10 Dangers you must avoid when visiting Maui
Named by TripAdvisor as the best island in the world for 2016, Maui can be a horrific place to visit. The spectacular sunsets, the year-round summer weather, and the scent of fresh air come with frightening costs. Here are 10 dangers you must avoid when visiting Maui:
#1 Wildlife, Plants, Insects
Once upon a time, insects like mosquitoes, centipedes, and house flies did not exist on Maui. However, as people fell in love with Maui and decided to stay here permanently, horrific creatures came along hiding in shoes, carpets, and clothes. Ever since, these creatures also claimed permanent residence in paradise.
Beasts of terror like centipedes grow up to a foot long, flying cockroaches up to three inches long, and cane spiders up to four inches wide. Thankfully, Maui cockroaches and cane spiders only bite when they are sufficiently provoked. Although, the terror that they bring may cause panic attacks to some people. Centipedes, on the other hand, are the devils of Hawaiian paradise and often bite and won’t let go until you beat them to death.
Maui’s plants are also hazards you must avoid. Although some fruit looking plants look deliciously edible to visitors, there are various poisonous plants on the island. So make sure to avoid popping anything in your mouth unless you are completely sure it is safe.
Lastly, avoid feeding or touching wildlife. You as a human being also pose a hazard to these innocent creatures. For example, it is illegal to feed the geese (Nene), touching the turtles (Honu), and swimming amongst the dolphins. These may look innocent actions, but the touch of human beings may cause deadly infections to the Hawaiian turtles. The geese no longer fear vehicles and are being killed at exponential rates.
#2 Cliff Diving
Cliff diving on Maui is a popular activity for locals and visitors alike. A popular Maui cliff diving location is “Black Rock” which is located towards the north end of Kaanapali Beach. A daily ritual occurs at Black Rock, during sunset a “professional” diver jumps off into the rolling surf of the Pacific Ocean. The ceremony is a reenactment of Maui’s last chief, Kahekili as proof of his spiritual strength. However, be careful when you prove your spiritual strength cliff diving as changing tides can easily move debris underwater. This means that if you are not careful a rock, a branch, or even a scuba diver may lodge itself directly under you. Weaker swimmers should also avoid the area as the water in the area becomes deep very quickly, and strong currents may occur.
#3 Grocery Store
Located at the center of the Pacific, most of Maui’s grocery store items are shipped from the mainland. This means that basic snacks like a bag of potato chips had to swim an ocean to get here. And make sure not have a heart attack when you realize the horrific reality that the cost of shipping includes the air that is half of your bag of potato chips. Nonetheless, Maui does have an amazing selection of fresh fruits and vegetables that are locally grown which often offsets the cost of basic grocery store items.
#4 Shark Attacks
Shark attacks are not as common as what most visitors think. From 1958 to 2014, only ten fatal attacks happened in Hawaii. However, sharks are still a danger and visitors need to follow beach rules or signs. For example, avoid swimming in murky water as it attracts little fish which also attracts big fish. When people say not to go in the water before 7 am and after 7 pm, it is best to follow it for your safety. Maui has amazing places for snorkeling, scuba diving, surfing, and various ocean activities. Listen to what lifeguards, locals, and authorities say because everywhere else is already discovered, and they most likely know what they are talking about.
#5 Death by coconut
Yes, you read that right, death by coconut. Various claims show that death by falling coconuts is more likely to occur than dying from sharks tearing you to pieces. Coconuts kill around 150 people every year, which means you are 10 times more likely to be murdered by a coconut than a shark. The approximate deaths by shark attack worldwide every year is around 5 to 15 people. So before lounging or camping out in that empty shady spot on Maui, make sure that the palm tree above it is not filled with coconuts waiting to unleash their nature terror.
#6 Standing Under a Waterfall
Standing under Maui’s spectacular waterfalls would definitely get anyone countless Instagram and Facebook likes. However, if you care about your life more than your likes, make sure to just swim next to the waterfalls as it will already be one of the most amazing experiences you will experience on Maui. Why not? You might ask. Well, imagine getting your head struck by a rock falling from Maui’s tall waterfalls, not really a spectacular ending to your Maui vacation. So ditch the social media love and love yourself first by swimming next to the waterfall.
#7 Sun Poisoning
Do not forget to consistently slather your skin with sunblock before reintroducing yourself to the warmth of the shining sun. Sun poisoning is a real thing. You are greatly mistaken if you think that after spending months indoors that heading to the beach without protection will be a harmless endeavor. The water magnifies the sun’s rays and can get anyone fried really quickly. It is best to avoid burn hours which are from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm and use that time instead to grab lunch or go shopping. Don’t ruin your Maui vacation by getting that tropical tan in a couple of days. The memories of sunburns last longer than your tan which will probably last within a month.
#8 Curse of Pele
Goddess of Fire and Volcanoes, Pele is known for her temper and the curses she bestow to those who steal her children away from the islands. Maui and the other Hawaiian islands receive so many volcanic rocks and sand in the mail each year from visitors who smuggled Pele’s children away. By returning Pele’s children back to her, these unknowing visitors hope to end their constant bad luck ever since smuggling Hawaiian rocks. Airport security now confiscates any pieces of luggage that may contain any rocks or sand taken from the Hawaiian islands.
Hiking on Maui is one of the most popular activities that both locals and visitors love to do. I mean who does not want to hike Maui’s Haleakala volcano or Hana’s lush tropical rainforests. The only danger is when you forget to bring enough water for the journey and end up dehydrating in the middle of your trip. Haleakala, for example, is at such a high elevation that consistently drinking water is necessary to avoid major safety concerns like dehydration.
#10 Buying or using a return ticket
The worst danger you must avoid when visiting Maui is entertaining the idea of ever leaving. It is very easy to fall in love with the beautiful island of Maui. The breathtaking Maui sunsets, double rainbows, and crystal clear waters will be very difficult to let go. However, just remember that Maui’s warmth and beauty will remain until your next visit.