Day 29 – Hanaiakamalama (Queen Emma’s Summer Palace) & The Royal Mausoleum

Day 29

Destination: Queen Emma was the spouse of Kamehameha IV and had a habit of retreating from her formal downtown home to this laid back hillside retreat. The exterior has a southern plantation feel and the interior is filled with royal memorabilia and period furniture. After her death it was sold to the Hawaiian government and has since been maintained by the Daughters of Hawaii. The Royal Mausoleum was completed in 1865 as a final resting place for the kings and high chiefs of Hawaii.

Focus: History

Soundtrack for the drive: Sheryl Crow, Wildflower

Quote of the Day: You’ll miss the best things if you keep your eyes shut ~ Dr. Seuss

I’m back in the Nu’uanu Valley this morning to visit Queen Emma’s Summer Palace, which was called Hanaiakamalama.

It’s more of a country house than a palace and is quite modest. There’s no indoor photography allowed. I’m instantly reminded of my great aunt’s house in Connecticut when I walk inside. The smell, the dark stain of the wood, the creek in the floor, the perfectly made beds that no one has slept on in decades, they all bring me back to a place I wiled away many hours as a child.

Just like my aunt’s house it’s an interesting mix of homey and museum-like. Also like my aunt’s property, the house is surrounded by acres of meticulously kept lawns and gardens.

Oh the grounds! Lush, right? You guessed it. How many times can I use that word in one blog?

  Check out this tree!

I am miraculously still finding new kinds of flowers to photograph. The guidebook says Queen Emma spent most of her later years here tending to her garden.

  Not far down the road from the palace is the Royal Mausoleum.

The tombs here hold the remains of many of the important people I’ve learned about this month including Kamehameha II through V, Kalakaua, Queens Emma and Lili’uokalani, and Charles Reed Bishop.

I’m really looking forward to returning to the Bishop Museum to learn more about the history of this land. I have the opportunity to take Hawaiian Culture classes at school as well.

What an incredible journey this has been so far! But it’s not over yet… I hope to go out with a bang tomorrow afternoon, so stay tuned for one more day!

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