Canadians visiting Hawaii usually choose to travel to one or a combination of Hawaii’s four major islands: Oahu, Maui, Kauai and Hawaii Island. But what about Lanai?
With enough to explore on Hawaii’s four major islands to warrant multiple visits to each, it’s no wonder the 141-square mile island of Lanai doesn’t often make it onto Hawaii travellers’ lists.
There are only three accommodation options on island as well – two of which are Four Seasons properties – so not a lot of people are staying on Lanai, comparatively.
The good news? While a stay on Lanai offers a slice of that ‘deserted island paradise’ so many travellers are after, Hawaii visitors don’t have to stay on Lanai for a chance to experience Lanai at its finest.
With flights to and from Lanai offered daily, departing from HNL and OGG as well as a daily ferry service from Maui, travellers can take a day trip to Lanai to create memories that will last much longer. What can travellers do when they get there? Here are three fabulous Lanai activities for a Hawaiian vacation clients won’t soon forget.
1. Four-Wheel Drive on Lanai
When visiting the Hawaiian island that is without even a single traffic light, it’s time for travellers to hop on a four-wheeler to explore Lanai’s rugged back roads. You won’t find any public transportation on Lanai (the population is just 3,200) but that doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty to explore.
Travellers can take their four-wheel drives through historic Lanai City or to visit Keahikakawelo (Garden of the Gods), a rock garden with boulders and rock towers that glow red and purple at dusk. Another trip worth taking on Lanai in a four-wheeler is to Polihua Beach. This secluded beach is exactly what travellers to Lanai may be searching for when they want to feel like they have sequestered a piece of Hawaii all to themselves. Visit during the winter months and Polihua Beach also becomes a perfect spot for shoreline whale watching.
2. Shipwreck Beach
Deserving a shoutout all its own, Shipwreck Beach is a must-visit for travellers to Lanai. About 30 minutes north of Lanai City, travellers can also reach this place via four-wheel drive, but what they will find there will take them back in time. This eight mile stretch of beach features a number of shipwrecks along its rocky shoreline, including an oil tanker from the 1940s beached on Kaiolohia Bay’s coral reef.
3. Hulopoe Bay
When it’s time to stop for lunch, this is the perfect place. Pack your picnic ahead of time and travel to this beach, named one of America’s best beaches by Dr. Stephen Leatherman (Dr. Beach). Fronting the famous Four Seasons Resort Lanai, this beach (which is open to the public) also features picnic tables, barbecue grills, restrooms and showers.
Hulopoe Bay is also known as a stellar beach for snorkelling, except during the winter months when conditions make snorkelling difficult. That said, it’s Hulopoe Bay’s tide pools that really set this spot apart. Carved from volcanic rock, these well-protected tide pools keep waters calm, giving swimmers a chance to observe protected marine life like hermit crabs, sea stars and small fish. Spinner Dolphins and Humpback whales (in the winter months) are also known to visit the bay.