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How many major Hawaiian Islands are there?

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Welcome to CoreFacts, where we're always short on time and big on science. I'm Steve Sobieszczyk. How about some trivia?

How many major Hawaiian Islands are there?

There are 8 major islands within the volcanic archipelago chain of the Hawaiian Islands. The islands include: Niihau, Kauai, Oahu, Molokai, Lanai, Maui, Kahoolawe, and Hawaii (or the Big Island). For bit more trivia, Kauai is the oldest and northernmost island, Oahu is home to the state capital, Honolulu, and the majority of the population, Hawaii's Big Island is the currently volcanically active island, and I got married on Maui.

And now you know. Join us every weekday for a new CoreFact. If you have a question you think we should answer on the air, email it to us at or leave us a voicemail at 703-648-5600; long distance fees do apply.

The USGS CoreFacts is a product of the U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior.

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