Hawaii’s Big Island Arts & Culture
The Merrie Monarch Festival (follows Easter Sunday in March - April) is the world’s premier hula event, held in Hilo. This weeklong celebration of the native art of the hula takes place every Easter, with halau (hula schools) from every island and the mainland practising year-round for the event. This moving expression of music, dance and storytelling is part of how the people of Hawaii’s Big Island continue to perpetuate and interpret the Hawaiian culture and its uniquely affirmative spirit of aloha.
Hilo town is also home to an array of museums, galleries, and performance venues where you can admire the work of local painters, sculptors, musicians, storytellers and crafts people.
The Merrie Monarch Festival is just one example of how Hawaii’s Big Island locals live comfortably in the present but with great respect for the past. The mana (spiritual power) is still strong at important historical places like Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park and Puukohola Heiau Historic Site. Today, with an active volcano still shaping the land at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, the people of Hawaii’s Big Island continue to forge their own history.