When you’re making plans to celebrate the festive season, Hawaii might be the last place on your mind. You won’t see many people skiing unless you the volcanic peaks, and you won’t have to shiver through subzero temperatures. Can Christmas still feel like Christmas in Hawaii?
Christmas in Hawaii is a wonderfully unique experience. In ancient times, the holiday coincided with a traditional Hawaiian feast called Makahiki. This is a four month long festival that marks the Hawaiian New Year and was held in honor of Lono, the god who used a net to fish up the sun and the moon from the ocean and set them into orbit.
The modern incarnation of Christmas as we know it today was celebrated in 1856 as King Kamehameha V and Queen Emma of Hawaii proclaimed it as a day of thanksgiving. Two years later, Santa Claus visited the islands for the first time and it was declared an official holiday in 1862.
The celebration of Christmas in Hawaii is a time of artistic creativity and a labor of love. Hawaiians import Christmas trees from across the seas on board the Christmas Tree Ship. Other more creative Hawaiians celebrate Christmas by decorating Palm trees and Santas' reindeer driven Sleigh gets substituted for an outrigger canoe and dolphins.
Christmas carols are accompanied by a ukulele and families celebrate by having luaus and picnics on the beach. The high temperature remains a comfortable 78 degrees although swimming can be difficult because of the big waves rolling in. If you’re traveling to Hawaii to watch big wave surfing, this is definitely the time to come.
One sight you won’t want to miss is the infamous Honolulu City Lights. The city of Honolulu goes all out for Christmas and it’s beautiful. This month long celebration kicks off with the popular electric light parade and family friendly activities are held every night. The event grows in size and magnitude every year as it attracts thousands of resident and visitors.
Mele Kalikimaka! Merry Christmas from The Hawaii Shop