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TRADITIONAL TALES:
MYTHOLOGY & LEGENDS

LANAI

Shipwreck Beach Petroglyphs
Photo credit State Parks Division, DLNR
SHIPWRECK BEACH PETROGLYPHS
Shipwreck Bay (East Lanai)

The Birdmen and Night Marchers of Lanai

Little stick figures about 12 inches tall, with strange, birdlike heads, decorate the rocks on the lonely and windswept shores of Shipwreck Beach graveyard for many vessels. Their meaning is a mystery lost in time. On the dark nights of the moon, ghosts of ancient warriors have been seen and heard along the shoreline road, and sounds of wailing and babies crying haunt many areas of the coast.

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Sweetheart Rock - Puu Pehe, Lanai
PUU PEHE
Manele Bay (South Lanai)

A Rock for Sweethearts

A legend says that Puu Pehe, a young girl from Maui, was captured by a young warrior from Lanai. Her beauty stunned him, and his fear of losing her led him to keep her in lonely places. One day, leaving her to prepare food, he returned to find her drowned. In grief, the young warrior retrieved her body and buried it on the 80-foot high rock island. He then leapt into the sea below, taking his own life.


© William Crowe
KAUNOLU ARCHAELOGICAL INTERPRETIVE PARK
Kaunolu (South Lanai)

An Ancient Village

Lanai was once known as the "Island of Ghosts." Its earliest inhabitants were said to be man-eating spirits and fiendish, blood-curdling ghouls controlled by a sorceress, Pahulu. Hawaiians avoided Lanai until the fifteenth century, when the ghosts were tricked and banished by Kaululaau, a prince from Maui.

Source: Unless otherwise noted, photographs and text are excerpted from Exploring Lost Hawaii: Places of Power, History, Mystery & Magic with the permission of the authors, Ellie and William Crowe and with credit to Island Heritage, publisher of the book. To order this unique, informative, and critically acclaimed guidebook, visit Exploring Lost Hawaii.

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