Hawaii is the 50th and most recent state to have joined the United States, having received statehood on August 21, 1959. Hawaii is the only U.S. state located in Oceania and the only one composed entirely of islands. It is the only U.S. state located outside North America.
The word Hawaii is from the Proto-Polynesian hawaiki, meaning 'place of the gods' or 'homeland'. Hawaii state's nickname is 'Aloha State', because the word 'Aloha' is the most commonly used words in the Hawaiian Language. Based on the context, Aloha can mean 'hello', 'welcome', 'love', 'best wishes' or even 'goodbye'
How did Hawaii get its name?
The wettest place in the United States is Waialeale Mountain. It averages an astounding 488 inches of precipitation per year. The largest contiguous ranch in the United States is in Hawaii.
Hawaii Fun Facts
Hawaii was originally called the Sandwich Isles. This is what Captain James C. Cook named the islands in 1778 in honor of his patron the Earl of Sandwich
The Big Island (Hawaii Island) is getting bigger by about 42 acres each year because of the continuous eruption of the Kīlauea Volcano. It is the most active volcano on Earth and it's been erupting for more than 30 years. The Hawaiian name 'Kilauea' means "spewing" or "much spreading".
Kauai, also known as the 'Garden Isle' is famous for its jagged green mountains, white-sand beaches and tropical landscapes. More than 60 Hollywood movies have been filmed here, including Jurassic Park
Iolani Palace, in Honolulu, is the only royal palace in the United States. Electric lights illuminated Iolani Palace four years before the White House in Washington D.C. had them
Mauna Loa, the world's biggest volcano, presents out-of-the-world experience on Earth. NASA trains astronauts for space voyages on its lava fields.
Hawaii is the only US state made up entirely of islands. It is composed of 132 islands - eight main islands (Hawaii, Maui, Oahu, Kauai, Molokai, Lanai, Niihau and Kahoolawe) and 124 islets, reefs, and shoals. Hawaii is the southernmost state in the USA
Hawaii is the only US state with a tropical rain forest. Exceptionally prodigious rainfall, verdant vegetation and significant biological diversity define the rain forests of the world. Hawaiian Archipelago harbors tropical rain forest on windward cliffs and slopes, as well as boggy cloud forest on high-elevation plateaus.
Hawaii is the only U.S. state that commercially grows coffee, cocoa, and vanilla beans. The weather of sunny mornings, cloud or rain in the afternoon, little wind, and mild nights combined with porous, mineral-rich volcanic soil create favorable coffee growing conditions. Kona coffee is the market name for coffee (Coffea arabica) cultivated on the slopes of Hualalai and Mauna Loa in the North and South Kona Districts of the Big Island of Hawaii. It is one of the most expensive coffees in the world.
The Hawaiian Islands are the projecting tops of the biggest mountain range in the world. Under-sea volcanoes that erupted millions of years ago formed the islands of Hawaii.
The Hawaiian archipelago spans the distance of 1,523 miles (2,451 km), making Hawaii the longest island chain in the world.
Hawaiian language has only 12 letters (A, E, I, O, U, H, K, L, M, N, P and W) and a symbol called 'okina (') and it indicated a glottal stop (slight pause) 'Okina is often represented by the apostrophe (') but its official symbol (') In Hawaiian language, Hawaii is written as: Hawai'i. Eevery word in Hawaiian language has to end with one of five vowels (A, E, I, O, U) The kahakō symbol is a line placed over a vowel. It directs speakers to stretch out a vowel sound.
From east to west, Hawaii is the second widest state in the United States (behind Alaska), measuring 1,523 miles (2,451 km) from the island of Ni’ihau to the island of Hawai’i
Hawaii is the only state in the United States to honor a monarch, celebrating King Kamehameha Day on June 11th since 1872. King Kamehameha I (Kamehameha the Great) is known for uniting the Hawaiian Islands in 1810.
Haleakalā (meaning 'House of the Sun') is the world's largest dormant volcano. It forms more than 75% of the Hawaiian Island of Maui. Its crater is 3,000 feet deep, 7.5 miles long by 2.5 miles wide
Hawaii is the only state in United States where whites (Caucasians) are in minority. About 37% of Hawaii's population are of Asian ancestry.
Niihau, the seventh largest of the Hawaiian Islands, was purchased by Elizabeth Sinclair in 1864 from King Kamehameha V for $10,000 in gold and private ownership passed on to her descendants, the Robinson family
Molokai’s north shore is home to the world’s largest sea cliffs (more than 3,000 ft or 914 m high) and Hawaii’s longest waterfall (Kahiwa Falls – 2,165 ft or 660 m long)
At less than half a million years old, Hawaii Big Island is the youngest of the Hawaiian Islands. As it is still forming, the Big island is lacking in good beaches (We need to wait for 5 million years to get beaches on the Big Island) 6 million years old Kauai is the oldest of the Hawaiian Islands. Kauai is the oldest of the main Hawaiian Islands
Standing 13,803 ft (4,207 m) above sea level, the peak of Mauna Kea is the highest point in the state of Hawaii. Mauna Kea is a dormant volcano on the Big island of Hawaii. It is the world's biggest and tallest volcano. It is also the tallest (not highest, because most of it is under the sea) mountain on Earth. When measured from its oceanic base, its height is 33,100 ft (10,100 m) Mount Everest is world's highest (not tallest) mountain as it's peak is 8,848 metres (29,029 ft) above sea level.
Hawaii Fun Facts
Hawaii has the highest life expectancy in the United States. Mississippi has the lowest life expectancy in the United States. On an average, Hawaiians live about 6 years longer than Mississippians.
The hula was originally a form of worship performed by highly trained men who were supposedly taught the dance by the Hawaiian god Luka
The island of Maui was named after the demigod Maui, who taught Hawaiians to make fire, invented spears, and created a giant fishhook from his dead grandmother’s jawbone. According to the legend, when he fished with the hook, he brought the Hawaiian Islands up from the sea
The Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary, created in 1992, is the only sanctuary in the U.S. dedicated to a single species. Hawai‘i is also the only state where whales mate, calve and nurse their young.
At Kealakekua Bay, Big Island, is a 5,682-square-foot area that was deeded to Britain for a monument to Captain James Cook. So you can literally swim from Hawaii to England
Hawaii is one of the three US states that are antipodal (diametrically opposite on the other side of the globe) to inhabited land Hawaii and Oahu islands lie exact opposite to the African nations of Botswana and Namibia. So, if you start digging a straight hole in Honalulu and manage to come on the other side of the globe, you will come out in Botswana/Namibia
A luau is a traditional Hawaiian party or feast that is usually accompanied by entertainment. Many families celebrate a child's first birthday with a luau. Graduation luaus and wedding luaus are also common.
Hawaii's coastline is approximately 750 miles (1,210 km) long, which is fourth in the United States after those of Alaska, Florida and California
Hawaii is the 8th smallest, the 11th least populous, but the 13th most densely populated of the 50 U.S. states
Ka Lae on the Big Island of Hawaii is the southernmost point in the United States
Kalaaupapa on Molokai was once a leper colony. It was administered by Father Damien, a Flemish Catholic missionary, who later died of leprosy he contacted while treating the patients
Pearl Harbor near Honolulu is a United States Navy deep-water naval base. It was shot into headlines when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor on Sunday, December 7, 1941, an event that brought the USA into World War II
Hawaii is one of the few places on earth that has two types of lava - the rough, rocky, fragmented kind called a’a and the smooth kind called pahoehoe.
Only two types of mammals are native to Hawaii - the hoary bat and the monk seal. There are no snakes native to Hawaii. The Brahminy blind snake is the one snake that lives in Hawaii; it was imported from the Philippines, is harmless and is about the size of an earthworm.
By law, no building on Kauai is allowed to be built taller than a palm tree.
Hawaii does not allow snakes as pets. The state also prohibts alligators, dragon lizards, ferrets, gerbils, geckos, hamsters, monk parakeets, piranhas, snapping turtles and toucans as pets. These can only call zoo as their home in Hawaii.
Hawaii has its own time zone (Hawaiian Standard Time) It's also one of two U.S. states that doesn't follow Daylight Saving Time. (Arizona is the other)
Some of the largest waves in the world can be found in Pe’ahi on the north shore of Maui. Aptly called Jaws by surfers, the surf break has produced waves of higher than 60 feet.
Hawaii is the most isolated population center on the face of the earth. Hawaii is 2,390 miles from California; 3,850 miles from Japan; 4,900 miles from China; and 5,280 miles from the Philippines.
The Hawaii is one of four US states that have outlawed billboards (The others are Alaska, Maine, and Vermont)
In 1968, Diamond Head was declared a National Natural Landmark. The crater, also called Diamond Head Lookout was used as a strategic military lookout in the early 1900s. Spanning over 475 acres (190 ha) (including the crater’s interior and outer slopes), it served as an effective defensive lookout because it provides panoramic views of Waikīkī and the south shore of Oahu
Lei is a wreath of any of nature's gifts (flowers, leaves seeds, nuts etc.) presented upon arriving or leaving as a symbol of affection. A lei is usually given with a kiss. It is impolite to refuse a lei or remove it in front of the person who presented it. Only open lei are given to a pregnant. Lei should never be thrown away casually. It should be returned to the earth by hanging as a decoration, burying, or burning.
Hawaii is famous for its world-class beaches and they come in many colors, including golden-yellow, red, white, green and black. Papakalea, the famous green sand beach, which gets its color from olivine crystals formed by volcanic eruptions. There are also several black sand beaches on the Big Island, so colored by tiny shards of lava.