Makapu’u Point


With no place that we had to be, we relaxed a bit and slept in a little. ..Right… we were up at 8am! While we discussed what to do for the day, I suggested we go to Makapu’u Point Lighthouse. I had seen a Samantha Brown show on the Travel Channel where she said it was just a short, 5 minute hike from the road to fabulous ocean views. Sandy also likes lighthouses so it sounded like a nice way to start the day. I had also looked it up online and the articles there described it as a “moderate” hike.

We didn’t have any problem finding the turnoff and there was a large paved parking lot. The trail was also paved but closed to automobiles. We had hiking boots and some water but not a big supply. I was wearing a baseball cap but Sandy didn’t have a hat at all and no sunscreen. Now I want to go on record right here and now by saying that if your guide books say “bring water , a hat, good walking shoes and sunscreen“, follow their suggestions!

The trail immediately begins to climb so even though it’s paved, it quickly becomes a great aerobic workout. Of course even in 2007 both of us were on the wrong side of 50. In any case we really felt old when younger people began jogging by, one was even pushing a baby stroller and here we were sweating and huffing and puffing. When we met some of the runners returning before we made it to the top it became laughable!. They were very encouraging though and told us it would all be worth it.

PS. To Samantha Brown…it’s not 5 minutes, but more like an hour! The trail continued upward and then around a bend so we couldn’t see how much further we needed to go until we actually turned that corner. That might have been a good thing or we may have bailed out!

Once around the corner we started to get the breeze from the trade winds. There was also a spot to stop and rest, sitting on the stone wall. The views here were wonderful and there was the lighthouse. It’s a really cute lighthouse, all white with a red roof. It made a terrific picture with the deep blue of the ocean behind it. The area of the ocean we were looking over is part of the whale sanctuary. The whales arrive in November and stay until spring having their calves in the safety of these warm waters. Since we were there in October they hadn’t arrived yet but it was easy to imagine sitting there and watching the whales blow and breach.

After sitting for a bit we felt like we’d recovered and we could see the end of the trail and the lookout platforms. So with a deep breath we started the last bit of our climb and we made it!

As we explored the lookouts and platforms we found a marker that referred to a plane crash in World War II. On Easter Sunday – four months after Pearl Harbor-2 planes on routine patrol lost there way “in rain, clouds, and darkness”. One crashed here at Makapu’u Point the other at the Pali Lookout where we had visited earlier in the week. I searched the internet but did not find much information about these planes but I have placed a link at the bottom of this post in case anyone would like more information.

We took a lot of pictures because the views were everything we’d been promised. The small Island we could see from the lookout platform is called Rabbit Island. We could also see Sea Life Park which was our next stop for the afternoon. The views were certainly worth the climb.

Having thoroughly explored the top and having run out of water quite awhile ago, we wrapped up our visit and headed back down to the car. The journey down was much easier than the one going up!

In subsequent research I learned that the trail is 2.5 miles and 1 ½ – 2 hours for the round trip. The elevation is 600 ft. We certainly got our exercise that morning!

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