After five years of preparation and planning, the Polynesian Voyage Society (PVS) will embark upon the Moananuiākea Voyage from Juneau, Alaska on June 15, 2023. This voyage includes three canoes — the Hōkūleʻa, the Hikianalia, and a digital education “canoe” called Wa’a Honua. Moananuiākea is Hōkūleʻa’s 15th major voyage.

The Polynesian Voyaging Society is a nonprofit organization based in Honolulu, Hawaii. It was established in 1973 to revive and perpetuate traditional Polynesian voyaging methods. Their mission is to explore the cultural and scientific significance of this tradition for the Polynesian people and the broader world.

The society's most notable accomplishment has been the construction of the Hōkūleʻa, a performance-accurate full-scale replica of a waʻa kaulua, a Polynesian double-hulled voyaging canoe. The Hōkūleʻa has undertaken several notable voyages, demonstrating that ancient Polynesians could have intentionally navigated the vast distances of the Pacific Ocean using only traditional navigation techniques and knowledge of the natural environment. The Polynesian Voyaging Society's efforts continue in education, scientific exploration, and cultural preservation.


The Moananuiākea Voyage is a global education campaign that amplifies the importance of Indigenous cultures and ocean knowledge through storytelling and education.


To ignite a movement of 10 million “planetary navigators” who will pursue critical and inspiring “voyages” to ensure a better future for the earth. This purpose is served by developing young leaders and engaging communities around the world while amplifying the vital importance of our oceans, nature, science, and Indigenous wisdom. Each leg will have a specific purpose and lead to the ultimate goal of connecting Pacific communities for collective action around common challenges and a shared sustainable destiny.

Journey Overview

Hōkūleʻa will be welcomed at Auke Bay in Juneau, the traditional lands of the A’akw Kwaan, on June 10. The ceremonial start of the “Heritage Sail” and launch of the beginning of the Moananuiākea Voyage will take place on June 15. The Hōkūleʻa will trace a route along the Southeast region of Alaska in the journey’s first leg Heritage Sail, to pay homage to the leaders and places that helped build the longstanding relationship between the Pacific peoples of Hawai’i and Alaska. This event is a celebration of the enduring relationship between Hawai’i and the Tlingit, Haida, Tsimshian and other Alaska Native communities. In total, Hōkūleʻa will circumnavigate an estimated 43,000 nautical miles around the Pacific, visiting 36 countries and nearly 100 Indigenous territories.

“We begin with a 31-year relationship with the native people of Southeast Alaska. And I think Alaska is the appropriate place to begin because in the end this is about family — the family of the earth. And so we go from one family to another, building relationships grounded in respect and trust.”

- Nainoa Thompson (President of PVS)

Moananuiākea Voyage Sponsors

  • Hawaiian Airlines
  • Kamehameha Schools
  • Hawaii Community Foundation
  • Nakupuna Foundation
  • Omidyar ‘Ohana
  • HEI Foundation
  • Hawaiian Native Corporation / DAWSON
  • Matson
  • Alaska Marine Lines
  • Harold K.L. Castle Foundation
  • Dalio Foundation
  • Bert and Susan Kobayashi and ‘Ohana
  • Strong Foundation
  • Shaw Foundation Properties
  • 11th Hour Racing/Schmidt Family Foundation
  • Atherton Family Foundation
  • Sealaska
  • Hawaii Tourism Authority
  • Patagonia
  • Ama Olukai Foundation / Olukai
  • Maxwell Manahan Foundation
  • Wanderlust Fund
  • Engaging The Senses Foundation
  • Outrigger Hotel & Resorts

Education & Mission Partners

  • Kamehameha Schools
  • University of Hawaii
  • Arizona State University
  • Hawaii Department of Education
  • Bishop Museum
  • Virginia Institute of Marine Science, William & Mary
  • NOAA
  • ‘Aha Moananuiākea (Pacific Consortium)
  • Education Incubator
  • Ocean Discovery League
  • Ocean Elders
For additional information on Polynesian Voyage Society and the Moananuiākea Voyage, visit or follow @hokuleacrew on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.

To learn more about Sealaska’s historical relationship with Polynesian Voyage Society, explore the links below:

Regional Sailing Plan:Follow Hokulea as PVS voyages an estimated 43,000 nautical miles around the Pacific, visiting 36 countries and nearly 100 indigenous territories.

Uniting a Pacific Legacy: This chapter introduces the PVS and Sealaska’s historical relationship, highlighting the shared values and traditions that connect them across the vast Pacific Ocean.

Birth of Hawai’iloa: This chapter follows the story of the creation of Hawai’iloa, the symbolic voyaging canoe that embodies the spirit of Polynesian exploration and the mission to care for the Earth.

Power of Cultural Exchange: This chapter highlights the enduring relationship between Hawai’i and Alaska Native communities, the ceremonies and traditions that connect them, and the lessons we continue to learn from one another.

Key Leaders Inspiring Generations: In the final chapter, the focus is on our ancestors that, to this day, continue to guide us with wisdom and deep belief in the traditional values of our people.