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Hawaii Arts & Culture

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The history and majesty of the Native Hawaiian people are evident as one visits the historic places of the Hawaii Islands. Hawaii is a place of diverse cultures that have blended and transformed the island’s traditions, festivals and historic places. Through music, dance and storytelling the Hawaiian people continue to perpetuate and interpret the Hawaiian culture.

Beginning on the Island of Oahu, one can enjoy this blend of cultures by attending the island’s many festivals educational tours through venues like the Hawaii Plantation Village, The Iolani Palace, the King Kamehameha I Statue, the Duke Kahanamoku State Park on Waikiki Beach and the Bishop Museum all celebrate the accomplishments of the Hawaiian people.

The Big Island, is home to an array of museums, galleries, and performance venues where you can admire the work of local painters, sculptors, musicians, storytellers, and crafts people. The Merrie Monarch Festival (follows Easter Sunday in March - April) is the world’s premier hula event held in Hilo. It is a week-long celebration of the native art of the hula. The historical places such as Puuhonua and Honauna National Historical Park, Puukohola Heiau Historic Site and Mookini Heiau State Monument have spiritual significance to the native Hawaiian people.

Maui features unique arts and culture experiences. Today, Maui offers a thriving arts scene. The events and exhibitions at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center and the Hui Noeau Visual Arts Center continues to pay homage to its rich history while the Whalers Village Museum offers an historic account of the whaling industry and the Alexander & Baldwin Sugar Museum offers a view into the agriculture past. The Lahaina Historical Trail offers a significant look at the seaport’s heritage.

The history and culture of Kauai is on display at the Kauai Museum and Grove Farm Museum in Lihue, the Waioli Mission House in Hanalei Town and the Kokee Natural History Museum on the West Side. You can get a taste of the local flavor by visiting the small towns on the island and by participation in one of the many festivals and events on Kauai.

The people of Molokai gather together to celebrate the personification of the "aloha spirit" at the Molokai Ka Hula Piko Festival. This commitment to perpetuating the past sets Molokai apart from the other Hawaiian Islands. Molokai legends speak of the hula beginning at Kaana near the present day town of Maunaloa. Every May, some of the best dancers in the state gather to share their traditions and celebrate a never to be forgotten history.

Most people living on Lanai are descended from plantation workers who first came here when the “Pineapple Island” was the world’s largest pineapple exporter. You can experience the intimate atmosphere of Lanai by taking a stroll around Dole Park in Lanai City, browsing the shops and eating at its local restaurants. When in Lanai you feel like you are part of a small town.

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