History of Kualoa Ranch


Kualoa Ranch is a 4000 acre plot which encompasses 3 valleys which are Ka’a’awa Valey, Kualoa Valley, and Hakipu’u Valley. The entirety of the land is owned by a single family that runs it for various purposes. The ranch and valleys themselves are full of history, beauty, and adventure. Kualoa Ranch is located just off Kamehameha Hwy on the Island of Oahu. The valley was sacred to ancient Hawaiians from the 1200s to 1700s because it was a place where divine polynesians had settled after visiting Kauai and before returning to Tahiti. It was a sacred site where only gods could enter, and by extension, chiefs and other royalty.

Kualoa was a training site for young royal men to learn fighting and military strategy. The bones of chiefs are still buried in caves up in the mountains of Kualoa. Because the area was so sacred, any commoner who dared set foot on the land would be chased down and executed. It remained a royal training grounds up until contact with the first Europeans. In 1850 an American doctor, Dr. Gerrit P. Judd purchased 622 acres of land from King Kamehameha III to build a ranch at Kualoa. Dr. Judd was the first person to translate medical journals into the Hawaiian language for the Kamehameha III. In 1860, Dr. Judd bought an additional plot of 2200 acres of surrounding land and then the doctor’s son Charles bought another 1188 acres in 1880. All in all it totals to 4000 acres of land.

In 1863, Charles and his brother-in-law Samuel started a sugar plantation and built a mill at the ranch. However, several years of low rainfall brought their sugar farming to a close. The remains of the mill that had shut down in 1870 can still be seen at the ranch. In 1941 during World War II, the U.S. military had taken over the ranch and occupied the land. They used it for protection, shelter, and defense as it was the site of a newly constructed Kualoa Airfield. After the war the ranch was returned to the descendants of the Judd family. Today, Kualoa Ranch is a beef cattle ranch but is also a popular site for tourist activities. Among those activities are: Ziplining, ATV rides, Horseback riding, Movie Site Tours, Jeep Expeditions, and hiking as well as arts and crafts. The ranch is famous for being used in such Hollywood productions as Pearl Harbor, Godzilla, Lost, and Jurassic Park.

Check out Hawaii Discount (#hawaiidiscount) for the best offers and prices on tours and activities such as visiting Kualoa Ranch for ziplining, atving, and horseback riding.

Loa’a wale lā!