When I was growing up, my family went to Hawaii for Christmas quite a few times - I definitely remember being worried a few times that Santa wouldn't find me, but presents or not (and yes, Santa did find me) every single time I loved it. I love the Hawaiian spirit, and when you add Christmas in too, it makes for a very special island holiday. For those of you who have ever wondered what it is like to be in Hawaii for Christmas, here is a short article on what you can (and shouldn't) expect. Maybe this is the year to check it out for yourself?
Yes, Santa can surf! You won’t see Santa and his reindeer soaring through the night skies on Christmas Eve. Mr. Claus – Kanakaloka in Hawaiian – is said to make a more island-appropriate entrance, paddling in on a red outrigger canoe. He might even be wearing a lei. And one year, I actually saw Santa arrive by surfboard!
Plenty of locals have traditional fir Christmas trees during the holidays,but the trees have to be shipped in by boat and can be quite pricey. Some islanders opt for a closer-to-home option. Expect to see Island Norfolk Pines, one of the few pine trees that grow there. But you’ll most likely see palm trees decked out for the season with lights and ornaments.
A white Christmas in Hawaii? Well, it’s not likely unless you're looking for sand. But a fair amount of snow does fall every year at the summits of the state’s three tallest volcanoes, Mauna Loa, Mauna Kea and Haleakala. Believe it or not, there’s even a Hawaii Ski Club! During December, some locals living on the Big Island of Hawaii drive to high elevations, fill their pickups with snow and bring a big pile of the powder back down for snowmen, snowball fights and more.
MeleKalikimaka! You’ll hear this phrase a lot during the holiday season.The words are a Hawaiian phonetic translation of "Merry Christmas." Not sure how to pronounce it? Well, Bing Crosby himself is here to help you out. Check out his popular song!
Like most places, Christmas dinner is a big part of any holiday celebration in Hawaii, but old-fashioned turkey and ham feasts are not necessarily the norm. Hawaiians enjoy such island delicacies as roast pork, sushi, coconut pudding and Manapua – a barbecue pork-filled bun whose name translates delightfully as "that delicious pork thing." Families hold private luaus and picnics on the beach - as usual, Ohana comes first, especially at the holidays!
All in all, there is nothing as magical as mixing the Aloha Spirit with the Christmas Spirit....the result is a memorable Holiday experience that will not soon be forgotten! Who's up for it? Don't hesitate, because space fills up quickly and the most desirable rooms, condos and villas are typically booked-up a year in advance!