Donkey Beach is pretty and secluded beach on the East Side of Kauai, Hawaii. Its crescent-shaped beach, with soft golden sand, is perfect for sunbathing. Its official name is Paliku but is also called Kuna Bay and Kumukumu Beach. The nickname is attributed to the donkeys and mules that were used to haul sugar cane in a nearby plantation.
While the blue water is inviting, it is not excellent for swimming or snorkeling due to strong and dangerous currents. When conditions are good, local experienced surfers and body-boarders can be seen enjoying the waves. There are no lifeguards in this beach and visitors are advised not wandering into the water. Read more
Kaumalapau Harbor is the main commercial seaport in Lanai. It is located on the west coast of the island and was built by James Dole, the founder of the Hawaiian Pineapple Company, in the 1920s to easily transport crops by barge to the cannery in Honolulu.
Since its completion in 1926, the harbor became a very busy port not only for barges transporting produce from the thriving plantation but also for local fishing boats. During that time, the coastal village of Kaumalapau became a model town complete with all the amenities and machineries necessary for efficient pineapple production. Read more
Kahanu Garden is a 294-acre botanical reserve located on the Hāna Highway near Hāna in Maui, Hawaii. It was established in 1972 on the isolated northern coast of the island as a conservatory of rare and medicinal plants from the tropical Pacific. It is one of five gardens of the non-profit National Tropical Botanical Gardens.
The garden is lush with a variety of plants of significance to the Hawaiian people as well as to other cultures of Polynesia, Micronesia, and Melanesia. Referred to as the Canoe garden, these remarkable plants were transported around the Pacific on ancient voyaging canoes. Some of the notable plants in the garden are bamboo, banana, calabash, kava, kamani, sugarcane, taro, turmeric, vanilla, and bitter yam. Read more
Kula Kai Caverns is a subterranean lava tube system located in Ocean View, on the lower slopes of Mauna Loa near the far southern tip of the Big Island of Hawaii. The caverns were formed thousand of years ago as lava from the nearby volcano made its way up to the surface, leaving behind the labyrinthine underground tunnels.
The miles-long interconnecting lava tubes range from wide massive corridors to downright narrow openings that require crawling on all fours to navigate. A variety of guided tours are available led experienced and knowledgeable guides providing interesting tidbits about the lava tube system, the science behind its formation and how ancient Hawaiians used the caverns. Read more
Kawaiaha’o Church is a historic Congregational church located in Downtown Honolulu in Oahu, Hawaii. It was constructed between 1836 and 1842 under the supervision of Kamehameha III from the design made by Rev. Hiram Bingham.
It was the first Christian Church built on the island and at some time became the official place of worship of the Kamehameha Dynasty and Kalākaua Dynasty during their reigns. The church was the site of royal coronations, christenings and funerals, hence the title, Westminster Abbey of Hawaii. Read more
The Duke Paoa Kahanamoku Lagoon, also known as Hilton Hawaiian Village Lagoon, is a 5-acre, man-made public wading pool located in the Waikiki neighborhood of Honolulu, on the south shore of the island of Oahu, Hawaii. It was built in the 1950s as part of Henry J. Kaiser’s Hawaiian Village development project. Upon completion, a nearby beach and the lagoon were named after surfer and Olympic swimming champion Duke Kahanamoku.
In 1961, Hilton Hotels acquired the Hawaiian Village Resort but the lagoon remained a property by the state of Hawaii. Over the years, the lagoon became unfit for swimming because of its murky and stagnant water. Read more
The Pacific Tsunami Museum is a museum dedicated to the history and Science of tsunamis. It is located at 130 Kamehameha Avenue, Hilo, Hawaii with the mission of educating people about tidal waves in general and how to be prepared in case a tsunami strikes.
The museum provides interactive exhibits, documentaries, and docents to explain the impact of major tsunamis such as the April 1, 1946 Pacific tsunami and the May 23, 1960 Chilean tsunami which devastated much of the east coast of the Big Island, especially Hilo, also known as Hawaii’s “Tsunami Capital.” Read more
Dragon’s Teeth is a unique lava rock formation located at Makaluapuna Point in Kapalua on Maui’s northwestern shore. It was formed hundred of years ago as a result of one of the last lava flows on the island.
The unsual formation was created when lava from the West Maui Volcano poured into the ocean and was pushed back by the fierce wind and waves of the northen swell causing the lava to harden in an upward fashion. The resulting formation resembles great jagged teeth, hence the name. Read more
Napoopoo Beach Park is a popular and historically significant park located at the southern end of Kealakekua Bay on the Big Island’s west shore. It was the site where Captain James Cook first set foot on the Big Island of Hawaii on January 17, 1779. Native Hawaiians initially thought that Cook was the powerful deity Lonokamakahiki, the god of agriculture and fertility of the land.
Just across the bay is a 27-foot white obelisk which marks the spot where cook was eventually killed after a skirmish with the Hawaiians. The monument is visible from the Napoopoo Beach Park. Read more