Ka’a'awa Valley


About Ka’a'awa Valley


Ka’a'awa Valley is one of Oahus best kept secretsexcept youve already known about it for decades. The valley is one of Hollywoods favorite filming locations which has brought dinosaurs to life, sheltered plane crash survivors, and been home to mountain gorillas.

Located north of Kaneohe Bay and Kailua Town, Kaaawa meets the Pacific Ocean at Kanenelu Beach (also known as Kalaeoio Beach Park or Kaaawa Beach Park). As the Kamehameha Highway wraps around the east side of Oahu, residential houses and buildings are peppered along a narrow roadway with views of the scenic Windward coast.

The Ka’a'awa Valley extends inland away from the ocean, and is owned by Kualoa Ranch. The area is popular for various tourist activities, local refreshments and souvenirs, as well as filming. Major films and TV series incorporating significant views of the valley include George of the Jungle, 50 First Dates, Jurassic Park, and Lost.

Just north of Ka’a'awa Valley is Kahana Valley. Known for the charming bay excellent for snorkeling at the base of the valley, the rock formation known as Crouching Lion separates these two majestic valleys.


Ancient Hawaiians held the Ka’a'awa Valley as a sacred place of rest and royal training. In 1850 King Kamehameha III sold the land to Dr. Gerritt P. Judd, a missionary doctor from New England, who also served as a royal advisor. For the areas roots in royalty the Ka’a'awa Valley was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1974.

The Ka’a'awa Valley has had a diverse history. It once was a sugar mill and World War II military airstrip, but more recently the area has been home to a cattle ranch, movie shoots, and tourist attractions.

Ka’a'awa Valley is a popular host for outdoor events. The area is a prime location for the Xterra Trail Running World Championship half-marathon, which usually takes place in December.

Facts & Trivia

  • Island: Oahu
  • Duration: All day, depending on your choice of Kualoa Ranch tours.
  • Amenities: Photo opportunities, restrooms, and refreshments available at Kualoa Ranch.
  • Insider Tip: Dont forget to bring your sunscreen, sunglasses, a hat, and insect repellant!
  • Fun Fact: Ka'a'awa Valley has been nicknamed The Backlot of Hawaii because it is one of the most-filmed locations throughout the Aloha State.
  • What to Expect: Kualoa Ranch Tours and Activities explore Kaaawa Valley in a variety of ways. Horseback riding, ATV excursions, catamaran ocean tours, and rambling jungle expeditions, and a visit to a secret Hawaiian fishpond are just some of the amazing activities you c
  • Pop Culture: The list of Hollywood movies filmed in Kaaawa Valley at Kualoa Ranch is near endless, the most popular blockbusters being Jurassic Park, Godzilla, Pearl Harbor, George of the Jungle, Mighty Joe Young, Tears of the Sun, Windtalkers, LOST (television series