Hawaiian Culture

Hawaiian culture stories published by Maui No Ka Oi Magazine.

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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.

Home, Thatched Home

Virtually extinct for over a century, hale—traditional Hawaiian houses—are making a comeback with the new millennium.

Hawaii Ponoʻi

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

Written in Stone

A historic site yields clues to Maui’s ancient culture
olena

Hawaiian Turmeric

Turmeric is prized around the world for its yellow color, bold flavor, and medicinal properties. When Polynesian voyagers first sailed to Hawai‘i, they brought the pungent herb with them.
Hawaii Big Island Lava Flow

The Road to Pele + VIDEO

What is it like to live next to a volcano?
Hokulani Holt

What is a Hawaiian Education?

We ask three maoli (native) educators to consider what it means to be an educated Hawaiian in the twenty-first century—and why it matters.
checking opihi populations

Clinging to Survival

In rural East Maui, two communities are taking a stand to conserve a weird wild food — and with it, a part of their culture.
Hawaiian hale

Social Structure: Hawaiian Hale

Indigenous architecture was shaped by—and helped to shape—life in early Hawai‘i. Descendants of the Islands’ first people are building on that foundation.
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.
Hawaiian healing

Healing Across Generations

Following the ancient practices of our ancestors has restored a missing piece—healing across generations.
Polynesian explorers

Wayfinders

Polynesians navigate Earth's largest ocean by celestial bodies and seabirds, winds and ocean swells.
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.
Taro in Maui

Taro for Sale and I’m Buying!

Purchase rare varieties of taro while supporting Maui Nui Botanical Gardens.

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.
Hawaiian moon calendar phases

Hawaiian Moon Calendar

In its wax and wane, Hawaiians of old found the secrets to sustainable living.
Lomilomi spa massage in Maui Hawaii

Aligned with the Ancestors

Lomilomi has the potential to "heal a person's path backwards and forwards," says Jeana Naluai, owner of Ho'omana Spa.

Ku Mai Ka Hula

Discovering culture through dance.
Hawaiian cultural leaders in Maui

The Thousand-year-old Gift

Hawaiian culture evolved over millennia, then almost disappeared after Western contact. Maui's cultural advisors are committed to bringing it back.
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.
Kamaka Kukona

Mover and Shaker

Triple threat: He can dance. He can chant. And he can sing.
Lahaina

Resurrecting Moku‘ula

Bit by bit, archeologists are uncovering a forgotten island where kings once ruled and a sacred lizard kept watch.
voyaging canoe maui

Birth of a Canoe

After nearly two decades in dry dock, the first oceangoing traditional voyaging canoe, Mo‘okiha o Pi‘ilani, embarked on its maiden voyage from Mala Wharf in Lahaina on July 11.
Hawaiian art

Making it Maoli

What defines art as Hawaiian? The answer may lie as deep as one’s DNA.
Hawaiian canoe carver

A Carver of Canoes

Using ancient navigation techniques as a guide, master woodworker Keola Sequeira breathes new life into the ancient art of canoe building right here on Maui.
Alala Hawaiian Crow

The Call of the ‘Alala

Ancient Hawaiian Chanters used the unique sounds of the Alala, Hawaiian crow, to broadcast messages in battle. Currently they are extinct in the wild.

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