Puu Pehe (Sweetheart Rock), Lanai
Name: Puu Pehe (Sweetheart Rock)
What: An iconic Lanai landmark between Manele and Hulopoe Bay
Where: A short hike from the Four Seasons Resort Lanai at Manele Bay
On the southern coast of Lanai is picturesque Hulopoe Bay and Lanai’s main boat harbor, Manele Bay. Rising from the sea just between these two bays is the iconic Puu Pehe, or Sweetheart Rock. Besides being a picturesque natural landmark, Puu Pehe is also steeped in Hawaiian legend.
Legend tells of two lovers, a Hawaiian maiden named Pehe from Lahaina and a young warrior from Lanai named Makakehau. He was so taken with her beauty that whenever he laid eyes upon her they would mist up in tears. Hence his name: Maka (eyes) Kehau (mist). He took her back to Lanai and hid her in a sea cave at the base of Manele’s cliffs.
One day while gathering supplies he noticed a storm brewing and started back, only to find Pehe drowned by the surge of the storm waves. Stricken with grief, Makakehau gathered his beloved in his arms. He wailed out to the gods and his ancestors to help him climb the steep rock island where he eventually buried her. He then jumped from this 80-foot summit into the pounding surf below.
To get to Puu Pehe you can take a short hike from the Four Seasons Resort Lanai at Manele Bay southeast past Hulopoe Beach and the rocky tide pools. Hike up the path along the rocky cliffs for about 15-20 minutes and you’ll soon overlook this Lanai landmark. Sunsets here can be especially romantic with dramatic views of Hulopoe Bay. You may even spot the spinner dolphins that frequent these waters perched atop this scenic lookout.