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Interesting Facts About Hawaii

Interesting Facts About HawaiiThe most unique state in the union – Hawaii!

There are eight main islands and 124 smaller uninhabited ones

The major islands in Hawaii include:  Niʻihau, Kauaʻi, Oʻahu, Molokaʻi, Lānaʻi, Kahoʻolawe, Maui, and the Islands of Hawaii. In addition to these eight main islands, there are other smaller islands surrounding them.

Hawaii is the world’s longest archipelago.

Hawaii may be a small group of islands but it has one of the longest archipelagoes in the world. The archipelago is made up of 130 scattered points of land spanning some 1,600 miles starting from the Kute Atoll (north) to the Island of Hawaii (south).

Kilauea (above) is the most active volcano in the world

Kilauea is a shield volcano in Hawaii. It is one of the most active volcanoes, having erupted many times for the last 32 years. Kilauea is also the youngest shield volcano in the islands.

There are only 13 letters in the Hawaiian alphabet and every word and syllable ends with one of five vowels

Initially, the Hawaiian alphabet consisted of twelve consonants and five vowels, as well as seven dipthongs. Over the years the Hawaiian alphabet has evolved to facilitate speech. Currently, the Hawaiian alphabet consists of: Aa, Ee, Ii, Oo, Uu, Hh, Kk, Ll, Mm, Nn, Pp, Ww, and an apostrophe called ‘okina.

The name Hawaii comes from Hawaiki meaning place of the gods

The etymology behind the name “Hawaii” remains doubtful. It may come from “Hawaiki” meaning “the place of the gods,” or may have been named after Hawaii Loa, the legendary discoverer and settler of the islands.

All of Hawaii’s beaches are public

Hawaii is essentially a “beach” state. So except for a very few limitations, all beaches in Hawaii offer public access to the visitors and tourists — as “they belong to no one and everyone.”

You can find Hawaii beaches in the colors of white, black, yellow, red, and green sand

Hawaii envelops a magical and mysterious beauty even when you’re on the beachfront. While you may already have known about the beautiful white and golden sand beaches that Hawaii is famous for, you can also encounter beach sands in strange but delightful colors: black (at Punaluu Beach Park), red (at Kaihalulu) and green (Papakolea), among others.

From the sea floor, Mauna Kea measures 33,476 feet, more than twice as tall as Mount Everest

Mauna Kea is a dormant volcano on the Hawaiian islands. It stands 13,796 feet if you see it from land, but in reality much of the volcano is under water. From the sea floor, Mauna Kea is actually over 33,000 feet high, significantly taller than Mount Everest (which is “just” over 29,000 feet).

There are two types of lava seen all over Hawaii – the rough, rock, fragmented kind called a’a and the smooth, ropy kind called pahoehoe

Actually, there are not just two, but six types of lavas in Hawaii. Apart from the pahoehoe and the a’a lavas, there are also the Pele’s hair, Pele’s tears, lava bombs, and green sand.

From east to west, Hawaii is the largest U.S. state

You may scratch your head at first while reading this, but here’s a fun fact: although Hawaii is one of the smallest states by land area (only 10,931 square miles), but in terms of the scope, Hawaii is actually the widest among all other US states. Hawaii measures 1,500 miles from the island of Ni’hau on the west to the Island of Hawaii on the east.

Ancient Hawaiians believed the heavier a woman was, especially the chieftess, the more beautiful she was

If you are a little overweight and you’re in Hawaii, you might feel quite lucky! You will feel beautiful there especially if modern Hawaiians still hold this belief (and we think they still prefer curvy, heavyset women).

The people of Hawaii consume the most Spam per capita in the U.S.

While much of the Americans in the mainland may have a love-hate relationship with Spam, in Hawaii people LOVE Spam so much. Hawaii consumes about 7 million cans of Spam every year.

Hawksbill sea turtles lay up to 200 eggs at a time that hatch after two months but only a fraction live to maturity

Normally, hawksbill sea turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata) lay around 140 eggs but they can lay as much as 200. The baby turtles usually hatch in the evening after about two months. But because these hatchlings mostly emerge in darkness, they never make it to the water by dawn as they have become prey to birds and crabs that live on the shores. The hawksbill sea turtle is considered one of the endangered species.

A large number of the 10,000 humpback whales migrate near Hawaii between October and June

Hawaii’s warm and shallow waters are a favorite “vacation spot” for these humpback whales. According to scientists, about two-thirds of the North Pacific humbpack whales swim to Hawaii to mate, bring forth and nurse their calves (baby whales). They swim about 3,000 miles from the colder waters of Bering Sea (near Alaska and Russia) to Hawaii in less than a couple of months.

Surfing was invented thousands of years ago by the first Polynesians who settled on Hawaii

Surfing is almost every extreme sport lovers’ favorite. But contrary to what you think, it’s not really a recent invention! Surfing has Polynesian origins, and the ancient Hawaiian people were the ones to ride the big sea waves thousands of years ago. However, they didn’t do this for the sake of sport or hobby, but rather they saw surfing as a form of art (called he’enalu) and a also part of their culture.

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