Kapiolani Park attracts more than lovers picnicking in the shade or children chasing kites. It’s become quite the gathering place for worldly sports, too.
On any given Sunday, there could be a number of matches going on. The roaring cheers of rugby will seemingly drown out those quiet clink-clinks from bocce ball, just across the way. Meanwhile, cricket players batter up for the pitch, and a soccer game goes head-to-head under the blazing Hawaiian sun.
Over the years, visitors came and went; some stayed for good. And along with cultural foods and customs, they brought these friendly sporting games that have since found a home in the islands and today, extend their reach to locals and visitors as well.
The mishmash of sports at Kapiolani Park comes from all over the globe. Both rugby football and cricket came from England, while bocce ball is said to have ties with ancient games played in the Roman Empire. Soccer, on the other hand, was said to have been played in different styles back in the BC era – by the Chinese, Japanese, Italians, Vikings and Persians.
No where else in Hawaii will you be able to experience all these worldly sports in one day. It’s fun to game hop around Kapiolani Park; sit at the sidelines of matches or practices, but just be sure to wear your game face because the players may just invite you to join in.