Kalākaua Legacy Tour
This tour showcases life and legacy of our last ruling King, who was known as the “Merrie Monarch” and was instrumental in the revitalization of Hawaiian culture during his reign in the late 1800s. The tour will feature historical accounts and personal items belonging to King Kalākaua to help guests better understand not only what Kalākaua achieved locally and globally, but how his tangible vision of ʻIolani Palace, continues to contribute to the Hawaiian way of life and his preservation of hula, history, and tradition.
View King Kalākaua's Coronation Suit and Masonic Apron
Reproductions of the suit King Kalākaua wore at his coronation on February 12, 1883, and his masonic apron debuted at ʻIolani Palace on the king’s 185th birthday, Tuesday, November 16, 2021. Created by historic dress designer Iris Viacrusis, the Coronation Suit stands majestically in the Throne Room, while the Masonic Apron is on display in King’s Library on the second floor.
Explore Our Specialty Tours
Garments worn by the alii seamlessly integrated Hawaiian culture into European style dress. The Fashion Fit for Royalty specialty tour highlights the wardrobe and jewelry of Hawaiian royalty in the 19th century. Visitors will experience royal fashion at the peak of Hawaii’s monarchy with a closer look at opulent gowns, elegant uniforms, and other precious objects that were worn at formal court occasions.
The Hawaii’s Royal Connection to Japan tour explores how the Hawaiian Kingdom established the relationship with the Asian nation, which continues to present day. This exclusive opportunity brings King Kalakaua’s 1881 journey to Japan to life. During this docent-led tour, guests will have access to restricted areas throughout the Palace for an up-close look at precious objects, learn about people in Kalakaua’s inner circle, and hear stories about the King’s efforts to strengthen the Kingdom’s position on the world stage.
During the White Glove Tour, guests will go beyond the stanchions during a private and intimate tour led by the Iolani Palace Historian. Get a closer look at many precious objects in the Throne Room, State Dining Room and King Kalakaua’s Library. Guests will hear stories of the monarchs and learn of their distinguished place in Hawaii’s history as well as their impact on the world. The tour concludes in the Palace attic where guests will slip on a keepsake pair of white gloves for the unique chance to view items in the Palace collection not on display to the general public. They’ll learn about the special care it takes to protect and preserve these precious cultural objects for future generations.
Take a never before seen tour of the Chamberlain’s office suite and other rooms with the new Chamberlain’s Tour. This specialty tour brings a new perspective of life at Iolani Palace through the eyes of the Royal Chamberlain and other members of the Palace staff. The Chamberlain answered directly to the King and Queen and his office revealed what it took to run the royal household. For the first time, guests will be able to step into the Chamberlain’s office and hear insightful and enchanting stories about the monarchs who once walked the halls.
Welcome to Iolani Palace
Iolani Palace is a living restoration of a proud Hawaiian national identity and is recognized as the spiritual and physical multicultural epicenter of Hawaii. Built in 1882 by King Kalakaua, Iolani Palace was the home of Hawaii’s last reigning monarchs and served as the official royal residence and the residence of the Kingdom’s political and social life until the overthrow of the monarchy in 1893.
Registered as a National Historic Landmark since 1962 and the only official royal residence in the United States, the Palace is one of the most recognizable buildings in Hawaii. Meticulously restored to its former grandeur, Iolani Palace tells of a time when their Majesties, King Kalakaua and his sister and successor, Queen Liliuokalani walked the grand halls.
VIRTUALLY EXPERIENCE IOLANI PALACE
Browse our virtual experiences and online resources.
Just because our doors are closed doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the rich culture, history and insights of a Palace visit.
We encourage you to explore the Palace from a new perspective through our various digital resources.
The Royal Palace
Iolani Palace has been meticulously restored to its former grandeur, featuring original palace furnishings and artifacts that have been recovered, restored and replicated. Open to the public for guided tours, the first floor consists of the public reception areas – the Grand Hall, State Dining Room, Blue Room, and Throne Room – while the second floors showcase the private suites, including the King and Queen’s suites, Music Room, and the Imprisonment Room.
While the Palace building is of great significance, the land around the Palace stretches back to antiquity and is thought to have been the site of an ancient heiau (place of worship). In 1845, King Kamehmeha III established his official residence on this site, which served the first five Hawaiian kings until its demolition in 1874. It was replaced by a larger and more modern palace was completed in 1882.
Iolani Palace tells the story of a time in Hawaiian history when their Majesties, King Kalakaua and his sister and successor, Queen Liliuokalani walked the halls. The Palace holds beautiful memories of grand balls and public hula performances, along with painful ones of Liliuokalani’s imprisonment and eventual overthrow. Following the overthrow, the Palace served as the Capitol for almost 80 years until it was vacated and restored in the 1970s.
Iolani Palace is open Tuesday-Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The ticket office, located in Hale Koa (Iolani Barracks), is open from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. To make reservations, call 808-522-0832, or book online now.