Pacific Islands

Totem poles, nightsky at National Park of American Samoa, and a whale jumping out of water in Guam

Make new discoveries and a lifetime of memories in the national parks of the Pacific Islands. During your visit, you may hear personal accounts of struggle and survival during the Pacific campaigns of World War II, see dances and the artistry of indigenous peoples, or feel arctic-like mountain storms or hot steam rising from cooling lava. More than tropical beaches, warm temperatures, and brightly-colored flowers, the Pacific Islands are where battles raged, cultures continue to flourish, unique plants found nowhere else on Earth thrive in rainforests and deserts, and volcanoes erupt in moonscape environments. The 8 national parks in the Pacific Islands preserve the last best representations of all of these, and more.


Pacific Island Ocean & Coastal National Parks



World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument

  • 0.4 Shoreline Miles
  • 0.4 Marine Water Acres
  • At World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument, home of the USS Arizona Memorial, learn about one of the most pivotal moments in US history: the attack on Pearl Harbor, and the subsequent entry of the United States into World War II. The monument preserves and interprets the stories of the Pacific War, from the internment of Japanese Americans to the battles in the Aleutians.

Kalaupapa National Historical Park

  • 22 Shoreline Miles
  • 1,938.8 Marine Water Acres
  • When Hansen's disease (leprosy) was introduced to the Hawaiian Islands, King Kamehameha V banished all afflicted to the isolated Kalaupapa peninsula on the north shore of Molokai. Since 1866, more than 8000 people, mostly Hawaiians, have died at Kalaupapa. Once a prison, Kalaupapa is now refuge for the few remaining residents who are now cured, but were forced to live their lives in isolation.

Haleakala National Park

  • 2.5 Shoreline Miles
  • This special place vibrates with stories of ancient and modern Hawaiian culture and protects the bond between the land and its people. The park also cares for endangered species, some of which exist nowhere else. Come visit this special place - renew your spirit amid stark volcanic landscapes and sub-tropical rain forest with an unforgettable hike through the backcountry.

Pu’ukohola Heiau National Historic Park

  • 0.3 Shoreline Miles
  • 5.3 Marine Water Acres
  • How many places in America can you walk in the footsteps of a king? Where else has a stranded sailor risen up to become a great chief over an entire island? Where else can you experience the culminating event of a people, foretold from centuries past? Where else can you stand on a beach and watch as sharks pass over a submerged temple? Experience all this and much more – only at Pu'ukoholā Heiau!

Kaloko-Honokohau National Historic Site

  • 5.5 Shoreline Miles
  • 613 Marine Water Acres
  • To survive in a hot and arid environment the native Hawaiians (kanaka maoli) used ancient fishing skills, including the building of fishponds, and the knowledge of the location of precious fresh water (wai) that flows into the many brackish pools throughout the park. The spirit of the people (poe) and the knowledge of the elders (kupuna) created a tradition of respect and reverence for this area.

Pu’uhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park

  • 2.5 Shoreline Miles
  • Imagine you had just broken the sacred laws, the kapu, and the only punishment was death. Your only chance of survival is to elude your pursuers and reach the Pu'uhonua, a place of refuge. The Pu'uhonua protected the kapu breaker, defeated warriors, as well as civilians during the time of battle. No physical harm could come to those who reached the boundaries of the Pu'uhonua.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

  • 33 Shoreline Miles
  • Experience the heartbeat of a volcanic landscape. Volcanoes are monuments to Earth's origin, evidence that its primordial forces are still at work. During a volcanic eruption, we are reminded that our planet is an ever-changing environment whose basic processes are beyond human control. As much as we have altered the face of the Earth to suit our needs, we can only stand in awe before the power of an eruption.


War in the Pacific National Historical Park

  • 6.3 Shoreline Miles
  • 991 Marine Water Acres
  • At War in the Pacific National Historical Park, the former battlefields, gun emplacements, trenches, and historic structures all serve as silent reminders of the bloody World War II battles that raged across the Pacific. The park is known for its historic resources, but the verdant jungles, sandy beaches, turquoise waters, and stunning coral reefs also beckon visitors and residents to enjoy Guam.

American Samoa

National Park of American Samoa

  • 37.2 Shoreline Miles
  • 4,540.8 Marine Water Acres
  • The National Park of American Samoa welcomes you into the heart of the South Pacific, to a world of sights, sounds, and experiences that you will find in no other national park in the United States. Enjoy this unique national park and the welcoming people of American Samoa. We are here to protect its rich culture and natural resources. Come explore them with us!

Last updated: June 8, 2022


  • Site Index