Islands seem to make most people think of romance. Out of the top ten most romantic places to travel to – 6 are islands! If you are planning an island destination wedding or honeymoon, many people have Hawaii on their list. And if you think about Hawaii – you are thinking about Maui. Why? As we say in the islands, Maui is “No Ka Oi” – the best! With the beautiful coastlines and all of the features you would like in Paradise – Palm Trees, balmy weather, and warm water, Maui delivers.
Although visitors have only been traveling here since the 1800’s, we know that people on our islands have been falling in love much longer then that. We have proof too! True, we have many wonderful Polynesian people whose families have been here for many generations but our proof goes even further back then that.
There are many stories that tell of the love between Nanau and Kapaka and unfortunately, we know that they are still apart today. Pele, our fire volcano goddess had some special feelings for a young man in the village. However, it seemed that he was becoming attached to a young woman in the village. Pele set about watching them and became jealous of the love developing between the two of them. She tried numerous times to win the young man’s heart but she saw that she couldn’t break the magic between the two young lovers. Pele’s sisters knew that this would not come to a happy ending as they watched their sister become enraged.
Pele kept watch until she saw the young man heading out to the mountain to once again meet his loved one. She immediately used her power to pour lava from her mountain down on him. Her sisters took pity on the young man and changed him into a half of flower, the mountain Naupaka. Pele was wild that her sisters would do this and immediately went down the lava river to find the young woman approaching the mountain path. She came upon the young man’s love but her sisters quickly turned her into the beach Naupaka, with only half a flower too.
The couple are separated forever and you can still see the young man in the mountain flowers and his love on the beach flowers. It is said that if anyone ever finds a whole Naupaka flower, it would mean that the couple was finally reunited.
Luckily for all of you, when you come to Maui you will grow closer together as you profess your love in your wedding/vow renewal ceremony. But maybe I wouldn’t flaunt my love up in Haleakala. You never know when Pele might be watching!