HONOLULU (KHON2) — We all make use of our island roadways, but when was the last time you paid attention to their given names? 

Did you know you could learn more about Hawaiʻi and our history if you did?

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Our weekly “Aloha Authentic” segment highlights various streets across the pae ʻāina so we can dig into those names, and in turn, learn something new. 

This week, we bring the attention to the entrances of ʻIolani Palace.

In the ahupuaʻa of Honolulu, which lies in the moku of Kona here on Oʻahu, stands the street that leads you onto the grounds of ʻIolani Palace. 

We are talking about Likelike Street.

When ʻIolani Palace was completed in 1882, an 8-foot coral block wall with wooden gates originally encircled the grounds.

Within 10 years, the wall was brought down to 3 ½ feet and a painted iron fence was installed, which remains today. 

There are four principal gates that lead onto the palace grounds with each given a distinctive name and purpose.

The gate on King Street facing the front of the palace is named Kauikeaouli after King Kamehameha III. 

It was used for ceremonial occasions.  

The gate behind the palace facing the state capitol is named Hakaleleponi after Queen Kalama, consort to King Kamehameha III.

It was used by staff and retainers of the royal family.

The gate facing the east is named Likelike after the princess and sister to King Kalākaua and Queen Liliʻuokalani.

Today, we all use this gate to enter with our vehicles, but it was once reserved for private use by the royal family.

Finally, the gate on Richards Street facing the west is named Kīnaʻu after the mother of King Kamehameha IV and V.

It was once used by tradesmen, but today we use this gate to exit the grounds with our vehicles. 

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