Honaunau Travel Guide

  • View towards water from the Place of Refuge
    View towards water from the Place of...
    by Nor_Cal_Brad
  • Royal Grounds at the Place of Refuge, Big Island
    Royal Grounds at the Place of Refuge,...
    by Nor_Cal_Brad
  • Place of Refuge, Big Island, Hawaii
    Place of Refuge, Big Island, Hawaii
    by Nor_Cal_Brad

Honaunau Hotels

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Honaunau Restaurants

  • honaunau's Profile Photo

    by honaunau Updated Dec 23, 2009

    Just like you'd find in Italy. Excellent chef and fresh food, fascinating menu. Small, young family (husband is Chef and wife is greeter and their small child is often somewhere) run and we feel oh so lucky to have this restauant within 15 minutes of our house.

    Favorite Dish: I love the Baked Polenta--every thing- even the house lasagne is made with fresh pasta and the flavors!

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Honaunau Off The Beaten Path

  • BlueCollar's Profile Photo

    by BlueCollar Updated Jan 27, 2008

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    On the Big Island

    On the west side of the island just south of Pu`uhonua `o Honaunau, you will find this lava tube. It's just south of the park along the coastal trail.

    What's a lava tube, you ask? As large lava rivers flow across the ground, the outer portion cools and hardens. On larger, high volume flows, this 'shell' insulates the molten lava inside and it keeps flowing downhill. We have read that the insulation is so good that the 2000 degree Fahrenheit lava loses minimal temperature even after a couple miles of flowing. The floor of the tube is eaten away by the flowing molten rock (click on the picture above and look at the previous rock layers on the lower wall) and the tube grows downwards. Then when and if the lava flow is abruptly cut off, the lava drains away just like a garden hose after the water is turned off and leaves these caverns.

    This particular tube was large enough for us to stand up inside. However, the center section required us to almost crawl to get through. But you cannot crawl on your hands and knees very easily because of the sharp `a`a lava floor (very coarse, sharp rock). Be sure to click on the photo for the larger view. There is a close up of the ceiling, which is rather unique, in my Travel Logue. You'll see how the molten rock just dripped away from the ceiling and left little whips like you'd find on a meringue pie. This particular tube abruptly ends about 20' above the water where it was deep enough for us to jump in. However, we did not see an easy exit point from the water had we done so. We did not indulge, but others apparently have.

    While we stood at the end of the tube over the water, a boat entered another tube below us. Here is my video of our encounter: http://youtube.com/watch?v=g3eLLdK0vPQ

    Looking back into the tube
    Related to:
    • Eco-Tourism
    • Adventure Travel
    • Family Travel

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  • BlueCollar's Profile Photo

    by BlueCollar Updated Mar 17, 2006

    Pronounced: pooh-ooh-ho-nooh-uh o ho-now-now. Translated, it means: place of refuge at Honaunau. It's located on the coast in the South Kona district. It is one of the most complete restorations of an ancient Hawaiian religious sanctuary in the State of Hawaii. Centuries ago kapu-breakers and defeated warriors were granted refuge here, if they made it, and were absolved of all their wrong-doing.

    By 1820, King Kamehameha II had abolished the kapu system and the place was soon abandoned.

    The grounds of the oceanside park are beautiful. You must be respectful since this area is considered sacred.

    For fun, stand by the water's edge and count the sea turtles feeding here. Also, see my other listing about a lava tube that exits over the ocean that you can explore near here.

    Admission is not always collected but you can still donate.


    Return to my Big Island page.




    Return to my main Hawai`i page.

    Related to:
    • National/State Park
    • Whale Watching
    • Beaches

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  • Honaunau Hotels

    8 Hotels in Honaunau

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