The keiki eagerly awaited the arrival of our school bus. For many of them, this would be their first time on one. As we headed to the west side of the island, some keiki sang “The Wheels on Bus”. Based on their eager faces, taking a ride on the school bus would have fulfilled their transportation field trip expectations. But there was more…they were headed to the Sugar Cane Train in Ka‘anapali.
When we arrived at the Sugar Cane Train Pu‘ukoli‘i station, we heard the blast of the trains steam whistle and knew it was near. In the distance was the top of the smoke stack and the keiki watched in amazement as the train finally appeared from around the bend. The two train conductors smiled and waved out the window as they pulled up to the landing dock. One of the keiki whistled like a train and yelled out loud “All Aboard!”
We began our 6 mile journey between the resorts of Ka‘anapali and the historic Lahaina town. Keiki, ‘ohana and staff relaxed in the open-air coach observing breathtaking panoramic views of the ocean, mountains, and neighboring islands. Along the way, the keiki waved at onlookers, and squealed as we spotted whales breaching and spouting in the ocean below. We then crossed a 300+ foot curved wooden trestle and watched as the train released steam from under it. Once the steam had dispersed, a beautiful rainbow appeared. As our journey slowly came to a close, our narrator serenaded us with Hawaiian songs, which provided a nostalgic charm of the days of old Hawai‘i.