While making sure you book all the tours, sightseeing opportunities and reservations are important, here are some helpful tips that you may not know. From respecting the Aina “land” to protecting yourself, these 5 things are important to know before coming to Hawaii.

1) Single-use Plastic Bags are Banned

Be prepared to bring your own bags to the grocery store, because most will not provide one. Some stores may provide paper bags, but most places either require you to bring your own or buy a reusable one.

2) It is Illegal to Touch Sea Turtles

I’m sure when you come to Hawaii seeing a sea turtle is on your bucket list. While it is amazing to see one up close, it is illegal to disturb or touch a sea turtle.

3) Non-Reef Safe Sunscreen has been Banned

All sunscreens except for Reef Safe Sunscreen have been banned, so any sunscreens that have chemicals that are bad for the environment. When many people use chemically filled sunscreens in the water, it can damage the coral reefs and other sea life, so look into the sunscreen brand you are buying and help us take care of our island.

4) Don’t take Lava Rocks as Souvenirs

There is a myth that if you take a lava rock off the island, Pele will become angry with you and bad luck will follow. And though this may or may not be true, it is also illegal to take anything from any state parks, so just respect the state rules and regulations, and enjoy the views.

5) Be Cautious in the Ocean

You may have experience bodyboarding and swimming in the ocean, but don’t be overconfident when it comes to the waves. The waves have a way of being calm one set and huge the next, and if you aren’t careful, you can hurt your neck or worse. Fortunately this is avoidable! Just make sure to not turn your back on the waves, probably not the best to grab a floatie and nap on the water, and just use good judgment.


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