With a history steeped in religion, culture and even civil war, Hawaii is no stranger to crazy urban legends. From legends surrounding the powerful and influential Volcano Goddess to modern myths of wandering spirits, the “aloha” state isn’t all sunshine and happiness.
1) The Goddess of the Volcano
Pele, the Volcano goddess, can be found in many Hawaiian legends. It is said that if you meet a young, beautiful woman in red or an older lady with white hair, you must greet her with aloha and offer her help. If you refuse to help, death or heartbreak will fall upon your family.
2) Don’t Bring Pork Across the Pali Highway
It is said that Pele and the demigod Kamapua’a – a half man, half pig – had a bad breakup and agreed to never see each other again. The legend says that you cannot take pork over the Pali Highway, which separates the Windward side of Oahu from Honolulu, because it means that you are symbolically taking Kamapua’a from one side of the island to the other. If you risk bringing pork across the highway, your car will stop at some point along the journey and an old woman with a dog will appear. To continue on your way, you must feed the pork to the dog.
3) The Menehune
Menehune are dwarf-like creatures that reside in lush forests, far from civilization. These 2-foot tall creatures are portrayed as mysterious but also have excellent craftsmanship, constructing anything they desire. They are credited with building the Menehune Fish Pond on Kauai – in just one night.
4) The Night Marchers
The Huaka’ipo, also known as the Nught Marchers, are the spirits of ancient Hawaiian warriors who have been cursed to march the islands for eternity. The night marchers are said to march in a single line, often carrying torches and weapons while chanting and playing drums. To protect yourself, you must lie on the ground face down in respect. Otherwise, the Night Marchers will kill you. Or so they say.
5) The Green Lady
Described as a woman covered in green mold and moss, “The Green Lady” wanders through the Wahiawa Gulch, and is most often seen near the Wahiawa Botanical Garden on Oahu. Legend states that there was once a woman who visited the gulch with her children, and while there, one of her children was lost, never to be found. The woman supposedly died of heartbreak, and is still trying to find her lost child.
6) Don’t Take The Lava Rocks…
One of the most common modern legends in Hawaii warns against Pele’s curse, which states that anyone who takes rock or sand away from the Hawaiian islands will suffer bad luck until the items are returned. Whether this myth is the result of Pele, or merely a disgruntled park worker is unknown but each year, hundreds of visitors send packages full of rocks and sand back to the island to relieve their bad luck.
Do you know of any other Hawaiian urban legends that still find their way into modern life?