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16 Fun Interesting Facts About Hawaii That’ll Make You Love the Islands

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Hawaii is deservingly on many people’s bucket lists. If it seems like sun, sand, islands, and beaches, that’s because it is.

Hawaii offers a peaceful and laid-back way of life (whether for short-term vacation or long-term) and a fascinating and rich cultural and natural history.

Hawaii is one of the most beautiful places on earth. Yet, there’s more to it than aesthetics. Here are fun, interesting facts about Hawaii that will make you love it even more; and likely activate your travel bug.

1. No Native Snakes in Hawaii

Cute mangrove snake on hand of the expert. Boiga dendrophilala,
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Snakes and [some] humans aren’t the best of friends, which makes Hawaii unique. Hawaii is one of the few places in the world without any native snake species. To safeguard the rare habitat, the state has stringent laws that forbid the introduction of snakes.

2. The World’s Tallest Mountain

Top of Mauna Kea, dormant volcano on the island of Hawaii,
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You may have heard that Mt.Everest is the tallest mountain in the world at 8,850 meters (29,035 feet). However, if measured from its base on the ocean floor, Mauna Kea, located on the Big Island, is the world’s tallest mountain. Mauna Kea stands about 33,500 feet (10,210 meters) tall, with about 13,796 feet (4,205 meters) above sea level.

3. Unique Time Zone

A man checking time on watch
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Like a queen, Hawaii operates in its own time zone, the Hawaii Standard Time (HST), which is 10 hours behind Coordinated Universal Time (UTC-10). Hawaii does not observe Daylight Saving Time.

4. Hundreds of Islands

A bunch of Islands
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Hawaii is rich in many things, and the islands are at the top of the list. Although the state of Hawaii’s 8 islands are the most well-known, it’s made up of 137 islands.

5. Hawaii is the Biggest Island

View on Na Pali Coast on Kauai island on Hawaii
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The biggest and youngest island in the state of Hawaii is called Hawai’i. It is over 4,000 square miles, accounting for over half of Hawaii’s archipelago landmass. Underwater volcanic eruptions formed these islands, and the youngest island, also known as the Big Island), is still growing due to ongoing volcanic activity.

6. The Macadamia Nut State

Macadamia nuts in white bowl and white background
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Hawaii is the only U.S. state that grows macadamia nuts commercially. The first macadamia tree in Hawaii was planted in 1881, and the nuts have since become a popular export.

7. Humuhumunukunukuapua’a

Picasso triggerfish swimming over a coral reef
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Apologies if you bit your tongue trying to read that, but that is the name of Hawaii’s state fish, also known as the reef triggerfish. Hawaii is the only state in the U.S. that has its own fish.

8. Children Named the State Fish

Clown Triggerfish
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The above Hawaii’s state fish name is so long because kids named it. The name means “triggerfish with a pig-like snout.” It’s a mouthful, but makes total sense!

9. A Surfing Birthplace

Girl Surfing Wave Surfing Girl Durban,
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If you love surfing, you’ll be happy to know that modern surfing has its roots in Hawaii. Europeans first documented the sport in the late 18th century, and it has since become an integral part of Hawaiian culture- and many other beach cultures.

10. Hula Dance

Woman dancing hula by the ocean in hawaii at sunrise
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There’s no mentioning Hawaii without mentioning the hula dance. The Hula is a traditional Hawaiian dancing style that uses hip and hand gestures to tell a narrative. Initially, trained dancers would perform it as a devotional dance for the aristocracy of Hawaii. It saved the Hawaiian language from extinction.

11. World’s Most Active Volcano

Frozen lava from Kilauea Volcano in big island, Hawaii
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Kilauea, located on the Big Island, is one of the world’s most active volcanoes. The island’s constantly shifting topography results from its frequent lava flows.

12. Two Official Languages

Snorkeling Bay in Oahu,Hawaii
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Hawaii is the only U.S. state with two official languages: English and Hawaiian.

13. World’s Most Isolated Population

Na Pali coast in Hawaii
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Hawaii is Earth’s most isolated population center, about 2,400 miles (3,860 kilometers) from the nearest continent. If you want to get away from the world, literally, Hawaii is the place to go.

14. World’s Largest Maze

Green bushes circular labyrinths, hedge maze
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The pineapple-shaped maze at the Dole Plantation on Oahu features the world’s largest maze made entirely of Hawaiian plants. Visitors can explore the pineapple-shaped maze while learning about the fruit’s history.

15. The State of Rainbows

A Rainbow, Poipu, Kauai, Hawaii
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Hawaii is often called the “Rainbow State” due to the frequent rainbows, thanks to the combination of sunshine and brief rain showers.

16. Mail a Coconut

A letter in a bottle and a coconut on the beach
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You can put many things in a mailbox, and Hawaii allows you to mail the strangest thing of all—coconuts. In 1991, a postmaster in Hawaii started the Post-a-Nut program to give locals and tourists a way to send their friends a unique, genuine piece of Molokai.


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confused woman holding a map on her head
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