We've had a few requests on what logistics are necessary to plan for this event. Having hosted many of the world's best swimmers, Jeff and I have this dialed in more than anyone else out there so take these as suggestions, but you can always email us at email@example.com to explore more questions. We understand that this area is not well known and are pleased to help you figure out your plans.
Of the many times we have planned this swim, we feel that the most consistent, least expensive and easiest plan is the following. (based on a team from San Francisco)
Fly into Honolulu around August 21st. Stay in Waikiki and go for a swim to get used to the warmth, added salinity and feel of the water. Hawaii is anywhere from a 3-6 hour time difference from the Mainland, so an extra day of resting will help you acclimate better to the island. Enjoy the day resting, relaxing and even a Mai Tai. Try to coordinate with your escort captain to drop off anything you may need on race day in advance so you can travel light to Molokai. On Friday, August 23, catch a flight from Oahu to Kaunakakai Molokai. Its about a 25 minutes beautiful flight directly over the race course. Catch a taxi to KaluaKoi Residences which is at the start of the course and where the meeting will be held Friday at 4 pm. The next morning, we walk to the beach, take the start line and swim till you get to Sandy Beach on Oahu! The end of the race will finish on Oahu, and there are literally hundreds of places to stay in Waikiki and throughout the island. Most hotels will average 175-500/night depending on how luxury you want to go. There are also a few hostels locally that have a cheap nightly rate for hostel living.
Estimated expenses as of 4/2013.
Ø Flights from San Francisco to Honolulu: $450
Ø Hotel for 2 in Honolulu for 2 nights $350 (avg $175 each)
Ø One way flight to Kaunakakai, Molokai $70
Ø Taxi to KaluaKoi residences $25 each???
Ø Misc food, drinks and expenses per day $40 x5= $200
Ø basic costs per swimmer (sans KCSR or escort boat totals): <$1000
With the Maui Channel Swim (Lanai to Maui) and the Waikiki Rough water swim all within a week of the Kaiwi Channel Swim, it would be easy to make a swim vacation like has never been done before. It’s the Hawaiian Triple Crown of Swimming all within 10 days of each other!
Here are a few resources to help you get started:
KaluaKoi reservations: Dana Harris 800-367-2984 or Jill McGowan 808-552-2233
As an alternate to this, some may choose to stay closer to the airport the night before and catch a taxi in the morning to the race start. If so, check out
For taxi rides and shuttles, contact: Heli Mai Taxi at (808) 646-0608
****NOTE transportation to, from and within Molokai is very limited and it is important to make your reservations far in advance or contact us to help.
Ø For lodging you pay for what you get but you should be able to get something comfortable and clean for $150/night or so.
Ø Many of my friends travel and stay with AIRBNB.com or VRBO.com.
There are also some alternatives you can consider such as flying into Maui and catching the ferry from Maui to Molokai etc. Lodging on either island Oahu and Maui will be comparative. We recommend that you then Fly over to Kaunakakai, Molokai on Thursday or Friday to be well rested before the captains meeting at Friday at 4 pm at the start of the race at KaluaKoi Resort. A second option that some may consider is to take their event escort boat from Oahu to KaluaKoi- This may be tiring going against the seas and upwind to KaluaKoi and it is common for us to see seasickness in the channel.