Most visitors that plan a trip to the beautiful island of Kaua’i will at some point probably hear about Spouting Horn but many will not realize that this incredible show by Mother Nature is actually part of the Koloa Heritage Trail ( Ka ala hele waiwai ho’oilina o Koloa) that introduces visitors to five millions years of exploration of natural history, archaeology, culture and the history of the Koloa District of Kauai and its people, which to most people means the south shore of Kaua’i.
In ancient times land was divided by Hawaiians into pie-shaped wedges called ahupua’a that run from the mountain to the ocean. The Koloa Heritage Trail travels through four ahupua’a – from east to west they are: Maha’ulepu, Pa’a, Weliweli and Koloa. The sugar cane industry helped to put the ahupua’a of Koloa on the map, Po’ipu(meaning waves crashing) is part of the Koloa ahupua’a.
Without a doubt, the most popular or well known stop along the Koloa Heritage Trail is the first stop Spouting Horn Park, a stop on most every tour around the island, and most visitors will try their luck at getting a really good shot of a high plume of water shooting into the air if they are patient enough. Known to ancient Hawaiians as puhi (blowhole or to blow) these natural blowholes are created by the constant pounding of waves that eventually erode caves in the softer rock along the shoreline and wear a hole through the topmost layer, thus allowing incoming waves to generate a fountain up to around 60 feet high into the air, so keep your eye on the waves as they come to shore.
There are fourteen stops along the Koloa Heritage Trail including: Prince Kuhio Birthplace & Park (Hawai’i is the only state in the union to have had a monarchy and so much of the history and culture that is Hawai’i is based upon this monarchy), Hanaka’ape Bay & Koloa Landing,Pa’u a Laka (Moir Gardens)**,Kihahouna Heiau(an ancient Hawaiian temple),Po’ipu Beach Park,Keoneloa Bay,Makawehi & Pa’a Dunes, Pu’uwanawana Volcanic Cone, Hapa Road,Koloa Jodo Mission,Sugar Monument,Yamamoto Store & Koloa Hotel, and Koloa Missionary Church. Each stop along the way a significant cultural,historical or geological site that is part of the history of Kaua’i. Visitors can explore the Koloa Heritage Trail by walking or by bicycle there are route maps for each.
For more information or to make a donation:
Many sponsors and volunteers conceptualized and prepared this historic journey through Koloa. If you are as touched as I to explore this historical trail,feel free to make a donation toward trail and monument maintenance. The Po’ipu Beach Foundation is a non-profit, 501 (c) 3 organization, so donations would be tax-deductible within the allowance of the law.
Ka Ala Hele Waiwai Ho’oilina o Koloa -c/o Po’ipu Beach Foundation-P.O. Box 730, Koloa, HI 96756
Phone (808) 742-7444- Email [email protected]
**Treat yourself to dinner or at least dessert at the Plantation Gardens Restaurant in the middle of Moir Gardens at Kiahuna Plantation.
Linda Dancer – Kaua’i Master Destination Specialist Phone (931)-337-0770
Email [email protected]