manny’s Cafeteria and Delicatessen

Both a celebrity haunt and a favorite for the “regular” locals, Manny’s is the best place to have breakfast in Chicago. It may very well look like a old rundown taxi rank coffee shop but this is certainly part of the appeal with Manny’s and strangely, one of the reasons it does so well. Expect huge corned beef sandwiches, pastrami on rye and hearty soups.

Take a photo with “the Bean” aka Cloud Gate

On a summers afternoon on weekends, this unusual sculpture by British artist Anish Kapoor can feel like the centre piece of a major concert. Abstract art at its best, Cloud Gate is situated on AT & T Plaza in Millennium park right at the foot of some towering skyscrapers. It’s not just an unusual site, the reflections and trick photography opportunities make it one of the great free things to do in Chicago.

Visit the Zoo in Lincoln Park

Few cities around the world can claim to have a free Zoo in a luscious leafy park like Lincoln. Located a short bus or train ride from the city centre, Lincoln Park is a spacious green haven in the city suburbs of Chicago. One of the most amazing attractions at the Zoo are the giant polar bears, which you can view from side windows around the enclosure which can almost feel as though you are in there with them.

Have lunch at the top of the Hancock

The John Hancock is arguably the most recognizable sigh in Chicago and not only can you reach the top for amazing views, but you can also have lunch in a world class restaurant while you are up there. A reservation is required during holidays or peak times and prices can be a little high so make sure to have restaurant discounts with you before you go.

Watch the Chicago Cubs or even just visit Wrigley Field

If you are lucky enough to visit during the baseball season and manage to get your hands on a ticket, make sure to take in a game at Wrigley Field. Alternatively, it is possible to take a guided tour of the historic stadium which is not only a great chance to get an insiders view to the home of Chicago baseball, but also a way of finding out about an integral part of this city.

Have dinner at Alinea

Okay it may be the most famous restaurant in Chicago, but when you have restaurant discounts and the experience is this good, it’s hard to ignore. Alinea is akin to walking into an art gallery where everything is edible, the chefs make an art out of cooking, literally and food has never tasted so good. Do yourself a favor and try this sublime eatery out at least once in your lifetime.

Catch a sunset at Navy Pier

What better way to end a weekend in Chicago than to watch the sun go down at Navy Pier. Although it is admittedly a little more spectacular to watch the sun rise in the east, this happens pretty early in the morning, and we are assuming you will want to check out Chicago’s notoriously fun nightlife, for which you need only enter the nearest downtown bar, and you will know all about it.

You can avail of restaurant discounts with Hotels Etc who are currently offering a FREE trial which provides access to travel discounts, car rental discounts, hotel discounts and more.