Maui could be a model for creating a ‘real paradise’

Mauitopia or Oahutopia? Yes, the aloha spirit exists on the main island of Oahu too.

A decade ago, before I wrote the pamphlet, or mini-book, “Creating Mauitopia: Making Maui a Real Paradise” (updated edition available for free at, I had briefly contemplated whether to attempt to create the world’s first large-scale utopian society on Oahu or on Maui.

Besides having gotten a revelation on Mount Haleakala in 1992, my rational mind had decided that while we are all lucky we live Hawaii, Maui is special. I have called it my home since.

Maui has a large enough population to make a significant model. Today we have 165,000 residents, big but not too big. Oahu has about 1 million people. The larger population brings problems like traffic and crime.

Have you ever watched the evening’s local news? We have accidents, fires, and robberies on Maui too, but it pales in comparison. Last year we had 117 traffic fatalities in Hawaii. Of those, only 17 took place on Maui.

Occasionally I used to go for a weekend to frolic on Oahu. No longer.

I hope Pele and the other Hawaiian gods shine on creating Mauitopia in my lifetime. We will make Maui truly no ka oi.

Ori Kopelman