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Captain Cook Monument

Hike, kayak or take a boat cruise to the monument celebrating the life of the famous British explorer.

Captain James Cook was the British naval explorer who first brought Europeans to the Hawaiian Islands in 1778. Upon his return a year later, the Hawaiians killed him at the picturesque Kealakekua Bay. A century after he first reached the island, a 27-foot (8-meter) tall monument was erected in his honor. Today the monument is a popular destination for history fans and adventurers alike.

Situated in a remote bay, the monument isn’t easy to reach. The spire stands alone against a rocky cliff, and must be reached by hiking or by sea. Get up early and rent a kayak, the most popular method for reaching the monument. Those who arrive early enough have the chance to see dolphins playing in water nearby, or the iconic Hawaiian sea turtles that the area is known for. You can rent a kayak on the Hawaii Belt Road prior to the turnoff to the bay.

Chartered boats are also available in the area and offer a relaxing alternative to kayaking. Many of these tour operators include lunch in the program. Jump off the boat to experience the excellent snorkeling opportunities. Kealakekua Bay is a marine sanctuary and so fishing is prohibited.

Trek across the rugged landscape to reach the monument by land. The 4.25-mile (7-kilometer) hike takes you through stunning scenery. Reaching the monument is a rewarding experience. Be sure to bring your swimming costume because after this hike you’ll want to cool off in the water.

Kealakekua Bay is located approximately 30 minutes by car from Kailua-Kona. Parking is available at Napo’opo’o Beach, from where you can choose to travel on foot or by boat to reach the monument. There is no fee to visit the Captain Cook Monument.

Want to make your time spent at Captain Cook Monument even more unforgettable? Don't miss the chance to try some of these activities:

For more things to do, have a look at our Captain Cook things to do page.


Guide to Exploring around Captain Cook Monument


Map

Best Lodging Options Near Captain Cook Monument

See all 1,458 Properties near Captain Cook Monument
Manago Hotel ¥8,138
Manago Hotel

Manago Hotel

82-6155 Mamalahoa Hwy, Captain Cook, HI
     
    2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

    Situated in Captain Cook, this hotel is 0.2 mi (0.4 km) from Kona Coffee Living History Farm and 2.5 mi (4.1 km) from Captain Cook Monument. Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden and Kealakekua Bay are also within 2 mi (3 km).

    Oceanfront 3br, Breathtaking Views 3 Bedrooms 2 Bathrooms Home
    Oceanfront 3br, Breathtaking Views 3 Bedrooms 2 Bathrooms Home

    Oceanfront 3br, Breathtaking Views 3 Bedrooms 2 Bathrooms Home

    82-6017 Manini Beach Rd, Captain Cook, HI
       
      3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Situated in Captain Cook, this vacation home is within a 10-minute walk of Kapahukapu Manini Beach and Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park. Kona Pacific Farmers Cooperative is 1.4 mi (2.2 km) away.

      Rainbow Plantation B&B
      Rainbow Plantation B&B

      Rainbow Plantation B&B

      81-6327 B Mamalahoa Hwy., Kealakekua, HI
         
        3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Situated near the airport, this guesthouse is 0.6 mi (0.9 km) from Kona Coffee Living History Farm and 2.1 mi (3.4 km) from Captain Cook Monument. Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden and H.N. Greenwell Store Museum are also within 1 mi (2 km).

        Gingerhill Farm Retreat
        Gingerhill Farm Retreat

        Gingerhill Farm Retreat

        81-6467 Mamalahoa Hwy, Kealakekua, HI
           
          3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Situated by the ocean, this farm stay is 2.3 mi (3.7 km) from Kealakekua Bay State Historical Park and 2.3 mi (3.7 km) from Kealakekua Bay. Captain Cook Monument and Kona Le'a Plantation are also within 9 mi (15 km).

          Mermaid Dreams
          Mermaid Dreams

          Mermaid Dreams

          81-1031 Keopuka Mauka Road, Kealakekua, HI
             
            3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            Situated near the beach, this romantic bed & breakfast is 1.1 mi (1.8 km) from Greenwell Farms and within 3 mi (5 km) of Kealakekua Bay and Captain Cook Monument. Kapahukapu Manini Beach and Painted Church are also within 6 mi (10 km).

            Ka'awaloa Plantation Bed & Breakfast ¥13,086
            Ka'awaloa Plantation Bed & Breakfast

            Ka'awaloa Plantation Bed & Breakfast

            82-5990 Napoopoo Road, Captain Cook, HI
               
              3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

              Situated near the beach, this bed & breakfast is within 3 mi (5 km) of Kona Coffee Living History Farm, Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden, and Kealakekua Bay. Kona Pacific Farmers Cooperative and H.N. Greenwell Store Museum are also within 3 mi (5 km).

              Ka'awa Loa Plantation Guesthouse and Retreat
              Ka'awa Loa Plantation Guesthouse and Retreat

              Ka'awa Loa Plantation Guesthouse and Retreat

              82-5990 Napoopoo Road, Captain Cook, HI
                 
                0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Situated near the airport, this boutique bed & breakfast is within 3 mi (5 km) of Kona Coffee Living History Farm, Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden, and Kona Pacific Farmers Cooperative. H.N. Greenwell Store Museum and Greenwell Farms are also within 3 mi (5 km).

                Kona Palace in Captain Cook ¥12,577
                Kona Palace in Captain Cook

                Kona Palace in Captain Cook

                82-5815 Napoopoo Rd., Captain Cook, HI
                   
                  3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Situated in the historical district, this bed & breakfast is within 3 mi (5 km) of Kona Pacific Farmers Cooperative, Paleaku Gardens Peace Sanctuary, and Kona Coffee Living History Farm. Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden and Kealakekua Bay are also within 3 mi (5 km).