I was reading a book about The Blind Traveler, a Lieutenant James Holman, of Her Majesty’s Royal Navy. He traveled the world after he became blind. He then proceeded to write several books about travel that were better than books by authors who could see. He relied on the observations of others, and used his other tactile senses to describe famous works of art and architectural gems.
Perhaps nowhere I have been has the unique smells, or more delicately, fragrances of the Hawaiian Islands. As soon as you step off of the plane, you can smell the native flora and feel the heat and humidity, where the “air is so dewy sweet, you do not have to lick postage stamps”.
They say people from the Midwest, who have never seen an ocean, smell the warm, blue salt water of the Pacific. For people who get crazy over food, the smell of Kona coffee and huli-huli chicken are their first smells. And it is distinctly different than the smells of the Indian and Atlantic Oceans.
Here is what the experts say:
What are the 5 best smells in Hawaii?
- Ahi Poke with shoyu and pepper water from Kahuku Superette. I’m talking about when it’s fresh!
- White plumeria (frangipani) flowers blooming along the Ala Wai Canal in Waikiki.
- Any of the forest trails after a hard rain.
- Korean BBQ! The smell is addicting… once you get it a couple times, your nose is always pulling you back to where you got it.
- The fresh, salty, humid air when the waves are big and the wind is strong. Makapu’u and Bellows AFS have some great air during a mildly windy 3 foot + day on Oahu.
Other smells that I can recall are:
Guava, Papaya, Lilikoi (Passion Fruit)
Chocolate macadamia nut ice cream
Feel free to add your own. I do not miss the smell of burning sugar cane fields, or seaweed drying on the white sand beach.