Hokulea Sets Sail for Hawaii and Historic Worldwide Voyage Homecoming

After 5 days in the community of Tautira – a  second home of the Polynesian Voyaging Society (PVS) and legendary canoe Hokulea – the crews of Hokulea and Hikianalia bid  a warm goodbye to their Tahitian voyaging ohana and departed on the final historic leg of the Worldwide Voyage: sailing home to Hawaii.

The people of Tautira have been the Tahitian caretakers of the canoes and crews of PVS since Hokulea’s maiden voyage in 1976. Upon arrival in Tautira, the crew payed homage to the family ties so important to the shared voyaging heritage of Hawaii and Tahiti, visiting the grave sites of leaders who helped build the connection more than forty years ago.

The crews were hosted at Mayor Papa Sane’s home and welcomed as family in this voyaging community so closely held to Hawaii’s own.

The morning of Wednesday, May 17, Hokulea, sister canoe Hikianalia, and escort vessel Gershon II began the final leg of the Mālama Honua Worldwide Voyage departing from Tahiti to head back home to Hawaii. This last, historic stretch of the sail plan is expected to take 3-4 weeks (pending weather).

The canoes will make a celebratory return to Honolulu on Saturday, June 17 at Magic Island for a cultural welcoming ceremony followed by a grand celebration open to the entire community.

The week-long celebration will continue with the Malama Honua Fair and Summit, a three-day event at the Hawaiʻi Convention Center , which will highlight the voyaging, cultural, environmental, educational, and health and well-being missions of the Worldwide Voyage by sharing malama honua “stories of hope” and voyage-inspired initiatives and activities with the public.

The event’s inspirational speaker series will feature local and global speakers who have engaged with the Voyage including: Megan Smith, 3rd chief technology officer of the United States; Dieter Paulmann, founder of Okeanos Foundation for the Sea; and Ocean Elders Sylvia Earle, Jean-Michel Cousteau, and Don Walsh. Registration for these events is now open at www.hokulea.com/summit.

Hokulea Greeted by Mayor of Mataiea and Over 500 Community Members

As part of the Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage, Hawaii’s legendary Polynesian voyaging canoes Hokulea and Hikianalia visited Mataiea and were greeted by Alpha Tearii, mayor of Mataiea and minister of Marine and Land Resources, and with an overwhelming show of support by the community.

In a grand welcoming ceremony, over 500 third graders and college students from Mairipehe Primary School, Nuutafaratea Primary School, Matairea Primary School, and Teva I Uta College celebrated the shared malama honua vision of caring for the oceans and land for future generations in Tahitian, French and English.

It has been over 40 years since Hokulea first arrived in Mataiea, which is known for its rich cultural heritage and abundant in natural beauty. “They are doing a lot of really good things here and we are witness to that,” said Bruce Blankenfeld, pwo navigator of the Hokulea. “I see us coming back with future generations to engage, because that is what the voyage is about. It’s about discovering.”

The next day, following a community breakfast and coconut tree planting ceremony with local children, Hokulea and Hikianalia departed for Tautira on Tahiti’s south-east coast.

The sister canoes will continue to travel throughout Tahiti and Raiatea to engage with the local communities in ceremony and education outreach as they celebrate the close of the nearly four-year long journey. Hokulea and Hikianalia are making their way back to Hawaii together for a homecoming ceremony at Magic Island in June 2017.

Hokulea and Hikianalia Return to Taputapuatea for Ancient Voyaging Ritual and Ceremony

Traditional Polynesian voyaging canoes Hokulea and Hikianalia were welcomed by local dignitaries, spiritual elders and community members at Taputapuatea. The marae, or the focal meeting ground, is located on the southeastern coast of Raiatea in French Polynesia. The purpose of the stop was to honor the ancient tradition of Hawaii’s Polynesian ancestors who would go to Taputapuatea, the spiritual center for voyagers of the Pacific, to ceremonially launch and close their voyages of discovery. After sailing about 100 miles from Papeete, Tahiti, the canoes arrived at Taputapuatea yesterday morning following the historic protocol of entering via the sacred pass of Teava Moa.

The ceremony began with pwo navigator Nainoa Thompson and captain Billy Richards returning two sacred stones to the marae that were given to the crew when the canoes last visited Taputapuatea in 2014 to launch the Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage. The return of the two stones signified that the Hokulea and Hikianalia crews fulfilled their responsibility to sail around the world and deepened the connection between Hawaii and its navigational roots in Taputapuatea.

“These stones carried the spirits of all of our ancestors and the direct descendants of all of our families as we sailed around the world,” said Thompson. “Today we brought the stones home to Taputapuatea and were granted permission from by our ancestral family to return home. It’s the last permission based on the fulfillment of many promises we made,” he added.

In addition to the spiritual elders of Taputapuatea, the crew was greeted by French Polynesia president Edouard Fritch, the Taputapuatea mayor Thomas Moutame, and the country’s minister of culture Heremoana Maamaatuaiahutapu. The day-long ceremony featured the ancient rituals conducted to ceremonially complete a voyage, traditional chants and dance by the Taputapuatea community and students from Kamehameha Schools and Milolii Charter School.

In honor of this ceremonial milestone, crewmembers from Hokulea’s first voyage to French Polynesia in 1976 joined this leg from Tahiti to Raiatea, including Gordon Piianaia, Billy Richards, Snake Ah Hee, Kainoa Lee and John Kruse. Zane Aikau, nephew of 1978 crewmember Eddie Aikau, also participated on the leg on behalf of the Aikau family and 1976 crewmember Buffalo Keaulana who was unable to join the sail.  Special guests who also participated on the overnight sail included Hawaiian Airlines CEO Mark Dunkerley, University of Hawaii president David Lassner, and Hawaii State Department of Education superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi.

Once considered the religious and cultural center of Polynesia, Taputapuatea is the location of an ancient marae that was once considered the central temple and religious center of Eastern Polynesia. Established around 1000 AD, the marae was a place of learning where priests and navigators from all over the Pacific would gather to offer sacrifices to the gods and share their knowledge of the genealogical origins of the universe, and of deep ocean navigation.

Most significantly, a truce known as the Faatau Aroha was established with the surrounding islands to form an alliance that lasted for many years and perpetuated the growth of voyaging and exploration leading to the discovery and colonization of all the islands of Eastern Polynesia, including Hawaii, Rapa Nui and Aotearoa (New Zealand).  New marae were established on each of these islands with a rock being taken from Taputapuatea so that Raiatea served as a spiritual link. However, the Faatau Aroha was broken due to a conflict between two leaders of the alliance that resulted to open warfare and an end to large-scale interisland voyaging.

The archaeological remains of Marae Taputapuatea were restored in 1994 and efforts to preserve the site continues. Association Na Papa E Vau Raiatea is working towards having Marae Taputapuatea designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site and continuing work to revive connections between communities of the Polynesian triangle and throughout the Pacific region.

Hokulea and Hikianalia are scheduled to depart Taputapuatea today and will return to Papeete, Tahiti where the crews will prepare the canoes for the voyage back to Hawaii. The canoes will depart French Polynesia in mid-May and will arrive at Magic Island on Oahu for a homecoming celebration on Saturday, June 17.

Hokulea and Hikianalia Arrive in Tahiti

Legendary Polynesian voyaging canoes Hokulea and Hikianalia have arrived in Tahiti.

This arrival marks the first time the sister canoes have reunited since the vessels embarked on separate Malama Honua sail plans in spring of 2015 – when Hikianalia sailed for the Hawaiian Islands to advance the education mission of the Worldwide Voyage while Hokulea continued on her unprecedented circumnavigation of the globe. The canoes’ arrival will be celebrated with the Tahiti community tomorrow, April 14, 2017.

Tahiti holds special historical significance for the Polynesian Voyaging Society as the destination of Hokulea’s first deep sea voyage in 1976, over 40 years ago. Tahiti is the largest island of French Polynesia and shares origins with the rest of the Polynesian Triangle. The mountain, Moua Orohena, tops the island and stands 7,352 feet tall, earning the distinction as the highest point in French Polynesia; its height has made Tahiti the home base of voyaging for generations.

Sister canoes Hokulea and Hikianalia will travel to Raiatea for a ceremony in Taputapuatea on April 25. Hokulea and Hikianalia will sail home in early May to begin the final deep-sea leg of the Worldwide Voyage.

Hikianalia Launches from Hawaii to Reunite with Hokulea

Polynesian sailing vessel Hikianalia launched from the Marine Education Training Center at Sand Island today to meet her sister canoe Hokulea in Tahiti. This will be the crew’s final stop to share the Malama Honua message before sailing back home to complete the Worldwide Voyage.

The journey to Tahiti marks the inaugural voyage as captain for apprentice navigator Kala Baybayan Tanaka. Tanaka is an educator and apprentice navigator with Maui’s voyaging society, Hui o Waa Kaulua, where she teaches about  Polynesian wayfinding techniques to children and other interested learners. Tanaka draws her inspiration and connection to voyaging from her father and pwo navigator, Kalepa Baybayan, who will also be aboard while Kala captains Hikianalia to Tahiti.

“As a captain for the first time I’m reminded of the amazing teachers like my dad who I’ve learned from over the years,” said Kala Babayan, captain of Hikianalia. “It’s truly an honor to lead this leg on an epic journey that aims to inspire the world and our home here in Hawaiʻi.”

Hikianalia is the Hawaiian name for the star also known as Spica, which rises together with Hokulea (Arcturus) in Hawaii. They are sister stars because they break the horizon together at the latitude of the Hawaiian Islands. The 72-foot canoe Hikianalia is a modern Polynesian voyaging canoe and sister canoe to the Hokulea, uses sustainable solar and wind energy to combine the latest ecological technology with the heritage of the voyaging tradition.

The crews anticipate arrival at Tahiti around mid-April. They will travel throughout Tahiti and Raiatea to engage with the local community in ceremony and education outreach as they celebrate the message of caring for Island Earth at the close of the nearly four-year long voyage. Together, Hokulea and Hikianalia will head home to a welcoming ceremony on Magic Island in June 2017.

Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage Update – Hokulea Homecoming Scheduled

The Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage sponsored by Hawaiian Airlines today announced that iconic voyaging canoe Hokulea is scheduled to return to the Hawaiian Islands in June 2017.  On Saturday, June 17, Polynesian Voyaging Society and its crew members will conclude the three-year sail around the globe and make an historic arrival at Oahu’s Magic Island after sailing nearly 40,000 nautical miles since departing Hawaiian waters on May 30, 2014. Themed Lei Kaapuni Honua, meaning “A Lei Around The World,” Hokulea’s homecoming celebration will include a cultural welcoming ceremony followed by a hoolaulea at Magic Island.  A series of additional homecoming events are being planned during the week following the June 17 arrival event.

“When Hokulea first set sail on the Worldwide Voyage, our mission was to seek out and share stories of hope that would inspire a movement to strengthen the health and well-being of Island Earth,” said Nainoa Thompson, president of Polynesian Voyaging Society. “Our vision is that this Voyage of a 1,000 stories will launch 10,000 voyages needed to protect and care for Hawaii and the world,” he added.

Leading up to the homecoming in June, Polynesian Voyaging Society will be highlighting stories of schools, organizations and local individuals that have taken lessons from the Worldwide Voyage to launch efforts that further care for the world’s natural and cultural environments.

At the completion of the Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage sponsored by Hawaiian Airlines, Hokulea and Hikianalia will have covered approximately 60,000 nautical miles, over 150 ports, 27 nations and approximately seven of UNESCO’S Marine World Heritage sites. Along the way, over 300 experienced volunteer crew members have helped to sail the vessel and connect with more than 100,000 people throughout the world in communities across the South Pacific, Tasman Sea, Indian Ocean, Atlantic Ocean, and the Caribbean Sea, including Samoa, Aotearoa (New Zealand), Australia, Indonesia, Mauritius, South Africa, Brazil, U.S. Virgin Islands, Cuba, the East Coast of the United States and Canada. Currently, Hokulea is in Miami and is scheduled to depart for Panama in a few days. The canoe will transit through the Panama Canal to the Pacific Ocean and will make stops in the Galapagos Islands, Rapa Nui and French Polynesia before returning home to Hawaii.

The mission of the Voyage is to spread the message of Malama Honua (caring for Island Earth) by promoting environmental consciousness, fostering learning environments, bringing together island communities and to grow a global movement toward a more sustainable world. The Voyage has sought to engage the public by practicing how to live sustainably while sharing Polynesian culture, learning from the past and from each other, creating global relationships, and discovering the wonders of Island Earth.

After returning to Hawaii, the crew will sail Hokulea and Hikianalia around the Hawaiian Islands to visit communities and share stories and lessons learned on the Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage.  For updates on the Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage homecoming, visit www.hokulea.com/home .

Hikianalia’s Upcoming Hawaii Island Events

Hikianalia, the sister ship of Hokule’a, will be coming to the Big Island soon and the public is invited to some of the upcoming Hawaii Island events.
malama honua hawaii island visit

  • Friday, March 4 – Education Engagement Day Location: All throughout West Hawaii.  Organize and pair up schools and community organizations who malama honua for community service learning or classroom visitation.  To RSVP and for more information contact: nakalaiwaa@gmail.com
  • Saturday, March 5, 8:00-10:00 a.m. – Waa Talks: Location: Pua Ka Ilima (Kawaihae Coral Flats).  Geared for educators: E Lau Hoe Waa Teacher Training Activities.  RSVP on website.
  • Saturday, March 5, 10:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. – Malama Honua, WW Voyage Festival.  Location: Pua Ka Ilima (Kawaihae Coral flats).  This event is free and open to all families and community members. Featuring three demonstrations: Fish Surveys, Water Safety and Waa Mele & Oli
  • Wednesday, March 9, 5:00-7:00 p.m. – Waa Talks, Location: Kona – Keauhou Shopping Center. Special Guest Speaker: Celeste Hao from Imiloa Astronomy Center sharing the Kolea Waa Tool Kit, which is soon to be available to teachers.
  • Friday, March 11, 10:00-11:30 a.m. – Special Screening for schools, Location: Kahilu Theatre.  Screening of: Te Mana o Te Moana, $2 Event Fee RSVP: pomai@kalo.org
  • Friday, March 11, 7:00-9:30 p.m. –SAIL-A-BRATION FUNDRAISER, Where: Kohala Village HUB Barn. What: Music and Entertainment. Donation at the Door, No RSVP needed.
  • Saturday, March 12, 10:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. – Make Happy, A hui hou Hikianalia! Location: Kawaihae, Hawaii.  Community is invited to say a hui hou to Hikianalia. Potluck for community participants and Ohana Waa – bring something to share.

Hikianalia Sails to Hilo – Local Schools Invited to Participate (Must RSVP)

As legendary traditional sailing vessel Hokulea travels around the world, sister voyaging canoe Hikianalia continues to make her impact in Hawaii by delivering the Malama Honua message of taking care of Island Earth – this time on Hawaii Island- with the help of Polynesian Voyaging Society (PVS) crew members, Hawaii’s Ohana Waa (canoe family), and Imiloa Astronomy Center.

Vaka Sail - Oahu to Kauai - July 2011

Vaka Sail – Oahu to Kauai – July 2011

“It’s very important to PVS that Hikianalia continue engaging our local communities by offering opportunities for the public to interact with crew members and learn more about the Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage,” stated Miki Tomita, director of the Polynesian Voyaging Society’s Learning Center. “As an organization, we’re always striving to ensure that the public, especially our islands’ schoolchildren, are engaged in the educational aspects of the voyage at home as well as abroad,” Tomita added.

Between Feb. 15-25, weather-permitting, Hikianalia, Ohana Waa, and partner organizations will be hosting community outreach events in Hilo, with some events open to the general public.

Hilo Day

A welcome ceremony in Palekai, Keaukaha will be held on Monday, Feb. 15, with the time to be determined. Local schools are invited to participate in the momentous occasion and will need to RSVP.

On Friday, Feb. 19 from 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., Hawaii Island teachers and students will have the opportunity to take part in Hikianalia Education Day – again, schools will need to make reservations to participate.

Hikianalia Community Day will be held on Saturday, Feb. 20 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. The event will be at Suisan Pier, and all of the Hawaii Island community is invited – no reservations are required.

Imiloa Astronomy Center celebrates its tenth anniversary on Sunday, Feb. 21 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The public is invited to enjoy the day by visiting the astronomy center for free, meeting PVS crew members, and learning more about Hikianalia, Hokulea and the Worldwide Voyage.

For more information or to participate in events that require reservations, visit http://www.hokulea.com/hikianalia/.

The Hōkūle‘a Arrives in Hilo – Malama Hawaii (Statewide Sails) and Malama Honua (Worldwide Voyage)

Today I had the opportunity to check out the Polynesian Voyaging Society’s Canoe the Hōkūle‘a as it has arrived in Hilo as it prepares to take off for its “Malama Hawaii” (statewide sails) before the Malama Honua (worldwide voyage).

Hōkūle‘a ported at Radio Bay in Hilo

Hōkūle‘a ported at Radio Bay in Hilo

The Worldwide Voyage will include stops at more than 60 ports in more than 20 countries, all connected by ocean, most with traditional systems of ocean voyaging.

The Hōkūle‘a

The Hōkūle‘a

Here is a map of the planned route that they plan on taking:

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

Crew member Kim Kuulei Birnie talked about the pending voyage and the route that the vessels will take and explained how this is the first time that the vessels have ever been out of the Pacific Ocean as part of their planned route will take them through the Panama Canal and into the Atlantic Ocean and beyond.


I was invited out to the vessel along with David Corrigan from Big Island Video News and Tiffany Edwards Hunt from Big Island Chronicle and we got to ask crew members about the pending trip.

David Corrigan interviews Kim Kuulei Birnie

David Corrigan interviews Kim Kuulei Birnie

Tiffany Edwards Hunt checks out one of the places to sleep on board

Tiffany Edwards Hunt checks out one of the places to sleep on board

Education Specialist Jenna Ishii was kind enough to explain how things worked aboard the ship and was honest enough to tell us that one of the most difficult tasks they have is actually going to the bathroom as they have to harness themselves to rope and then do their business over the side of the boat.

Jenna Ishii explains some of the safety equipment

Jenna Ishii explains some of the safety equipment

She explained in all the years that the vessels have been going on there has been only three incidents of a crew member falling over board however they are prepared for it when and if it were to happen.

Ishii shows us the flashing beacon that is tossed over shores if someone goes overboard

Ishii shows us the flashing beacon that is tossed off the boat if someone goes overboard

“Since Hokulea’s launch in 1975, Hawaiians have reclaimed and refined the art of wayfinding, non-instrument navigation that synthesizes tradition principles of Pacific Navigation and modern scientific knowledge.”

"Eddie Would Go!"

“Eddie Would Go!”

Here is one of the press releases I received from them on Why Hokulea Voyages:

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

Here is the tentative Sail Plan and Port List, of course this could all change because of a lot of factors but this is what they are shooting for… note that this first year is what is termed the Malama Honua Hawaii Tour as it travels throughout the Hawaii Islands for the next year to make sure the vessels are prepared for the worldwide Voyage:

The Hawaii part of the World Wide Exploration

The Hawaii part of the World Wide Exploration

And the worldwide plan(s):

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

Click to Enlarge

Click to Enlarge

I spent about an hour aboard the Hokulea this afternoon and look forward to following them on their worldwide tour.

The decks were so hot, that they had to keep splashing water on the deck to keep our feet from burning

The decks were so hot, that they had to keep splashing water on the deck to keep our feet from burning

Here are some quick facts about the Hokule’a and the Hikanalia:

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

The public is invited to send off the vessels tomorrow, however, they technically won’t leave for a few more days however, this will be the main chance for the public to check things out.  A community potluck is being provided by the folks of the Keaukaha Community and the Canoe Clubs that are in Hilo.

Hokulea in Hilo

Just an overexposed picture I kind of like

Just an overexposed picture I kind of like


Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage Public Celebration – Hōkūle‘a in Hilo

The Polynesian Voyaging Society Canoe “Hōkūle‘a” is currently in Hilo at Palekai, Radio Bay in Keaukaha.

Her sister canoe, the  Hikianalia will depart Kawaihae today at 5 PM and be in Hilo sometime Saturday.  All events are subject to change, of course, mostly due to the weather.

On Sunday, June 9th, a big community event in Hilo will include the Hōkūle‘a launch ceremonies.  Everyone is invited.

Hokulea in Hilo

It is being hosted by Keaukaha community, ‘Ohana Wa‘a and the canoe clubs there.  There will be guest speakers that include Mayor Kenoi, a couple of the Ocean Elders and others.

The window of opportunity for the actual departure is between June 10-14, but the official ceremonies will take place Sunday.

According to Hawaii News Now:

…There are 22 legs planned for Hokulea’s voyage around the world, but the first and final are both right here at home.  Crew members say it’s about honoring our community and showing Hawaii’s people their gratitude.

Over the next four years, Hokule’a and her escort boat and sister canoe, Hikianalia, will travel to 28 countries and stop at 85 international ports – sailing more than 45,000 nautical miles around the world.

“We want to go. It’s time to go,” said navigator Nainoa Thompson, Hokulea’s Captain.

But before they set sail for international waters, Hokule’a and Hikianalia will spend the first five months of their journey right here at home.

“Around Hawai’i sail is the first leg.  It’s only a thousand miles, probably the shortest of all of them, but it’s the most important,” described Thompson, before adding this portion of the voyage is crucial to making sure all 250 crew members are trained and prepared before heading to the South Pacific next May.

“In many ways we could go to Tahiti right now.  We’re safe enough to do that, but I think this engagement with home is a crucial piece to earning that voyage,” explained Thompson.

“Malama Honua”, or “Care for the Earth”, defines the worldwide voyage’s mission and crew members say that starts here in the islands with “Malama Hawai’i”…

Worldwide Voyage Receives First Major Sponsorship

Hawaiian Airlines Pledges Crew Travel and Cargo Transportation

In a significant display of support for the mission of the Polynesian Voyaging Society’s Worldwide Voyage, Hawaiian Airlines has pledged to provide air transportation for PVS crew and cargo throughout Hawaiian’s route network for the duration of the four-year voyage.

Hikianalia on its way to Hawaii last year.

Hikianalia on its way to Hawaii last year.

Under a sponsorship contract signed this week, Hawaiian Airlines will provide 32 million air miles for crew travel, as well as cargo support for supplies needed as the sailing canoes Hōkūle‘a and Hikianalia travel to international ports throughout the Pacific.  The value of the sponsorship is estimated to be $1 million.

Hawaiian will be the lead sponsor of the voyage, which will be known as “The Worldwide Voyage Sponsored by Hawaiian Airlines.”

The Dalai Lama blessed the Hokulea at Kualoa Park last year.  Photo courtesy of Pillars of Peace

The Dalai Lama blessed the Hōkūle‘a at Kualoa Park last year. Photo courtesy of Pillars of Peace

“We are deeply appreciative of Hawaiian’s extraordinary commitment to our mission to inspire young people throughout the world to care for and sustain our planet, and to coexist in peace and compassion,” said navigator Nainoa Thompson, PVS president.  “Sailing Hōkūle‘a has taught us the importance of understanding and connecting with our natural resources.  She is a reminder to us all of the need to celebrate and protect the natural and cultural treasures of Island Earth.”

“The Worldwide Voyage honors a legacy of connecting islands throughout the Pacific that Polynesian navigators created centuries ago. It is our privilege as modern-day navigators and beneficiaries of that legacy to support this voyage and its message of sustainability and resource protection,” said Mark Dunkerley, Hawaiian Airlines’ president and CEO.

The Worldwide Voyage Sponsored by Hawaiian Airlines will begin in June 2013 with a series of voyages throughout the Hawaiian archipelago, and continue through 2017 with visits to more than 60 ports in more than 20 countries.

The Hōkūle‘a being worked on. Picture courtesy of Pillars of Peace

The Hōkūle‘a being worked on. Picture courtesy of Pillars of Peace

The 48-month voyage involves more than 400 crewmembers from 16 countries.  This includes educators and scientists who will be using the voyage to research ocean wellness, using Native Hawaiian and western science research methods, and to create voyaging-based curriculum to be disseminated in as many Hawai‘i schools as possible, including Mālama Honua, a newly created charter school affiliated with the voyage.  Hikianalia, the solar- and wind-powered support and sister vessel to Hōkūle‘a, will be a platform for marine science, documentation, education outreach, communication and teacher training, while Hōkūle‘a will continue to be a platform for indigenous knowledge, experiential learning and sustainability.

PVS expects to have approximately 5,000 of Hawai‘i’s school children physically on the canoes during the first year of the Worldwide Voyage, and more than 100,000 Hawai’i students and teachers on board PVS’s third canoe, the website http://hokulea.org, throughout the four-year voyage as part of their curriculum.  Students from several public and private schools in Hawai‘i have already been involved in preparing for the voyage by assisting in dry docks (restoration and repair work) for Hōkūle‘a and Hikianalia, studying the sail plan, and participating in crew training and classroom work on the wa‘a.

Photo courtesy of Pillars of Peace

The blessing of the Hokulea. Photo courtesy of Pillars of Peace

“The involvement of our youth has been one of the most powerful aspects of planning for this voyage,” remarked Thompson.  “We can count on this next generation of voyagers to perpetuate the values and practices that will guide our planet toward good health.”

Commented Dunkerley: “The students who will be touched by this voyage, either by participating in it or by learning from the science-based curriculum it will produce, are the future workforce of Hawaiian Airlines.  So it is fitting that Hawai‘i-based companies such as ours support this journey.”

Hikanalia Expected to Reach Home This Afternoon on Oahu

Hikianalia, Polynesian Voyaging Society’s new state-of-the-art voyaging canoe, is expected to reach Mokauea (Sand Island) mid-afternoon, Sunday, November 25. The latest estimated time of arrival is 2 PM to Marine Education Training Center.

Hikianalia is on its way home

Master navigator Bruce Blankenfeld and a crew of 18—including master navigator Chad Kālepa Baybayan, and several veteran as well as new crewmembers—left Friday night, anticipating a voyage with little-to-no wind.  This morning she could be seen from Kalaupapa Lookout; at 9 AM this morning, she was seen off Mo‘omomi Coastline, Moloka‘i.

Kalepa gives a pule for the safe passage of Faafaite on her voyage from Hawai’i to Tahiti in Nov. 2011. Crédits photo: Danee Hazama

Hikianalia reached Hawai‘i last week and has spent the week in Hilo.  She left Auckland, where she was launched in late September, and set sail on October 9.  The crew changed in Tahiti and again in Hilo.

Hikianalia will accompany Hōkūle‘a during the Polynesian Voyaging Society’s 2013-2016 Worldwide Voyage as her sister vessel, providing a second floating classroom, and the main platform for communication and technology.  Hōkūle‘a and Hikianalia are Hawaiian star names for Arcturus and Spica, which break the horizon together in Hawaiian skies.  Neither uses fossil fuels; both rely on the wind in their sails and photovoltaics for their lights, communication and – in Hikianalia’s case – engines.

Hikianalia is scheduled to arrive on Sand Island on Oahu this afternoon

To review Hikianalia’s launch and journey from Aotearoa, and to learn more about the upcoming Worldwide Voyage, visit our website http://hokulea.org.


Hikianalia Arrives Home in Hawaii – Welcoming in Hilo Bay Tomorrow

Hikianalia, a new state-of-the-art voyaging canoe, is expected to be in Hilo Harbor by dawn tomorrow morning, Sunday, November 18.  She will have traveled more than 4,000 miles to come home to Hawai‘i since her launch in early October.

Hikianalia is scheduled to arrive on the Big Island tomorrow.

It has taken Hikianalia 17 days to sail from Papeete, Tahiti (French Polynesia) to Hawai‘i, and it took 16 days to sail her from her launch site in Auckland, New Zealand, to Papeete.

After clearing customs at Hilo Harbor, Hikianalia will make her way to Radio Bay, where Hikianalia and the entire crew will be formally welcomed by the Keaukaha Community Association.

“We expected them in the afternoon, but now that they are arriving in the morning, it will be a quiet welcome,” explained master navigator Chad Kālepa Baybayan, who has co-organized the Hilo reception.  “Still, we know the community will come out to see her.”

Baybayan navigated Pacific Voyager canoe Faafaite from Auckland to Tahiti, escorting Hikianalia during the latter’s maiden voyage.  Master navigator Bruce Blankenfeld captained Hikianalia during that first leg of her voyage home to Hawaiʻi.

Most of the Hikianalia crew changed in Papeete.  Captain Bob Perkins and master navigator Chadd ‘Ōnohi Paishon are part of a crew of 15 bringing the canoe to Hawai‘i in a portion of the voyage that included crossing the equator.  Overall, for the course between Tahiti and Hawai‘i, the skies have been clear and the winds fair, except for a brief passage through the Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone, where they experienced quirky weather.

Hikianalia will accompany Hōkūle‘a during the Polynesian Voyaging Society’s 2013-2016 Worldwide Voyage as her sister vessel, providing a second floating classroom, and the main platform for communication and technology.  The two wa‘a will partner in messages of sustainability.  Neither uses fossil fuels; both rely on the wind in their sails and solar energy for their lights, communication and – in Hikianalia’s case – engines.

Hōkūle‘a and Hikianalia are Hawaiian names for stars Arcturus and Spica, respectively, which break the horizon together in Hawaiian skies.

“It’s been a privilege to bring Hikianalia home to Hawai‘i,” says Perkins.  “She will finally meet her sister Hōkūle‘a.”

Hikianalia is expected to sail directly from Hawai‘i Island to O‘ahu next weekend.

To track Hikianalia, or to learn more about the upcoming Worldwide Voyage, visit our website http://hokulea.org.

To follow the educational objectives of navigator and Makali‘i senior captain Chadd ‘Ōnohi Paishon, go to http://www.nakalaiwaa.org/student-qa-hikianalia.

The Polynesian Voyaging Society was founded in 1975 on a legacy of Pacific Ocean exploration, seeking to perpetuate the art and science of traditional Polynesian voyaging and the spirit of exploration through experiential educational programs that inspire students and their communities to respect and care for themselves, one other, and their natural and cultural environments.

Hikianalia Sets Sail for Hawaii – Hōkūle‘a’s Sister Vessel Will Be Important Part of Worldwide Voyage

Hikianalia, a new state of the art voyaging canoe, has departed Auckland and is headed for Hawai‘i by way of Tahiti.  Hikianalia will sail alongside Hōkūle‘a as part of the Polynesian Voyaging Society’s 2013 Worldwide Voyage and will be a vital component in the WWV’s educational endeavors.

Hikianalia is on its way to Hawaii

Like Hōkūle‘a, Hikianalia carries a Hawaiian star name. Spica rises together with Arcturus (Hōkūle‘a) in Hawai‘i. “They are sister stars because they break the horizon together, and Hikianalia will be the first wa‘a, or traditional double-hulled canoe, to accompany Hōkūle‘a as an escort vessel,” explains master navigator Bruce Blankenfeld.

Bruce Blankenfeld

Hikianalia is a high-tech, eco-friendly double-hulled canoe constructed by master boat builders in Auckland, New Zealand.  Made in the same mold of the Pacific Voyager waka moana that gathered in Hawai‘i in 2011 < >, Hikinanalia has electric rather than diesel motors, and in-board propellers. She is 72 feet long, 23 feet wide, and weighs 30,000 gross tons.  Each of Hikianalia’s hulls contains an electric motor powered by onboard photovoltaic panels that convert sunlight to electric propulsive energy.

Hikianalia was launched in Auckland on September 15th.  Since then, crewmembers have put her through extensive sea trials.

“She has great balance and sails beautifully,” says Blankenfeld, who will captain Hikianalia from Aotearoa to Tahiti. “Like all canoes, she’s definitely a living entity and will be a faithful companion to Hōkūle‘a during the Worldwide Voyage.”

The “Vaka Sails” can be seen here

Hikianalia is expected to reach Pape‘ete in 3 weeks, accompanied by the Tahitian canoe Fa‘afaite.  A new crew will sail Hikianalia to Hawai‘i from Tahiti and will make landfall in Hilo.

To track the Hikianalia from Aotearoa to Tahiti and then to Hawai‘i, visit our website http://hokulea.org.