Oluwalu Cultural Reserve
The Ahupua’a

In ancient Hawaiian times, prior to the arrival of Europeans in the islands, our kupuna lived on a land division called an ahupua‘a where they worked and played. Olowalu ahupua‘a follows the natural valley formation of Lihau and stretches from the mauka ridge tops down to the shoreline below.  The Ahupua‘a provided its inhabitants with all the resources necessary for sustainable living.  Olowalu stream with its fresh running water provided nourishment for lo‘i kalo as well as hihiwai, ‘opae and o‘opu. Upper forest areas provided wood for canoes, calabashes, weapons, and tools, kapa for clothing, and feathers for capes. Hawaiian planters grew food crops such as kalo, ‘uala, and mai‘a in the mid sections and fishing families gathered limu, salt, and crab from the sea.