Pu'ukohola Heiau

Pu'ukohola Heiau (HM1D42)

Location: Waimea, HI 96743 Hawaii County
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Country: United States of America
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N 20° 1.662', W 155° 49.368'

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A Sacred Place Since Prehistoric Times

A heiau (temple) at Pu'ukohola was built long before Kamehameha started construction on the heiau that you see. This showed great vision and strategy on the part of the kahuna (priests). The heiau was physically very prominent and imposing on the landscape, adding to its spiritual power.

Only the male kahuna (priests), male ali'i (chiefs) and other royalty were allowed to enter the heiau. Women of all status were forbidden entry into the heiau proper. The structure was designed so that no one could see into it from the land side nor look up into it from the water. Wooden fencing along the edge of the platform further blocked visibility into it. Early written accounts also describe numerous structures and large carved images on the platform.

(Inscription next to the photo in the lower left) An 1882 photograph of Pu'ukohola Heiau looking southeast, from a study of volcanoes done by Clarence E. Dutton, U.S. Geological Survey.

(Inscription below the photo in the upper right) The heiau is about the same shape and size now as when it was constructed by Kamehamela in 1790-91. The platform footprint is 200 feet long and 80 feet wide, and the stone walls surrounding it are anywhere from 10 to 20 feet high depending on the ground surface. This survey, drawn in 1869, shows the condition of the heiau 50 years after the death of Kamehameha.
HM NumberHM1D42
Placed ByNational Park Service-United States Department of the Interior
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Saturday, September 20th, 2014 at 5:53am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)5Q E 204679 N 2217039
Decimal Degrees20.02770000, -155.82280000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 20° 1.662', W 155° 49.368'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds20° 1' 39.72" N, 155° 49' 22.08" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)808
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 62-3601 Kawaihae Rd, Waimea HI 96743, US
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