Polynesian Cultural Center

One of the things we wanted to do with the boys while in on Oahu was the Polynesian Cultural Center.  The Polynesian Cultural Center is 13.5 acres divided into seven villages each representing seven Polynesian Islands; Samoa, Hawaii, Fiji, Tahiti, New Zealand, Tonga, Marquesas and Aotearoa.

When DH and I had been 13 years prior, our favorite village had been the Samoa Village.  We watched while one of the Somoan Villagers climbed a tree, plucked a coconut from it, brought it down, peeled the husk off, cracked the shell with a small rock, shredded the coconut from it’s insides with a spear, then lit a fire with the hairy husk and two small sticks all in about 12 minutes, with the acting aplomb of Hollywood’s elite.

Even though all the villages were quite entertaining, Samoa is still our favorite.  The guy that did the routine was quite the comedian, and ended up calling Roo up to drink the water inside the coconut.

Our tour guide was a very sweet girl from Tahiti by the name of Rahae.  She told us that she and a large percentage of the employees at the Polynesian Cultural Center were students at Brigham Young University at Hawaii.  I didn’t even know there was a BYU on Oahu, let alone it possessing so many talented individuals.

She took us to each individual village where there was a show and a history lesson on each culture.  Just outside one village there was a replica of a long boat:

After we toured the villages, there was a parade of sorts on the river that runs through the property.  Each village performed a dance on a float.

After the parade we hopped a bus and visited The Laie Hawaiian LDS Mormon Temple which is next to BYU.  It was an amazingly landscaped place, and made me wonder how many gardeners it took to keep it that way.

After the tour, we went back to the Polynesian Cultural Center and went to dinner before seeing their major show, Ha: Breath of Life.  It was a long day, but we all had a great time seeing other cultures and learning about them.  Well worth the long day.

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31 Responses to Polynesian Cultural Center

  1. I’ve always wanted to go to Samoa..it’s DEFINITELY on my list..like completely officially..totally!
    Once again..amazing photographs! 😛

  2. Oohheee–what fun! We’ve been to the Polynesian Village at DisneyWorld, but this looks waaaaaaay better. 🙂

  3. Elisa says:

    What fun! Such great entertainers….you must have had a blast!

  4. Lovely place…..tranquilizer…
    I have a close affection for those, who live close to nature and adapt it as a part of it.

    close to me place there is a island “Undaman Nikobar”, here still people living with the same old ways and avoids any modernisation; like no light, no motors, nothing…. they have a closeness and a faith on nature.
    You get more details info on this link… http://tourism.andaman.nic.in/tribal.htm

    Thanks for the post.

    • Wow–very primitive. And maybe not for tourists? Sounds like most of the villages don’t take kindly to outsiders coming in a stirring things up! I’m sure it’s how they keep it peaceful–western civilization isn’t really very peaceful…fun, maybe.

  5. Madhu says:

    Sounds like fun! Love your pictures!

  6. Jim Cantwell says:

    Hey Allthings,
    Great pictures!!! Hawaii is on the list of places to visit ( yes I actually have one ha-ha)
    What DH stand for ?

  7. East Coast = not a fun trip to go all the way to HI. That’s too bad. My wife and I actually met while we both worked at the PCC – we lived in Laie for a few years. She danced in the afternoon shows and in the Hawaiian Village. I was a tour guide pushing Japanese tour groups on those canoes. . . . good times. Thanks for the post – looks like your family had fun

    • We did have a good time! I was amazed by these “kids” who worked there–I honestly don’t think I had it together that much at that age. So you were one of those? It seems like it would be a dream job–especially if all your friends are there as well. It would not seem so much like a chore, or a job that was dull. In the Tonga village during the show there was a Japanese man that was picked to come be part of the show from the audience. He was such a good sport, and so funny even though he had NO english AT ALL! He was an older gentleman, and he just played along with sign language. It was so great! You must have gotten great workouts pushing those canoes around–and been really tired at the end of the day! Did you get to see your wife dance much? Or were you always working? Did she enjoy it? What part of the country are you in now? (Not that anything could even come close to Hawaii…)

      • It was awesome – I’ve been lucky to have had some great experiences in life but that was my favorite job and I met some of my best friends working there. Watching the shows during the day never gets old either. It was fun to watch my wife (we were dating for most of that time) dance – I’d introduce her as my girlfriend to all of my tours and they’d all think I was joking and give me the, “there’s no way she’s with you” look. I still get that.

        I’m in Utah now – one of our friends who now does marketing for the center came up for a business trip so a bunch of us got together a few weeks ago. I hadn’t seen most of them in 12 years (yikes) so it was a nice reunion. Good times and it is / was neat how close we all got. I just found out one of them may move a few blocks down from us. Small world.

        Man you guys had a great trip – your kids are lucky!

      • Yeah, sometimes I worry that they don’t realize or appreciate how lucky they are! The tour guides boyfriend also worked the canoes, and she pointed him out as we floated by–it was so sweet! It’s nice that you got a reunion of sorts. We are the only ones in my husbands family that moved away, and sometimes if feels so lonely here, even though I love it. Makes friends all the more valuable. How do you like Utah in general? (Even though you miss HI).

  8. Lynne Ayers says:

    Thumbs up to you for the exposing the boys to the different cultures – it can only be a positive experience. And Yay that they seemed to enjoy it. Maybe it was the hula dancers, but that’s OK.

  9. Well. . . . .it’s no HI but we still enjoy it here quite a bit. My siblings all live up here for now (one is moving back to HI in a few months) and my wife is from here so that makes it nice to have family around. We lived in CA until two years ago and always wanted to move back either to here or HI.

    We live close to one of the mtns which makes our commute to the boys school a few miles longer but it’s a nice and quieter area – something I need being from HI. I think I enjoy the friendliness and ‘family’ feeling of HI and that is something I miss – it’s different depending on where you go and live. I think that’s why so many of my college and HI friends still stay in touch and we try and see each other when we have an opportunity because that’s what we are all used to. My daughter had an important bday for her (she turned 8 and that’s the baptism age for LDS folk) last year and so many of our HI friends turned out for the occassion it was nice. I think if I didn’t have that close circle, I’d be more homesick.

    • Sounds like you have a wonderful group of friends! I’m always curious about other religions–I didn’t know that 8 was the baptism age for LDS. I confess to be a rather fallen away Catholic. At the moment I just like to say I’m Christian. I understand Utah is a beautiful place, though I’ve never been. It’s good to be close to family. I sometimes wish we were closer to family.

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