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Hawaii > Hawaii State Parks > Lapakahi State Historical Park
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Lapakahi State Historical Park

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General Information

Description - For individuals seeking to learn about life in a primitive Hawaiian fishing village this park is a gem. The site lies on a small cove, full of fish and protected from swift currents most of the year. Lapakahi was once a thriving fishing village, until dry conditions forced residents to seek housing and jobs elsewhere.

Attractions - Ruins of all aspects of village life remain at the site and some buildings have been reconstructed. Interpretive panels explain various structures and their uses. The waters immediately off the coast from the village are open to water sports.

Recreation - Visitors to this site will enjoy hands-on learning opportunities of life in a Hawaiian fishing village. Snorkeling and swimming are popular activities at this site along with hiking and photography.

Climate - The island of Hawaii, like the others in the chain, has a windward and leeward climate. The windward (eastern) side of the island receives a lot of moisture. Hilo's monthly averages are above 8 inches. Winter and spring months receive the most moisture, but count on rain if you're traveling in this region. The leeward side can be almost desert like. The mountains are so large on Hawaii, that they trap the moisture on the windward side. Most of the days are sunny on the western coast of Hawaii and hence the tourists flock to this region.

Temperatures on the island of Hawaii are moderate with year round averages near 74 degrees F. The temperatures differ more with elevation than the seasons. Winter clothing such as gloves, hats and layered clothing is necessary if camping in any of the high elevation campgrounds on the island.

Location - Lapakahi State Historical Park lies on the leeward coast of the Big Island a short distance south of the northern tip of the island. This site can be accessed from the Akoni Pule Highway 12 miles north of Kawaihae.

Current Conditions & Trip Reports

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Filed By: Shim
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: My wife and I have visited Lapakahi many times somce 1982, but not in the last five or so. Contemplating a visit in the near future, I checked a web site with a lot of pictures. It looks like some improvements have been made. There is no difficulty visiting the place. It's right off the highway. I think it's more interesting than the so called City of Refuge. A marked trail and a guide book lead you to the various parts of the village so that you get a really good idea of how an ancient Hawaiian village was laid out. In the past there have been displays of salt making. Judging from the pictures, there are now thatched hale and an improved visitors' center which in the past was little more than a thatched kiosk. Lapakahi is a state historical site, and is marked by a sign on the highway. No problem finding it. The area is beautiful enough that you should allow at least a couple of hours to explore the place. Definitely worth a stop if you are anywhere near. If you're camping, Mahukona State Park is just up the road to the north. Bring your own drinking water. This is a great part of Hawaii, very often neglected by visitors.

Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Viewing Historic Sites Site of historic Hawaiian fishing village.

More Information

Contact Information:
Hawai'i District, Hawai'i State Parks, P.O. Box 936, 75 Aupuni Street, 204 , Hilo, HI, 96721-0936, Phone: 808-974-6200

Additional Information:
Big Island (Hawaii) - This island is known as 'The Big Island', due to its size, which is nearly double that of the others in the archipelago combined. Hawaii has a plethora of natural areas including Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.
Big Island State Parks - The Big Island contains 14 state-administered park sites. The sites pervade the island and protect properties of natural, historical and cultural significance.
Hawaii State Parks - Hawai'i's State Park System is comprised of 52 state parks encompassing nearly 25,000 acres on the 5 major islands.
Hawaii,s Historic Sites -


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