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Niihau Island

The Forbidden Island

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Niihau is 17 miles off the coast of Kauai Island. Until 1987, no uninvited guests were allowed to visit this family-owned island. Today, there is no outside development on this island to the south of Kauai Island.

Helicopter companies based in Kauai Island fly to the island, putting down on two of the islands beaches. But they avoid Puuwai village, where 200 residents live. There is no electric, plumbing or telephones. Bikes and horses are the transport.

The 72 square mile island is arid and run by the Robinson family, which ranches sheep and cattle. Residents speak the Hawaiian language in the last refuge of primitive native life.

People live in small wooden houses and there are no guns, no liquor, no jail, no telephones, no sewers or electricity. The small school has a solar-powered computer.