Be sure to read the other review of this trip, written on March 27, 2012. Like these people, we took the Molokai Alii Tour, an all-day tour to Molokai sponsored by the Hawaii Ocean Project, but actually conducted by the Lahaina Cruise Company. It does a disservice to the Hawaii Ocean Project, which seems to be a good whale research project. We were interested in visiting Molokai on this trip to Hawaii, and had looked into spending three nights at the Aqua Hotel Molokai, the place we stopped for the included lunch. We decided to take this one-day tour instead, to see if we wanted to go back. Good thing. We actually paid a bit less than the other people, $390 with an AAA discount, and boarded the Molokai Ferry at 7:30 AM for the 1 HOUR AND 45-MINUTE RIDE to Molokai. My wife had visions of sitting on the top deck of the ferry boat to get some sun and look at the views, and we were joined by around 20 or so like-minded travelers. The Captain warned all about the spray, and advised everyone to sit inside. He was right. The ride was so rough over to Molokai (the second-roughest we have ever been on, topped only by the ride back FROM Molokai), and the ocean spray so strong that 10-minutes after leaving Lahaina's harbor everyone was soon crammed into the small interior space. We "enjoyed" a wide-screen TV with streaks down the middle, intermittantly going on and off, and watching what appeared to be a sports show of roller derby on ice skates. The continental breakfast was exactly as described in the other review, some sliced fruit, quartered muffins and some sort of fruit punch. It wasn't served until we reached calmer waters, about 15 minutes from landing at Kaunakakai's pier. We were met by Hans, our local tour guide who was trained by Rudy, and said Rudy taught him everything he knew about being a guide. He was right. Hans talked constantly, and recently had some dental surgery, so he was virtually unintelligible. We also saw several of the schools on Molokai on our tour, three of the four churches that Father Damien built, and every house of every person Hans knew on Molokai, including two his son owned. Sadly, there really is very little to see on Molokai, except for Kalauapapa which you see from a cliff above. The first stop on the van is an overlook where you can see the peninsula, and read some very weathered signs telling about its history. The unfortunate phallic rock is also at the same stop -- skip it unless you are a teenage male going throughn puberty. Hans made many jokes about this and we were not amused The next stop was at a "coffee plantation and plant", which was really nothing more than a coffee bar and gift shop. They were located at a working coffee plant, but there was no tour, no sign, nothing to show visitors what was done or how it was done. We never even saw any cofffee growing up close -- only as the van drove by a coffee field on the highway. We then drove past several schools and churches, on to the highlight of the trip, a visit to a 50-tree macadamia nut farm. This stop was actually interesting. The owner, a quirky man named "Toodie", gave an interesting talk about how macadamia nuts grow, are harvested, and processed. The neat thing we got to do was crack some real macs and eat the nut meat right out of the shell. We then, of course, shopped in Toodie's small shop where he sells macs, and oils and butter made from macs. On to our lunch at the Aqua Molokai Hotel. We really were glad we didn't stay there. It has NO beach, and one cafe/bar/restaurant, where we were served passable sandwiches. Honestly, it is not the fault of the hotel, but the "beach" is about 15' wide and covered with a million little crabs running around. You could never sit on this beach. NOTE: They were having a cross-dresser pageant at the hotel later that evening. Hans made many sarcastic remarks about the "fruities" and I don't think any of the ten of us on his tour appreciated his rude remarks. After lunch, we drove to a small beach at the west end of the island, after stopping by 2 of Father Damien's churches along the way. The only neat thing about it was that you could see Kapalua, on Maui, across the channel from it. We next drove to Kaunakakai, the only town on the island. Unfortunately, Hans' driving us to see all his friends' houses left us only 20 minutes to "see" the town. We bought some Molokai Sweet Bread, the only really good thing about Molokai, and back in the van to return to the pier for the worst boat ride we have ever been on -- think of the boat in Perfect Storm, except the weather was beautiful (?). One other curious thing -- you hear Molokai referred to as the "Friendly Isle". Well, that friendly Isle recently instituted a $300 fine for jay-walking in Kaunakakai!! This town does not even have a traffic signal and it is hard to imagine jaywalking being a crime, but several people in the town commented about it to us. I guess they wanted to make sure tourists used their cross-walks and didn't get run-over by the non-existent trafic. We try to look at this day as a positive one -- we didn't waste our time spending 3 nights on Molokai. We had heard about the many beautiful beaches on Molokai, one the longest in Hawaii. But, we didn't see any but this small beach at the end. But, we wanted to visit Molokai, and we have. Don't waste your money on this tour.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.