The smallest inhabited island travelers may visit in Hawaii, Lanai offers big enticements to its visitors. Only nine miles from Maui yet a world away, Lanai can feel like two places. The first is found in luxurious resorts where visitors can indulge in world-class amenities and championship-level golf. The other is found bouncing along the island’s rugged back roads in a 4-wheel-drive vehicle to explore off-the-beaten-path treasures. You’re sure to find serenity, adventure and privacy on any of the three regions of Lanai.
Traveling to remote Lanai—both getting here and navigating the island’s beguiling, untamed landscapes—is not without its challenges. But visitors will find that the rewards are well worth their efforts, especially with a little advance planning.
Arriving on Lanai
There are no direct flights from outside Hawaii to tiny Lanai Airport (LNY), and most travelers connect through either Honolulu or Maui. For inter-island travelers, Mokulele Airlines provides direct service to Lanai from Oahu, Maui, Molokai and the Island of Hawaii.
From nearby Maui, you can also hop on an Expeditions Ferry for a scenic one-hour boat ride through the Auau Channel, a popular place for whale-watching in the winter months.
Getting Around Lanai
With its windswept terrain and rugged roads, driving on Lanai can be quite an adventure. You won’t find a single stoplight, and only 30 of the island’s 400 miles of road are paved. But if you do choose to explore these roads less traveled, you’ll be treated to landscapes that exist nowhere else in Hawaii.
Book a four-wheel drive vehicle ahead of time through Lanai Car Rental in Lanai City, and head north to explore the lunar-like landscapes of Keahiakawelo (Garden of the Gods) and ghostly Kaiolohia (Shipwreck Beach) . These drives are not for the faint of heart, but the payoff is spectacular for those who brave the wild, bumpy ride. Be forewarned that gas on Lanai is quite expensive, usually around $5 per gallon. Please note: Rental cars are currently in high demand, so please plan ahead to secure a reservation.
Taxis are also available for airport transfers and other transportation needs. Limousine service can also be arranged for airport transportation and day tours. A shuttle system is available for guests of the Four Seasons Resorts. Shuttle service is by reservation only.