Where to Stay on Molokai

It’s not the accommodations that draw you to Molokai. You come here to get away, slow down and feel the pulse of a quieter life style and perhaps walk in Father Damien’s path.

Teri Waros, owner of Kalele Bookstore in Kaunakakai, says it best, “Molokai is like a pilgrimage.”

Regardless of what brings you to Molokai, you need a place to rest your head at night. The choices are few with the closure of the Molokai Ranch last year. What remains is not perfect.

Hotel Molokaihotel molokai

Recently re-branded an Aqua resort, we liked the comfortable bed and down pillows, large room and oversize lanai, plus the well stocked kitchen. Hotel Molokai also has the advantage of being the most central place to stay on the island located two miles from Kaunakakai. It’s also the island’s only hotel.

There were three problems we experienced on our recent visit; a) an outbreak of ants in the kitchen and bathroom, b) loud music every night until 10:30 p.m. that penetrated the walls of our room, c) blowing a fuse each time we tried to use both stovetop burners at the same time or the burner and microwave simultaneously.


We stayed at this condominium two years ago. Our unit was a one bedroom with kitchen. The grounds are well kept but the room décor varies as each unit is privately owned.

We didn’t like the room layout which placed the bedroom at the front facing the parking lot. After the first night we switched the furniture between the living room and the bedroom in order to take advantage of the view and trades.

You’re also going to be charged a cleaning fee and daily housekeeping is not included.

Wavecrest is located a distant 13 miles from Kaunakakai on the east side of Molokai. There are some good beaches close by and spectacular scenery as you drive to the end of the road.

Ke Nani Kai

This condominium has the advantage of being near Papohaku Beach which is one of our favorites.

We’ve never stayed here, but long-term visitors we talked to in town swear by it. It’s located at the Western end of Molokai and you’ll be 12 miles from the main town of Kaunakakai. The landscape around here is dry compared to the eastern side of Molokai where Wavecrest is located.

The town of Maunaloa near the resort feels like a ghost town with the closure of the Molokai Ranch.

Like Wavecrest, an additional cleaning fee will apply.


Reservations for Hotel Molokai can be booked on-line directly with the hotel. For the two condominiums mentioned, you can check VRBO, Molokai real estate offices or search Google to book directly with the property owner.

If you have any favorite place to stay on Molokai or have experience with any that we’ve mentioned, please add your comments.

Disclosure: On our recent visit we paid full price for one night at Hotel Molokai and received two nights complimentary.

1 thought on “Where to Stay on Molokai”

  1. The ants mentioned still reside in the rooms (they belong there… you’ll see why if you read on) though I only noticed them after my wife pointed them out 2 or 3 days in to our stay. They are very small and Were only on the floor by a piece of food that I had unknowingly dropped while cooking the night before. Hardly an infestation…I would call it a feast for some lucky ant’s if anything, and for me it was more of a glimpse at how nature should be less the mainlands obsession with extermination and false sense of cleanliness. Secondly, no fuse tripped while cooking said meal, microwave included while both burners were on. I made rice, broccoli, ahi, steak, and fresh shrimp from the local market. All very fresh and delicious, though deveining and beheading the shrimp was a little tedious with limited kitchen utensils.

    People come here expecting to find that barbie doll paradise… An “untouched” and authentic Hawaii, that still offers picture-perfect amenities. This island is not for the Yuppies back on the main land looking for a deserted island movie prop to spend their vacation on. It IS the real deal. Beautiful, Clean, Pristine, Rugged, Natural…. The REAL Hawaii. Molokai took my love for everything natural and political and built it in to a goal for me to achieve by one day becoming part of this awesome community. The people here ARE friendly, but you can tell that you’re an outsider until you become a part of it. I am sad to leave tomorrow morning since we have just now started to be recognized and greeted with more sincerity after spending a week here. You see the locals are all family in the way they interact with each other and it makes me wan’t to move here and bring something to add to it. I Can tell that once I leave here I will always long to be back.

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