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Goodbye Captain Cook.
Goodbye Captain Cook.

Hawaiians Kill Captain Cook

Field review by the editors.

Captain Cook, Big Island, Hawaii

An obelisk marks the spot when one of the 18th century's great navigators and cartographers was clubbed and stabbed to death. Captain James Cook was the first white tourist to visit what he named the Sandwich Islands (His boss was the Earl of Sandwich).

It was during a subsequent visit that Cook was killed. In fairness to the Hawaiians, Cook had been trying to kidnap their king on February 14, 1779, when he and his men were chased back to the beach. The Hawaiians genuinely respected Cook as an adversary, so after murdering him they roasted and hacked the flesh from his bones and, according to some accounts, ate it.

Hawaiians Kill Captain Cook

Napoopoo Rd, Captain Cook, Big Island, HI
Requires long walk over loose rocks; wear hiking shoes and bring a walking stick. At Captain Cook bear right (if heading south) from Hwy 11 onto Napoopoo Road (Kealakekua Bay) and quickly park along the road. Walk downhill. You'll see a rock wall on the left, which is part of a fancy house up the hill. Immediately opposite the wall's driveway and mailboxes is the entrance to the trail, on the right side of Napoopoo Road, which has been mowed through the tall grass. Walk down to the ocean, bearing left at the bottom to the Captain Cook Monument. Budget at least three hours to walk there and back.
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Nearby Offbeat Places

Big Island Bees Museum and TourBig Island Bees Museum and Tour, Captain Cook, Big Island, HI - 2 mi.
Pu'uhonua - Place of RefugePu'uhonua - Place of Refuge, Honaunau, Big Island, HI - 4 mi.
Painted ChurchPainted Church, Captain Cook, Big Island, HI - 4 mi.
In the region:
Volcano Steam Vents, Volcano, Big Island, HI - 44 mi.

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