Saturday 28 May 2016
When researching for our trip to Hawaii I discovered there were eight main islands so I wanted to go to all of them but the best we can do is six islands as two of them are not accessible to the general public. Well if it is only possible to visit six islands then six islands it will be.
Today we are going to another island – Molokai. I booked Molokai Ali’i Tour with the Adventure Maui website. The tour included the round trip ferry from Lahaina to Kaunakakai Harbour on Molokai, breakfast, lunch and a tour of Molokai.
We were ready and out the front of our hotel around 5.45am and had the guy there call a taxi for us which was there in about five minutes. I wanted to be there early in case it took a long time for the taxi to come but as it was there very quick we were early for our 6.30am check in at Lahaina Harbour. We arrived at the harbour at around 5.55am so had time to kill.
The harbour is right in Lahaina with the historic Pioneer Inn right at the harbour.
The famous banyan tree is next to the Pioneer Inn. It is huge and gorgeous and everywhere should have a tree like this. This is one tree.
Very early morning in Lahaina Harbour
The island of Lanai from Lahaina Harbour
When we checked in we were given our tickets and tour information and were also given a glad-wrapped disposable plate containing our breakfast. We ate it and soon after were able to go board the ferry, the Molokai Princess. The ferry left Lahaina at 7.00am and the trip is about
Ferrying past the Kaanapali beach and hotels area
The ferry ride from Lahaina to Kaunakakai Harbour on Molokai is approximately two hours and sails past about half the length of the island to get to the harbour.
Arriving at Kaunakakai Harbour around 9.00am
After we met up with our driver/guide and the other people on our tour who had all arrived on the ferry with us, we drove to the nearby town of Kaunakakai.
It was Saturday and there was a farmer’s market happening so we looked around for a little while. The locals were friendly and I had nice conversations with several of them, I think my Australian accent grabs their attention.
We left Kaunakakai and drove west, past about a dozen churches, most of which were next to each other. Molokai has a population of around 8,000 people and a lot of churches.
We arrived at the Molokai Museum and Cultural Centre which has a lot of photos and artefacts about the Leper Colony in Kalaupapa on the island. We were shown a video and then had a look around at the exhibits. Photos were not permitted inside the museum building. Outside, in the grounds, was the R W Meyer Sugar Mill.
The museum building
The R W Meyer Sugar Mill
The restroom was also in the grounds
Sugar cane plant
I think this car has been at this museum for a while
Next we headed out to the Kalaupapa Lookout. We were here for the lookout but I was intrigued and wanted to see that rock too.
It was a flat path and only about a 200m walk and then a stunning view of the Kalaupapa Peninsula
We had time so we took the trail to take a look at Phallic Rock. This walk was steep and several times I contemplated turning around but was intrigued by what that rock would look like.
Was it worth it? Probably not, but at least I don’t have to die wondering what it looks like.
Next we drove to Purdy’s Macadamia Nut Farm where we learnt how to crack a macadamia nut and got to taste raw and cooked nuts.
Just be careful, alright? You never know when those coconuts will attack
The ground around the demonstration area was full of nut shells
There was a little shop area where you can buy macadamia nuts and honey
Next we drove east, back past Kaunakakai to the Hotel Molokai for lunch in the bar and restaurant along the beach front
After lunch we continued east along the road until we came to the first of the churches that Father Damien built, it was tiny but pretty. Father Damien worked caring for the people with leprosy.
This is the main road going lengthways, east-west, along the island.
While everybody else was looking at the church I walked a little way down the road to get a look at the view
We drove past a little taro
and some ponds, which if I remember correctly are shrimp farms, and really I could be wrong about that
A little further along the road was another church that Father Damien built, this one was a bit bigger than the last
Heading back toward Kaunakakai, our guide said along here you can see the point where the wet side of the island meets the dry side. It was really hard trying to get a photo of that but I tried
That looks nice and green and wet
This looks like it might be where wet and dry meet
And this looks dry
We drove back to Kaunakakai and had a chance to wander around the town for a while. The farmer’s market from the morning was long gone and being Saturday a lot of the shops were closed. I had a good look around a shop with clothes, giftware and souvenirs.
We had a little time to spare so they drove us to Kamoi Snack-n-Go which must have had about forty different ice cream flavours, including some unusual ones.
I had the Kona coffee flavour and Peter had the purple sweet potato. Now purple is my favourite colour so I would normally have gone straight for that but I am not fussed on sweet potato so gave it a miss. Besides, I much prefer coffee flavoured anything and I had my scoop of Kona coffee with a scoop of macadamia nut ice cream.
After a drive through the town and surrounding area we were taken back to the harbour for the two hour ferry ride back to Lahaina.
Arriving back at Lahaina a little before 7.00pm. What is that giant L in the hills? Is it related to some sort of sporting thing? Pity to spoil the view like that.
You can see the Pioneer Inn overlooking the harbour
When we got off the boat we thought about getting something for dinner before getting the Maui bus back to the hotel. This was our first chance to get a look at the historical Lahaina area and I really liked what I saw. We walked along the ocean side for a bit looking for a reasonably priced restaurant but they all had wait times and they weren’t that cheap. We ended up in a little courtyard area across the street and had fish and chips. Afterwards we walked along the street behind Front street to find the Maui bus at the Wharf Cinema. Tomorrow we plan to spend the day here in Lahaina but for now we were tired and wanted to go back to the hotel.