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Category: Cultural

Hānau Ke Koʻa: The History and Importance of...

July 15, 2019
Maui Ocean Center Shallow Reef

The kumulipo states that life began with the coral polyp and as more life was born, it became more and more complex. It is believed that coral is an akua, or deity, that may be responsible for both life and death for natives to the islands. The historical and cultural significance of ko‘a, or coral, cannot be understated and it is no wonder that corals continue to amaze us to this day.

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maui ocean center, things to do in maui, maui activities

Boneless, blue-blooded, slimy, and totally awesome, the octopus has bewildered ocean lovers for centuries. From cultural folklore to the gyotaku artists and sushi restaurants of Japan, the octopus has influenced coastal cultures throughout the world. Here are 8 tenti-cool facts and reasons why the octopus is one most fascinating animals beneath the waves.

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Mo‘okiha O Pi‘ilani

August 17, 2018
maui ocean center, things to do in maui, maui activities

“He wa‘a he moku, he moku he waʻa – the canoe is an island, the island is a canoe.” The Mo‘okia O Pi‘ilani is Maui’s first voyaging canoe built in over 600 years, serving as a gateway into the world of Polynesian wayfinding and navigation. In partnership with Maui Ocean Center and Hawaii Tourism Authority, the Hui O Wa‘a Kaulua now offers tours of this historic canoe.

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Native Intelligence

August 07, 2018
maui ocean center, things to do in maui, maui activities

Some may call it a superstition, but many Hawaiian proverbs bear more truth than fiction. For thousands of years, Hawaiians have carefully observed correlations between activity on land and in the sea, recording their findings orally in the absence of a written language. Their observations were preserved and passed down for generations through songs and chant, a testament to the brilliance of Hawaii’s native intelligence.

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The Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument is a place of scientific, historical, and cultural significance. On May 30th, 2017, Maui Ocean Center, Mayor Alan Arakawa, and supporters of the Monument unveiled the Papahānaumokuākea Gallery, a new exhibit that offers a glimpse into the world’s largest Marine National Monument.

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The Ocean’s Canvas

June 02, 2017
maui ocean center, things to do in maui, hawaii fish

When Brian Heustis moved from Aruba to Maui in the early 90’s, he eventually discovered an art form that was generally unknown by the rest of the United States. Like many artists before him, Brian experienced Hawaii’s unique fusion of cultures that brings together art styles from around the world. For those with a creative mind, Hawaii is an artist’s paradise and its pristine waters offer an endless canvass for artistic inspiration and expression.

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Illuminating the Past

May 08, 2017
maui ocean center, things to do in maui, maui activities

The kukui nut, or candlenut, is one of nature’s engineering marvels used by Hawaiians for centuries. Go back in time and learn how kukui nuts were used in fishing traditions, medicinal applications, and more!

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Sea Shepherds

April 10, 2017
maui ocean center, things to do in maui, hawaii fish

Lawai‘a were highly skilled and greatly respected in Hawaiian society. They were trained to understand cloud formations, ocean currents and wind direction, moon phases, and star patterns. But the lawai‘a did not always look to the sky to find fish – the answer would often come with the aid of the ‘ōpelu māmā.

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What role do humpback whales have in Hawaiian culture? Despite their popularity, some research suggests that another whale may have played a larger role than the mighty humpback.

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Planting Kalo

July 14, 2016

Author: Evan Pascual On Friday July 8th, Maui Ocean Center celebrated the planting of kalo, the Hawaiian name for taro. Taro is a vegetable plant, producing a starchy tuber oftentimes used to make poi. Kalo requires great cultivation and care; Hawaiian culture describes the relationship between farmers and their kalo as if the plants were […]

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