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Historic Kapiolani Park near Waikiki
Posted by Unknown | Monday, April 21, 2014

Many times in our blog I have mentioned Kapiolani Park so I thought I would give some history on this historic public park.  It's just a few minutes walk from many of our Waikiki Vacation Rentals such as Foster Tower, The Seashore, Cabana at Waikiki, the Waikiki Sunset, and many more units.  It is also the oldest and largest park in Hawaii and is listed on the State Historic Register due to the many trees which date back over 100 years.  Below is an example of a banyan tree in the park.
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Before being used as a public space, the area was a mix of swamp land and arid plain unsuitable for building. Then, in the 1870s, King Kalākaua was asked to find a permanent, dry course for horse racing. Since Waikiki was popular with wealthy racing fans, he chose the unoccupied and dry plain at the foot of Diamond Head where the park now stands. On June 11, 1877, the park was dedicated as the first Hawaiian public space.

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 The one mile track opened in 1883 and had a grandstand and clubhouse.  It was the focal point of the social scene in Waikiki for many years and hosted the Rosita Cup every year on Kamehameha Day.  The track was demolished in 1914 when interest in the sport waned. 

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Since 1913, the park has been maintained by the City and County of Honolulu's Department of Parks & Recreation.  The area now consists of open green space, lilyponds, the Honolulu Zoo, the Kapiolani Bandstand and the Waikiki Shell live entertainment venues plus many shady picnic benches.

For some family friendly fitness, the park includes tennis and basketball courts, soccer, baseball, lacrosse and rugby fields plus an archery range.  There is also a popular course for joggers who utilize its two-mile (3 km) circumference. The park also serves as the site, as both the starting and finish lines, of road races in Honolulu including the Honolulu Marathon.  Kapiʻolani park is also home to Honolulu Cricket Club, the only cricket club in the Hawaiian Islands.

Cabana At Waikiki Family Friendly Free Oahu Activities Honolulu Zoo Kapiolani Bandstand Kapiolani Park Live Entertainment Waikiki Vacation Rentals

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