Celebrate All Things Hawaiian At The Month-Long Aloha Festivals in Oahu


If you grew up watching Lilo & Stitch like us, we’re pretty sure you wanted to visit Hawaii at least once as a kid. We were enticed by Hawaii’s beautiful beaches, unique culture, and the friendly locals (except Myrtle and her gang who bullied Lilo a lot). The show gave us a preview of how it was to be in Hawaii, but there’s a lot more to Hawaii than pineapples, surfing, grass skirts or hula dancing. This September, get a chance to experience Hawaii to the fullest at the Aloha Festivals in Oahu.

During the Second World War, the attack on the Pearl Harbor devastated not only the US Forces’ efforts during the war but also the cultural landscape and identity of the civilians. So, in an effort to recover their identity as Hawaiians, the Aloha Week, which turned into Aloha Festivals, was established. Today, the Aloha Festivals are celebrated to appreciate and preserve Hawaiian culture. Each year, the Aloha Festivals have a theme that reflects Hawaiian culture like the No Ke Kai Kakou E or ‘We are of the sea’ which celebrates the locals’ relationship with the sea.

The festival begins with the investiture of the Royal Court. People with Hawaiian ancestry are chosen to fill the positions of the king, queen, prince, and princess who will then preside over the festivities. They will be dressed in traditional clothing and presented with the regalia representing their reign.

During the festival, enjoy a night full of dancing, food, fun, music, and entertainment at Hawaii’s largest block party–the Hoolaulea. Locals and tourists would flock to the Kalakaua Avenue where both modern and traditional performances by hula schools, bands, and solo artists are staged, food stalls offer a variety of native as well as international cuisines, and retail stalls selling native flowers, products, and other paraphernalia.

The whole festival concludes with the Flower Parade where the most beautiful of Hawaii’s native flowers are showcased. During the festival, you’ll see Pau riders atop horses adorned with colorful leis around their necks and motor floats decorated with native flora carrying hula dancers, bands, and singers.

Interspersed between floats are marching bands and traditional dancers from various hula schools that make locals and tourists feel the ‘Spirit of Aloha’.

Hawaii is a paradise on earth and the Aloha Festivals will let you experience not just the island but the culture and people as well! So pack your bags this September, jump on a plane, and say ‘Aloha’ to the islands with the best sunsets, majestic sceneries, rich culture, and friendly locals.

Photo credit: alohafestivals


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