A cultural exchange, learning about organic gardening in Hawaii, United States


United States

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  • Description


    My husband and I have a 3 acre homestead on the rural East side of the island of Maui in Hana. We are blessed to be the custodians to this special part of the 'last Hawaiian place' rich with cultural and spiritual significance. We are a private homestead and not a commercial operation. The farm consists of a sampling of trees such as papaya, banana, cacao, coffee, inga, soursop, avocado, lychee, rambutan, jackfruit, surinam cherry, fig, star-apple, mountain apple and coconut.

    As we expand to growing vegetables and maintain the gardens already planted, we're looking for hard working mature couples traveling together who will appreciate their experience in paradise and be open to the cultural exchange unique to the Hawaiian Islands in the isolated Hawaiian village we call home.
    We have a few chickens and ducks for ambiance, eggs and companionship and have a variety of new fruit trees that are just beginning to produce. The trees and new garden area produce enough for sharing with workaway guests and family. The 'bunkhouse' for visiting guests is partially solar powered with an indoor-outdoor living space along a stream with a view of Hana Ranch pastureland. The bunkhouse has a kitchen and shower/bathroom in the private unit. Couples traveling together have proven to be the best match for our farm as it is located near the town but in an isolated part of the island of Maui. The location is great because of cell phone and internet access with the right carrier (Verizon) and proximity to the amenities of the town such as food trucks, gift shops, bank, post office etc. In their spare time, couples traveling together have companionship for exploring the beaches and hiking trails and also someone to work alongside in the garden, maintaining the farm and learning Hawaiian crafts, dance, and music.
    Mature couples 21 or over are preferred. A minimum of 8 weeks is usually required for a Workaway to really absorb the mana of the area and learn about the history and culture of the 'last Hawaiian place'. Guests should realize that part of the reason Hana is so unique and preserved culturally is that it is isolated. A two hour drive down a mountainous road over 52 bridges is required to get to the village. Your host is a retired educator and will teach each guest about organic farming in the tropics, about the mo'olelo (stories, legends) of the area and the native plants that we grow. There is a library of resource books in the cabin about the history and Native culture of Hawaii as well books on growing native plants, the flora and fauna of the Islands and creatures found in ocean. Guests have been given the opportunity to learn hula from family members and experience the use of a variety of percussion and musical instruments. Making flower and ti leaf leis may be part of the experience utilizing seasonal flowers and ti leaves found on the property. Guests learn to cook the native produce such as ulu and jackfruit when in season and prepare other products from the farm. Guest have built traditional Hawaiian lava rock walls for the trees for a lasting imprint. The ability to perform physical labor in the tropics is expected. A facetime or what's app interview and references are required to be considered for the opportunity to enjoy a special win/win Workaway experience at our little piece of paradise.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Art Projects
    Help with Eco Projects
    DIY and building projects
    Animal Care
    Farmstay help
    Help around the house
    General Maintenance

  • UN sustainablity goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN sustainablity goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN goals
    No poverty
    Zero hunger
    Good health and well-being
    Quality education
    Gender equality
    Clean water and sanitation
    Affordable and clean energy
    Decent work and economic growth
    Industries, innovation and infrastructure
    Reduce inequality
    Sustainable cities and communities
    Responsible consumption and production
    Climate action
    Life below water
    Life on land
    Peace, justice and strong institutions
    Partnerships for the goals
  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Hana is a beautiful enclave of refuge from the busy world of modern America. There is so much to learn about organic gardening and how to be in touch with the earth and nature. Travelers will grow strong physically as well as spiritually by helping on the land (aina) over the time spent being in touch with the sound of the ocean, wind, rain and the birds. The significance of the area is rich in cultural history and those with an open mind to the Hawaiian way of life will come away with a life-changing experience. The peace and quiet provides a gift that can not be adequately described. We will share the mo'olelo (stories of the place) with guests and provide books and other reading material in the cabin to enhance the experience and knowledge of what is known as 'the last Hawaiian place'. Your host is a retired educator and able to provide guests with the appropriate Hawaiian names for plants and animals as well as sharing the basic history of the various cultural sites in the area. Working together in the kitchen to prepare ulu, jackfruit, dry bananas and pineapple is part of the cultural exchange. Experiencing Hula and ukulele along with other percussion instruments such as drums, and uli uli are special aspects of a visit at Hale Pueo. Guests have learned to construct traditional Hawaiian lava rock walls to protect the trees and support their growth.

  • Help


    Cutting down banana trees and drying bananas, pineapple, and jackfruit in the food dryer. There is always weeding, fertilizing, pruning, mowing as the jungle persists in growing into the garden areas and taking over. Living in the tropics also requires maintenance on buildings with some painting, fixing, and other projects. Opening up coconuts for the ducks and chickens and making sure there is a water supply and watering new plantings during the dry season are all part of the daily tasks assignment. We are a private homestead and not a large commercial operation. Guests enjoy the lifestyle away from the crowded world of mainstream modern culture with a return to basics as custodians of the 'aina' or land. Being open to learning how to pronounce the names of local landmarks, practice traditional conservation and native food preparation (such as ulu and coconut) and enjoy Hawaiian music and dance through participation in periodic evening sessions is part of what we offer. Guests are considered an extension of the family and sometimes share dinners together to celebrate milestones such as birthdays or holidays.

  • Languages spoken

    English: Fluent
    French: Beginner

  • Accommodation


    Private cabin with propane stove, electric refrigerator, solar power, gas operated shower. Enclosed sleeping room and open air covered patio and kitchen fronting a stream. Couples over 21 years of age are preferred as they can help together on the homestead and also explore the neighboring beaches and hiking trails together. As a result, two people occupying the cabin are given priority over singles requesting a working stay at our place.

    We provide items such as coffee, tea, spices, margarine, peanut butter, jam, mayo, condiments, bread, pancake mix, rice, cereal etc. Making meals from products in season found on the land such as fruits and vegetables. (seasonal: avocado, starfruit, banana, pineapple, lemons, oranges, coconut, surinam and brazilian cherry, ulu, jackfruit) provide additional nutrition.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    We are half mile away from Koki Beach and one mile from Hamoa beach and Hana Bay. Good snorkeling, kayaking, swimming, boogieboarding etc. There are many waterfalls and natural pools in the area plus hiking trails. There are historic sites such a Pi'ilani Heiau at Kahanu Gardens and the National Park at Haleakala. The location is convenient to the food trucks and stores of Hana town and central to the community while bordering the Hana Ranch.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?


  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week

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Host ref number: 877719933774