Hawaii is a state in the Western United States located in the Pacific Ocean about 2,000 miles (3,200 km) from the U.S. mainland. It is the only state outside North America, the only state that is an archipelago, and the only state in the tropics. Hawaii is also one of a small number of U.S. states that was once an independent nation. Hawaii comprises nearly the entire Hawaiian archipelago, 137 volcanic islands spanning 1,500 miles (2,400 km) that are physiographically and ethnologically part of the Polynesian subregion of Oceania. The state's ocean coastline is consequently the fourth longest in the U.S., at about 750 miles (1,210 km). The eight main islands, from northwest to southeast, are Niʻihau, Kauaʻi, Oʻahu, Molokaʻi, Lānaʻi, Kahoʻolawe, Maui, and Hawaiʻi, after which the state is named; it is often called the "Big Island" or "Hawaii Island" to avoid confusion with the state or archipelago. The uninhabited Northwestern Hawaiian Islands make up most of the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument, the nation's largest protected area and the third largest in the world.
Settled by Polynesians some time between 1000 and 1200 CE, Hawaii was home to numerous independent chiefdoms. In 1778, British explorer James Cook was the first known non-Polynesian to arrive at the archipelago; early British influence is reflected in the state flag, which bears a Union Jack. An influx of European and American explorers, traders, and whalers arrived shortly thereafter, introducing diseases that decimated the once isolated indigenous community. Hawaii became a unified, internationally recognized kingdom in 1810, remaining independent until Western businessmen overthrew the monarchy in 1893; this led to annexation by the U.S. in 1898. As a strategically valuable U.S. territory, Hawaii was attacked by Japan on December 7, 1941, which brought it global and historical significance, and contributed to America's decisive entry into World War II. Hawaii is the most recent state to join the union, on August 21, 1959. In 1993, the U.S. government formally apologized for its role in the overthrow of Hawaii's government, which spurred the Hawaiian sovereignty movement.
Of the 50 U.S. states, Hawaii is the fourth-smallest in land area and the 11th-least populous, but with 1.4 million residents ranks 13th in population density. Two-thirds of the population lives on O'ahu, home to the state's capital and largest city, Honolulu. Hawaii is among the country's most diverse states, owing to its central location in the Pacific and over two centuries of migration. As one of only six majority-minority states, it has the nation's only Asian American plurality, its largest Buddhist community, and the largest proportion of multiracial people. Consequently, it is a unique melting pot of North American and East Asian cultures, in addition to its indigenous Hawaiian heritage.
Historically dominated by a plantation economy, Hawaii remains a major agricultural exporter due to its fertile soil and uniquely tropical climate in the U.S. Its economy has gradually diversified since the mid-20th century, with tourism and military defense becoming the two largest sectors. The state attracts tourists, surfers, and scientists from around the world with its diverse natural scenery, warm tropical climate, abundance of public beaches, oceanic surroundings, active volcanoes, and clear skies on the Big Island. Hawaii hosts the U.S. Pacific Fleet, the world's largest naval command, as well as 75,000 employees of the Defense Department.Although its relative isolation results in one of the nation's highest costs of living, Hawaii is the third-wealthiest state. Honolulu performs well in several world livability indexes, ranking 22nd out of 140 cities worldwide in the 2019 Global Liveability Index, more than any American city.
State of Hawaii Articles
Hawaiʻi (Hawaiian pronunciation: [həˈvɐjʔi], anglicized Hawaii (listen) hə-WY-ee) is the largest island in the United States, located in the state of Hawaii. It is the southeasternmost of the Hawaiian Islands, a chain of volcanic islands in the North Pacific Ocean. With an area of 4,028 square miles (10,430 km2), it has 63% of the Hawaiian archipelago's combined landmass. However, it has only 13% of Hawaiʻi's population. The island of Hawaiʻi is the third largest island in Polynesia, behind the two main islands of New Zealand.The island is often referred to as the Island of Hawaiʻi, the Big Island, or Hawaiʻi Island to distinguish it from the state. Administratively, the whole island is coextensive with Hawaiʻi County. As of the 2010 Census the population was 185,079. The county seat and largest city is Hilo. There are no incorporated cities in Hawaiʻi County (see List of counties in Hawaii).
The island of Maui (; Hawaiian: [ˈmɐwwi]) is the second-largest of the Hawaiian Islands at 727.2 square miles (1,883 km2) and is the 17th largest island in the United States. Maui is part of the State of Hawaii and is the largest of Maui County's four islands, which include Molokaʻi, Lānaʻi, and unpopulated Kahoʻolawe. In 2010, Maui had a population of 144,444, third-highest of the Hawaiian Islands, behind that of Oʻahu and Hawaiʻi Island. Kahului is the largest census-designated place (CDP) on the island with a population of 26,337 as of 2010, and is the commercial and financial hub of the island. Wailuku is the seat of Maui County and is the third-largest CDP as of 2010. Other significant places include Kīhei (including Wailea and Makena in the Kihei Town CDP, the island's second-most-populated CDP), Lāhainā (including Kāʻanapali and Kapalua in the Lāhainā Town CDP), Makawao, Pukalani, Pāʻia, Kula, Haʻikū, and Hāna.
Pā'ia (Hawaiian: Pāʻia [paːˈʔijə]) is a census-designated place (CDP) in Maui County, Hawaii, United States, on the northern coast of the island of Maui. The population was 2,668 at the 2010 census. Pā'ia is home to several restaurants, art galleries, surf shops and other tourist-oriented businesses. It was formerly home to a Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar mill from 1880 to 2000.Pā'ia is the first town on the Hana Highway when heading eastbound towards Hana. Pā'is located close to many internationally known windsurfing spots including Hoʻokipa and Spreckelsville. It is therefore sometimes called "The World Capital of Windsurfing".
Honolulu (; Hawaiian: [honoˈlulu]) is the capital and largest city of the U.S. state of Hawaii, which is located in the Pacific Ocean. It is an unincorporated county seat of the consolidated City and County of Honolulu, situated along the southeast coast of the island of Oʻahu, and is the westernmost and southernmost major U.S. city. Honolulu is Hawaii's main gateway to the world. It is also a major hub for international business, finance, hospitality, and military defense in both the state and Oceania. The city is characterized by a mix of various Asian, Western, and Pacific cultures, as reflected in its diverse demography, cuisine, and traditions. Honolulu means "sheltered harbor" or "calm port" in Hawaiian; its old name, Kou, roughly encompasses the area from Nuʻuanu Avenue to Alakea Street and from Hotel Street to Queen Street, which is the heart of the present downtown district. The city's desirability as a port accounts for its historical growth and importance in the Hawaiian archipelago and the broader Pacific region. Honolulu has been the capital of the Hawaiian Islands since 1845, first of the independent Hawaiian Kingdom, and after 1898 of the U.S. territory and state of Hawaii. The city gained worldwide recognition following Japan's attack on nearby Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, which prompted decisive entry of the U.S. into World War II; the harbor remains a major naval base, hosting the U.S. Pacific Fleet, the world's largest naval command.As Hawaii is the only state with no incorporated places below the county level, the U.S. Census Bureau recognizes the approximate area commonly referred to as the "City of Honolulu"not to be confused with the "City and County"as a census county division (CCD). As of the 2020 U.S. Census, the population of Honolulu is 350,964, while that of metropolitan Honolulu census-designated place (CDP) is 802,459;. With over 300,000 residents, Honolulu is the most populated Oceanian city outside Australasia.Honolulu's favorable tropical climate, rich natural scenery, and extensive beaches makes it a popular global destination for tourists. As of May 2021, the city receives the bulk of visitors to Hawaii, between 7,000 and 11,000 daily. This is below the 2019, pre-pandemic passenger arrivals of 10,000 to 15,000 per day. While Honolulu's relative isolation from the rest of the U.S. contributes to a high cost of living, it also consistently performs well in several world livability rankings, based on healthcare, safety, education, culture, and other metrics. According to the 2019 Global Liveability Index, it ranked 22nd out of 140 cities worldwide, the highest of any American city. It is also the second safest city in the U.S.