Hōkūleʻa Arrives at Block Island
Hawaiʻi’s famed voyaging canoe, the Hōkūleʻa arrived at Block Island off the coast of Rhode Island at approximately 8 p.m. local time (2 p.m. HST) on Sunday, June 19, after departing New York City earlier in the day.
As part of the Hōkūleʻa crew’s protocol for showing respect for the land and its people, crew members sought permission to dock the sailing vessel from the indigenous tribes of the area.
They were welcomed by a representative of the Narrangansett Indian Tribe. Hōkūleʻa captain and master navigator Kalepa Baybayan offered a kahili (feather standard) on behalf of the Mālama Honua Worldwide Voyage.
Community members are encouraged to visit the canoe on Tuesday, June 21 at the Block Island Boat Basin Marina for canoe tours and to learn more about the Worldwide Voyage.
Hōkūleʻa is expected to remain on Block Island until Thursday, June 23, before continuing on to Mystic, Connecticut, with safety and weather conditions dictating any sail plans.
When complete, the Mālama Honua Worldwide Voyage will have covered over 60,000 nautical miles, 100 ports, and 27 nations, including 12 of UNESCO’s Marine World Heritage sites.
Voyaging from Hawaii in 2013 with an estimated sail conclusion date of June 2017, the Worldwide Voyage is taking the iconic sailing vessels Hōkūleʻa around Island Earth and her sister canoe Hikianalia around the Pacific and the Hawaiian Islands to grow a global movement toward a more sustainable world.
The voyage seeks to engage all of Island Earth – practicing how to live sustainably while sharing Polynesian culture, learning from the past and from each other, creating global relationships, and discovering the wonders of the precious place we call home.
Since departing Hawaiian waters in May 2014, Hōkūleʻa has sailed more than 23,000 nautical miles and made stops in 12 countries and 55 ports, weaving a “Lei of Hope” around the world.
Along the way, more than 160 volunteer crewmembers have helped to sail Hōkūleʻa to spread the message of mālama honua (or taking care of Island Earth) by promoting sustainability and environmental consciousness, as well as exchanging ideas with the countries she has visited.
So far, crew members have connected with over 45,000 people in communities across the South Pacific, Tasman Sea and Indian Ocean including Samoa, Aotearoa (New Zealand), Australia, Indonesia, Mauritius, South Africa, Brazil, U.S. Virgin Islands, and Cuba.
The Mālama Honua Worldwide Voyage reached the East Coast of the United States in March. The crew visited Florida’s NASA Kennedy Space Center, Charleston, S.C. and celebrated Earth Day in Newport, VA.
Hōkūleʻa first set out on the Pacific Ocean in 1975. Since then, she has traveled to multiple countries across the globe, reawakening a Hawaiian cultural renaissance in the process through reviving the traditional art of wayfinding – navigating the sea guided by nature using the ocean swells, stars, and wind.