non-instrument navigation

Explore the history, teachings, and trainings surrounding the ancient Polynesian technique for navigating without modern instruments. Learn how to find your path using the stars, nature, and your surroundings.

The Star Compass

The Hawaiian Star Compass is based on the ingenious, ancestral methodology introduced to Hawai‘i by Master Navigator Mau Piailug of Micronesia. It is a mental construct that allows navigators to organize the rising and setting of stars, directions of waves and a bird’s flight into houses. It sets direction, it assists in memory, it enables thousands of decisions on direction every day and it helps navigators find an island.
Star Compass Blue

Explore More

Learn more about navigation with these additional resources.

VIDEO: Sailing Around The World With No Tech

TRAINING: Building Their Star Compass

VIDEO: Hōkūleʻā – Exploring Earth
VIDEO: Star Compass – PBS HAWAIʻI
VIDEO: Nainoa Thompson on Polynesian Wayfaring | StarTalk with Neil deGrasse Tyson
VIDEO: Wayfinders: Waves, Winds, and Stars