Named for the late Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop, The Bishop Museum features the most comprehensive collection of royal Hawaiian family heirlooms, documents and photographs. But the sprawling campus also includes the Science Adventure Center, a planetarium, native garden and an extension of the Hawaii Sports Hall of Fame.
For a Hawaiian history tour, it’s hard to get more authentic than The Bishop Museum. Created as a loving legacy to Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop by her husband Charles Bishop, the museum both honors and curates her life as well as the lineage that came before her, dating back to her great-grandfather, King Kamehameha I. In addition to housing an extensive collection of Hawaiiana, the museum also showcases the largest display of Polynesian cultural and scientific artifacts. The collections contain more than one million artifacts from cultures across the Pacific – from New Guinea to Rapa Nui (Easter Island) and from Hawaii to Aotearoa (New Zealand).
The three floors of Hawaiian Hall steer visitors through different realms of Hawaii: The first floor represents Hawaiian beliefs and legends. The second floor focuses on the importance of land and nature in daily life. The third floor is the realm inhabited by the gods. September 2013 celebrates the re-opening of Pacific Hall within Hawaiian Hall: two floors representing island people from Polynesia, Micronesia and Melanesia through artifacts related to war, religion, clothing and dance. Adjacent to Hawaiian Hall, the Kahili Room honors the memory of Hawaiian royalty with personal belongings, portraits and Kahili displays (ceremonial poles decorated with feather plumes).
Sports enthusiasts will appreciate The Bishop’s extension of the Hawaii Sports Hall of Fame, paying tribute to native athletes including Duke Kahanamoku, the “Father of Surfing” and Hawaii’s first gold-medal Olympian. With children, explore The Bishop’s Richard T. Mamiya Science Adventure Center. This 16,500-square-foot facility was designed to teach about oceans and volcanoes. (A giant volcano sits squarely in the middle of exhibit, complete with a lava tube to walk through and a lava flow to slide down.) End your visit to The Bishop sighting constellations at the J. Watumull Planetarium.
“ If you are visiting between November and February, don’t miss Waimea Bay on the North Shore where the island’s top surfers take on 30-foot waves ”
Address: 1525 Bernice St., Honolulu, HI 96817
Phone: (808) 847-3511
Web Address: www.bishopmuseum.org
Distance/Drive: Five miles – a 15- to 20-minute drive from THE MODERN HONOLULU depending on traffic.
Brief directions from THE MODERN HONOLULU: Head south on Ala Moana Boulevard, left on Ena Road, left on Kalakaua, left on South Beretania, right on Piikoi, left on Lunalilo, left on to the H1 West Freeway, take exit 20A to merge onto Kalihi Street, right onto Bernice Street.