Lapakahi, Hawaii–If I Were Alive In 1315

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Me in Lakahia
Me at Lapakahi, Hawaii

Lapakahi, Hawaii—If I Were Alive In 1315, This Is Where I’d Want To Live…

As you drive towards the northern tip of The Big Island of Hawaii, you pass by an ancient Hawaiian village on the edge of the ocean. This beautiful stretch of coast is Lapakahi.


Timeless foundations of stacked lava rocks exist where homes once stood. The original grass huts have disappeared along with time but the lava pathways, foundations, fresh water wells, salt making pits and burial grounds remain. Aside from the biodegradable items long gone, the village remains untouched.

To wander along the lava rock paths, as huge waves break on the shore, is like time travelling. The area appears to the modern-day visitor as pristine as it would have over 700 years ago when the first settlers arrived on its shores.

IMG_0669The grass hut is a replica of a traditional Hawaiian home. Other homes were much larger and housed many families. The day I explored the village was hot, windy and the ocean break fierce; yet, inside the hut was calm, cool and peaceful. The original settlers had light in their homes at night–they burned oil from the kukui nut in stone bowls for light.

I cannot imagine a more pleasant place to live than Lapakahi in 1315. The Hawaiian village was rich with seafood, crops of taro and sweet potato. The villagers travelled by dug out canoe, sunbathed and surfed for fun.

My family having a lunch picnic above Lapakahi.
My family having a lunch picnic above Lapakahi.

When I think about how my Northern European ancestors might have lived during the middle ages, in 1315–a time of black plague and great famine all over Europe–I hope that if I were alive during that time, in human form, in a past life, please let me have lived in Lapakahi...

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