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Honokohau Settlement
Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park
U.S. National Register of Historic Places
U.S. National Historic Landmark
U.S. National Historical Park
Honokōhau Hälau
Honokohau Settlement and Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park is located in Hawaii
Location: Hawaii County, Hawaii, USA
Nearest city: Kailua Kona, Hawaii
Coordinates: 19°40′43.32″N 156°01′19.20″W / 19.6787°N 156.022°W / 19.6787; -156.022Coordinates: 19°40′43.32″N 156°01′19.20″W / 19.6787°N 156.022°W / 19.6787; -156.022
Area: 1,161 acres (470 ha)
Architect: Unknown
Architectural style(s): Dry stack masonry
Governing body: National Park Service
Added to NRHP: November 10, 1978
Designated NHL: December 29, 1962[2]
NRHP Reference#: 78003148[1]

Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park is a United States National Historical Park located in the Kona District on the Big island of Hawaiʻi in the U.S. state of Hawaiʻi. It includes the National Historic Landmarked archaeological site known as the Honokōhau Settlement.[3] The park was established on November 10, 1978, for the preservation, protection and interpretation of traditional native Hawaiian activities and culture.



Kaloko and Honokōhau are the names of two of the four different ahupuaʻa, or traditional mountain-to-sea land divisions encompassed by the park. Although in ancient times this arid area of lava rock was called kekaha ʻaʻole wai (lands without water), the abundant sea life attracted settlement for hundreds of years.



Kaloko (meaning "the pond" in the Hawaiian language)[4] is a site of fishponds used in ancient Hawaii is on the North end of the park. The first reference to the pond comes from the story of Kamalalawalu, about 300 years ago. The kuapä (seawall) is over 30 feet wide and 6 feet high, stretching for 750 feet. Constructed by hand without mortar, the angle and gaps between the stones deflected the surf better than many modern concrete seawalls.[5]

ʻAimakapā fishpond is an important wetland area protecting native birds including the koloa maoli (Hawaiian Duck, Anas wyvilliana), ʻalae keʻokeʻo (Hawaiian Coot, Fulica alai), āeʻo (Hawaiian Stilt, Himantopus mexicanus knudseni), auʻkuʻu (Black-crowned Night Heron, Nycticorax nycticorax), among others. The area is currently under reforestation, after the removal of non-native invasive plants. [6] It was added to the Register of Historic Places in 1978 as site 78003148.[1]


Honokōhau means "bay drawing dew" and refers to the ancient settlement on the south part of the park. This area can be reached via trails from the park visitor's center, or from the small boat harbor access road on Kealakehe Parkway.[7] Features include loko iʻa (Ancient Hawaiian aquaculture fishponds), kahua (house site platforms), kiʻi pōhaku (petroglyphs), hōlua (stone slides) and heiau (religious sites). The ʻAiʻopio Fishtrap is a 1.7-acre (0.69 ha) pond, with a stone wall forming an artificial enclosure along the naturally curved shoreline of a bay. Small openings allowed young fish to enter from the sea, but as they grew larger (or at low tide) they were easily caught with nets inside the trap as needed. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1966 as site 66000287.[8]


Several restored trails include about one mile of the Mämalohoa Trail. It was built in the mid 1800s, and evolved over the years into the Hawaii Belt Road which encircles the entire island. The coastal trail is part of the Ala Kahakai National Historic Trail. The Honokōhau boat harbor provides a launching area for traditional canoes, fishing boats, Scuba diving and snorkeling tours of the area.


ʻAiʻopio Fish trap at Honokōhau viewed from the beach  
Honokōhau small boat harbor  
Heiau on the beach  
Partially restored Kaloko Fish Pond  


  1. ^ a b "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2007-01-23.  
  2. ^ "Honokōhau Settlement". National Historic Landmark summary listing. National Park Service. Retrieved 2009-04-29.  
  3. ^ Honokōhau Settlement National Historic Landmark Summary
  4. ^ Online Hawaiian Dictionary
  5. ^ The Spirit of Kaloko brochure from National Park Service
  6. ^ TREE Hawaii reforestation web site
  7. ^ Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical Park on National Park Service official web site
  8. ^ "Red Book" entry from the National Park Service


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