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Information about the two volcanoes
which form Molokai

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Molokai Volcanoes - East and West Molokai

Molokai Cliffs Photo Molokai is comprised of the top of two extinct volcanoes; Wailau, referred to as East Molokai, and Maunaloa, referred to as West Molokai. At one time, the islands of Maui, Molokai, and Lanai were one larger island. An eruption caused the land, now submerged, to sink creating the three exisiting islands.

Wailau- East Molokai

21.17 N, 156.83 W
Summit Elevation 1210 m
Shield volcano

Wailau is a shield volcano which encompasses the eastern two-thirds of the island. Wailau is overlapped by Lanai, Maunaloa, and Haleakala volcanoes.

The drive from Kamalo to Halawa Valley in East Molokai is one of Hawaii's most beautiful drives. It provides a glimpse of old Hawaii that can rarely be seen on the other islands. The best way to complete this drive is to drive all the way to the end and make your stops on the way back.

Maunaloa - West Molokai

West Molokai is the smaller of the two volcanoes of Molokai (above sea level). Much of West Molokai lies below sea level, is buried by lava flow from other volcanoes, or was moved through the landslide process.

West Molokai has breathtaking scenery and almost deserted beaches. You may have an entire beach to yourself! Papohaku Beach on West Molokai is the longest white sand beach on the Hawaiian Islands. There are points of significant historical interest surrounding West Molokai, such as the Mule Ride to Kalaupapa National Historical Park, the site of Father Damien’s leprosy colony. Other unique guided hikes on West Molokai include visiting “The Birthplace of the Hula,” and the “Poisonwood Kalaipahoa Gods.”

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