The island of Molokai is for people trying to get away from everything or those looking for adventure. There are no direct flights from the mainland to Molokai, so you will have to fly into Honolulu and then take a commuter plane to Molokai. Tip: Start your itinerary on a weekday for more opportunities to shop, dine, and sightsee.
Day 1: Arriving & Stopping in Kaunakakai
If you're staying in a condo or vacation rental, head into Kaunakakai and stock up on groceries. While you're here, wander around the old two-street town and check out the stores. Be sure to stop at the Kapuaiwa Coconut Grove/Kiowea Park and watch the sunset.
Day 2: Riding a Mule to Kalaupapa
Your internal clock will still be set to mainland time, so you should have no problem waking up early for the Molokai Mule Ride. This adventure will take you through 26 switchbacks on a 1,600-foot cliff and give you a chance to tour the Kalaupapa Peninsula, where people suffering from leprosy lived for decades.
Day 3: Heading for the Beach
Molokai has terrific beaches -- and on weekdays they are generally empty! Depending on the time of year and the weather, great beaches for snorkeling are Murphy Beach Park (Kumimi Beach Park) and Sandy Beach on the East End, and Kapukahehu (Dixie Maru) Beach on the West End. Pack a picnic lunch or stop by Outpost Natural Foods or the Sundown Deli, both in Kaunakakai. Stay all day. Relax.
Day 4: Hiking in a Tropical Valley
After a day at the beach, you'll be ready for a hike into the tropical jungle of Halawa Valley. Bring a picnic lunch for after the hike, and then spend the rest of the day on the beach at Halawa. Stop to see the fishponds before you leave the East End.
Day 5: Exploring the Outdoors
Spend a day kayaking, biking, or hiking.
My choice would be kayaking along the shallow waters of the East End. Hikers should check out Pepeopae Trail or the Kamakou Preserve.
Day 6: Touring the West End
Because you've already seen the East End, spend a day exploring the rest of the island. Start out with a tour of the central part of Molokai by driving out to Palaau State Park, which overlooks the Kalaupapa Peninsula, and then stop at the Molokai Museum and Cultural Center and take a coffee break at Coffees of Hawaii Plantation Store and Espresso Bar. Next head to the 3-mile-long, white-sand Papohaku Beach. After an hour or so at the beach, drive up to the cool air in Maunaloa town to see the best store on the island: the Big Wind Kite Factory & Plantation Gallery.
Day 7: Seeing Moomomi Dunes: Archaeology Heaven
Before your flight back, stop by the Moomomi Dunes, located close to the Hoolehua Airport. This wild, sand-covered coast is a treasure trove for archaeologists. Buried in the mounds are ancient Hawaiian burial sites, fossils, Hawaiian artifacts, and even the bones of prehistoric birds. If you have time, take the 20-minute easy walk west to Kawaaloa Bay, the perfect place to say aloha to Molokai.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.