114 Hawaiian Names Your Baby Will Thank You For
Check out some of the most beautiful names for both boys and girls that the Aloha state has to offer.
There is a lot to celebrate about Hawaiian culture beyond luaus, leis, and ukulele songs. Even the language offers something special. Using only 13 letters, words born from this alphabet are packed with nuance. "Aloha," for instance, may read like a simple greeting, but its meaning also extends to include mercy, grace, kindness, and more. And Hawaiian names are no different.
In addition to their translations, many bear strong connections to the spiritual world. Others circle back to special events, and some are even inspired by specific personality quirks. Below, we've listed many Hawaiian names to mull over for your child. We've also provided some information on specific naming traditions and their Hawaiian roots.
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Origins of Hawaiian Names & Naming Traditions
Today, many Hawaiian names remain tethered to an English equivalent. The name "Akamu" roughly translates to "Adam," just as "Malia" does "Mary," for instance. But that's something that only kicked off after 1860, when King Kamehameha, the fourth monarch of Hawaii, signed the Act to Regulate Names.
The statute held that any child born from that point on would be given a Christian English first name. The parents could use a more traditional Hawaiian name for the child's middle name, while the father's given name would serve as the child's surname.
As time went on, commitment to the act started to loosen up, and residents began gravitating more towards hybrids, like the ones listed above. Before that, Hawaiian names were entirely unisex. There was also a very distinct naming system in ancient Hawaii; one that revolved around six specific motivations:
There's the concept of inoa po, where new parents arrive at the child's name in a dream. There's also inoa ho'ailona, or a name inspired by a vision or mystical sign. That's not to be confused with inoa 'ulaleo, a name heard from a mystical voice.
There's also inoa ho'omana'o, a name given to commemorate a certain celebration or event. Inoa kupuna is something that occurs across most cultures and refers to a name inspired by a relative or an ancestry. Lastly, there's inoa ewe, a name inspired by the baby's own individual personality.
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100+ Traditional Hawaiian Baby Names
Before we dive into our list, there's something else you should know about names of Hawaiian origin: These titles are often accompanied by an apostrophe or an "okina," (an official consonant in the Hawaiian language). It's how they appear in traditional Hawaiian form, though it may cause some confusion over here on the mainland.
If it turns into too much of a headache, know that these punctuations can be removed without changing the significance of the name. So, the name "Hali'a" can also be spelled as Halia, just as "Hawai'i" carries the same meaning as "Hawaii," and so on.
So, now that we've gotten that out of the way, it's time to kick things off. See which Hawaiian baby name below you like most!
Popular Hawaiian Baby Boy Names
- Akoni: Priceless
- Akamu: Red earth
- Alaka'i: Guide or leader
- Alapai: Coastal area
- Aukai: Sailor
- Ekewaka: Wealthy protector
- Kahalo: Light-footed
- Kamaile: Vein of a lei
- Keanu: Cool breeze (You may also recognize this one because of award-winning actor Keanu Reeves.)
- Koa: Warrior
- Koukakala: Dark river
- Laʻakea: Sacred light
- Luano: Enjoyment
- Makani: Wind
- Mamo: Yellow bird
- Meka: Eyes or beloved one
- Nahele: Forest
- Oliwa: Olive tree
- Onaona: Sweet fragrance
- Pahokee: Grassy waters
- Waipuna: Cherished one or spring water
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Hawaiian Boy Names With Mystical Meanings
- Aolani: Heavenly cloud
- Elta: "The Lord is my God"
- Haoa: Hot as the sun
- Hikialani: Look to heaven
- Kāne: Named after the highest of Hawaii's four major gods and creator of all living things.
- Kawika: The Hawaiian version of "David," an Old Hebrew name meaning "beloved of Yahweh."
- Kealakekua: Pathway of the gods
- Ke'alohilani: Heavenly brightness
- Keon: God is gracious
- Kimokea: Honoring God
- Lono: God of the harvest
- Malulani: Protected by heaven
- Maui: One of Hawaii's eight major islands. Also known as the God of Fire.
- Mililani: To praise
- Pukalani: Heavenly gate
- Rangi: God of the sky
- Uhane: Soul
- Wehilani: Adornment from heaven
Traditional Hawaiian Names for Your Baby Girl
- Alamea: Precious volcanic stone
- Alana: Offspring; the feminine form of "Alan."
- Alaula: Light of dawn
- Alawna: Precious
- Apikaila: My father's joy
- Gali: Wave
- Haleakalā: House of the sun
- Haukea: White snow
- Haunani: Beautiful snow
- Iolana: To soar
- Ka'ahumanu: Bird cloak
- Kaia: Derived from the Hawaiian word meaning "sea."
- Kaipo: Sweetheart
- Maleia: Gentle waters
- Moana: Wide expanse of water or deep sea
- Naia: Dolphin
- Oleen: Joyous
- Polunu: Chubby
- Uluwehi: Growing in beauty
- Wikolia: Victorious
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Hawaiian Girl Names Inspired by Heaven
- Ahulani: Heavenly shrine
- Fetia: She who rules over heaven and earth
- Kamalani: Heavenly child
- Kaili: Departing spirit
- Kalani: Of the heavens
- Kaniela: Only God is my judge
- Keikilani: Heavenly child
- Kiana: Moon baby
- Kulani: Rising towards heaven
- Lanikai: Heavenly beach
- Lekika: God beholds
- Makana: Gift from God
- Nālani: The heavens of the chiefs
- Noelani: Heavenly mist or a beautiful girl from heaven
- Pi'ilani: Ascent to heaven
- Ualohekeakua: God has listened
- Ululani: Inspired by heaven
Hawaiian Flower Names For Girls
- Aelan: Beautiful flower
- Kaleighia: Happiness and flowers
- Kaleia: Curled flower
- Kapua: The flowers
- Kaulana: Famous are the flowers
- Kiele: Gardenia
- Kiely: Garden of flowers
- Lehua: The name for the Hawaiian state flower
- Leiko: Petite flower
- Leilani: Heavenly flower
- Leimomi: Pearl flowers
- Oliana: Oleander
- Pikake: Jasmine
- Maile: Vine
- Puanani: Beautiful flower
- Pua: Flower or offspring
- Roselani: Red rose
- Waiola: Violet flower
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Unisex Hawaiian Baby Names
- A'ala: Fragrant
- 'Ailana: Island
- Ailani: High Chief
- Ahe: Softly blowing breeze
- Akela: Lucky or noble
- Aulii: Something which is very delicious
- Eusebio: One who worships well
- Hanalei: Crescent bay
- Healani: Haze from the heavens
- Hilo: First night after the new moon
- Kahiwa: Sacred vine
- Kanoa: The free one
- Kapano: Righteous
- Konane: Bright moonlight
- Ku'u Hoaloha 'Oi: Best friend
- Iolani: Royal hawk
- Mahina: Moon or moonlight
- Nalani: Calmness of the skies
- Olina: Joyful
- Pali: Cliff
That's it for our list of traditional Hawaiian names, but be sure to check back with us soon for more ideas. You can also sign up for our newsletter so you don't miss out on what's coming next!