The reputable, week-long Merrie Monarch Festival of Hawaii is fast-approaching, and locals and tourists alike are excited to marvel at the many spectacles. Returning once more to the Afook Chinen Civic Auditoria, this cultural delight honors King David Kalaukaua, who was called the “Merrie Monarch” for his patronage of the arts.
He is recognized for restoring many Hawaiian cultural traditions during his reign, including the hula. Stop by and enjoy several free exhibitions and events for a cultural, entertaining delight! If you are staying in Oahu or any of the other islands, consider getting to Hilo via Hawaiian Airlines for excellent fares on flights between islands!
Be sure to leave time in your Hawaii itinerary to explore the festivities:
Sunday, March 31st
– Starting at 9:00am on Sunday, stop by the Afook Chinene Civic Auditorium for free admission to watch local Hawaiians perform their hula.
Mon, April 1st – Fri, April 5th
– Head to the Hawaii Naniloa Volcanos Resort at 12pm for entertainment, and the Hilo Hawaiian Hotel at 1pm, Monday through Friday during Merrie Monarch Festival!
Arts & Crafts Fair
Wed, Aprtil 3rd – Sat, April 6th
– An annual favorite, this free event features local artists and crafters. Weekday hours go from 8:30am to 5:00pm – Weekend hours are from 8:30am to 4:00pm.
Wed, April 3rd
– At 5:45pm, head over to the Edith Kanaka’ole Stadium for an exhibition night of hula and music. Get your tickets on the Merrie Monarch website!
Miss Aloha Hula Competition
Thurs, April 4th
– A festival favorite, the Miss Aloha Hula competition features some of the most renown contestants peforming hula and oli (chanting) – hosted at the Edith Kanaka’ole Stadium. This is a ticketed event – get them here!
Group Hula Kahuko & Group Hula Awards
Fri, April 5th and Sat, April 6th
– Starting at 5:45pm at the Edith Kanaka’ole Stadium for both nights, Friday’s group hula competition of ancient style dances determines the awards night that follows. Both events are jam-packed with dancing and festivities! Tickets needed for both events.
Merrie Monarch Royal Parade
Sat, April 6th
– One of the festival’s most entertaining and fun events for the whole family. Starting at Pauahi Street and ending at Kamehameha Avenue, be sure to find a good point of view by the 10:30am start!
For more information about the Merrie Monarch Festival and to get vouchers for the ticketed events, check out the Merrie Monarch Festival website. The Merrie Monarch Festival is a
registered non-profit, and all profits go toward scholarships, educational workshops, and cultural preservation.
To learn more about the Merrie Monarch himself, visit King Kalukaua’s former residence – the Iolani Palace. As home to the last two monarch of Hawaii, King Kalukaua lived here in the late 1800s. And if you haven’t had enough hula, be sure to stop by Germaine’s Luau – the perfect place to experience authentic, backyard-style hula. You will experience the thrills of fire-knife dancing, slap dancing, Tahitian dancing, and more magnificent hula over an all-you-can-eat Hawaiian/American buffet -complete with cocktails! Get all this and more for one low price with the Go Oahu Card, and make the most of your Hawaii experience!