- WSL / Damien Poullenot

"Mele Kalikimaka" means to have a Merry Christmas in Hawaiian. And yes, Christmas here may not be snowy and white, but it has its own special charm. As you drive along the North Shore you will see the large winter swells, small groups of surfers bobbing around on the horizon and people riding waves in celebration of the holidays. Here on the islands, we replace Christmas trees with palm trees, snow angles for sand angles and sledding for surfing.

Winter Swells Hit The North Shore

When the winter swells light up the Seven Mile Miracle that is the North Shore of Oahu, locals and visitors alike make the most of the abundance of waves. Last year, a swell came right in time for Christmas morning. Some would say that waves are the best kind of present to wake-up too.

Stormy conditons on day 8 of the waiting period of the Billabong Pipe Masters 2017 in Pipe Oahu, Hawaii , USA
Headline/NameBillabong Pipe Masters 2017
Credit@ WSL / Poullenot
PhotographerDamien Poullenot - WSL / Damien Poullenot

The People Of The Islands

There is no shortage of evidence that the people of Hawaii make visiting the Islands so special. If you show the locals respect and kindness the same will be reciprocated. The gift of aloha is the gift that keeps on giving.

Kelly Slater during the opening ceremony of the Eddie Aikau 2016.
CreditWSL/Sloane - WSL / Ed Sloane

Endless Warm Waves

If you surf in December or January in most places in the world, you'll probably be pulling on a thick fullsuit. Hawaii is one of those exceptions. No matter when you go, it is pretty much warm year round. That means endless warm winter waves during the holiday season.

An empty wave during Round 3 at the Billabong Pipe Masters at Pipeline, Oahu, Hawaii.
Headline/NameBillabong Pipe Masters 2018
CreditPHOTO: © WSL / Sloane SOCIAL : @wsl @edsloanephoto
PhotographerEd Sloane - WSL / Ed Sloane

The Colorful Sunrise Skies

Sunset or sunrise, the Hawaiian sky has no shortage of colors. Headed out for dawn patrol session? Well you've earned yourself a spot in the lineup to watching the vibrant sunrise. Nothing quite like surfing with only a couple people out and enjoying a show on Christmas morning.

Karen Wilson - WSL / Karen Wilson

Rainbows Are Common Sight

It's true, rainbows are everywhere here on the Islands. All you have to do is look up from your phone and you'll probably find one. If you are lucky, a double rainbow may be in your near future. A Christmas rainbow or two aren't too uncommon either.

OAHU, UNITED STATES - DECEMBER 8: A large rainbrow shining bright over the lineup on day one of the 2019 Billabong Pipe Masters at Pipeline as a layday is called on December 8, 2019 in Oahu, United States. (Photo by Kelly Cestari/WSL via Getty Images) - WSL / Kelly Cestari

The Hawaiian Culture And Traditions

Don't miss out on the culture and traditions of the Hawaiian people. The holiday season is filled with aloha. Aloha in Hawaiian means love, affection, peace, compassion, welcome, and so much more. Whether you live here or not, aloha is a way of life and is especially prevalent during the holidays.

MAUI, UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 25: A traditional Hawaiian blessing taking place during the opening ceremony of the 2019 Lululemon Maui Pro at Honolulu Bay on November 25, 2019 in Maui, United States. (Photo by Ed Sloane/WSL via Getty Images) - WSL / Ed Sloane

The Natural Beauty Of The Land

We may not have a white Christmas but, behind every corner and twist in the road is a new sight to see here in Hawaii. The natural beauty of the land gives each and every one of us extra grace during this time, feeling grateful beyond words. The tropical Hawaiian Christmas may not be for everyone but for those who call this place home it is reminder of who we are and where we come from.

The opening Ceremony of the Beachwaver Pro Maui, Honolua Bay, 2018.
Headline/NameBeachwaver Maui Pro 2018
CreditPHOTO: © WSL / Sloane SOCIAL : @wsl @edsloanephoto - WSL / Ed Sloane

Trade Winds And Misty Skies

During December and January there are extra trade winds and mist in the air. Don't get me wrong, it is still in the 70s, but it is slightly more chilly than any other time of the year. The winds and winter rains make it just cold enough to cozy up with a nice blanket and a hot cup of coco.

Stormy conditons on day 8 of the waiting period of the Billabong Pipe Masters 2017 in Pipe Oahu, Hawaii , USA
Headline/NameBillabong Pipe Masters 2017
Credit@ WSL / Poullenot
PhotographerDamien Poullenot - WSL / Damien Poullenot

Hawaiian Honu's Swimming Around

The wildlife in Hawaii is unlike any other. We may not have elk and deer for the holidays but you can surely spot a honu (Hawaiian Sea Turtle) swimming around while you surf.

Sea Turtle - WSL / Damien Poullenot

Hawaiian Sunset Surfs

From pink to yellow to a fire red, every Hawaiian sunset is one in a million. Not one is the same. And if you are surfing during this golden hour you are in for a real treat. It is like watching a light show while enjoying the best waves in the world. Get out there and enjoy!

A scenic moment during a lay day on December 14, 2018 at Pipeline and Off The Wall, Oahu, Hawaii, USA.
Headline/NameBillabong Pipe Masters 2018
CreditPHOTO: © WSL / Heff SOCIAL : @wsl @Tony_heff
PhotographerTony Heff - WSL / Tony Heff
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