A collection of hundreds of islands sprinkled over 1,500 miles of vast blue ocean, the Hawaiian archipelago is home to incredible environmental biodiversity. Created by rising mantle plumes of basaltic magma at undersea volcanoes, the breathtaking heights and arid sho relines of Hawaii meld together to create a tropical landscape that is awe-inspiring in both its geological history and natural beauty. Because the islands are so isolated, life is believed to have arrived there by wind, waves, and the wings of wild birds, and insects. Looking beyond its thriving tourist culture and public beaches, this essay strives to capture Hawaii’s flourishing ecosystem —an array of endemic flora, waterfalls, and volcanic creations—,reminding us all to take a step back from the daily grind of our busy lives to appreciate the world around us.
Photography by Sophia Li.

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