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The moment you step on any one of the six islands that make up the state of Hawaii, the weight of the world simply melts away. Breath deep and a warm and welcoming spirit takes over, which has way more to do with the culture, people, and way of life than the lei strung around your neck. Collectively known for beautiful beaches, rainforests, active volcanoes, big waves, ono grinds, and laid-back lifestyle, each of the islands  — Hawaii, or the Big Island, Maui, Oahu, Kauai, Lanai and Molokai — offer different experiences, whether it’s outdoor adventure or total relaxation.

The locals are deeply proud of their land, heritage, and culture, and they go to great lengths to protect it. But they also love to share it in all forms, from the food to the hula to the glimmering oceans, emerald-green mountains, and stunning sunsets. Drive around and you’ll see farm stands filled with gorgeous fresh pineapple, papaya, mango and more, and coffee shops serving the locally grown Kona coffee. On menus you’ll see loco moco, poke, plate lunches and shaved ice. There’s wonderful music, warm breezes and rainbows just about everywhere. With so much to do and see, just remember to tread lightly on the land and respect the locals. They’re happy to share their way of life (and maybe a secret surf spot if you’re lucky) as long as you don’t abuse it. Try not to overstuff your itinerary and leave room to explore off the beaten path. Or just simply relax. That’s the island way.  Aloha!