The name “Oahu” means “the gathering place”. It is the second oldest of the 6 main Hawaiian islands. The island of Oahu has one of the most remote populations on the globe. As a result, they relied on religion to provide explanations for the natural wonders around them. Many religious sites sprang up in Oahu, offering visitors a place of worship and a personal tour of Hawaii’s history.
The following are some of the most sacred religious spots on the island of Oahu:
Kukanioloko Birth Stones
Located in central Oahu, the site lies in a quiet field and is considered as one of the most sacred in Hawaii. Visitors must walk down a path dotted with red soil and flowers. The actual spot of the Kukanioloko birth stones is marked by large volcanic rocks. The open fields are filled palm fronds and eucalyptus trees. Starting in the 1300s, the high priest and priestesses were born here and anyone who was also born here, also achieved a high ranking throughout his or her life. The black volcanic stones were meant to soothe the aching body of the birthing mother. Stones are placed on either side (36 of them facing left and right) and facing north and is where the chiefs sat as witnesses to the births. In the center, visitors will notice a backrest where birthing mothers leaned against for support.
This site is revered and cared for by native Hawaiians. Guests are requested to respect the place by not climbing up the stones or leaving items behind.
Located on Oahu’s leeward coast, this cave is covered in mystery. It is estimated to more than 150,000 years old and is surrounded by ancient legends. According to one such legend, this was the birth place of mankind. The cave itself acted like the womb of the goddess earth. The name Kaneana means cave of Kane who is considered the god of Creation.
Constructed in the 16th century, this place is one of the best preserved on the island. Located on the west side in the Makaha Valley, the sites features an altar, 2 prayer towers, god images, a taboo house and drum hose.
Pu’u o Mahuka Heiau
This is the largest heiau in Oahu, covering nearly two acres. Constructed in early 1600s, the site is considered a powerful and sacred place for kahuna priests. It is also the place where the wives of chiefs gave birth. Many human sacrifices have also occurred at this site.
The valley is a lush area that hosts seventy eight reconstructed archaeological sites depicting life of early inhabitants of the area. Located on the north shore, the area features shrines and religious sites.
This area is quite large and was used for various purposes including the birth of royals, sacrificial site, and a place to celebrate the harvest.
For a spiritual experience on your Hawaiian trip, visit some of the sacred places in Oahu.