It might not feel like it when you're standing in the middle of a crowded Waikiki beach, but the Hawaiian archipelago is actually the most isolated population center on Earth. It is roughly 2,400 miles to the closest landmass (California), which means -- as the below photos illustrate -- you really are all by your lonesome in the Pacific.
NASA Astronaut Rex J. Walheim took these amazing images during a 2008 Space Shuttle Mission to the International Space Station and recently shared them with the Pacific International Space Center for Exploration Systems (PISCES) on the Big Island. Hawaii's isolation has made it an epicenter of scientific and environmental studies. It boasts the largest cluster of telescopes and observatories in the world thanks to its low levels of air and light pollution.
Yep, looks pretty ideal to us.