Travel to Molokai, Hawaii
Known as "the most Hawaiian" isle, Moloka`i is a cultural and historic treasure trove. Take a mule ride to Kalaupapa, walk on miles of white sand, and visit the birthplace of hula while spinner dolphins and sea turtles play just offshore.
Moloka`i is often called the most Hawaiian of all the islands. There are a few reasons it has this reputation. First of all, a higher percentage of full-blooded Hawaiians live here than on any other island except Ni`ihau. Second, the way of life on the island remains almost untouched by modernization or commercialization. Time marches on in Moloka`i, but it does it so slowly and gracefully as to be almost unnoticeable. The third reason has to do with the attitude of people on the island. Almost all of them display a genuine "Aloha Spirit" that is impossible to find in any other place in the world. People aren't just polite on this island; they're warm. Shopkeepers aren't professional; they're genuinely interested in being helpful. It's an amazing thing to behold, especially for mainland city dwellers, and it is the reason why Molokai`s nickname is "The Friendly Isle." More...
Moloka`i is the ultimate vacation destination for outdoor activities and adventures. The island is virtually undeveloped, and it offers hundreds of acres for hiking, biking, camping and horseback riding. The islands' beaches offer everything from surfing to snorkeling to skimboarding. Offshore is Hawaii's only barrier reef, an attraction that draws scuba divers from all over.
There are also a number of educational and entertaining local attractions. From the coffee plantation at Kualapu`u to the guided mule rides at Kalaupapa, Moloka`i offers a culture that is unlike any other. More...
Dining and Drinking
Moloka`i has no pretensions in regards to its dining scene. It doesn't claim to be a culinary Mecca; nor does it aspire to be one. There are just a few restaurants on the island and most of them serve simple, greasy local fare with a strange Filipino twist. There are about three special-occasion restaurants, but even the fanciest of them is rustic by mainland--or even Maui--standards.
Where To Stay
Travelers who want the real Hawaiian experience would do well to stay on Moloka`i. While it has a larger population than neighboring Lana`i, for the most part it has not attracted any high-ticket investors or developers. As a result, it is friendlier, more authentic, and more laid-back than any other island. On the whole, average room rates are lower in Moloka`i than on any other Hawaiian island.
Hotels are usually on the small side, and while there are definitely some luxurious digs, even the most expensive ones seem to place comfort ahead of glamour. There are also a few condominium complexes in Moloka`i, most of them on the West End in Kaluakoi Resort.
There may only be a few hotels on Moloka`i, but there are plenty of B&Bs and guest houses scattered around the island, most of them boasting great locations. Nearly indistinguishable from the B&Bs--till breakfast time rolls around--are the numerous guest houses on the island. Waialua Beach seems to have more than its fair share of these properties.
Moloka`i by the NumbersElevation: 455 feet
Average Annual Precipitation: 24.4 inches
Average January Temperature: 70 degrees F
Average July Temperature: 76 degrees F
Time Zone: GMT-10
Area Code: 808
Major Industries: tourism/hospitality/recreation, agriculture, government
Did You Know?
Moloka`i is often known as the "Friendly Island" and the "Most Hawaiian Island" as there is little automobile traffic (not even a traffic light on the island), no shopping malls, and no buildings taller than a palm tree.
Moloka`i is located in Maui County between the islands of Oahu and Maui, which are amongst the Hawaiian Islands in the central Pacific Ocean.