Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Hawaii Part 4 - Polynesian Cultural Center

If you ever find yourself on Oahu, do yourself a favor and spend a day at the Polynesian Cultural Center. It's a bit spendy, but well worth doing at least once in your life as it adds a richness to  your Hawaiian experience when you have some cultural history on board :-)

There are a number of different ways to experience the park, but basically they have created six authentic villages based on the Polynesian Islands.  When you visit each village you can see a presentation and learn about the history of the island.  In addition there are interactive activities at each island. You can learn and play the games they taught their children as they were training them as warriors, practice their art forms, and learn their dances and much much more.  The kids loved it - and there was some pretty great family bonding as the four of us played together.

In addition to learning to throw spears the kids were able to attempt to climb a coconut tree (with harness!).  It was a lot harder than they thought :-)  The native who demonstrated it for them was up to top in just a few seconds.  They were pretty impressed ;-)

In this game the leader would call out 1 left, 3 right, 2 forward and so on and so forth, getting faster and faster.  The girls were better at this game than the guys.  

A game similar to pick up sticks...

This was a game to develop quick reflexes.  Basically people would slowly start throwing sticks at you (yelling out each time a stick was thrown so you knew it was coming) and you had to catch them and throw them back.  It would get faster and faster :-)  So much fun.  There was another game the four of us played where you stood in a square formation each holding a stick.  The native would call out LEFT or RIGHT and you had to let go of your stick and grab the one to your left or right again getting faster and faster.  Each round the square got bigger and the game got harder.  The kids loved playing this one with us - it was really fun!

We did not stay for the night show or luau but were able to see the parade of islands.  Each island was represented on a raft and did a big show with their native dances.  Really fun to watch. 

They also tasted native foods, learned to hula, tried weaving and many other activities and learned a lot of history along the way.  We really had a blast and it was one of our favorite days.  Highly recommend!

1 comment:

  1. Oh my goodness, what fun you all had! Your pictures are great. You and your hubby make such a cute couple and the kids are such a great combination of the two of you. What a great experience. Thanks for sharing!