During this pandemic, some of our visitor center park stores may experience intermittent closures. We need your help more than ever to resume support of vital national park programs. Please donate, visit our online shop, or become a member today to save 15% off all purchases, whether in-park or online. Mahalo!

Hawaiʻi Winter in Hawaii's National Parks

Hawaiʻi Winter in Hawaii's National Parks

Traditionally, two seasons were named and recognized in Hawaiʻi: Kau and Hoʻoilo. Kau was hotter, drier, what we generally think of as summer. Hoʻoilo was wetter, cooler, closer to a winter feeling. Both seasons were ushered in by changes in the positions of the constellations, and the months of the seasons were dedicated to different pursuits depending on whether it was time to farm or fish, harvest or let the land and sea rest, and so forth. Despite no longer being how we officially track seasons and weather in present day Hawaiʻi, the feeling between the two seasons is pronounced, and longtime residents can sense when the shifts from one to the other are in motion. Humpback whales also begin arriving in Hawaiian waters, making it possible to whalewatch from the shores of our partner parks. One of the best books we carry on the subject of humpback whales in Hawaiʻi is here: https://shop.hawaiipacificparks.org/products/hi-humpback-unveiled

At our Hawaiʻi national park partners, Hoʻoilo season very much arrives with the Makahiki time in early November, a season of celebrating the deity associated with agriculture and abundance, Lono. Each park site honors or signifies the opening of the season with traditional Hawaiian ritual, and activities for visitors. For our part, we direct our visitor center park store customers to books, videos and games that celebrate the Makahiki season, like this one: https://shop.hawaiipacificparks.org/products/hawaiian-games-to-play

In years past we have supported cultural festivals that mark this special time of the year and hope to do so again, soon, when pandemic risk becomes manageable for everyone.

For our nonprofit, November is also the run-up to holiday shopping in our visitor center park stores and online. Preparations begin for Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and the flurry leading up to December 25th. With the weather shifting in the rest of the northern hemisphere, also, parks fans and those shopping for them start to stock up on our exclusive hoodies for Hawaiʻi Volcanoes and Haleakalā national parks, as well as on kits, games, and other fun stocking stuffers. Proceeds go to national park programs and projects, so every purchase really converts to a gift to parks. To learn more about that, you can read up here under the Our Work drop down menu: https://www.hawaiipacificparks.org/

Spring will bring a return to more light, the departure of the whales, the warming of the ocean, and once again Kau will arrive with its special days, its rituals, and its fun reasons for shopping to support the national parks of Hawaiʻi and America Samoa.

IMG: courtesy Haleakalā National Park

Hawaii Pacific Parks Association Location Map

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