Guests of the Polynesian Cultural Center on the island of Oahu, Hawaii, can sit back, relax, and enjoy a meal and a show — but before that, they can participate in any of the Center’s “Go Native” activities, the newest of which is outrigger canoe paddling. Outriggers, once the preferred way to get around, are now popularly raced with clubs around the world. At the Polynesian Cultural Center, an experienced paddler and guide will lead four-person outriggers (available from noon to 5:30, Monday-Saturday) through the center’s lagoon, so even those new to canoes can experience firsthand Hawaii’s state team sport.
To get even more in touch with your native side, the PCC offers coconut tree climbing, spear throwing, Samoan cooking lessons, umu (fire pit) making lessons, guided canoe tours, a Polynesian marketplace, and an authentic food and snack bar. Coming soon to the “Go Native” offers are Hawaiian quilt making and pareu (sarong) dying, and Te Here (forever), a Tahitian wedding celebration.
The Polynesian Cultural Center is 42 acres and includes eight villages to explore, a large lagoon, waterfalls, and the beautiful plant life of Hawaii. Tickets start at $49.95 for general admission, with plenty of other perks available to boost your Polynesian expertise, from tours to tiki carving presentations. www.polynesia.com