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Is Hawaii Trashed As a Recent Article Depicts?

A recent article from insider.com caught our attention. It was showing Hawaii beaches as strewn with litter. The post was entitled “Disappointing photos show what vacationing in Hawaii is really like.” Considering the source, we didn’t take this all that seriously. Nonetheless, we wanted to set the record straight, since we are here, and well, they are not.

The article seems to confuse islands. It states: “Hana Highway in Hawaii is one of the most scenic drives in America….  You’ll see waterfalls, rainforests, and dramatic cliff sides. But you won’t be the only one.” It goes on, “In 2015, Honolulu’s traffic was ranked second-worst in the entire US.”

What do Honolulu and Hana have in common?

It’s hard to imagine they share much, other than they are both in Hawaii and both start with an H. Hana is located on one the most rural and remote parts of Maui whereas Honolulu, is the only major city in Hawaii and is located on Oahu, home to 80% of the state’s population. Maybe putting the two together was just in error, who knows.

Is Hawaii littered with trash everywhere?

In our humble opinion, it is not. That isn’t to say we haven’t seen Hawaii beaches on all the islands with overflowing trashcans and otherwise littered. But that is most definitely the exception, not the rule. Hawaii does in fact suffer from too much tourism for its limited and aging infrastructure. No doubt about that, and the fact that the burden of 10 million annual visitors isn’t easy.

For the most part, we do not find extensive trash on Hawaii’s beaches. Strangely, the article’s photos are captioned as stock photos from ” Shutterstock and Getty Images.” So we don’t know where they were even taken.

What about Waikiki Beach?

The article depicts Waikiki as overcrowded, saying “but popular beaches like Waikiki Beach are anything but relaxing.” Well, that can certainly be the case. In fact, that seems to be and has always been one of the iconic aspects of Waikiki Beach. If that isn’t to your liking, you can easily carve out generous space for yourself at either end of the Waikiki strip. So it is all about what you are looking for. Remember that Oahu is known as “The Gathering Place,” and Waikiki perhaps best exemplifies just that.

Are the views in Hawaii incredible, or as the articles say, not necessarily so?

They use a photo of the Ala Moana shopping center parking lot taken from the Ala Moana Beach Hotel as an example of bad views in Hawaii. Well sorry folks, the views throughout Hawaii, once again, are overall, simply incredible, and something even those of us who live here never tire of.

The Beat of Hawaii lead photo above was taken at Ala Moana Beach Park facing towards Waikiki in mid-afternoon.

Okay Hawaii fans. Please chime in! Mahalo. 

19 thoughts on “Is Hawaii Trashed As a Recent Article Depicts?”

  1. Hawaii’s problems have many roots.
    Over tourism: too many hotels, too many tourists for the infrastructure. They need to stop building new ones till the roads get widen, new ones built. But it’s all about money.
    Roads/traffic
    Road to Hana traffic is bad. So is the Main roads in Honolulu. Locals take 60-90 minutes to travel back and forth to work and home. I take the bus on Ohau. Forget the rental. Maui traffic is bad too and now Kaua’i is terrible!! Spent 4 weeks their this winter, traffic fron Kappa to Lihue 45 minutes and it’s just a few miles. Trying to get to the west sise on a Friday night, took us 2 hours and didn’t go back again.
    Homeless
    Yes you can find the problem on all the islands, you just have to look around. Local government I feel does its best but if people don’t want or can’ t work what do we do? Living under a tarp in feyis better than in a box in any northern mainland state.
    Local costs
    Generally every thing seems to cost so much more in Hawaii. I’ttold it’ An island, you have to ship everything in. Sorry still doesn’t explain it. So much goods come from the Far East, Hawaii is half the distance to California so the freight should be less. Even if it went to California first then reshipped to Hawaii the cost had to be cheaper then going by trucks loading and unloading especially to the east coast. I can find many things for the same or even less than in my home town, but alm the rest is just crazy. Costo’s large pizza is the same price here like in Hawaii.
    Well I’ve gotten off subject, sorry.
    Hawaii is great, but it has the same issues we gave on the mainland.
    Thousands of people go every day expect issues, be realistic and plan. Now with lower airfares expect more.

    1. Sorry the trashing I saw on the West side of Oahu was not tourists…… it is people who live there and are supposedly caring about the land…

  2. Spent 10 days in Maui a month ago. Kihei and Wailea had clean beaches, just beautiful. Baby Beach in Lahaina was sadly overrun with garbage and recycling (no larger resorts here). I think there may have been a homeless community there. I told a family member that lives in Maui about it and they were going to report it to Island Care Group. We were shocked how many storefronts and buildings stood empty, too.

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