Molokai, the 5th largest island in the archipelago of Hawaii, remains one of the most pristine, untouched islands of the group. Molokai is also one of the friendliest islands, perhaps because it has staved off the shopping malls and duplex towers that come with increased tourism. It is here you will find uncrowded white sand beaches, lush rainforests and charming villages where the locals carry on their rich ancestral traditions.
Kalaupapa, the infamous leprosy colony of Father Damien, is accessible by a winding, cliff-top donkey ride and is a bizarre experience. Nearby, the Halawa Valley, accessible only with a native guide, is a magnificent spectacle of natural erosion. The waterfalls here, commonly held to be sacred, define perfection. Molokai is an ideal place to visit if you want to ditch the crowds and take in the majesties of nature.
Here are some activities you may want to include in your plans:
-Play on the beach: Papohaku beach is one of the most popular and pristine beaches on the island. Find a place to relax in the soft sugary sand, or go swimming or snorkeling in the blue waves.
-Visit the Kamakou Preserve: This is a wonderfully preserved rainforest ecosystem and a great place to see fragile species of native plants and wildlife.
-Visit a macadamia nut farm: Take a factory tour at Purdy's All Natural macadamia nut farm. Learn more about this delicious snack and go behind the scenes of a friendly family business.
-Visit the Molokai Museum and Cultural Center: Learn more about Hawaiian history, religion and culture at this educational center.
-Go scuba diving: The reefs around Molokai are home to spectacular species of colorful fish, sea turtles, and a variety of marine life.
-Take a Molokai mule ride: Mules are the best way to navigate the trails that wind down an 1800 foot cliff to the Kalaupapa Peninsula.
The pristine, rain forested mountains form the perfect backdrop for Molokai weddings and Molokai camping adventures. While you're here, leave your beach rental behind during the day and go exploring. Take full advantage of the Molokai ranch, the surf schools and the other offerings on this breathtaking and sparsely populated island. At night, return to your beach condo or luxury vacation rental and watch the sunset while enjoying a relaxing evening with your family and friends. Don't leave Hawaii without a visit to some of the other islands including Oahu and Maui.
As featured in USA TODAY and recommended by Travel + Leisure in its annual Villa Guide:
New to FlipKey?
FlipKey is a vacation rental marketplace with more than 300,000 homes and rooms around the world. Find the perfect place to stay for your trip, and get great value along with the space, privacy and amenities of home.
Find the vacation rental perfect for you. Learn how.