By Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau · January 2022
Celebrate life’s moments through rejuvenation, reconnection, and an opportunity to travel deeper. Experience a transformative trip to Hawaii with a greater emphasis on connecting with the community and culture, giving back to the destination, and preserving it for the future.
Like so many words in the Hawaiian language, malama has a number of different definitions. It can mean to take care of, to preserve or protect, and even to save. So malama is a word used often across the Hawaiian Islands today in discussions about the importance of preserving and protecting the destination’s oceans, its land, and the people who call the islands home. Mindful travelers who decide to malama during their Hawaii stay are sure to enjoy an enriched visit by immersing themselves in authentic experiences that connect them with the place and its people — ultimately creating a lasting connection that truly stays with travelers long after their return home. Find your celebratory malama experience on one of the four major Hawaiian Islands.
Several organizations across Kauai offer opportunities for visitors to malama during their stay, including cleaning up beaches with Surfrider Foundation Kauai and the Friends of Kamalani & Lydgate Park, or helping remove invasive species with Hawaii Land Trust. When you give back – to the land, the ocean, the wildlife, the forest and the community – you will experience Kauai on a much deeper and connected level.
Oahu’s diverse natural ecosystems provide a variety of malama activities for the whole family, from shoreline clean-ups to mountain-top reforestation efforts, and everywhere in between. But you can also malama by helping to keep Oahu’s culture alive. It can be as simple as learning and using the Hawaiian names for our geography, which embed rich cultural backstories and ecological wisdom into the places you may visit.
From perpetuating culture at the Olowalu Cultural Reserve to reforesting Honokowai Valley, there are many opportunities to turn a Maui adventure into a way to give back, enriching your experience of the island and leaving it a better place for locals and future visitors. When you join Maui residents in these efforts, you’ll gain a deeper understanding of what community means, and how you can be a part of giving back and protecting it.
Sparkling beaches, deep turquoise ocean waters, wild mountain trails. The natural setting of the island of Hawaii is striking when you enjoy its beauty as a bystander, but a more rewarding experience awaits those who join efforts to malama. By working alongside the communities dedicated to preserving the islands’ unique history and precious aina (land), you are immersed in Hawaii’s true culture. With your hands in the mud, soil, weeds or fishponds, you get a sense of what it’s like to be a part of this place, inseparable from nature.
While the visitor experience might look and feel different, travelers can count on the transformative and positive impact of traveling to Hawaii to change their own lives, and the destinations they visit across the state, for the better. Create moments and lasting memories that you can celebrate for a lifetime, by learning what it means to malama Hawaii.
For more information on Hawaii or to start planning your malama Hawaii experience, contact your Ensemble travel advisor.
Image and Video Credit: Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau