Hawai’i Proposal

Sunrise Surprise on Haleakala

Little did Daniella know what Paul had in store when he suggested they wake up at 3am on August 8th, 2015 and drive from their hotel in Ka’anapali (on the west coast of Maui) to the summit of Haleakala volcano to take in sunrise atop the aptly-named “House of the Rising Sun”.

As we approached the entrance to the national park it seemed like everyone else on Maui had the same idea and we got stuck in heavy traffic that made getting to the summit for sunrise unlikely.  With the sky getting lighter by the minute we peeled off the main road and drove to one of the lookout spots on the crater rim which we had all to ourselves to enjoy a very memorable sunrise.

Our original plan was to have breakfast at sunrise from the summit, so once the sun had risen we drove up towards the 10,023ft highest point.  It was cool and windy at the summit so we wolfed down a quick meal while sheltering behind some volcanic rocks, and on the way back to the car we walked to a point with brilliant views down into the crater and all the way across to the volcanoes of Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea on the Big Island some 100 miles away.  It was here that Paul brought out his grandmother’s engagement ring and asked Daniella to spend the rest of her life with him – and of course she said yes!

Hiking & Champagne

We drove to the visitors center along the crater rim and decided to go for a short hike down into the crater amongst the colorful cinder cones.  After walking around an hour we found a nice place to sit to take in the views and soak up the experience.  Paul brought out a bottle of Tattinger champagne he had smuggled away with two champagne flutes and we toasted ourselves and our future together.

Waterfalls along the Road to Hana

We took our time driving down off the mountain, and headed north towards the scenic Road to Hana along the north coast of the island.  We pulled over a couple of times to take in the views, and stopped at the idyllic Three Bears Falls for a refreshing swim in the rock pool at the base of the waterfall surrounded by the steep mountainside and lush, tropical rainforest.

Surprises back at the Hotel

Back at the hotel by mid-afternoon, Paul surprised Daniella yet again with rose petals scattered around the room and over the bed, and a bottle of Bollinger Rose champagne for more celebrations.  Relaxing on the balcony overlooking the beach and ocean, we finally shared our news with the rest of the world and made calls to our parents and siblings.

Dinner in Ka’anapali

We finished off the day with a romantic alfresco dinner at a nearby restaurant, fielding many calls and messages from our family and friends around the globe.

A very memorable day for both of us!