- “Don't worry, it's a lot farther down than it looks.”
Also known as the Realm of Monsters, the entrance to Lalotai can be accessed atop a high mountain on a remote island. The passageway (a pit) leads to an undersea environment home to a number of exotic, fearsome and ferocious creatures — one of which being Tamatoa, a villainous giant crab.
Lalotai's entrance was covered with dirt. The only way to find the entrance is to get rid of the dirt, which Maui did by using his insanely powerful lungs to blow a gust of wind at the dirt creating a big dust cloud.
To unlock Lalotai's entrance, one must perform the haka followed by a forceful ground smash. The necessary impact of the smash implies that Lalotai's entrance can only be accessed by beings with supernatural strength.
One can exit Lalotai by simply swimming to the surface, or by being blowed up by geyser - like jets of water. This will directly take you to the surface. Even monsters may be launched to the surface by water jets.
- Carnivorous Plants - Monstrous plants that are the first monsters appearing in Lalotai. They appear to be diamond-shaped plants with fangs on roots. One such plant was a purple Venus flytrap with carnivorous petals
- Frog monster - A frog or lizard-type monster with pale bumpy limegreen skin and scale, has lavender spots on its body, red eyeballs with black pupils, fangs as well as a long and pointy-tipped tongue. It stands on a rock covered in corals and algae. When Moana falls into Lalotai, the monster catches her by its tongue and starts reeling her up to its mouth. But it was eaten by a carnivorous plant, thereby biting off part of its tongue, causing Moana to fall to the ground with part of the tongue still draped around her.
- 8-Eyed Bats - Hostile bats with 8 eyes that repeatedly tried to attack Moana. Maui is seen defeating one of them in "You're Welcome". One such bat was a foe of Maui in Hawaiian folklore.
- The Great Eel - A very large red eel; was slain by Maui to protect an endangered village, and had its guts buried, which created the first coconut tree. It was seen during "You're Welcome".
- Spiked Monster - A gargantuan being with projections of various sizes on its backs and head. Its size and weight is overwhelming; it causes rumbling of the ground by walking. This was later confirmed to be an interpretation of Marshmallow from Frozen and the resemblance to Godzilla on the movie's Blu-ray release.
- Giant Fish - A pair of giant fish; one long and blue with cyan bioluminescent spots, and the other larger and green with purple bioluminescent spots. They were shown during Gramma Tala's explaination to Moana about why their ancestors no longer voyage, specifically what happened after Maui stole the Heart of Te Fiti.
- Spiky Serpent - A massive limbless reptile with spiky scales. Maui dunked an 8-eyed bat into its mouth like a basketball during "You're Welcome". The real one had a regular tongue, but the tattoo version later in the song showed it with a tongue with a 6-eyed snake as the end.
- Sloth Monster - Being rather ominous and unpredictable, it has a sloth body with four, long arms with sharp claws. The most notable feature of this creature is its masked face strongly resembles Polynesian tribal masks portraying two different facial structures upside down. It seemingly can rotate its head/neck. Was ejected by the geyser after approaching Moana. This was later confirmed by the directors to be Flash from Zootopia.
- Other Monsters - A giant octopus and a giant hummingbird were portrayed on Maui's tattoo as some of his past accomplishments. The tattoo scene of Maui beating the octopus appeared in the teaser trailer and during "You're Welcome".
- Main article: Tamatoa
Places of Interest
- Lalotai is derived from two proto-Polynesian words: "lalo" means "below" and "tai" means "the sea." Together, they form a term that means "below the sea" or "under the ocean". Lalotai is also known as "the underworld".
- In a deleted scene, Maui mentions that Lalotai is where monsters dwell after they've been killed, hence its nickname.
- Originally, Lalotai was to be a realm inhabited by ancestral spirits, as opposed to monsters.
- The creatures found in Lalotai were inspired by real deep sea fish, as well as creatures from Maui's legends, such as the great eel and eight-eyed bats.
- Some of the monsters in Lalotai made cameo appearances earlier in the movie during "You're Welcome".
- Maui had a grandmother named Hina who served as the guardian of Lalotai's entrance in earlier drafts the movie.
- Along with Tamatoa's song, a song called "Warrior Face" was to be performed in the realm, sung by Maui and Moana.
- Moana and Maui were originally going to face a number of monsters in Lalotai, prior to facing their final adversary, Tamatoa. Some of these monsters include the Great Eel (in a speaking role) and a vengeful 8-Eyed Bat.
- In a deleted scene, poisonous urchins throughout the realm were one of the obstacles Moana and Maui had to face. Though this was cut from the film, some storybooks still feature illustrations of the two fending off the urchins.
- The Sloth Monster's name was coined from Disney Crossy Road.
- The Story of Moana: A Tale of Courage and Adventure
- Vallerio, Britt (May 30, 2017). "13 Things You Didn't Know About Moana". Oh My Disney. Disney. Retrieved on June 1, 2017.
- Julius, J., Lasseter, J., Malone, M. (2016). The Art of Moana. Chronicle Books, page 112.
- Julius, J., Lasseter, J., Malone, M. (2016). The Art of Moana. Chronicle Books, page 122.
- Julius, J., Lasseter, J., Malone, M. (2016). The Art of Moana. Chronicle Books, page 135.
- Julius, J., Lasseter, J., Malone, M. (2016). The Art of Moana. Chronicle Books.