Retro Surfing – Honolua Bay, Maui – 1963

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This video is from three years before I was born, guys riding easy 2 foot surf at one of my favorite places in the world to surf and bodyboard – Honolua Bay, Maui, Hawaii.

Duke Kahanamoku from Hawaii from Hawaii - 1920 retroHonolua Bay is located on the northwestern tip of Maui island, and it’s a great place for a number of things.

  1. Snorkeling – my favorite spot on Maui when the water is calm and clear. I’ve spent 5 hours at a time on the water kicking around and free diving.
  2. Surfing – Bodyboarding – some say Honolua Bay has the most perfect wave in Hawaii. It is a lovely wave that slowly breaks right. A great place to learn surfing when the waves are small.
  3. Picnics up on the hill overlooking the bay when the waves are up and some of the best surfers on the planet are surfing.

It’s amazing to me to look at these guys surfing this Maui bay three years before I was born.


There I was, growing up in western Pennsylvania, just outside Pittsburgh, and yeah, looking back on it – living on a Hawaiian island and surfing everyday instead of playing in the dirt with my Tonka trucks would have been a tremendous step UP.

Isn’t it fascinating how different our lives can be – based on who your parents are, what they liked to do, what they did to make money, and whether they were into drugs or other nasty stuff?

Hawaii back in the 60’s must have been the coolest place to grow up – in the world. Did any of you grow up in the islands during the 50’s – 60’s? 70’s?

Give me one wish today…

I’d wish to go back in time and be born to Duke Kahanamoku and his wife, Nadine Alexander. I’d surf and eat local kine grinds my entire life… free-dive for ono, mahi, lobstah, all of it. I’d raise my family on Maui when I grew up. We’d have a surf shop on the hill leading down to Honolua Bay and lots of hammocks and limu poke in the refrigerator with dah kine chili peppah watah.

I’d start squatting on the hill of Honolua – me and a bunch of mokes, and we’d homestead that place in twenty years. Whatever it took. Can you imagine that? Ha! Me neither, the dream is too big – and too past it’s time.

What Were You Doing in 1963?

Where Did You Grow Up?


About the Author:

Moving to Hawaii was one of the most amazing moves ever. I strongly encourage you to consider it if you're in the financial position to make it work. Living in Hawaii has a fair bit of both positive and negative experiences awaiting each of us who give it a try. Read some of the articles here and try to get a feel for whether you might thrive in the islands. I wrote an entire book on the subject and it's usually less than $5. It's up there on the right side column. Best of luck and life to you! Aloha! - Vern L.

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