Hawaiian Culture

Hawaiian culture stories published by Maui No Ka Oi Magazine.

Gordean Bailey

Island Royalty

Kumu hula and lei maker, Gordean Bailey has spent a lifetime sharing the culture of aloha.
makahiki

The Rebirth of Makahiki

Maui and her sister islands are reviving one of the most important spiritual times of ancient Hawai‘i: Makahiki.
poi pounding

VIDEO: Papa Kuʻiʻai (Poi Board) Making

Watch as we transform a piece of monkey pod into a papa kuʻiʻai (poi board) during this workshop on Maui, hosted by the Hawaiʻi Farmers Union United.
taro farming

An Appetite for Culture + VIDEO

How Maui farmers are cultivating ancient wisdom to feed a population—and a hunger for culture.

Kapa: Fabric of a Culture

Pua Van Dorpe has spent a lifetime pursuing her passion—reclaiming this ancient and lost Hawaiian art
Haleakala Crater

Into the House of the Sun

A millennium before Haleakala became a national park, Hawaiians traversed its moonscape crater. On the park’s centennial, we reprise that journey.

Pohaku

You and I are older than the stones along the Puna shoreline. These stones started just a few years ago as gobs of lava from Pele’s current eruption, gobs that dripped into the sea only to be tumbled and polished then lobbed back onto the shore.
hawaiian fisherman nets

The Fisherman’s Net

From ancient times, Hawaiians have used this handwoven tool to gather an ocean harvest. For one Maui fisherman, it still holds a way of life and a sense of identity.
Ian Cole, Breadfruit Institute

Breadfruit

As it turns out, one breadfruit can feed a family, and one variety a people. Packed in coconut-husk fiber and dry leaves, ‘ulu accompanied the Polynesian voyagers in their canoes bound for Hawai‘i.
Maui girls canoe club

Keeping Culture Afloat

Maui's winningest canoe club is borrowing lessons from the past to surge ahead.
shearwaters

Watch out for Wedgies!

Wedge-tailed shearwaters spend the majority of their lives at sea, where they feed on baitfish and squid. They return to Hawai'i each spring to nest.
kalo field

Powered by Poi

Kalo, a legendary plant, has deep roots in Hawaiian culture.
Awapuhi Shampoo Ginger

Grounded in Culture

The culture of ancient Hawaiʻi was deeply rooted in nature. It still is—thanks to places like Maui Nui Botanical Gardens.
hanai

All in the Family

There’s a saying in English that you can’t choose your family. But with an ancient and enduring Hawaiian tradition called hānai, sometimes you can.

Lono’s Season

Teya Penniman explores the cultural significance and modern practices of Makahiki season in Hawaii. Learn about this sacred celebration in honor of Lono.
Maui voyaging canoe

Now, Voyager

Seventeen years in the making, the Hawaiian modern day voyaging canoe Mo‘okiha O Piilani will set sail on December 21 during the winter solstice.
Pele by Linda Rowell Stevens

In Praise of Wāhine

From the very beginning, Hawaiian culture has celebrated women’s power, passion and intellect. We dig into Hawaiian wāhine culture to learn more.
video

The Heartbeat of Hula

In contrast to modern hula (which is typically accompanied by Western-derived stringed instruments, such as the slack-key guitar or ‘ukulele), ancient hula is purely percussive.

Open Mind

See what happens when ancient Hawaiian culture meets modern art techniques at Maui's annual Celebration of Hawaii exhibit at Viewpoints Gallery in Makawao.
pueo

Hawaii’s Spirit Guardians

Animal, plant, elemental force, even the substance of dreams-in their different forms, ancestral guides helped to shape the Islands' first culture.
lessons from the past

Lessons from the Past

What can the ancient Hawaiians teach us about preserving today's resources for tomorrow?

Hawaii Ponoʻi

Get the translation of Hawai'i Pono'i.
Hawaiian taro

Cultivating an Ancient Wisdom

How food is grown, prepared, and used is arguably as important in defining a culture as lineage, language and lore.
lobelia grayana

Behold the Lobelia

The Lobelia Grayana is an endangered lavender flower that grows in Waikamoi Preserve on Maui. Ancient Hawaiians called this plant opelu.
Hawaiian kapa

Kapa: More to Learn

See all eleven kapa Pua Van Dorpe created to honor ancient Maui chiefs, and read their stories.
Hawaiian moon calendar phases

Hawaiian Moon Calendar

In its wax and wane, Hawaiians of old found the secrets to sustainable living.
'Ukulele

Jumping Flea

'Ukulele entertainer and master teacher Walter Kawa'i'aea keeps the beat of Hawaiian music.

Events & News

Latest Stories