- from Hawaii
Say “aloha,” and your mouth just naturally forms a smile. Aloha is a Hawaiian word with many meanings. Hawaiians use it to say hello – and goodbye.
Literally, it translates as love, affection, or kindness. Traditionally, to greet someone with aloha was to acknowledge the goodness in that person.
Each year, 9 million tourists hear “aloha” from the Hawaiians who greet them. Visitors come to enjoy the tropical beauty and warmth of the islands. They play on sandy beaches and soak up the aloha spirit.
The Hawaiian archipelago (ar-ki-PEL-i-go), or chain of islands, stretches about 1,500 miles across the Pacific Ocean. It is farther away from a continent than any other inhabited place on Earth. The chain is made up of 132 islands, reefs, and shoals. The state of Hawai`i includes eight major islands, which form a crescent less than 400 miles long. How were they formed? Who first settled them? What is each island like? Put on a Hawaiian aloha shirt, imagine a fragrant lei around your neck, and take a scenic tour of the Aloha State.