Activity Finds: North Shore & Central Oahu
Pu'u o Mahuka State Monument
For those escaping to Hawai‘i to savor the Hawaiian culture, continue further along Kamehameha Highway, off of Pupukea Homestead Road, and pay homage to Pu‘u o Mahuku Heiau, the largest heiau (hay-ow or religious temple) on the island of O‘ahu. Spanning two acres on O‘ahu's North Shore, Pu‘u o Mahuku (which translates in Hawaiian to mean the "hill of escape") played a significant role in Native Hawaiian history and is believed to be a site where religious ceremonies and human sacrifices were conducted.
Today, the heiau consists of a short walled-in courtyard presiding over the typically tranquil waters of Waimea Bay. After you've soak in the history of the area it is the perfect place for a scenic picnic or to view the green flash at sunset.
In 1962, Pu‘u o Mahuku Heiau was designated a National Historic Landmark for its important role in Hawaiian history and culture. For families with young keiki it is important to remember that the heiau is a sacred place and should be treated with respect. Visitors are asked not to enter the heiau, but to view it from the outside perimeter.