Beach + Island

Hidden Beaches

by Bob Payne

Blue Hawaii

Spread Your Towel: Polihua Beach, Lanai, Hawaii

Shore lines: Currents make it too treacherous for swimming, and you need four-wheel-drive to get to it. But if you are seeking solitude and beauty, this empty mile-plus stretch of white sand is worth the trip. That's Molokai you'll see directly across the channel, and, on a good day, a whale spouting. To reach the beach, head north from Lanai City on the jeep trail inappropriately called the Polihua Highway, passing the weirdly sculptured landscape of the Garden of the Gods, and kicking up so much red dust that, if you are in an open vehicle, you'll arrive looking like a sun-dried tomato.

Best Bunk: No hotel (in fact, nothing) is on Polihua, but the 11-room Hotel Lanai, about ten miles away in Lanai City, is among the most convenient to it. Built in the 1920s and retaining much of its pine-floored, clapboard-sided plantation style, it will give you much more of a taste of the Old Hawaii than the island's two far pricier Four Seasons properties at Koele and Manele Bay.

Hotel Lanai
Tel: 808 565 7211
Doubles from $139, including breakfast, two-day minimum

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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