Hawaii is a destination where you can truly escape into paradise. As the last addition to the United States in terms of statehood, Hawaii is frequently acclaimed as one of the most breathtaking places on the planet. This chain of islands is located on a volcanic hotspot in the Pacific Ocean, comprising hundreds of islands spread across a distance of 1,500 miles. Its scenic coastline brimming with lush rainforests, palm trees, and jagged cliffs that descend dramatically into the tempestuous waves below, makes it a haven for nature enthusiasts. Interestingly, it’s the only US state boasting both tropical rainforests and deserts, serving as a habitat to a multitude of unique fauna and flora not found elsewhere on the globe. Let’s delve into 6 intriguing facts you might be unaware of about Hawaii:
They Speak Two Languages
It’s not unusual for nations to recognize more than one official language, such as Canada (English and French), South Africa (Afrikaans, English, isiXhosa, Sesotho sa Leboa, Setswana, siSwati), or New Zealand (Maori and English). In contrast, the United States acknowledges only one official language – English. But that’s where this specific state stands out – the simultaneous existence of two languages. Hawaiians use the Hawaiian language because it was the indigenous language of the islands before the arrival of English explorers. However, in addition to their native tongue, the Hawaiian population also speaks English, leading to bilingualism among some Hawaiians.
It is Where Surfing Originated From
Hawaii holds the title as the birthplace of surfing. Have you ever pondered where the origins of surfing lie? The response is rather straightforward. This activity has garnered immense popularity globally, but its roots trace back to Hawaii, where individuals began mastering wave riding. The tradition has been preserved and handed down through the ages, maintaining a significant role in contemporary Hawaiian culture. As you explore the island’s beaches, you’ll frequently witness surfers near the shoreline. If fortune is on your side, you might even receive an invitation to join in on the fun!
Cowboys Roam The Highlands
Indeed, you read correctly. Elements of the wild west have found their way to the 22nd state of the US mainland. Hawaii’s Big Island houses cowboys, known as paniolos, who herd cattle across its expansive highlands. These individuals trace their lineage back to Spanish explorers and their native Hawaiian wives.
If the allure of the Wild West and cowboys captivates you, Hawaii is a worthy destination. In Maui’s highlands, wild herds wander freely without human intervention. On particular days, it’s common to spot imposing bulls sauntering through the area, undisturbed by human presence. For visitors drawn to Western themes and who relish the opportunity to experience cowboy life, this presents a thrilling and intriguing aspect of Hawaii to explore.
It Snows in Hawaii
Considering its tropical location, it may seem improbable for snow to fall in Hawaii. However, it does indeed! While witnessing snow on the islands is a rare occurrence, it isn’t unheard of. The Big Island is known to experience snowfall during winter due to its high altitude and chilly weather.
Interestingly, Hawaii’s Big Island is the sole island with active volcanoes that sees significant snowfall each year. Therefore, Hawaii makes for an appealing destination during the winter months. Activities like snowboarding, skiing, and other winter sports can provide unique experiences in Hawaii. Who knows? You may even have the opportunity to experience it first-hand!
Beaches Come In Black, Red & Green
We typically envision beaches as sandy shores extending into the sea. However, some beaches in Hawaii are bereft of any sand! Should you be fortunate enough to explore these islands and end up lounging on one of their “beaches” with a cocktail in hand, you’d actually be standing on black, red, or green sand.
The beaches in Hawaii display a remarkable range of hues, such as black sand (found at Kahana Beach on Maui), red sand (visible at Papakolea Beach on the Big Island), and green sand (located at Green Sand Beach on Kauai). Every beach presents a unique experience, making it a must to witness these Hawaiian natural marvels.
There’s a Road Trip For Every Island
Given the assortment of islands within Hawaii, there are scenic drives designed to showcase each one’s unique charm. One of the most sought-after routes is the circular tour around Oahu. This journey provides an opportunity to appreciate almost every picturesque corner of the island, ranging from mountains and waterfalls to nature preserves. It’s possible to take a helicopter ride over each island, Kauai helicopter tours are often most popular, and offer expansive aerial views of the island, including volcanoes and glaciers.
The Big Island of Hawaii features a scenic drive known as The Hamakua Coast, renowned for its ancient rainforests and waterfalls. On Kauai, there’s a tour along its stunning coastline, affording breathtaking views from its mountain ranges down to the ocean. Essentially, Hawaii continually offers activities and adventures to keep you engrossed for an extended period.
Hawaii, America’s 50th state, is an archipelago boasting a variety of unique ecosystems, from pristine beaches to active, fiery volcanoes. It’s our hope that these insights will aid in making your next trip filled with memorable experiences.