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Me ka wai Kaulana a'o Punalu'u
Ka wai punapuna a'o Kauwila

{With the famous spring of Punalu'u
The fountaining spring of Kauwila}

-- "Punalu'u" by George K. Iopa, 1922


Punalu'u is a magical place, nestled on the isolated Kau coast of the Big Island. Well known as one of the most spectacular black sand beaches on the island, Punalu'u is also the home for a luxuriant growth of seaweeds and their abundant grazers: fishes and sea turtles. The high seaweed abundance is attributed to large volumes of fresh water which trickle out into the reef in a labyrinth of springs. Legend has it that native Hawaiian obtained drinking water by filling gourds from the springs. The name Punalu'u means "diving spring."


Last update: 1/25/2005