Kealakekua Bay

Overview

Introduction

Near Napoopoo, just south of Captain Cook, is Kealakekua Bay, where Cook's ships made their unwise anchorage in 1779. You can see a tall white marble obelisk that commemorates the bay as the place where the explorer was killed. The monument, at the far northern end, marks the spot where Cook was mortally wounded in a skirmish with the Hawaiians.

A steep and difficult hiking trail leads down to the Cook monument from the highway above the north end of the bay. You can also see the monument from Hikiau Heiau, a well-preserved temple in the parking lot at Napoopoo Beach County Park. Book a tour or rent kayaks for up-close exploration.

Nearby is the heiau where islanders sang Cook's praises when they first thought he was an incarnation of a revered deity. The bay is now a marine-life conservation district with good diving and snorkeling.

Kealakekua Bay is 17 mi/27 km south of Kailua-Kona.

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