Molokai is Hawaii’s fifth-largest island but it differs quite a bit from the heavily visited Oahu and Maui. Yes, they share the same warm weather, azure water, and sand between their toes but Molokai offers a destination and culture unspoiled by tourism.
Visitors will feel as if they’ve step back and time as they visit the island without skyscrapers, stoplights, only one hotel but with plenty of pristine country and untouched beaches.
Molokai is just 38 miles long and 10 miles wide at its widest point. The stunning landscape includes some of the highest sea cliffs in the world along the northeast coast and off the southern coast Hawaii’s longest continuous fringing reef which runs for 28 miles.
The local population is made up of a high percentage of people with Native Hawaiian ancestry who continue to preserve their rural lifestyle.
Cruise ships don’t stop here, and that’s the way the people like it as they strive to keep their culture unchanged. They love the land, aloha aina, which can be felt wherever you go on the island, from the small town of Kaunakakai to the sacred Halawa Valley.
Things to Do
Among the beaches on Molokai is Popohaku Beach, one of Hawaii’s biggest white-sand beaches. And while visitors enjoy a somewhat laid-back island feel, Molokai also offers plenty of outdoor adventure.
Try hiking along those 1,700 foot cliffs leading to Kalaupapa National Historic Park or take a 3 mile mule ride along the trail to Kalaupapa Peninsula. Twenty-six switchbacks offer some magnificent views.
The island only has a handful of restaurants and one grocery store and it feels a bit like the island is caught in a time warp. It’s the perfect destination for those ready to experience authentic Hawaiian culture including Friday night gatherings at the Hotel Molokai where the locals play music and dance the hula.
Photo credits: soaresd002