When most people think of Oahu they think of Waikiki, the North Shore, surfing and gorgeous beaches. There is another side to Oahu, which is the haunted, supernatural and spooky side. Robert Sepulveda, a storyteller and tour guide at Oahu Ghost Tours shares the 52 Most Haunted Places in Oahu. Read on if you dare!
The 52 Most Haunted Places in Oahu
- The Nu’uanu Pali Lookout– In 1795 The Battle of Nu’uanu took place pitting future King Kamehameha from the Big Island of Hawaii against the Chief of Oahu Kalanikupule.Kalanikupule’s forces were defeated with the culmination of the battle taking place at the edge of the lookout where 300 to 500 of Kalanikupule’s warriors were forced off the edge. Their bones still remain at the bottom of the cliff.
- The locals know not to bring pork through the tunnels of the Nuu’anu Pali Highway going from the Windward side to the Leeward side. The powerful demi-goddess of the volcano Madame Pele made an agreement with her once lover and rival the half man-half pig demi-god Kamapua’a to split the island in half.They never wanted to see each other again after having a falling out. Madame Pele stays on the Leeward side which is dry and to her liking. Kamapua’a stays on the Windward side which is wet and to his liking.If you try to bring pork which is a part of him from his domain into her domain, she will stop you.
- Take a trip down the old Nuu’anu Pali Drive to the infamous Morgan’s Corner. From the 1920’s to the 1950’s Dr. James Morgan owned a villa near a sharp S-turn where cars would often crash, hence the name.In 1948, A 68-year-old widow was murdered at the hands of two escapees from a prison work detail. Some say she still is heard screaming for her life. People have also seen a teenage girl with a halfway decomposed face jump roping down the road.She had been murdered by strangulation of her own “lucky charm” jump rope and tossed into the bushes by the road.There is the story of a depressed teenage girl who had run away from home and hung herself on a tree near the turn.Her body nearly separated from her head as the result of decomposition. Some people see an apparition of girl hold her own head.
- Travel up the road another ¼ mile to a forgotten palace. Kaniakapupu (the singing of the land shells) is the only known structure (ruins) that is linked to King Kamehameha III. A ¼ mile hike in through a narrow passage of bamboo trees will take you to a haunting and powerful reminder of the royalty of the past whose spirits still watch over the palace.
- Kapena Falls – At the base of the Nuu’anu Valley, there is a beautiful waterfall where it is said to be the lair of Poki – the guardian dog of Nuuanu.
- The Queen Emma Summer Palace is halfway up the valley and it is there that the Queen’s ghost still is seen and felt by the staff. Also the ghost of her son Leiopapa’s dog still loyally awaits his return.
- The Ancient Heiau (Temple) of Ulupo rests on the edge of Kawaianui marsh near Kailua town on the Windward side of Oahu. This temple is said to be somewhere between 400 to 800 years old.Some say Hawaii’s elf-like race known as the Menehune were responsible for it being built. Even though today this is an active spot of worship, restoration of the Hawaiian culture, and where to worship the god Lono (god of agriculture, peace, and renewal) at one short period in history this might have been a sight used as a Luakini (human sacrifice) Heiau for the god of war Kuka’ilimoku (god of war). Also, some say that there tens of thousands bones interred within the walls of the Heiau.
- The cliffs of Makapu’u offer a scenic view of the eastern shores of Oahu. It is there that Madame Pele last stayed before moving on to the Big Island.People sometimes see an old lady in white hitchhiking along the highway there (as well as the Pali highway). That is the human incarnate form of Madame Pele and it is said you need to show her respect and kindness by offering her a ride.She will usually go along for the ride before disappearing into thin air. Failure to offer the ride may have serious implications. Makapu’u is also a place known for the Akua’lele (flying god). These are fireballs said in lore to be powerfully conjured up spells from one who practices the ancient ways of Hawaiian sorcery.
- Nearby Makapu’u is Alan Davis beach. It is there that a rock formation known as Madame Pele’s chair faces the ocean. Hike to the chair and gaze upon the view Madame Pele looked out onto.
- There is a spot at the top of Poola Street just past the Kalani high school that people say is haunted. Some have said that there once was a Heiau that sat on the spot which now if you drive your car over and put it in neutral, the spirits will push you uphill.
- 11th Avenue Bridge Ghost – In the town of Kaimuki, there is said to be a ghost of a young girl that lurks on the overpass bridge. She died there while walking home.
- Kapiolani Park in Waikiki is the 12th most haunted spot on Oahu where hundreds of years ago a great battle took place. Since that time citizens have been reporting to the police hearing battle cries, figures dressed in ancient battle gear and more.
- At the Diamond Head tennis courts there is said to be the ghost of an angry man who smells of rotting flesh. People see him walking back and forth along the area as if guarding something.
- In the heart of Waikiki along Kuhio beach sits a police substation. In front of the substation sits the four Wizard Stones. The story has it that hundreds of years ago there were four strange men who had come from a far-off place the Hawaiian people did not know.They were said to have the power to heal people. At some point they were summoned to return back to their home, therefore they transferred their healing powers into these four boulders so that people today can still ask for healing.
- The University of Hawaii located on the slopes of Manoa Valley sits on what is the oldest Ahupua’a (community land system of old) on Oahu. It is also home to an abundance of hauntings.
- The Mokihana dorms is where students still see the ghost of a young student who committed suicide by hanging in one of the dorm rooms.
- Frear Hall dorms is where students have seen the namesake Mary Dillingham Frear still walking the halls wearing white and holding what appears to be a key ring for the dorm rooms. Often her sighting is accompanied with the scent of perfume.
- Hamilton Library – custodians and students have heard strange noises and seen apparitions lurking along the aisles and in the bathrooms of the library. One janitor reported seeing a young woman dressed in a pink muumuu (Hawaiian-style dress) walking around the Mauka (mountain side) wing of the first floor.
- The very back of Manoa Valley is where the beautiful Manoa Falls is located and is the 19th most haunted spot on Oahu. This is the area where once only the Ali’i (royalty class) were allowed to dwell. They saw themselves as living gods.On many nights (especially Po’kane – night of the walking dead) their spirits walk the path there. It is also said that powerful entities that were never born roam there.
- The Hilton Hawaiian Village is where workers and visitors alike have for years seen an older lady wearing a red Mu’u’mu’u dancing and wandering among the many hallways or even on the beach only to disappear into thin air.Some people say this is the fire goddess Madame Pele, while others say this is a village Kupuna (elder), as the Hilton Hawaiian Village hotel sits on what was once an old Hawaiian fishing village.
- The Iolani Palace– Where ghosts and spirits from the Hawaiian Monarchy still linger to relive the past.
- The Hawaii Theater – Where a Chinese custodian was murdered years ago and his ghost is seen from time to time.
- The Leio’papa Albert Kamehameha building – where the 4-year-old son of King Kamehameha the IV and beloved Queen Emma is still said to roam the halls as people have seen the shadow of a little boy. They have heard singing in the stairwell and seen the wet footprints of a little boy.
- The Kawai’ahao (means the waters of Hao) Church and Cemetery – High Chiefess Hao from Kaimuki would cleanse herself in the natural spring of Hao every once a year. She is still seen by the fountain where the spring sat.Also on the grounds, there is the crypt of King William Lunalilo – “The People’s King” is laid to rest. It is said that every once and a while the security guards will hear someone whisper “please bring me my tobacco”. The king was an avid pipe smoker. In the cemetery, there is a young boy who is often seen running around.
- The old Kaka’ako Fire Station is known to be a place where the firemen would encounter the “choking ghost”. This entity comes in the middle of the night to sit on your chest and choke you. Today the place is flooded with orbs (spirits) that can be captured by cameras. This is one very unique way to discover Oahu.
- Washington Place – The old governor’s mansion is still home to the spirits of Queen Liliu’okalani and the late Governor Burns. This was the queen’s home until she passed on it 1917.Every so often she will check in on what is happening in her home. The governor spirits once took two ladies on a tour of the mansion before they later learned from a security guard that the governor has been dead for over 25 years.
- St Andrews Cathedral – Queen Emma was the driving force behind having the brought the Anglicans to Hawaii. Her spirit often pays a visit during the Day of Ascension to the church which she inspired. Her favorite piano is often heard playing her favorite tunes when no one is sitting there.
- One of the most haunted spots in downtown Honolulu is the State Capitol itself. It is the burial site of hundreds who died in a massive Measles epidemic in 1822.The king’s guards once had their barracks on the site before the building was moved in 1965. They still watch over the area. A security guard who passed over still makes his rounds in the building. A construction worker who died during the building of the Capitol is still sometimes seen working.
- Take a walk down Fort Street Mall in downtown Honolulu – At one time long ago Oahu’s largest human sacrifice Heiau – Pakaka was located there. Part of the human sacrifice ritual involved beheading the person being sacrificed. Merchants say they see headless apparitions walking the area very late at night.
- On the corner of Merchant and Alakea street in downtown Honolulu sits Kaua’nono’ula (Rain with the red rainbow). Said to be a gathering spot for the Wailua (ghost), it is where they gather energy. A building right across the street was the site where an electrical worker heard an eerie bloodcurdling scream while rewiring the building one night.
- Near the State Supreme Court is a large banyan tree. In many cultures they refer to these trees as the tree of the dead.From time to time people will hear what sounds like children crying. The area once had an orphanage in the 1800s. Were there any children buried nearby?There are no records, but the one thing we know about Banyan trees is that their roots drop from its branches and will “walk” over an area to grow in no time at all. It is believed that the roots often find its way into the subterranean lava tubes in the area. These lava tubes are filled with the hidden bones of old Hawaiian Ali’i (Royalty).
- Puowaina (Hill of Sacrifice) is the Hawaiian name for the Punchbowl Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific. Though the name seems to capture the essence of those laid to rest there from the various Pacific region wars, the meaning of the name has a much darker history.In the ancient days the hill was used for human sacrifice by the Hawaiian Kahunas. There still are restless ghosts who roam the area.
- The Dole Cannery Theater was built on the grounds of an old Hawaiian Heiau that had a tragic history. Many years ago a school bus crashed into the temple killing most of the children on board. Today people can still hear the voices of children in the theater and especially in the bathrooms.
- The H-3 Freeway was built over two Heiau’s amidst heavy protest from the Hawaiian Community. Some say this is a cursed freeway. Construction workers saw equipment sail through the air.Rocks that were displaced would roll back into place and the sounds of chanting and people talking would permeate the area. To this day many will still not use this freeway.
- Pearl Harbor’s Ford Island is located at the center of the harbor. There is an underwater cave that was the home of a powerful shark god.Just days prior to the famous attack by the Japanese there were two guardian stone (Pohaku) that suddenly disappeared. Today the spirits of those who died in battle at Pearl Harbor are often seen and heard throughout various places on the island.
- Kipapa Gulchnear Mililani Town – this was the site of a major battle in Hawaiian history. The bridge that spans the ravine has been the site of numerous head-on freak accidents.The gulch is said to be one of the paths of the Huakai’po (night marchers). Underneath the bridge, area is also said to be a sight where the Hawaiian kupua (shapeshifter) Kaupe appears from time to time manifesting as a halfman-halfdog standing over 7 feet tall.
- Wahiawa Elementary School 1402 Glen Aveis the location of sightings of the infamous Green Lady, (a scaly female creature).It has been reported from as far across the world as Connecticut to Canterbury. For decades, the people of Wahiawa have claimed to see the same apparition, appearing in the wooded area next to the school.Some say this could be a Mo’o wahine (dragon lady) that has been a part of Hawaiian lore since the dawn of time.
- Kukaniloko – The royal birthing stones located in Wahiawa is considered the bellybutton of Oahu and the home of many spirits of royalty who still watch over the scared area at night.
- Hau’ula is the site of Pounder’s Beach. There one can often hear the sound of a lost child’s cry or a woman wandering through the water looking for her child. Both drowned one night in the rough seas there.
- Waimea Falls Park is located on the north shore of Oahu. At the center of this park is a pond that is home to a drowning spirit. This spirit requires a sacrifice of a soul and every so often throughout history someone will end up drowning in the pond, but the body will not be located until there days later (the time the ritual takes).
- Pupukea Heiau is the largest Hawaiian temple on Oahu and home to many sightings of the ‘nightmarchers’ and the blowing of the conch shells that accompany them.
- Mokuleia Beach is where a beautiful enchantress said to be the Mo’o Wahine will lure a person to their own demise.
- The old Barbers Point Naval Air Station beach is said to be where one night a guard was called to check on what appeared to be a VW parked in an off-limits area on the beach.When he got there he found a young woman asleep in the car. He tried to rouse her, but she wouldn’t awaken so he walked back to his car a called in the license plate only to get a skeptical response from the dispatcher.After convincing the dispatcher that he was not pulling a joke on her, this security guard learned that for years other security guards have reported seeing this car and woman at the beach. She had been raped and killed at that beach long ago. When he ran back to find the car, it was gone.
- Kaneana Cave near Makua beach in Makaha is the lair of Nanaue (a shark-man). There is a passage to the sea far back in the cave. After capturing a victim he would bring them back to the cave to devour them there. His ominous presence is still strong there. This cave is also where mankind was brought to form by the Akua (god) Kane.
- Kaena Point which is the westernmost point on Oahu is called a Leina (jumping off point). It is there that the Amakua (family totem animal) will guide a recently departed soul to in order to make a choice. The choice is whether or not you want to jump into Po’pau’ole (Hawaiian spiritual realm).
- Mokapu Beach near the Kaneohe Marine Corps Air Station is where the Hawaiian people would bury disfigured babies who were thought to bring bad luck to the people.
- The Ihilani Resort in Ko’olina on the West side of the Island is one of the most beautiful resort areas on the island. The 17th floor of the Ihilani Resort in Ko’olina hotel is said haunted by a guest who got sick on her vacation and suddenly died there. She will often slide doors open and shut in the middle of the night.
- Mauna’ala (The Royal Hawaiian Mausoleum) is where the Hawaiian royalty from the modern Hawaiian Monarchy are laid to rest. Walk the grounds during the day and feel their spirits walk with you. It is said that there is also a tree there where some of the spirits hang around.
- Kapa’a Quarry Roadis where many lives have been claimed by the treacherous winding curves. It is said that there are many ancient altars that line the road near the area. People have also seen phantom hitchhikers and the Menehune there as well.
- Waipahu Street – When Oahu was invaded by King Kamehameha the Great, so many warriors were killed that the dead were lined up from Waipahu gulch all the way to Mililani Valley miles away. Chanting, marching, and drums can be heard along the street and are said to be the Nightmarchers, the ghosts of the ancient Hawaiian warriors.
- Kualoa Beach Park – Stories abound of the Hawaiian ‘Nightmarchers’ and other restless spirits roam the area from the valley on down to the beach park.
- The Mission Houses Museum by day is a historical setting where you can see what it was like for the missionaries who first came to the islands. After dark and even at times during the day people see the missionaries of old going about their as if time had stood still.
To check out Oahu’s haunted side connect with Hawaii’s #1 Nighttime Tour; Oahu Ghost Tours and make sure to request Robert as your guide!
WHEN TO VISIT OAHU
There is no bad time to visit any of the Hawaiian Islands as far as finding beautiful weather. The temperature typically varies from 68°F to 87°F on the island of Oahu. You’ll find days are mostly warm or hot with cooler evenings. Oahu is known for quick bursts of rain, but rarely will it ruin a day on the island. The best time to visit Oahu is from mid-April to early June or between September and mid-December. During these shoulder seasons, attractions are less crowded, festivals are plentiful and airfare and room rates are at their lowest.
If you enjoyed this article about The 52 Supernatural Places of Oahu, you’ll also love Oahu’s Kamehameha Loop.
Traveling To Oahu Soon? Here are a few tips:
How to get there: Oahu’s major airport is in Honolulu (airport code HNL). It’s by far Hawaii’s largest airport and hub. If you aren’t arriving by cruise ship, this is how you’ll arrive to Oahu.
Where to stay: There are many places to stay in Oahu Hawaii. There is a wide range of hotels, from budget to luxury. For a luxury hotel that won’t break the bank, I recommend The Kahala Hotel & Resort, which is currently the #1 hotel on Tripadvisor. For a mid-level hotel, I suggest the Outrigger Reef Waikiki Beach Resort. Finally, for a budget hotel, try the Shoreline Hotel Waikiki. You can also check HotelsCombined for the best Oahu Hotel Rates.
What to pack: The weather is tropical on the Hawaiian Islands with lovely northeasterly trade winds. Dress is smart-casual on Oahu, but do bring a light sweater or wrap. Water shoes, sunscreen a sun hat and a great guide to Oahu are a must!
Oahu Hawaii Trip Essentials
6 Indispensable Items to Pack for a Oahu, Hawaii Vacation
- Get the Fodor’s Oahu: with Honolulu, Waikiki & the North Shore (Full-color Travel Guide).
- Bring a good quality mirrorless camera for getting those beautiful Oahu beach landscape shots. I use the Sony Alpha a6000 .
- Summers are hot in Oahu, so make sure to bring Neutrogena Sunscreen, Broad Spectrum Spf 45
- You will find mosquitos on Oahu, especially if you do some hiking, so bring mosquito repellent – I like the pre-moistened towelettes, which are very convenient for packing and carrying with you. They’re convenient and don’t leave a sticky or oily residue.
- Don’t forget sunglasses for the beautiful sunny days. A.J. Morgan Unisex Sunglasses are a great choice and very affordable!
- Water shoes are a great item to pack for any beach vacation. They take up little room when packing and great if you end up at a beach that is rocky or with very hot sand.
Read More About Hawaii
Five Off-the-Beaten-Path Places on Hawaii’s Big Island
Oahu’s Eco-Friendly Cruise for Dolphin Lovers
Oahu’s Kamehameha Loop
Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers.