Lanai Travel Guide
Lanai, Hawaii, is an island of contrasts. There is not one traffic light, something the residents wouldn’t change. It is only nine miles from Maui, but feels light years away. Luxurious resorts will pamper you, nestled either in the misty mountains or along the sea contrasting with the rugged back-roads that require a four-wheel drive vehicle. Only 30 miles of the roads on the island are paved, another reason why Lanai feels as if it is two islands in one.
Things to see and do in Lanai
The entire family can spend lazy days exploring the rustic back roads and beautiful beaches. Enjoy a picnic in Dole Park or go for a horseback ride. Explore the tide pools on Hulopoe Bay. Hike one of the many trails on the island, including to the top of Munro Trail to seaside ePuu Pehe.
Snorkeling and scuba diving are also popular on Lanai. Go whale watching in the waters between Lanai, Maui and Molokai. With only 30 miles of paved road and 400 miles unpaved, traveling the island in a car can be difficult. Instead, rent a four-wheel drive vehicle and discover the hidden areas of the island. Travel to Shipwreck Beach, known as Kalolohhia, to see the tanker ship that was claimed by the reef.
Visit the Heritage Sites of Lanai to learn more about the rich history and culture of the native people. Take a trip to the Kaunolu Fishing Village which was once a favorite fishing retreat for Kamehameha the Great. It is a sacred spot as it is home to the remains of Halulu heiau, petroglyphs and Kahekill’s Leap where warriors would prove themselves by jumping into the ocean more than 60-feet below the cliff.
During the 1900s, George Munro managed the Lanae Ranch. During this period, he planted Cook pines as a way to reforest the land. Today, the Munro Trail is lined with his trees. Lanai City still feels rooted in the pineapple plantation past. Hotel Lanai, built in 1923 as a retreat for James D. Dole, the pineapple pioneer and his guests.
Lanai residents have a strong desire to protect the land and they offer many activities for those who visit who also have strong desire to protect the environment. Take a self-guided tour of the Kanepuu Preserve which features 48 species of Hawaiian plants. There is information regarding the survival of this fragile ecosystem.
Lanai is in a tropical savanna climate with a summer season that is mostly dry. January is the coolest month with average low temperatures of 60 degrees while September is the warmest month with an average high of 78 degrees. There is approximately 34 inches of rainfall each year. The wettest month is January with over five inches of rain on average each year.
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