36 Interesting Facts About Hawaii

Author: Jason Coles

Updated On:

Updated On:

Consisting of eight main islands, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, you will find the tropical paradise of Hawaii which is a captivating place, that’s for sure. It is no mystery as to why 9.3 million people visit these special sand-covered islands each year, which is almost 7 times the state’s population.

If you are considering a trip to Hawaii for business, pleasure, or even to consider relocating, you will thoroughly enjoy these interesting facts about Hawaii we have compiled for you.

Interesting facts about Hawaii

Let’s take a look at some of the most interesting Hawaii facts!

1. Surfing was invented in Hawaii, started by the beachgoers of Waikiki, a Hawaii island. The sport of surfing was created there and later revived by big wave surfers on Maui. After this, surfing was exposed to the rest of the world.

2. Recent years have witnessed a surge in environmental changes in an attempt to benefit the world we live in today, a recent change has been the banning of plastic bags in grocery stores and other retail outlets. Well, Hawaii was the first state to implement this in 2015, and it is no surprise why they acted so quickly. They saw first-hand what detrimental impact plastic has on our environment, especially marine life.

3. The next Hawaii fact is wacky, to say the least. You can mail a coconut from Hawaii, just simply a coconut with no packaging or anything other than the address, of course! People do this to send over the fresh produce at the Island’s disposal to family members and friends living on the mainland, you can also draw and paint on them too.

4. Hawaii is the only US state to boast two official languages! Hawaiian and English, with many locals believing that Pidgin is also an authorized language which would make the total three, however, it is not endorsed by the authorities.

5. Hawaiians will rarely greet you with a handshake. Instead, you will most likely receive an incredibly warming and endearing hug!

6. Strangely enough, the most famous Hawaiian word, universally associated with the island state is “Aloha”, which means both “Hello”, and “Goodbye”, so, getting confused by this word is very common.

7. Another unique fact about Hawaii is that it is the most isolated population center on the planet. Being roughly 2,400 miles from the nearest mainland, which is the United States. Due to the sheer distance, Hawaii has its own time zone, Hawaii Standard Time.

8. Hawaii, much the same as other states has its own state fish, color, bird, and more which are used to represent the state and its people, and in this case Hawaii’s tropical climate.

Here’s what we’ve got for you on everything Hawaii state symbols:

  • State Flower – Yellow Hibiscus
  • State Bird – Nene
  • State Fish – Reef Triggerfish
  • State Mammal – Hawaiian Monk Seal
  • State Marine Mammal – Humpback Whale
  • State Land Mammal – Hawaiin Hoary Bat
  • State Tree – Kukui Tree
  • State Song – Hawaii Ponoi

9. Hawaii is the widest state in the US, if you measure all Hawaii’s islands from east to west, you will total 1,500 miles, which makes Hawaii the widest state, closely followed by Alaska.

10. There are over 100 different beaches all situated within the eight different islands that make up this tremendously unique state. So, beach days are never off the equation, and getting that perfect tan is very achievable here, if you want to find out the top 10 beaches in Hawaii, take a look here.

Hawaii Facts

Facts About Hawaii

Here are some more facts about Hawaii that you won’t want to miss

11. The Hawaiian island Kauai is an extremely unique place with its own set of weird rules. So, there are no cities, free-ways, chain restaurants, skyscrapers, towers, and literally no mainstream stores. But the most interesting fact about Kauai is that buildings are not allowed to be taller than palm trees!

12. There have been many famous movies, and TV shows filmed in Hawaii, and it is easy to see why, with the different landscapes, beautiful beaches, and weather to go with all of that! Here are some of the most popular movies to be filmed in Hawaii:

  • LOST
  • Indiana Jones: Raiders of the Lost Ark
  • Jumanji
  • The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
  • Jurassic Park
  • Jurassic World
  • Pirates of the Caribbean
  • South Pacific
  • 50 First Dates
  • Forgetting Sarah Marshall

Some film and TV facts about Hawaii for all of you movie enthusiasts!

13. If you are not so keen on snakes then Hawaii is the perfect place for you! Snakes are extremely common in the US, in fact, pretty much every state has at least one or two species living in it. However, Hawaii does not have any snake species and it is completely illegal to own one as a pet. You will only ever see a snake on the island if it is in an enclosure!

14. Celebrities and famous icons who were born in Hawaii include:

  • Former President, Barack Obama
  • AOL co-founder, Steve Case
  • Dancer/Choreographer, Carrie Ann Inaba
  • Singer/Actress, Aulii Cravalho
  • Vocalists, Bruno Mars, Bette Midler, and Nicole Scherzinger
  • Actors, Jason Momoa, Don Stroud, and Timothy Olyphant
  • Actresses, Nicole Kidman, Maggie Q, Kelly Preston, Tia Carrere, Kelly Hu, Janel Parrish, and Lauren Graham
  • Sports stars that came out of Hawaii include, Michelle Wie, Marcus Mariota, Shane Victorino, Sid Fernandez, Kolten Wong, Alessa Quizon, Benny Agbayani, B.J. Penn, John Florence, and Max Holloway.

15. Hawaii and Utah are the only two states where gambling is totally illegal. Due to it being illegal, Hawaii’s residents are obsessed with gambling and its concept. This has resulted in many Hawaiians choosing Las Vegas as their favorite holiday destination, with some rather amusingly naming Sin City their “9th island”.

What was Hawaii’s original name?

Hawaii’s original name was rather amusingly “Sandwich Islands”, which was given when Captain James Cook visited the islands on January 18, 1778. The name pays homage to John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich. The name latest until 1840 when the name everybody knows these islands as was adopted.

16. Hawaii is the only US state to commercially grow coffee. In 1825, coffee seedlings were imported from Brazil and planted in an orchard located in Oahu Island. Coffee produced in Hawaii tends to be grown in multiple different islands, however, the coffee considered to be the best is Kona Coffee. Made by the Mauno Loa Volcano, it is also one of the most expensive coffees in the world.

Interesting facts about Hawaii

17. Hawaii has been attempting to be a virtually smoke-free state since 2015 when they made it illegal to smoke while at any Hawaiian beach or state park. Tobacco products and e-cigarettes are banned from those areas too, with many Hawaiian city and county parks also being smoke-free. Hawaii also increased the legal smoking age to 21!

18. Hawaii’s total land area is over 6,423 square miles, and the island’s water area is over 4,509 square miles.

19. Hawaii’s maximum speed limit is 55 mph, which is in the lower (slowest) tier of maximum speed limits in the U.S.

20. Many people are confused and wonder why the British flag is featured in the corner of the Hawaiian flag. The eight strips in the Hawaiian flag represent the eight islands that make up Hawaii and the Union Jack is there to symbolize the friendship between Britain and the Hawaiian Kingdom.

Facts about Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

Here are 10 of the most fascinating facts about Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

21. The Hawaii Volcanoes National Park used to be a part of Hawaii National Park, which was established all the way back in 1916.

22. The National park itself has an area of 505 square miles.

23. The park consists of two active volcanoes, hence the name. Mauna Loa, and Kilauea, both are 25 miles apart from each other.

Interesting facts about Hawaii

24. Hawaii Volcanoes National Park contains seven ecozones (ecological zones), which are an ecologically and geographically defined land area that is smaller than a bioregion. The ecozones that can be found in the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park are, cost, lowland, mid-elevation woodland, rain forest, upland forest, subalpine, and alpine. Each zone contains unique native plant and animal species, which includes approximately 60 threatened or endangered species!

25. During certain points of the year, guests can see lava spewing from the volcanoes that inhabit this special national park into the neighboring sea. This rare event of this volcanic activity has been described by many to resemble a firework display.

26. The Kau Desert Trail consists of 18 miles of terrain that leads from the trailhead and off Highway 11, spanning across lava fields to Hilina Pali Cliffs and a multitude of campsites along the coast, all boasting the same fantastic views.

27. The highest point on the islands of Hawaii, and the highest insular mountain in the United States is situated in the national park. The Manua National Landmark is the name of the famous mountain, sitting at a staggering 13,803 feet. It is no surprise why this is the highest point in the state.

28. The National Park was selected in 1987 as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

29. Mauna Loa has erupted on 36 different occasions since the first-ever documented eruption in 1843, with the most recent eruption taking place in 1984.

30. Along with its Volcanoes, the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park also contains a fern tree forest, which receives around 100 inches of rainfall per year!

31. The Island of Hawai’i is officially known as the “Big Island”, and for good reason! The island is the largest in the entire United States, with a total surface area of 4,029 square miles.

32. The native Hawaiian people, or commonly known as Kanaka Maoli are the indigenous or aboriginal people, who originally inhabited the islands.

33. Honolulu is the capital city and principal port of Hawaii.

34. The Manua National Landmark is the name of the tallest mountain, sitting at a staggering 13,803 feet. It is no surprise why this is the highest point in the state.

35. Hawaii’s flag might be one of the most interesting in the United States, with the red stripes symbolizing gods, the white representing truth, and the blue signifies the ocean, the perfect representation of Hawaiian culture and Hawaiian ancestry.

Interesting facts about Hawaii

36. Have you ever heard of the Hawaiian language? Well, technically there are three Hawaiian languages spoken within the state, Hawaiian, which is the old Polynesian language spoken by the native Hawaiians, then the English language, but a new, more unique language has been adopted by the Aloha State, “Pidgin”. Pidgin is an unofficial language used by the majority of the island, and it encompasses both the English and Hawaiian languages.

Economic Facts About Hawaii

There is a lot to consider when disseminating the economic facts about Hawaii. The island state has been observed by many as having the perfect environment for business and growth, especially if your business, franchise, or aspiring new start-up is in one of the key industries of Hawaii.

If you would like to learn how to register a business in Hawaii so you can start your entrepreneurial journey, we have created a checklist walking you through the process.

Let’s check out the economic facts about Hawaii to see why many consider this state to have one of the best and healthiest business climates in the nation.
Hawaii Economic Highlights

  • Hawaii’s top industries are, agriculture, manufacturing, fishing, services, and of course, tourism.
  • Hawaii ranks #1 out of all 50 states under health care (US World & News Report).
  • The progressive income tax rate in Hawaii ranges from 1.4% – 11%.
  • Sales tax does not exist in Hawaii, they use GET (General Excise Tax), which is assessed on all business activities.
  • Hawaii’s GDP is about $83 billion.
  • The typical house price in Hawaii is approximately $649,905.
  • The minimum wage in Hawaii is $10.10 per hour.
  • Hawaii ranks #12 in infrastructure (US World & News Report).
  • The median income in Hawaii is $33,882.
  • There are over 135,000 small businesses in Hawaii.
  • Over 275,000 small business employees are in Hawaii.
  • Hawaii has a corporate income tax rate ranging between 4.4%-6.4%.

All of these economic facts about Hawaii highlight just some of the many reasons people move to the state for business and work opportunities.

Interesting US State Facts


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Jason Coles

Jason Coles is the Founder of Foreign USA and its Chief Content Writer and Editor. Recognized as a prolific business plan writer by many prominent immigration attorneys in the U.S. who refer his services to their clients regularly, Jason has written over 1,365 business plans across the past 17+ years for start-up companies and franchises looking to expand their footprint in the United States. Jason is considered a seasoned expert in his field. He creates detailed business plans for his clients that include five-year financial projections, market and industry analysis reports, demographic studies, organizational charts, job descriptions, employee hiring plans, and more.