The Kohala community nonprofit Maika‘i Kamakani ‘O Kohala, Inc. has purchased more than 27.5 acres of undeveloped shoreline at Kauhola Point, located in Hala‘ula, North Kohala.
The $1.3 million purchase was a public-private partnership of the State Legacy Land Conservation Program under the State Department of Land and Natural Resources, The Trust for Public Land, Maika‘i Kamakani ‘O Kohala, Inc., Malama Kai Foundation’s Ocean Warriors Program, the Dorrance Family Foundation, the Freeman Family Fund of the Hawai‘i Community Foundation, the HEI Charitable Foundation, the Hawaii Electric Light Company, The Trust for Public Land’s Advisory Council Member Edmund Olson, the Zirinsky family (a Trust for Public Land donor), and many community members and stakeholders.
The property includes the majority of Kauhola Point.
Kauhola Point has been used as a community-gathering place from w? kahiko (ancient times) to present day. King Kamehameha I, who united the Hawaiian Islands, rested here after warfare and focus on peacetime activities — recreation, marriage and agriculture. Kamehameha taught his most beloved wife, Ka‘ahumanu, how to surf in the waters of Maliu off the property’s shores.
As noted the 1893 Hawaiian government map, the property was the site of Kamehameha’s Taro Patches and Kamehameha’s Fishpond. The remains of Mulei‘ula heiau, possibly Ohau heiau, and another unmarked sacred site, are thought to be places of worship of Kamehameha and other chiefly lines that existed prior to the Kamehameha dynasty.
During the sugarcane era, this was the official recreation area for plantation families, and the site of numerous company and ethnic organizations’ picnics and softball games. To this day, children in North Kohala grow up exercising with their kupuna, fishing, swimming, and learning how to surf at Lighthouse,” the nickname given to the property and surrounding area due to the iconic Kauhola Point Lighthouse that once stood guard there.