In the stunning new video series, appropriately named ‘Share the Aloha’, Hawaii Tourism gives travellers the cultural and safety do’s & don’ts when visiting their island home.
The Kuleana Campaign is one part of a multi-pronged approach to share the beauty of the culture of Hawaii while educating visitors on how to travel respectfully while visiting.
Kuleana means responsibility and it’s the personal and collective commitment to the people of Hawaii and the place they call home.
Every destination has its own set of unwritten rules regarding cultural etiquette. Hawaii is no different, and hopefully, by sharing these messages, we can all do our bit in being responsible and culturally sensitive travellers.
Ohana means family
The people of Hawaii welcome visitors with open arms. They want travellers to experience the people, history and culture of the land they call home.
They ask you to arrive in Hawaii with an open heart and open mind and learn from the people who live there.
Ohana allows you to engage with communities in a special way, it’s the gift the people of Hawaii offer to the rest of the world.
DO: Respect everyone, you are one big happy family.
DON’T: Lock yourself up in your resort, there are so many wonderful people to meet!
Respect the Culture
Did you know, Hula is the voice of Hawaiian ancestors? It is extremely sacred. It’s a way to stay in contact with the land they call home.
The people of Hawaii love to share Hula with Keiki (children) and visitors. They ask for you to keep it in your heart.
When in Hawaii, look at life through a Hawaiian perspective. Respect the land. Remember, you are stepping on a living being. Asking permission to enter a place is very wise, as it means you are not assuming. Asking to be invited into a place is important in the culture.
DO: Immerse yourself in the culture and listen in awe to the stories of the land.
DON’T: Turn up drunk dressed in a coconut bra.
This is a personal fave.
Pono means to be in balance; in concert with your surroundings. This includes travelling in balance with people and places. Embrace where you are.
Visitors can choose to volunteer with a community group for an authentic and enjoyable Hawaiian experience.
DO: Travel with open eyes and become enchanted with the people and the land.
DON’T: Look for what makes you different.
Respect the Ocean
The ocean in Hawaii might looks calm on the surface, but often there are hidden rip currents, rocks and other dangers. Make sure you keep an eye out for hazard signs, understand your own abilities, swim/surf where there are lifeguards on duty and if in doubt, ask a local for advice.
When it comes to Marine life, Hawaii offers it in abundance. If you’re lucky enough to encounter turtles, sharks or other sea creatures, stay calm, give them space and appreciate them from a distance.
It’s important to protect the ocean too. You can do this by picking up any litter or microplastics from the beach, using reusable bottles, straws, bags etc. and choosing sunscreen without toxic chemicals.
DO: Have fun and appreciate the abundance of life the water brings.
DON’T: Swim on your own, coated in chemical-filled sunscreen or harass the turtle for a selfie!
Hiking on the islands of Hawaii is spectacular and the local people want you to enjoy the scenery in a safe and respectful manner.
They ask you to be prepared for all conditions. The weather can change rapidly and you need to be equipped if this was to happen. Suitable footwear is a must, as well as a first-aid kit and plenty of water. Stick to the marked trails to avoid danger and to not cause harm to the nature around you.
DO: Be mindful; take only photos and leave only footprints.
DON’T: Wear flip flops on an off-trail adventure!
DO: Share this with your clients to give them one more reason to book with you.
DON’T: Let them get scammed by some dodgy website where “there’s a gorgeous luxury 5-bed villa, on the beach for $55 a night!”
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