Maunawila Heiau

Size: 9.08 Acres
Year Protected: 2014
Land Protection Strategy: Owned by HILT
Conservation Values: Archaeological and cultural preservation; Habitat restoration; Cultural practice and education
Land Features: Historic Sites

Photo:  Maunawila Blessing Ceremony.  Courtesy of Franz Schmutzer.

Photo:  Maunawila Blessing Ceremony.  Courtesy of Franz Schmutzer.

I believe that our grandparents would be very honored to have this ʻaina shared with the entire community as an educational and cultural resource for the benefit of current and future generations.
— Lurline McGregor, granddaughter of Louise and Daniel McGregor.


The Maunawila Heiau property consists of 9.08 acres in the Ko‘olauloa ahupua‘a (land division) on the island of O‘ahu.  The property is located in the Hau‘ula community and is accessed by Kamehameha Highway.  The heiau (place of worship), acknowledged as being one of the remaining “relatively intact” heiau in the Ko‘olauloa region, is a recognized wahi pana (revered site) for Native Hawaiian cultural historians and practitioners. The property’s former owners, the McGregor 'Ohana, commenced investigative work on the history of the property that revealed Maunawila may have been a heiau ho'ola (a healing heiau).  The property was purchased as a homestead by the McGregor family, of whom one relative was a konohiki (headman of an ahupua‘a under the chief) of the ahupua‘a, and thus, this heiau. In the past, the property was up for sale but was pulled from the market when the family decided to look for a buyer who would protect the property and the heiau.  Now, fee ownership of the property has passed to Hawaiian Islands Land Trust (HILT), which intends to hold the property in perpetuity and partner with local community organizations in managing the property.  HILT envisions that Maunawila will serve as a place of cultural learning and environmental education for Hawai‘i residents and visitors.

Learn the oli for Maunawila composed by Davianna McGregor.

Working with Maunawila Heiau has allowed me to pause, reflect and confirm my relationship with this place where I live. When I am at the Heiau I am able to release and open to the blessings it has to offer. I step back into my community transformed into a better person for having passed through.
— Krista Nielsen, Community Member
Photo:  Maunawila Sunset.  Courtesy of Tina Aiu.

Photo:  Maunawila Sunset.  Courtesy of Tina Aiu.