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Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park

Visit the historic walled refuge of Hawaiian lawbreakers, the only place on the island where their lives would be spared.

The tranquil grounds of the Pu'uhonua o Hōnaunau National Historical Park are an important part of ancient Hawaiian history, and one of the best places to immerse yourself in the culture. The 420-acre (170-hectare) park is home to archaeological ruins including the Great Wall, the Royal Grounds and a sacred temple. Visit the park at sunset to experience the stunning views across the Pacific Ocean.

Follow the self-guided walking tour. Maps are available throughout the park and will lead you to all the key attractions. Make your way to the park’s amphitheater for one of two daily ranger talks. This is a great opportunity to learn about the park and the customs of those who once lived here.

Walk the well-maintained trails that lead away from the Visitor Center to discover the 17-foot (5-meter) thick Great Wall, once used to confine lawbreakers. Rather than face execution, those who broke a kapu, an ancient Hawaiian law, could find refuge within the walls of the pu’uhonua. Huge wooden sculptures, known as kii, guard the temple within the wall and are an iconic part of Hawaiian culture.

Explore the Royal Grounds, once the home of the chief of Kona. Here you will find ancient fishponds, houses and a heiau, a sacred temple and one of the oldest remaining buildings in the park. Try your hand at papamu, a traditional Hawaiian game played by royalty. A playing surface remains in the Royal Grounds; pick up information on the rules of the game at the Visitor Center.

Pu'uhonua o Hōnaunau National Historical Park is located approximately 20 miles (32 kilometers) south of Kailua-Kona and is best reached by car or taxi, with parking included in your admission fee. Some charter buses also serve the park and can be booked in Kailua-Kona. Drinking water is available at the park but visitors should bring their own food.

Pu'uhonua o Hōnaunau National Historical Park is open daily.

Popular Activities at Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park

Want to make your visit to Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park even more memorable? Don't miss the chance to try one or two of these activities:

If you're looking for more activities, have a look at our Holualoa things to do page.


Guide to Exploring around Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park


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Lodging Near Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park

See all 489 Properties near Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park
Dragonfly Ranch $100
Dragonfly Ranch

Dragonfly Ranch

84-5146 Keala O Keawe Road, Captain Cook
     
    3.8
    of 5, from 80 reviews
    3.0 out of 5.0

    Situated by the ocean, this bed & breakfast is 0.7 mi (1.1 km) from Painted Church and 1.9 mi (3.1 km) from Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park. Bay View Farm and Paleaku Gardens Peace Sanctuary are also within 3 mi (5 km).

    Charming Tropical Hideaway, Best Snorkeling, Pool, Hot Tub
    Charming Tropical Hideaway, Best Snorkeling, Pool, Hot Tub

    Charming Tropical Hideaway, Best Snorkeling, Pool, Hot Tub

    , Captain Cook
       
      4.8
      of 5, from 37 reviews
      0.0 out of 5.0

      Situated by the ocean, this historic apartment building is close to Painted Church, Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park, and Bay View Farm. Local attractions also include Paleaku Gardens Peace Sanctuary and Kona Pacific Farmers Cooperative.

      Honaunau Lush Coffee Farm, 5 Minutes to Amazing Snorkeling, Dolphins, Ocean View
      Honaunau Lush Coffee Farm, 5 Minutes to Amazing Snorkeling, Dolphins, Ocean View

      Honaunau Lush Coffee Farm, 5 Minutes to Amazing Snorkeling, Dolphins, Ocean View

      , Captain Cook
         
        5.0
        of 5, from 32 reviews
        0.0 out of 5.0

        Situated by the ocean, this historic property is within 3 mi (5 km) of Painted Church, Bay View Farm, and Paleaku Gardens Peace Sanctuary. Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park and Kona Pacific Farmers Cooperative are also within 6 mi (10 km).

        Hale Koa Studio in Captain Cook
        Hale Koa Studio in Captain Cook

        Hale Koa Studio in Captain Cook

        , Captain Cook
           
          0.0 out of 5.0
          Cottage-like Duplex in South Kona on the Big Island
          Cottage-like Duplex in South Kona on the Big Island

          Cottage-like Duplex in South Kona on the Big Island

          , Captain Cook
             
            0.0 out of 5.0
            Hale Hoola B&B
            Hale Hoola B&B

            Hale Hoola B&B

            85-4577 Mamalahoa Hwy, Captain Cook
               
              4.4
              of 5, from 60 reviews
              3.0 out of 5.0

              Situated in Captain Cook, this bed & breakfast is 2.5 mi (4.1 km) from Painted Church and 3.1 mi (5 km) from Bay View Farm. Pu'uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park and Paleaku Gardens Peace Sanctuary are also within 6 mi (10 km).

              Luxury And Aloha Await You In A One Bedroom Suite
              Luxury And Aloha Await You In A One Bedroom Suite

              Luxury And Aloha Await You In A One Bedroom Suite

              , Captain Cook
                 
                4.9
                of 5, from 54 reviews
                0.0 out of 5.0

                Situated in a rural location, this romantic vacation home is 1.2 mi (1.9 km) from Paleaku Gardens Peace Sanctuary and within 3 mi (5 km) of Bay View Farm and Kona Pacific Farmers Cooperative. Painted Church is 2.4 mi (3.9 km) away.

                Luxury And Aloha Await You! Relaxation, Great Snorkeling, Large Unit
                Luxury And Aloha Await You! Relaxation, Great Snorkeling, Large Unit

                Luxury And Aloha Await You! Relaxation, Great Snorkeling, Large Unit

                , Captain Cook
                   
                  4.9
                  of 5, from 49 reviews
                  0.0 out of 5.0

                  Situated in a rural location, this romantic vacation home is 1.2 mi (1.9 km) from Paleaku Gardens Peace Sanctuary and within 3 mi (5 km) of Bay View Farm and Kona Pacific Farmers Cooperative. Painted Church is 2.4 mi (3.9 km) away.