12 Oct 2022
Immersing yourself in the culture and traditions is one of the best ways to experience a new place, especially in Hawaii. Whether that's trying new food, taking part in an experience offered by locals, or visiting museums to learn more about what makes Hawaii, Hawaii. Before you hop on a plane and head over to Kauai for your family vacation, get familiar with these traditional Hawaii things!
Staples of Hawaiian Culture
Lei are an important part of Hawaii tradition and culture, and it's one you may already be familiar with! It is a symbol of love, friendship, honor, or greeting and is essentially, a symbol of the spirit of Aloha. The tradition of the lei dates back to Native Hawaiians, especially chiefs, who used lei to signify their rank and distinguish themselves from others. Today, the lei is usually reserved for celebrations like graduations, parties, and weddings, however, you can wear one anytime if you choose. They are made with flowers, leaves, shells, seeds, nuts, or ivory.
Hula is another significant part of the Hawaiian culture. It is the storytelling dance of the Hawaiian Islands and can be paired with music and chants in different tempos. The two general styles of hula are hula kahiko (ancient hula) and hula ʻauana (modern hula). "Hula kahiko is traditionally performed as part of or as an extension of a ceremony, set to an oli (chant) and accompanied by percussion instruments. Hula ʻauana is less formal hula, performed without ceremony. Around the turn of the 20th century, newer hula began to emerge in this less formal style."
If you are interested in watching a Hula performance while on your Kauai vacation, visit Poipu Shopping Village every Monday and Thursday for a free performance held by a school of Hula, Halau Ka Lei Mokihana O Leina`ala. To learn more information about this event, visit here.
Hawaiian Shaved Ice
Looking for a sweet treat to satisfy your taste buds? If there's one traditional Hawaiian dessert you need to try on your getaway, it's the classic Hawaiian shaved ice. Shaved ice was brought to Hawaii by the Japanese plantation laborers and modeled after the Japanese kakigori. They consumed this tasty treat as a way to cool off during the summer months. Unlike the shaved ice you see on the mainland, shaved ice in Hawaii is made with finely shaved, not crushed ice. Several shops in Poipu offer several different flavor combinations to try like mango, pineapple, pina colada, and so much more.
A luau is a Hawaiian feast that features music and cultural performances from Hawaii. The first luau resembling modern-day luau is said to date back to 1819. In the past, most food offered at luau were mainly Hawaiian dishes, however, today you can expect a more diverse offering. Popular luau dishes include Poi (pounded taro plan root), Kalua Pig (pork prepared in an imu), Laulau (meat wrapped in taro), Haupia (coconut pudding), and Poke.
Book Your Poipu Beach Vacation with Suite Paradise
Suite Paradise features many Poipu Beach rentals, sure to impress every traveler! Each vacation home and condo come with everything you need, and more, to make your stay special. View available Kauai vacation rentals to begin planning the perfect getaway! Once you've booked your dream home, reach out to our team of experts for the best recommendations on things to do, see, and eat during your tropical getaway.