Uninhabited Island in Hawaii | Island Discovery Guide

  • By: Joseph Benson
  • Time to read: 11 min.

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Uninhabited Island in Hawaii, Hawaii’s uninhabited island Kahoolawe is the smallest of the Hawaiian chain’s eight major islands (Oahu, Maui, Kauai, Molokai, Big Island, Lanai, and Niihau).

Discover uninhabited island in Hawaii today that will leave your jaw dropping and full of surprise, there are a lot of uninhabited island in the world today, discover few from Hawaii.

Yes, Hawaii has an island that is still deserted or has a very small population; we may even call it a secluded island. It is a little oasis of quiet, twelve miles long, forty-five square miles in size, and completely abandoned.

The Kahoolawe Island Reserve Commission is in charge of administering and governing the island as of now.

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Tourists are not permitted on which Hawaiian Islands?

Niihau, sometimes known as the “Forbidden Island,” is Hawaii’s eighth biggest island, situated 18 miles southwest of the Garden Island (Kauai).

The island is also known as Knee-ee-how, and it has a population of less than 200 people, making it the least populous in the Hawaiian chain.

How much is Niihau worth?

Niihau is 18 kilometers long and has 46, 000 acres. Half of it is grassland, while the other is volcanic rock that rises to a height of around 1,300 feet above sea level. The island is surrounded by Kauai, a bigger island.

In his legislative address, Governor Burns offered a purchase price of $300,000, which many people here believe is too low. In a three-year-old estate valuation, the most recent public estimate of Niihau’s land worth was about $1 million.

While the Governor advocated an outright acquisition, other legislators would prefer that the state pursue the first option if the owners wish to sell.

The price has not been a point of contention amongst the owners. They have simply said that they do not want to sell. They are three members of the Robinson family, a wealthy plantation family from Kauai’s neighboring island.

Mrs. Helen Robinson and her two boys, Keith and Bruce, are the three. She is Lester Robinson’s widow. Many people support the Robinsons in their efforts to preserve a haven for the Hawaiian way of life in the 1800s, and the family is committed to doing so.

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Uninhabited Island in Hawaii

What happens if you go to Niihau?

Niihau’s moniker of “forbidden island” may seem daunting, yet it isn’t as restrictive as you may imagine. It was given that name for a purpose.

The island was closed to tourists in 1952 due to a polio outbreak, in order to prevent the island’s population from getting the illness. Fortunately, despite the term, visiting the island is no longer prohibited. But it isn’t that simple.

There are no ferry services or airplanes that transport visitors to Niihau from other islands. As a result, there are only two ways to access the island:

Reserve a seat on a hunting safari or enjoy a helicopter trip from Kauai. By contacting the tourist agency and selecting whatever tour package you’d like, you may book a helicopter trip (for a minimum of five persons).

Half-day and full-day packages, which start at $440 per person and include several hours in the air as well as time on the ground, are available.

The helicopter office is approximately 30 minutes from the airport, near the village of Kaumakani on Highway 50 on Kauai.

A hunting safari is the second way to go to Niihau (supposedly, the gun restriction law does not apply to hunting rifles).

To begin, make sure you have a Hawaii Hunter Education Wallet Card, which is awarded to people who successfully finish Hawaii’s hunter education course.

You may also fill out an exemption request if you already have a hunting license in your state. After that, just send an email to the tourist office to make preparations for a hunt reservation.

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Sheep, eland, oryx, and Polynesian boar are the most common game animals. When a wildlife park on the neighbouring island of Molokai went down two decades ago, these creatures were reportedly moved to Niihau.

A full-day excursion will set you back $1,950. Be prepared to pay an extra $800-$1,800 if you want to retain a trophy, however the tourist organization will skin, pack, and transport it for you.

Apart from these two approaches, the only way to visit is through personal invitation from a Niihau resident or a Robinson family member.

However, unless you hit it big with Tinder’s passport function, a personal invite is unlikely. If you go to Niihau by helicopter or safari, don’t expect to see any locals.

Because guests are forbidden from visiting many portions of the island, you’ll most likely find yourself on a desolate beach with little chance to go far.

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Uninhabited Island in Hawaii

Why is the island of Niihau forbidden?

Because visiting Niihau without a doctor’s note was forbidden due to a polio outbreak in Hawaii in 1952, it was dubbed the “Forbidden Island.”

Outsiders are not allowed on the island since its owners have promised to keep it safe from the outside world. Following the desires of a past Hawaiian King, they swore to protect their island’s traditions.

With a surface size of about 69.5 square miles and a distance of 17.5 miles from Kauai, the island is tiny. Elizabeth Sinclair, a Scottish housewife, bought Niihau in 1864.

The latter paid $10,000 for the island and subsequently handed it on to her descendants, the Robinsons. Only government officials, US navy personnel, the Robinsons, and their families are permitted to access Niihau.

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The Hawaiian dialect has become the predominant language of the island’s inhabitants. Fishing, farming, and welfare are their main sources of income. Furthermore, there are no rent payments in Niihau, and meat is available for free across the island.

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Uninhabited Island in Hawaii

Can anyone go to Niihau?

Niihau is solely accessible by invitation, which implies that you can only come if a Niihau resident or a member of the Robinson family extends an invitation.

However, Niihau Helicopters, Inc., a helicopter tour business, conducts half-day excursions to Niihau. After departing from Kauai, you’ll have an aerial tour of Niihau before landing on a beach for a couple hours of swimming, snorkeling, or sunbathing.

Hunting safaris with a guide are also offered. This excursion travels from Kauai as well, and once you are in Niihau, you may hunt for free-roaming wild boar, sheep, eland, or auodad (Barbary sheep).

Additionally, various boat cruises depart from Kauai that include snorkeling off the shore of Niihau. However, since mooring on one of Niihau’s beaches is prohibited, you will be limited to snorkeling in one of the island’s bays.

Uninhabited Island in Hawaii

Is Niihau still forbidden?

Niihau, often known as Hawaii’s “Forbidden Island,” is a privately owned island with an estimated 170 people. It is an invite-only resort that entices visitors from all over the world owing to its exceptional exclusivity.

Niihau is a five-mile stretch of land located 18 miles northwest of Kauai and has been privately held for more than 150 years.

While the public is not permitted to visit Hawaii’s Forbidden Island, the reasons behind this may surprise you. It’s not because you have to be famous or wealthy to visit the island.

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Niihau’s proprietors, on the other hand, are honoring a pledge made to a past Hawaiian monarch to safeguard the island from the outside world while still preserving its revered Hawaiian traditions.

If you’re interested in learning more about Hawaii’s Forbidden Island, here are 11 amazing facts about Niihau.

What is Hawaii’s least populated island?

Lanai is one of Hawaii’s smaller populated islands, yet it has a lot to offer tourists.

Is Hawaii home to any deserted islands?

Kahoolawe (pronounced kah-hoo-lah-wey) is one of the biggest abandoned islands in the Hawaiian Islands chain. Other than Oahu, Maui, Kauai, Molokai, Big Island, Lanai, and Niihau, the Hawaiian islands of Kahoolawe, Maui, Kauai, Molokai, Molokai, Molokai, Molokai, Molokai, Molokai, Molokai, Molok (the fourth smallest).

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Which of the Hawaiian Islands is uninhabited?

The “Forbidden Island,” located 18 miles northwest of Kauai, has been privately held by the same family since 1864, when Elizabeth Sinclair paid King Kamehameha V $10,000 to purchase it.

Is It possible to visit Hawaii’s forbidden Island?

Niihau, Hawaii’s Forbidden Isle, is accessible from Kauai’s west coast, but entrance is restricted unless Robinson family members or Native Hawaiians who live entirely on the island are invited.

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Uninhabited Island in Hawaii

Do the Hawaiians despise tourists?

Native Hawaiians like Daniel Aipa have respectfully advised visitors not to visit the islands until they have been proclaimed safe on social media.

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He claims that there is a rise in visitors without masks, as well as congestion at beaches and state parks these days. Around him, there is also a lot of rubbish and traffic.

Is there anyone living on Niihau Island?

Niihau, which spans 72 square miles and includes Oahu, Maui, the Big Island, and Kauai, is everything that Hawaii’s big islands lack.

Puuwai, a little village of fewer than 100 inhabitants, has around 130 residents. Rainwater is their sole supply of water, and they rely on the sun or generators for power.

Is Niihau still owned by the Robinson family?

Helen Matthew Robinson acquired 87 13 percent of Niihau when Lester Robinson died in 1969. Keith and Bruce Robinson, who have entirely controlled Niihau since their mother died in 2002, received the balance.

What is the name of the uninhabited Hawaiian island?

Kahoolawe is the smallest of the Hawaiian chain’s eight major islands (Oahu, Maui, Kauai, Molokai, Big Island, Lanai, and Niihau). It is a little oasis of quiet, twelve miles long, forty-five square miles in size, and completely abandoned.

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Uninhabited Island in Hawaii

Is it true that all of Hawaii’s islands are inhabited?

This is a list of Hawaii’s eight major islands (also referred to as the Hawaiian Windward Islands). The island of Kahoolawe is the only one that is deserted.

Hawai’i, Honolulu, Kalawao, Kauai, and Maui are the five counties that make up Hawaii. Each island is inside the limits of one of these counties and is administered by one of them. Despite being centralized, Honolulu County manages the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands.

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The only counties that share the same island are Kalawao (the smallest county in the United States in terms of geographical size) and Maui, both of which are located on the island of Molokai.

Hawaii, Maui, Kahoolawe, Lanai, Molokai, Oahu, Kauai, and Niihau are the eight primary islands that make up Hawaii.

Only 137 islands are officially recognized by the state of Hawaii, four of which are part of the Midway Atoll. In this context, an island may also refer to much smaller, usually deserted islands, rocks, coral reefs, and atolls.

As a result, this page lists 152 distinct islands (but also names smaller island chains such as the French Frigate Shoals, which includes 13 islands of its own).

Some are too tiny to be visible on maps, while others, like Maro Reef, only emerge above the water’s surface during low tide. Others have totally worn away, such as Shark and Skate islands.

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Uninhabited Island in Hawaii

What is the smallest island in Hawaii?

The island of Kaho’olawe, located 45 miles off the coast of Maui, is the smallest of the main Hawaiian isles and has had a stormy recent history.

Hawaii is made up of eight primary volcanic islands, with Kaho’olawe being the smallest. It has a width of 10 kilometers and a length of 18 kilometers. The highest peak on Kaho’olawe is Lua Makika.

There is very little rain, and the island is rather dry. More than a quarter of the island has been eroded due to saprolitic hardpan.

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The Hawaii State Legislature created the Kaho’olawe Island Reserve in 1993. It comprised the island and two nautical miles off the coast.

According to the legislation, Kaho’olawe may only be utilized to preserve native Hawaiian culture. This encompasses topics such as history, faith, fishing, and environmental preservation.

The Kaho’olawe Island Reserve Commission was established to oversee the reserve’s long-term management. The KIRC’s goals include vegetation restoration and water table equilibrium.

The Alalakeiki Channel separates Maui and Kaho’olawe. The island of Kaho’olawe is 45 square miles in size. The ocean is less than 4 kilometers distant from any location on Kaho’olawe. The population of Kaho’olawe was 18 in 1866. It was 80 in 1831.

It is now zero. With so much restoration work going on in Kaho’olawe, it is anticipated that it will one day be a lovely paradise and a popular tourist destination.

It’s a bit of a riddle, and tales abound. The contemporary history of Kaho’olawe began with the island being used as a detention center for criminals. Then there were the days of cattle grazing, which depleted the island’s flora.

The island was thereafter turned into a military facility. After decades of bombardment by US military forces in preparation for battles, Kaho’olawe is on its path to reclaiming its former status as a natural paradise.

The impacts of the shelling are still visible, and cleaning up the wreckage from the bombing days is difficult. This island has seen a sliver of what global civilization has gone through in isolation, like an island should.

However, echoes of global history, as well as the reverberations of numerous major battles, may still be heard.

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Kaho’olawe has a special position in the world’s history. This island has seen it everything, from King Kamehaha and his wife’s edicts to the dawn of modern education.

Someday, the world may be able to bridge the gap between Kaho’olawe’s lost history and its importance to the present and future.

The Hawaiian paradise of Kaho’olawe is a mainly unexplored region. This island might be the place where you find yourself through travel one day.

By then, efforts in Kaho’olawe to restore Hawaii’s spiritual, cultural, and historic origins may have had results. As a little residue of history’s transformations, Kaho’olawe is significant to the globe in this sense.

With its location close to the most talked-about piece of land on the planet, Kaho’olawe may soon transcend its current status.

If you’re planning a twenty-year trip across the globe, make sure Kaho’olawe is on your list of “must see” destinations.

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Uninhabited Island in Hawaii

End of the line

The largest of Hawaii’s uninhabited islands is Kahoolawe which has a size of 1,486.4 m², an area of about 0.1 square miles (0.26 km²) and a 2000 census population between 10 and 19 people.

Although the island can be hike-able via a few trails it is mostly used for military training exercises. The only way to get to Kahoolawe is by sea. Then you can explore the beaches and the uninhabited island.

Kahoolawe is a great place to visit for anyone who loves solitude, seclusion, and hiking. The landscape here is quite beautiful and very different from that of Hawaii’s other larger islands.

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It also has excellent fishing spots, but as you would expect on an uninhabited island you should take care of the environment while you’re there.

I have developed a new website on the island that I have put together for the purpose of informing people about Kahoolawe, its rich Hawaiian history, and the controversy surrounding the Hawaiian sovereignty movement. 

Kahoolawe recalls its history as a battle ground for conflicts among Hawaiians, the United States and Japan.

As a result of the damage it sustained from these battles and other factors that followed, the island has transitioned from once being the spiritual birthplace of Hawaiian culture to being one of its forbidden sites.

Today, unkempt remains of war planes and other military equipment require permits from the United States Government to enter and explore.

Nevertheless, intrepid visitors can get up close with Kahoolawe by snorkeling in Kealakekua Bay or taking a nighttime tour past seaweed fields and ghostly ruins to see the island’s famed sea turtles.

Kahoolawe is really an amazing place. I got the chance to go there a couple of times, and every time was unique. No beach looked like the last.

There are many other smaller islands in close proximity to Kahoolawe, so you’re never without something to explore.

By boat, you can make excursions to some of the other neighboring islands, or by foot you can walk the whole circumference of Kahoolawe (which we did).

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