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101 Things to Do (Maui) - - Contents -

79. RIDE A MULE TO KALAU­PAPA

Moloka‘i is fa­mous for its cliff-hug­ging MULE RIDES along the world’s high­est sea cliffs. The trek fol­lows the KALAU­PAPA TRAIL, which descends ap­prox­i­mately 1,700 feet to the Kalau­papa Penin­sula. The des­ti­na­tion, KALAU­PAPA NA­TIONAL PARK, is where, for more than a cen­tury, peo­ple suf­fer­ing from lep­rosy—later called Hansen’s dis­ease—lived and died in iso­la­tion. To­day, Kalau­papa is a NA­TIONAL PARK, the only one lo­cated in an ac­tive Hansen’s dis­ease set­tle­ment. The set­tle­ment’s her­itage is pre­served in its struc­tures and grave­yards. And the legacy of the priest who sac­ri­ficed his life to live and work with the pa­tients is very much in ev­i­dence. Can­on­ized in 2009, he’s now known as SAINT DAMIEN OF MOLOKA‘I.

A sec­ond Kalau­papa care­taker, Mother Marianne Cope, was de­clared a saint in Oc­to­ber 2012. She also is known as SAINT MARIANNE OF MOLOKA‘I.

Get­ting to Kalau­papa isn’t easy. Limited plane flights that even­tu­ally land at the set­tle­ment are avail­able, and some peo­ple hike, but the mule ride is prob­a­bly the most pop­u­lar route.

MOLOKA‘I MULE RIDE’S head­quar­ters are lo­cated on High­way 470 at mile marker 5. NOTE: There are no overnight ac­com­mo­da­tions in the park. This is a trek that re­quires ad­vance plan­ning. Call the com­pany at (808) 567-6088 or (800) 567-7550 well in ad­vance. Visit mu­leride.com for fur­ther de­tails.

80. SEE AN ARMY OF PALM TREES

If you are look­ing for a one-of-akind view once you’ve ar­rived in MOLOKA‘I, all you need to find is the lovely bunch of co­conut trees. Lo­cated on the south shore of Moloka‘i, KAPUAIWA CO­CONUT

BEACH PARK boasts a stun­ning sun­set view ac­cented by hun­dreds of ma­jes­tic palms.

This HIS­TORIC LAND­MARK, one of the largest groves of ROYAL PALM

TREES still ex­ist­ing in Hawai‘i, isn’t a co­in­ci­dence of na­ture. In the 1860s, King Kamehameha V had 1,000 royal co­conut palm trees planted to rep­re­sent each war­rior in his mighty army. He chose this lo­ca­tion for its SEVEN SA­CRED

POOLS, where (roy­alty) bathed. ali‘i You will only be able to view the grove (ru­mored to have orig­i­nally spanned 10 acres) from the out­side, in or­der to keep your head safe from fall­ing co­conuts. How­ever, bring a pic­nic, as the nearby KIOWEA BEACH PARK, just to the west and eas­ily within view­ing dis­tance, is a lovely place to catch a view and some rays.

NOTE: At the wa­ter’s edge of Kiowea Beach Park you also can find a con­crete MIL­I­TARY BUNKER left from WWII, a re­minder of Hawai‘i’s com­plex his­tory.

Kapuaiwa Co­conut Beach Park is lo­cated 1.5 miles east of Kau­nakakai on High­way 460. Kapuaiwa Co­conut Grove will be on the left, across the street from Church Row.

PHOTO: HAWAII TOURISM AUTHOR­ITY (HTA) / DANA EDMUNDS LO­CA­TION: KALAU­PAPA

EX­PE­RI­ENCE THE BEST OF MOLOKA‘I

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