Palapala church was founded in 1864. The church is a popular stop on the road from Hana. Guests are humbled by its tiny cemetery where legendary aviator Charles Lindbergh was laid to rest. He could have asked to be buried almost anywhere in the world, but chose the most peaceful, beautiful place he’d ever been. People, especially those old enough to remember the historic flight of the “Lone Eagle”, are drawn here as if on a pilgrimage to pay their respects to this aviation pioneer who changed the world.
The Kipahulu area is incredibly beautiful, peaceful and tranquil. It very well could be the most remote spot on the island, as it is populated with the fewest people. After experiencing Kipahulu, even sleepy Hana seems to be a bit of a rat race. Kipahulu is ideally located on a side of the mountain where it gets just enough rain to stay green and lush, but experiences more sun than areas closer to Hana and along the north coast. Heading south, beyond Kipahulu towards Kaupo, the land becomes considerably more arid and opens up into wide open grazing fields. Kipahulu is the road past Hana’s last bastion of green lushness, for many miles until we make the climb up into ʻUlupalakua, with it’s unique climate.
Charles Lindbergh Loved Kipahulu
Like us, Lindbergh truly loved this part of Maui. He loved it so much that he made his vacation home here. Once it was determined that he would not be able to recover from the cancer that riddled his body, he said he wanted to “breathe the sweet flowery air of Hana”, as his final breath. His desire was granted and he was taken from New York City for one final flight to Maui, accompanied by his family. He was perhaps the most well-traveled human who ever lived, but loved Maui, and this area in particular, so much so that he requested to be flown to his home in Kipahulu to live out his final 8 days.
I am sure both Anne and I would not have enjoyed this trip doing it ourselves.
Anne & Greg
I read up and decided not to drive. Best idea of the trip.
my wife convinced me that we might enjoy it more if we had a “guide”, she was right
A visit to the Charles Lindbergh Grave at Palapala takes you back to the nostalgic era of aviation firsts and a proud country that celebrated heroes who served in the World Wars. Our tour guides ensure that the sacred places visited on our Road to Hana tour, whether they be Hawaiian, Japanese or Christian, all are treated with the utmost respect. We believe it is our privilege to guide you responsibly through the Hana that Lindbergh deeply loved and wanted to preserve for all time.
Charles Lindbergh Grave
Perhaps he chose Palapala Ho’omau Church as his final resting place because the dramatic coastline and the serene setting makes it a perfect location for quiet meditation and reflection? Or was it the fact that the church is the first building to greet the sunrise on Maui? Possibly, or maybe it’s all of these reasons and more? He had such a deep love of Hana he vacationed here throughout his life and built a home in Kipahulu. Only a few grave sites dot it’s humble cemetery, however Charles Lindbergh’s is among them, and not by accident. Maui’s locals are proud that he made it home.
The Palapala Ho’omau Church welcomes all to come and visit. They simply ask you not to disturb any of the flowers and gifts left at the gravesites and that you treat the entire grounds with respect. Palapala church was built in 1857 of limestone coral by some of the first Christian missionaries to the island. During that time there was a much greater concentration of Hawaiians living in and around this area, whereas today only a few families and farmers remain.
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