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Hale o Keawe

big island/kailua kona
Beaches/Public Recreational

Pu'uhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park
Honaunau, 96704

Historical Landmark, Hiking

Hours of Operation:

    7 AM–7 PM
Historical Landmark, Hiking

Hale o Keawe

The Big Island's Preservation Project

Hale o Keawe stands as a significant cultural and historical site, positioned at the northern terminus of the eastern section of the Great Wall. This sacred place is the sole representation of a traditional hale poki, or consecrated house, on the island, which played a pivotal role as a royal mausoleum in ancient times. It housed the remains of 23 deified high chiefs, including Keawe-i-kekahi-ali'i-o-ka-moku, the great-grandfather of Kamehameha I. The divine power or mana associated with these ancestral bones was instrumental in sanctifying and validating the Pu'uhonua (place of refuge). Although the original structure has been lost and the remains removed, the profound mana persists, revered by Native Hawaiians who occasionally offer ho'okupu or offerings at the lele or tower.

The National Park Service diligently maintains the physical aspect of the heiau, while Native Hawaiians, deeply connected to the land, continue their stewardship and cultural practices, preserving Hale o Keawe as a living religious site. Seasonal ceremonies, based on the Hawaiian lunar calendar, are conducted throughout the year, with a particular emphasis on the annual makahiki, ushering in the new year. In recent years, the ki'i or images at Hale o Keawe have been adorned with cloth during these observances, exemplifying the ongoing reverence and care Native Hawaiians extend to their sacred places.

Hale o KeaweThe Big Island's Preservation ProjectHale o Keawe stands as a significant cultural and h ....

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