Waiohinu is a small town located just west of Naalehu at the southernmost part of the Big Island. The town’s only store is the Wong Yuen Store and Service Station established in 1914 by Chinese immigrant Wong Yuen. Waiohinu also has a small park with a pavilion.
Waiohinu is located in the Kau district near South Point (Ka Lae) which is the southernmost spot in all of the United States.
For a long time the town’s main attraction was a monkeypod tree planted by the famed author Mark Twain in 1866.
Unfortunately the monkeypod tree was destroyed by a windstorm in 1957 but it has now grown back from one of the original shoots, once again attaining a formidable stature. Wood from the original tree trunk was carved into a bust of Twain which is on display in the Lyman Museum & Mission House in Hilo.
Waiohinu means “Shiny water” and is also the name of the ahupuaa, or traditional Hawaiian land division extending from the sea to the uplands. Waiohinu is located 57 miles southeast of Kailua-Kona on the Mamalahoa Hwy. (Hwy. 11).