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What is the Halona Blowhole?

By Bethany Keene
Updated May 17, 2024
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The Halona Blowhole, sometimes spelled Halona Blow Hole, is a popular tourist destination in Hawaii. It is found on the south shore of the island of Oahu, north of Haunama Bay along Kalanianole Highway. Widely regarded as a can't-miss destination, a stop at the Halona Blowhole can be a great way to relax while sightseeing in Hawaii.

The Halona Blowhole is a natural phenomenon, caused by an underground lava tube created by volcanic eruptions thousands of years ago. The lava tube that creates the Halona Blowhole opens into the sea and when the waves crash into it, tremendous pressure builds up inside the tube. This causes water to shoot up and out of the tube.

While the water can shoot out up to 30 feet (almost 10 meters) into the air, the conditions are not always optimal to show such an impressive display. If the waves are large, you are more likely to see this natural occurrence than on calm days. Otherwise, you will just see some mist and steam rising from the blowhole.

Visitors and locals recommend viewing the Halona Blowhole from the scenic lookout since it is dangerous to get too close. Getting to the lookout is relatively easy for everyone as it is handicapped-accessible. While the blowhole is beautiful, the jettison of water is not the only spectacular view you can see from the lookout.

From this lookout during the winter, you can sometimes see whales at play. If the day is especially clear, you can make out some of the outer islands of Hawaii, including Molokai and Lanai. Finally, if you are especially lucky, you may also be able to catch a glimpse of the Hawaiian green sea turtle.

The lookout is a good place to relax and bring a picnic lunch. It is also a nice walk down to the beach. Next to the Halona Blowhole is the Halona Beach Cove. You can swim here when the waves are not too rough, but since there are no lifeguards on duty, you might want to play it safe and refrain from this. The Halona Beach Cove is also known for a famous scene between Burt Lancaster and Deborah Care in the movie From Here to Eternity, produced in 1953.

The coast where the blowhole is located is one of the most dangerous for diving and snorkeling because the high cliffs prevent exiting the water easily. Additionally, the strong current, slippery rocks and high waves, make exercising caution while visiting this beautiful location a must. It is best to view and enjoy the Halona Blowhole from a safe distance rather than putting yourself in danger.

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