Waipi’o Valley Hawai’i
Sacred Waipi’o Valley
Nestled at the base remote of Waipi‘o Valley on the Hāmākua Coast, the beautiful black sands, 2,000-foot cliffs, tropical rainforest, and cascading waterfalls of Waipi‘o Beach, make this a destination worth visiting. Ancient Hawaiian temple sites dot the sparsely populated valley floor, and several hiking trails lead to waterfall pools.
Waipi‘o is steeped in powerful spiritual energy and was the residence of early Hawaiian ali‘i. Known as “The Valley of the Kings,” as many as 10,000 people may have resided in Waipi‘o Valley prior to Captain Cook’s arrival. Waipi‘o was celebrated for its sacred nīoi trees; in the 18th century King Kahekili II raided Waipi‘o, burning the nīoi trees and the royal grass palace to the ground. In the 1800s, many Chinese immigrant families settled in Waipi‘o Valley, and the village had churches, restaurants, a school, and a post office. In 1946, a devastating tsunami swept the valley. Waipi‘o has been a sleepy taro farming community since.