Sept. 16, 2019
The Not-So-Chill History of Hawai‘i’s Breeziest Shirt
Atlas Obsure

The aloha shirt has many possible inventors and a long, fraught cultural history.

On the cover of his 1961 album Blue Hawaii, Elvis Presley can’t help but look impossibly cool. It’s not just the bouffant or half-smirk, or the plumeria lei draped ever-so-effortlessly around his neck, or the ukelele dwarfed in his large hands. No, it’s the shirt—a red zinger of a Hawaiian shirt, also known as an aloha shirt, with white tendriled flowers scattered over a woodblock print.

The chillest shirt style in the world has a murky, hotly contested provenance. No one can agree who invented the aloha shirt, according to Dale Hope, the owner of the Kahala shirt company (“The Original Aloha Shirt since 1936”) and author of The Aloha Shirt: Spirit of the Islands. But many have tried to own the shirt as a claim to fame.

Atlas Obscura
The Traveler’s Guide to Happiness

How You Travel, by the Numbers

How does travel make you happy? In our first-ever Travel Happiness Survey, we turned that question over to you. We asked how often you travel, which cities make you smile, and how you hang onto travel bliss once you’re back home. More than 15,000 of you replied, sharing stories about what delights you on the road. Read on to explore how, where, and why AFAR readers travel. You'll also discover which destinations are the happiest in the world—and why they're so special.

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