Iolani Palace

On our final day in Honolulu we visisted the stunning Ioalni Palace located in the Capitol District near Downtown Honolulu. The palace was built in 1882 by King Kalakaua and served as home for the last reigning monarchs of Hawai’i. In 1962, the palace was registered as a National Historic Landmark and is the only royal residence in the United States.  Visiting both the Bishop Museum and Iolani Palace truly allowed us to gain a much deeper understanding of Hawai’i, its culture and its history.

There are two main ways to explore the palace, by guided tour or by audio guide. We decided to opt for the guided tour as audio guides can be a little frustrating. Both tours run through the first and second level of the palace. Continue reading “Iolani Palace”

Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum

As well as swimming at Waikiki Beach and enjoying the amazing food, I really wanted to visit a couple of museums and heritage places in Honolulu. The Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum (aka Bishop Museum) is the State Museum of Natural and Cultural History. Primarily, I wanted to visit to learn a bit more about the history of Hawaii. In particular, how it became a state of America. This post is going to cover both a temporary exhibition currently on display titled Unreal: Hawai’i in Popular Imagination and highlights from the Bishop Museum’s permanent collection.

Unreal: Hawai’i in Popular Imagination

This sounded like a very intriguing exhibition, displaying how Hawai’i has been presented and ‘sold’ to the world. When you think of Hawai’i what comes to mind? Hula dancers, surfers and beaches have been used for decades to paint a picture of Hawai’i as a literal tropical paradise. The exhibition looked at how these images aren’t as harmless as they seem and integrated artworks produced by native Hawaiian artists to show alternative depictions. Continue reading “Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum”