Is Responsible Travel to Hawaii Fun? Or Boring?
Last week, I headed to Hawaii (“Hawaiian culture and natural beauty is simply world class!”), and I wanted to spend time in different cultures in their own backyard. This decision was not made lightly. I’d been to other places in the world and I believed that it was possible to see the best of their culture and still have a great time.
For one, there’s the Hawaiian culture. I knew there would be sites and experiences that were well-known as part of Hawai’ian culture that I hadn’t seen before. I also wanted to be reminded of the history and beauty of Hawai’ian culture, I wanted to learn more about the native people and I wanted to understand the challenges they have faced. My experience had prepared me well for the trip. The first site I visited that really stood out from other sites I’d been to was the Hale’iwa Plantation.
In the first half of the 19th century, a group of European settlers, the Kealohas, settled on the island of Kauai in what is now the Kona District of the county of Hawaii. The plantation was a significant factor in local Hawaiian culture. In 1857, the island was acquired by the United States Military, who created it a US military base. Following the acquisition, Kealoha Henry Kelehi, who was the plantation owner, was given a life lease, or leasehold in the United States, thus making him the first private citizen to be given that title.
The plantation was owned by Kelehi, his wife Lili’uokalani (1814-1891), and two of their children, Henry, Jr. and Leilani. They were all native Hawaiians. In 1862, the Kelehi family was forced to move back to Hawai’i when the US Military government found the plantation too expensive to maintain. The Kelehi family returned to Hawai’i in 1867, but Kelehi Henry Kelehi, who had purchased the plantation land while in Hawai’i, remained in Hawai’i. The Kelehi family returned once more in 1879 when the family was again forced to move back to Hawai’i since