Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park

Discover Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park’s mesmerizing marine life, pristine snorkeling spots, and the iconic Captain Cook Monument on Hawaii’s Big Island.

Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park is a Heritage Site located in the city of Captain Cook on Big Island, Hawaii
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Things to Know About Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park


  • Overview: Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park, located in Captain Cook on Big Island, Hawaii, is a picturesque marine sanctuary and an important historical site. This must-see attraction offers visitors a unique blend of natural beauty and cultural significance.
  • Highlights: The main highlight of Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park is its crystal-clear waters, teeming with marine life, which make it an ideal spot for snorkeling and diving. Additionally, the park is home to the Captain Cook Monument, commemorating the first meeting between Europeans and native Hawaiians.
  • Activities: Visitors to Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park can enjoy snorkeling and diving in the bay’s pristine waters, kayaking to the Captain Cook Monument, and exploring the park’s historical sites and lush hiking trails.
  • Information: Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park is open daily from 7:00 AM to 7:00 PM. There is no entrance fee, but parking is limited. The best time to visit is during the morning hours when the waters are calm and clear for snorkeling and the sun is not too strong for hiking.
  • History & Significance: Kealakekua Bay is historically significant as the site of the first extensive contact between native Hawaiians and Europeans, led by Captain James Cook in 1779. The Captain Cook Monument marks the spot where Cook was killed in a skirmish with native Hawaiians, and the park is dedicated to preserving the area’s cultural and historical importance.
  • Tips & Insights: To enhance your experience at Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park, consider renting snorkel gear or a kayak from a nearby vendor to fully explore the bay’s marine life. Additionally, bring reef-safe sunscreen and plenty of water, as the park has limited facilities. Lastly, be respectful of the park’s cultural and historical significance by staying on designated trails and not touching or removing any artifacts or marine life.

Getting to the Heritage Site


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