"Iao Valley State Park" Maui Off The Beaten Path Tip by PeterVancouver
Maui Off The Beaten Path: 85 reviews and 149 photos
The lovely, deep valley of 'Iao features the 'Iao Needle, a natural rock pinnacle presiding over the 'Iao stream and surrounded by the walls of the Pu'u Kukui Crater. Once used as a natural altar, the 2,250-foot stone pillar covered in green and brown, is a basaltic core that has survived eons of swirling water. Here a historical battle between Maui's defenders and King Kamehameha's army took place. In this battle, Kamehameha's army literally crushed Maui's troops with western cannons which they adopted into their fighting tactics. As a outcome of this gruesome display of victory the Iao Stream was dammed with piles of dead bodies blocking the flow of the water. To this day the area is named Kepaniwai, which means "damming of the waters." This landmark is one of the few sites that should not be missed by visiting tourists.
Take Highway 32 (Kaahumanu Road) west out of Wailuku. This road turns into Highway 320 which lead directly to the 'Iao Valley State Park.
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