Hawaii has a vibrant culture, originated by Polynesians, or native Hawaiians, enriched over the years by peoples from England, America, Portugal, Asia, and the Philippines to name a few. The aloha spirit of acceptance, respect and hospitality continues its warm embrace of peoples from everywhere. Hawaii is so many things, perhaps it is best summed up by one word: “Aloha”! For specific cultural experiences, check out our island pages.
The Big Island
Farmers Markets - Arts and Crafts
Fresh produce and local artists display their products at numerous locales throughout the islands. Farmers Markets are a fun way to visit with local people and enjoy local flare. Enjoy some fruit that you can’t find at home and pick up some gifts for friends and family back home.
Photographers, painters, wood carvers and sculptures display and sell their beautiful work in the galleries that dot the islands. All styles of artwork are available, from traditional to contemporary with a particular focus on Hawaii subject matter. If you’re interested in collecting art, need a quality art gift or you’re just interested in browsing, you’ll enjoy Hawaii art.
Heritage and History
You will appreciate the Hawaiian Islands with an understanding of how the islanders first came to this tropical paradise and the trials they faced from outsiders. Visit museums and archeological sites to learn about the rich heritage that makes Hawaii what it is today.
One of the best ways to experience Hawaiian culture is to participate in the many local events that are happening throughout the islands. Art walks, rodeos, Hawaii quilting demos, holiday parades, and concerts featuring local performers are some of the fun events to experience in Hawaii. Check out a listing of local events that are scheduled while visiting the islands. You don’t want to have to say, “I was on the island but I didn’t know about that event, I missed it!”
The cultural diversity of the islands is displayed in the theater, music and dance of the islands. For traditional Hawaiian culture, one often thinks of hula. Hula is a Hawaiian dance specific to the islands, accompanied by chant or song tied to the values, heritage and ancient stories of the islands. Many believe that hula’s roots stem from the islands of Molokai and Kauai. Hula today is entertainment, art form and expressions of sacred values all rolled into one. There are wide ranges of hula performances to be found on the islands, from authentic, dramatic chant-accompanied hula to the more flowing, modern style which contains elements of western musical influence.