BIG ISLAND SIGHTSWaipio Valley
Waipio Valley is many things. It is at first awe-inspiring beautiful from the lookup. But it is treacherous in its various descents and ascents into and and out of the valley, and at the wave beaten beach. It is historical in the part it has played through 50 generations of Hawaiians, including the greatest of Hawaiian Kings, Kamehameha I. It is mysterious in the folklore, clans, and individuals who frequent or live in the area. And it is a throwback in time where land boundaries are disputed, and the local law prefers to let people work out disputes amongst themselves. In ancient times the valley was a center for rituals and meetings. It also proved to be a dependable area for sustenance during the hardest of times. It is said Kamehameha was hidden here as a young child to protect him from his rivals. The residents today have no elecricity, water, sewer, etc. Even cell phones are fairly useless. Access by common car is ill advised. But, having said all that, it is a magnificent place that can only be appreciated in its grandeur from the valley floor. Waterfalls cascade down the ultra steep walls, and the island’s tallest, Hi’ilawe Falls, has one section that free falls 1200 ft. (1450 ft. overall). The valley was fairly active by island standards until it was virtually wiped clean by a tsunami in 1946, and left mostly vacant for 20 years. Then those on the “fringe of society,” wanting to get away from it all, began setting up claims and making it home. So you will encounter a wide variety of people here, so be prepared for just about anything. There are wild horses left over from the survivors of the tsunami, that have been known to raid your sack lunch if left unattended. It is best to be respectful and appreciate that the people who live here do so for a variety of reasons. There are valley tours, rim tours, horseback riding tours available. More on the Adventures in and around Waipio Valley – Here.
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