Although you’ll hear some noise from the unseen highway, the serenity of this historic 32-acre valley, open only for free guided tours, is unshakable, especially once you ascend the former Hawaiian heiau (temple) to the new Hall of Compassion, a gleaming wooden structure in the style of a 13th-century Buddhist shrine. You’re expected to keep silent there and on the hillside path marked by 88 diminutive Shingon Buddhist shrines, a replica of a 900-mile temple route in Shikoku, Japan. Built in 1904 by young plantation workers from Japan, the shrines beckoned pilgrims for decades until the local cannery closed, workers moved away, and the site became overgrown. An all-volunteer, nondenominational effort has led to their restoration; you’ll hear that inspiring story over a cup of tea and cookies first before heading up the steep hill (walking staffs included).
Lawai International Center
End of Wawae Rd., off Kaumualii Hwy., makai side., Lihue
Our Rating Neighborhood South Shore Hours Hours by reservation at 10am, noon, and 2pm the 2nd and last Sun of each month, and by appt. Phone 808/639-4300 Prices Free admission; donations welcomed. Web site Lawai International Center
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.