There’s no question that there are significant differences between Hawaii and the mainland. The bright sun and outdoor lifestyle is prevalent throughout the islands, especially because beautiful weather is present all year-round. People are different in both places and common courtesies also vary between the two areas. In addition to all of that, the cuisine is especially different between the two. Good, authentic Hawaiian food is difficult to find on the mainland. The closest I’ve gotten to Hawaiian food is L&L, but that’s still nothing compared to Ono’s and Foodland’s poke. All of these variables contribute to why Hawaii and the mainland are so different from each other. However, there is one thing that I find to be the most prominent difference between Hawaii and the mainland.

Pacific Ocean

One of the coolest views ever!

The difference

Growing up in Hawaii as a kid and later a teenager, there were so many things to do. Hiking, surfing, going to the beach, spending the weekends outdoors in the sun were available to us all year round. We never had to worry about winter weather ruining our plans, or destroying our roads and drivers. It was always sunny all the time. The primary difference between the mainland and Hawaii is what teenagers do in their spare time. Although it’s pretty well known that all high school kids have had a drink in their lifetime and probably go to a few parties here and there – in Hawaii there is a lot more to do than just party. In high school my friends and I would much rather go to the beach instead of getting wasted drunk and being hungover the next day. That’s how it was for a lot of people compared to mainland high schools. Mainland high schools don’t have the option to bask in the sun every day. The sun can have a big affect on someone, especially for a young high school kid who aspires to live the tumblr life.


Spuds, the wonder dog, always hiking with me!

Hawaii dominates tumblr

Hawaii is all over tumblr. The tropical pictures that dominate the social media site are comprised of bright blue oceans and dark green palm trees. Kids in high school in Hawaii are always tan, and active outside. It’s easy to go to the beach, you don’t even need a surfboard, you can just hang out in the water. Outdoor activities on the mainland seem to require a lot more equipment, travel time and skill. For example, winter sports like skiing and snowboarding require expensive equipment and getting up to the ski resorts require vehicles with AWD (most likely,) and travel time. Beaches are located all over Hawaii, literally everywhere, no matter where you are on the island. Beaches are also free to access because they are public property, so they are at no cost to you. Beaches also don’t require cars with AWD to access them.


My friends and I hiked Kuliouou Ridge a few years ago, a lot of fun!

Differences between Hawaii and the mainland

Hawaii offers a lot of outdoor opportunities for kids in high school to have fun without having to get involved in things like drinking and drugs at such an early age. Although those things are still happening in Hawaii high schools, they’re a lot less prevalent and common than mainland schools because kids in Hawaii have options to do other things.


Just another day in Paradise.