Welcome to Hawaii
Hawaii is the
only U.S. state made up entirely of islands. It is the northernmost
island group in Polynesia, occupying most of an archipelago in the
central Pacific Ocean.
Hawaii’s diverse natural scenery, warm tropical climate,
abundance of public beaches and oceanic surrounding, and active
volcanoes make it a popular destination for tourists, surfers,
biologists, and volcanologists alike. Due to its mid-Pacific location,
Hawaii has many North American and Asian influences along with its own
vibrant native culture.
Several areas in Hawaii are under the protection of the National Park
Service. Hawaii has two national parks: Haleakala National Park near
Kula, on Maui, includes Haleakalā, the dormant volcano that formed east
Maui; and Hawaii Volcanoes National Park in the southeast region of the
island of Hawaiʻi, which includes the active volcano Kīlauea and its
various rift zones.
There are three national historical parks: Kalaupapa National
Historical Park in Kalaupapa, Molokaʻi, the site of a former
Hansen’s disease colony; Kaloko-Honokōhau National Historical
Park in Kailua-Kona on the island of Hawaiʻi; and Puʻuhonua o Hōnaunau
National Historical Park, an ancient place of refuge. Other areas under
the control of the National Park Service include Ala Kahakai National
Historic Trail on the Big Island and the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl
Harbor on Oʻahu.
The Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument was proclaimed by
President George W. Bush on June 15, 2006. The monument covers roughly
140,000 square miles (360,000 km2) of reefs, atolls and shallow and
deep sea out to 50 miles (80 km) offshore in the Pacific Ocean, larger
than all of America’s National Parks combined. (More
begin your tour, click on one of the areas
Geographic's Guide to Scenic Highways and Byways
Geographic Complete National Parks of the United States