Right in the heart of Old Town Lahaina by the Courthouse is an exceptionally large and old Banyan Tree. The tree itself is over 60 feet tall and has over ten trunks that anchor it to the ground. This massive tree was first planted in 1873This massive tree provides a beautiful shaded area with benches underneath its branches. On weekends art exhibits and craft fairs take places under the shaded branches.
Unfortunately some people do not respect the beauty of nature and sit on the branches, and pick at the bark. I'm hoping that visitors will take in stride the Hawaiian way of "Leaving behind only footprints", when they visit, instead of damage.
We started at the Banyan Tree and went from there.In that park you will see some stones. They call it the Fort. It is what remains of the Fort that was built in 1830. The Fort is at the corner of Banyan Tree park. It is said that some sailors started firing cannon balls after getting in a fight with the local missionaries. The missionaries petitioned to have a Fort set up. It was also used at a prison for a time.
Then there is the courthouse. It is located in the same place where the Banyan Tree is located and the Fort. You cant miss it. We actually spent a good amount of time in here. It is now a museum. The Courthouse also served as a Custom house for a time.
They say that it was here in 1898 that the Hawaiian flag was lowered and the American flag was raised. There is so much stuff to be found here including the restored Hawaiian flag, some of the first samples of the Hawaiian alphabet and many other artifacts.
check out the pictures.
I didnt know what the big deal with this tree was but you cant miss it. Its huge anin the middle of town. It actually looks like a bunch of little trees together. Since I had never been to Lahania before I wanted to see everything so I picked up a little walking tour map and off I went with the kids.
So the big deal with this tree is that first it looks very odd. It was planted in April of 1873 to mark the 50th anniversary of the beginning of Proestant missionary work in Lahaina.
Its stands over 60 ft tall and its branches offer shade to over two thirds of an acre.
A large banyan tree resides in Courthouse Square in downtown Lahaina. It was planted in 1873. Originally only eight feet high when it was imported from India, it now stands over 60 feet high. Its twelve major trunks spread out to cover almost an entire city block. It is one of the world's largest banyan trees. Not only is it a sight to see, its shade provides a nice place too cool down in the tropical heat.
Right across from the harbor and right behind Banyon Tree Park in Lahaina is the Lahaina Museum which used to be the old courthouse. There are public restrooms in the building and it is free to see the museum, however they do accept donations. It is neat to walk through this old building (I love old historical buildings) and see all of the different seafaring items on display and many pictures of whales. There is also a small gift shop in the museum. Great little 30-45 minute diversion while you are waiting to go on your snorkeling or whalewatching trip.
Of all the banyan trees in Hawaii, this is the greatest of all -- so big that you can't get it in your camera's viewfinder. It was only 8 feet tall when it was planted in 1873 by Maui Sheriff William O. Smith to mark the 50th anniversary of Lahaina's first Christian mission; now the big old banyan from India is more than 50 feet tall, has 12 major trunks, and shades two-thirds of an acre in Courthouse Square.
Lahaina's first hotel was the scene of some wild parties at the turn of the 20th century. George Freeland, of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, tracked a criminal to Lahaina and then fell in love with the town. He built the hotel in 1901 but soon discovered that Lahaina wasn't the tourist mecca it is today. To make ends meet, Freeland built a movie theater, which was wildly successful. The Pioneer Inn remained the only hotel in all of West Maui until the 1950s. You can stay at this restored building today.
In 1858, a violent windstorm destroyed about 20 buildings in Lahaina, including Hale Piula, which served as the courthouse and palace of King Kamehameha III. It was rebuilt immediately, using the stones from the previous building; it served not only as courthouse, but also as custom house, post office, tax collector's office, and government offices.
The Banyan Tree
This massive banyon tree is the oldest of the Hawaiian Islands. This is one tree, the roots are all connected together and all started from one tree. The tree was planeted in 1873 and was only 8 feet tall.
Check out the Banyan Tree in the square on Front Street next to the Pioneer Inn. Is over 100 years old.