Hiku & Kawelu

Hawaiian Legends & Mythology


A famous legend from the magnificent Waimea Canyon on the island of Kauai is the love story of Hiku and Kawelu. The legend goes something like this:

Hiku, a demigod, visited the human realm and fell in love with a princess, Kawelu, and soon they were married. One day after an argument, Hiku got upset and left Kawelu to never return. Living in despair without Hiku, Kawelu committed suicide. When Hiku was informed about his wife’s death, he was filled with remorse and vowed to bring her back to life. He visited Poe, the land of the dead, to convince his wife to return.

Legend has it that Hiku used a long rope made of strong vines to go deep into the valley of the Waimea Canyon where the spirits of the dead were dwelling. When he found Kawelu’s spirit in Poe, he pronounced his undying love for her and begged her to return by touching the rope on which he had descended. Kawelu touched the rope and returned to the land of the living again. Hiku and Kawelu lived happily ever after.