Ukulele music playing in the background, guests laughing and playing luau games and enjoying delicious food and beverages from the Tiki Bar.
That’s what a luau party is all about. Food and fun!
These awesome luau party ideas will help you to plan and host a fabulous luau with ease whether it is a Hawaiian themed birthday party for Moana fans or a summer party for hanging out with friends.
Combine these ideas with Christmas things for a fabulous Christmas luau party. I have fun holiday luau printables for you. See them in the decorations and games sections.
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Luau Party Plan
Luau party is more fun with
- INVITATIONS that get you in the party mood
- Awesome DECORATIONS for the aloha atmosphere
- Beautiful OUTFITS Hawaiian style
- Delicious FOOD to be enjoyed with friends
- Fun GAMES and ACTIVITIES that create great memories
- Cool FAVORS for bringing home the aloha spirit
1. Luau Invitations
Get the guests in the Aloha mood with fun invitations.
This can be accomplished very easily with colorful tropical flowers and the word Aloha.
Here are a couple of awesome ideas for you:
- travel poster (who would not want to go to Hawaii or to your Hawaiian luau)
- pineapple shaped invitation
- “plane ticket”
Or attach the invitation to
- a lei
- grass skirt
- flip flops
- can of Spam
- fun straw
- coconut shaped cup
There are many options available for purchase too like this one:
Beautiful colorful aloha luau invitations from Self Editing Invites. Your friends will be excited to receive these invitations to a Hawaiian luau party.
2. Luau Decoration Ideas
With simple Luau decorations you can easily create the perfect tropical atmosphere for Aloha party!
1. Aloha Sign
We made a big ALOHA sign out of cardboard to welcome the guests to the Luau party
Just wrap any size cardboard with a plastic tablecloth. Cut up and glue your letters on and use flowers from a Lei to make it pretty. We used tacks to attach them to the cardboard.
Our sign was about 4 ft wide.
2. Mahalo Sign Thanks Them for Coming
And we also had a MAHALO sign to say thank you. It’s another easy diy luau decoration.
3. Luau This Way!
And one more simple Luau sign made out of cardboard. You can attach the signs to bonfire forks and stick to the ground. Really easy!
4. Printables You’ll Love
This collection of luau party printables is pretty cool, if I may say so.
The set has fun luau party signs and luau banner flags. And you have two styles to choose from!
Enhance the party atmosphere with fun luau party signs and banners. Since all the letters and numbers are included, you can create any kind of banners:
- HAPPY 2ND BIRTHDAY
- TIKI BAR
- E KOMO MAI (Welcome)
- HAU’OLI LA HANAU (Happy birthday)
- MAHALO (Thank you)
Matching games are available too! Mingle and find the guest, declare who is most likely to, unscramble words, match Hawaiian words to English ones, etc.
5. Surf’s Up
This is a surf board. Made of cardboard and covered with gift wrapping paper. I’m here to say it does not have to be perfect to be awesome!
Hawaii has incredible beaches and what a better way to spend time there than surfing… not that I ever surfed but I guess that would have been an amazing way to spend time.
Bring Hawaii look to your party with real or DIY surf boards.
Buy a gorgeous wooden surf board sign from Frans Country FL and have it personalized to match your luau themed party.
6. Luau Signs from Dollar Tree
You can make great finds at Dollar Tree in the beginning of the summer. You’ll find there many fun signs, inexpensive leis, and serving dishes.
7. Walk Through Waterfall
Adorn a doorway or a wall with a beautiful Waterfall Ribbon Backdrop from More Than A Moment.
Ribbon backdrop works also well as Hawaiian birthday party decoration. Gather the guests together with the birthday star and take pictures in front of it.
Though our party was mainly outside, we made a waterfall to cover the entrance to a hallway that leads to the bathroom.
I wish I had a picture of it! (I know I took one but must have deleted accidentally!)
Making a waterfall is really easy: hang blue fabric strips in layers from the ceiling maybe with some sparkly tulle to give it a little fluff.
Or use plastic tropical blue tablecloths.
8. Beach Scene Backdrop
This inexpensive gorgeous beach scene from Etsy will make your party area to look even more Hawaiian. Use it as a photo booth backdrop or as a beautiful scene behind the dessert table.
Or create a fun background for a seating area. Put a couple of beach chairs in front of it for the guests to sit and relax while gazing into the horizon.
9. Luau Cups with Candles
Buy a few Luau themed cups from Amazon.
Put some rocks in to keep the wind from blowing them away and place a battery-powered candle in each.
An easy Luau centerpiece idea.
10. Grass Table Skirt
A Hawaiian Luau party would not be a luau without the grass table skirts! It is an easy and cheap way to decorate the tables.
11. Hibiscus and Lantern Garland
You’ll love this! Hibiscus garland and lanterns create a wonderful atmosphere.
Hawaii is a colorful place. I had the privilege to live there for three years and I loved it! Lovely flowers everywhere.
Hang a few beautiful flower garlands to bring in the aloha.
Yellow hibiscus is the state flower. Cut out flower shapes from bright colored card stock and put those on walls and doors.
Hawaii and pineapples go together.
Create Luau centerpieces around real pineapples or use honeycomb pineapples you can get in many stores.
Add a few coconuts, mangoes and palm leaves to complete the Hawaiian look.
13. Palm Trees
Palm trees say “vacation” to me. What could stress you out when you’re surrounded by palm trees and sunshine.
A 7 ft palm tree next to your Tiki Bar or dessert table gives the Luau party just what it needs.
14. Palm Leaves
Buy inexpensive fabric palm leaves and get creative with them.
Use palm leaves as placemats or make a table runner with them.
Hang them on the wall or use them to decorate your Tiki Bar.
15. Pineapples and Coconuts
Pineapple and coconut shaped cups add a nice touch to your aloha party.
Use them for serving beverages or snacks such as fruit and candy.
16. Tiki Bar
Tiki Bar – a Luau Party must have.
Whether you serve cocktails or mocktails this Tiki Bar sign from Whittle Imagination turns any table into a Tiki Bar.
Wrap a grass table skirt around the table. Add a few props and you are ready to go.
Create your Tiki Bar with these items from Amazon
- Tiki Bar Sign: now proudly serving whatever you bring.
- Tiki Bar with Bar Stools
- Grass Skirt and Palm Leaves
- Hand Carved Tiki Masks
- Tiki Cocktails (200 recipes!!)
- Tropical Straws
- Colorful Hurricane Glasses
17. Lights and Torches
I loved seeing trees wrapped with lights in Honolulu year around. Looks really pretty.
You can do that same thing at your place if you have trees. If you don’t then hang them from your deck, or anchor poles to the ground for holding the lights up.
Light up a few torches too for a cool Hawaiian look.
18. Sea Turtles
Hawaiian Honu, Green Sea Turtle is a symbol of wisdom and good luck.
Create a turtle cove in your luau party area:
A kiddie pool with a little bit of water and inflatable turtles floating around.
You could also simply place turtles in various places in different forms:
- Sea Turtle Coasters from Amazon
- Life Lessons From Sea Turtles-Sign from Surf Shack Signs, Etsy
- Wooden Sea Turtle Centerpiece from World Bazzaar, Etsy
19. Luau Party Signs and Banner
Greet the guests with these gorgeous printable luau banners and party signs.
The lovely and humorous signs enhance the atmosphere.
Write whatever you want to with the 44 luau banner flags: aloha, mahalo, tiki bar, happy birthday, let’s hula, etc. The beautiful flower image add a tropical flavor.
20. Free Christmas Luau Printables
Mele Kalikimaka! This festive flamingo is ready to party, are you? Grab the free Christmas luau printable and come back for more ideas.
3. Luau Outfits
What to wear to a Luau party.
Nothing like a real flower lei. You’ll love the soft touch and fragrant scent of this Orchid Lei from Aloha Island Lei. Many options to choose from.
Seashell lei is a fun alternative to a flower lei. You could have leis set up for the guests to pick one when they enter the luau party.
2. Plumeria Flower Clip
A beautiful plumeria flower hair clip from Debra Ann Jewlery, Etsy will add a nice touch to your luau outfit.
Traditionally, you’d wear it behind your left ear if you are married or in a relationship and behind the right ear to signal that you are single.
Many tropical color and pattern choices for this versatile garment. You can find beautiful, inexpensive sarongs at Amazon.
Get creative with your sarong and wear it in a way that suits your taste.
4. Hawaiian Dress
Hot Lava Clothing, Etsy has awesome dresses you’ll love. They also make cool Hawaiian shirts for men.
Amazon has many inexpensive Hawaiian dresses for women and girls in various colors and styles.
5. Cheap Luau Outfit
The most common shoes I saw in Hawaii were flip flops. So if you have a pair of those you are ready to go.
The official state color is yellow so anything yellow would be cool.
Sun hat and sun glasses with any summer dress or shorts say “aloha”.
As mentioned before with leis and hair clips you can turn any outfit to be the perfect outfit for luau party.
Go through your closet and see if you have clothes to match one of these plumeria hair clips from Debra Ann Jewelry.
For example: pink and yellow top with white shorts; or white and yellow striped shirt with blue shorts.
4. Luau Food Ideas
Here you find luau food ideas that will please the crowd!
Serve them from pineapple shaped plates and coconut bowls (These are made of coconuts!). Label the food with luau themed food tents.
1. Hawaiian BBQ Pulled Pork
Pulled pork is an easy way to feed the luau party guests. Just throw the ingredients in the crock pot and let it work its magic for you. Use Hawaiian BBQ sauce to make it more Hawaiian.
- 2.5 lbs boneless pork loin
- 8 oz Hawaiian BBQ sauce
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 onion sliced
- 1 Tbsp paprika
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp garlic
- Put all ingredients in the crock pot.
- Cook on low for 8-10 hours.
- Shred the pork by pulling it with forks.
2. Hawaiian Pineapple Chicken
A must have food in any luau is pineapple! It tastes good with chicken. Your guests will enjoy any kind pineapple chicken dish.
Grill chicken and pineapple slices and serve with grilled vegetables.
Easy Hawaiian Crock Pot Chicken
- 2 lbs chicken
- 1/3 c soy sauce
- 1 cup pineapple juice
- 1/2 sugar or honey
- Mix all the ingredients in crock pot.
- Cook on low for 6-8 hours.
- Serve with rice.
3. Hawaiian Pineapple BBQ Meatballs
And you definitely want to serve these sweet and savory Hawaiian Pineapple BBQ Meatballs from Sip Bite Go. Watch the video on how they are done.
4. Candy Bar
Just add a couple of yummy sides and desserts and you have the whole luau menu covered.
A cute and simple candy bar of fruit slices, peach rings, watermelon, cherries.. we also added some fish there too…
5. Luau Cakepops
Irresistible Hawaiian themed Cake Pops from Carla’s Cake Pops. Impress your guests with tropical flower and pineapple cake pops that look almost too good to be eaten. Perfect bite size treat!
6. Luau Food Tents and Water Bottle Labels
NOTE: I’m updating these food label ideas for the summer 2023!!
Luau food just got easy! These cupcake or food toppers turn any food into luau themed food!!
The water bottle labels can be used for soda bottles, juice boxes, and of course water bottles.
The pineapple toppers look awesome on donuts too!
7. Beach Themed Cake Topper
Bake your favorite cake or cupcakes and top them with tropical cake toppers. All these wonderful beach themed toppers are from The Little Hedgerow, Etsy.
Your cupcakes will be a hit with these fun decorations. There are SO many cool cupcake topper options to look at.
8. Pineapple Donut Topper
I don’t know about you but I like easy dessert ideas and this pineapple donut topper from Glitter Party Co fits that category. Push the donut topper to a mini-donut and you are done!
Yes! Loving the idea.
8. Fruit Cups
- Chop up mangoes, pineapple, honeydew, and cantaloupe.
- Arrange in clear cups adorned with tropical flowers you have cut out from card stock.
- Sprinkle shredded coconut on top.
- Put a colorful cocktail fork in the cup.
- Or one of the cool luau food toppers.
Make various fruit combos, some with berries too.
9. Easy Pineapple Fluff
Pineapple fluff is delicious and easy to make.
All you need is:
- 1 20 oz can of crushed pineapple, don’t drain it
- 1 vanilla instant pudding mix
- 1 1/2 – 2 c mini marshmallows
- 8 oz cool whip, thawed
- 1/3 c pecans or walnuts (optional)
- 1 c shredded coconut (optional)
- Mix together crushed pineapple and pudding mix.
- Gently fold in the marshmallows, cool whip, and nuts and coconut. Chill for a couple of hours.
10. Coconut Fruit or Veggie Dip
- Coconut Cream Pudding Mix (3.4 oz)
- 2 cups of milk (or 1 cup if you want thicker dip)
- 8 oz cool whip, thawed
- Prepare the pudding mix according to instructions using 1 to 2 cups of milk.
- Fold in the cool whip.
11. Sand Dollar Cookies
Sand dollar cookies are a delicious treat to be served at a luau party. Order yours or make your own.
Decorating cookies is a skill that I need a lot of improvement but it’s never too late to learn.
You could also make also beach ball cookies!
Decorate round sugar cookies with simple royal icing and serve on a Kona wood plate.
Wrap the cookies individually and hand out as luau party favors.
12. Luau Parfait
Parfaits are easy to make, they look good, and taste great.
- 4 cups of yellow cake (chocolate and strawberry cake or brownies work too)
- 1 (4.3 oz ) package of pudding any flavor (coconut and vanilla are great)
- 8 oz of cool whip, thawed
- 2 cups of crushed pineapple, drained
- 1 cup of shredded coconut
- Whipped cream (optional)
- Prepare the pudding with 1 and 1/4 cup of milk. Stir in cool whip.
- Layer 1/2 of the cake cubes, pudding and pineapples. Repeat layers.
- Add whipped cream and coconut.
Makes one big parfait or 6 1-cup servings.
13. Shave Ice
Got to have shave ice at a Hawaiian luau party. Shave ice is different from snow cones, I’ve been told. Snow cones have larger granules.
You can easily make this kid approved luau party food with shave ice maker. It comes with 3 flavored syrups and accessories. Check it out!
14. Coconut Cupcakes
I really like easy luau food ideas and coconut cupcakes fit that category.
Make the cupcakes your usual way but add 2 tsp coconut extract to the batter.
Decorate the cupcakes with basic buttercream frosting and top with shredded coconut (maybe toasted coconut).
As a final touch add a cocktail umbrella or a palm tree pick!
5. Luau Games and Activities
These easy luau games will delight kids, teens, and adults.
1. Tacky Tourist Relay
The kids really loved this game. Will be doing it again at our next Luau!
- two teams.
- A carry on suitcase for each team.
- in each suitcase: a pair of sunglasses, beach towel, sunhat, lei, grass skirt etc.
- One member of each team at a time pulls the suitcase to the “Beach”.
- Spreads the towel on the “sand”, puts on the sunglasses, sunhat, lei etc. and lies down on the towel.
- Quickly gets up and packs everything back in the suitcase.
- Runs back home and gives the suitcase to the next person.
We had two inflatable flamingos that did not fit inside the suitcases so the “tourists” carried them.
The kids, from preschoolers to teens had fun with this Luau game!
Who can go lowest!
Limbo is a fun activity that works as a luau game for adults, teens, or kids.
All you need is a limbo stick and a couple of poles or people to hold it.
We didn’t have a limbo stick so we used a pool noodle.
This limbo game from Amazon gets good reviews and is said to work for teens too.
3. Beach Ball Hockey
Items you need:
- Pool Noodle for each player.
- Beach Ball.
- Cones or soccer goal.
The pool noodles from dollar store were little too flimsy. They might work for small kids if you make the pool noodles shorter.
I have not tried these pool noodles from Amazon but per reviews they are sturdier. They come in 9 different colors so you can pick the two you like the best for your pool noodle hockey teams.
This game is fun for any summer party like a pool party. Check out all the cool ideas I’ve got for you.
4. Hula Lesson
Hula is a beautiful Hawaiian dance. If you don’t already know hula, learn a few basic moves and teach them to your guests.
5. Hula Competition
Have a friendly hula dance competition whether anyone knows how to dance hula or not. Play awesome Hawaiian music and get everyone up and dancing.
Give prizes for various categories:
- Elegant Hula
- Lively Hula
- Funny Hula
- Acrobatic Hula
Fun prize ideas include: luau themed cups, pineapples, coconuts, towels, buckets, and sun screen.
6. Pineapple Bowling
- pineapples for the pins and
- a coconut for the ball.
If you don’t want to be knocking over real pineapples you could make pineapple pins with water or soda bottles and cardboard or card stock. Cut out pineapple shapes and attach to plastic bottles and you are all set for bowling.
7. Hula Hoop Spin
Who can spin the hula hoop the longest.
8. Hula Hoop Obstacle Course
Make a hula hoop obstacle course and see who can go through it the fastest.
9. Hula Hoop Ring Toss
Hula hoop ring toss... if you have a big enough target.
10. Hula Hoop Flip-Flop Kick
Hula hoop flip-flop kick. Stand up a few hoops or tie a couple from a tree branch and try to kick your flip-flop off your foot and through the hoop.
11. Hawaiian Pictionary
Here is a list of 44 Hawaiian Pictionary™ Words a.k.a. draw and guess to get you started with this luau game for adults or kids. Write down on paper slips words that relate to Hawaii.
Or purchase the 48 Hawaiian Luau Word cards. They are a part of the inexpensive luau party game collection. (Two styles available.)
- beach ball
- Diamond Head
- palm tree
- Turtle Cove
- black sand
- Macadamia nut
- surf board
- beach chair
- grass skirt
- beach toys
- Tiki head
- kalua (pig)
- lomi lomi (salmon)
- flip flops
- shaka sign
- sea turtle
- Sunset Beach
- humpback whale
- Tiki Bar
- Tiki torch
- sun glasses
Have also a white board or paper and pens ready for the amazing drawings.
12. Luau Scavenger Hunt
Hide luau-themed items in the party area. Give the kids a list of the items they need to find. Use the pictionary word list for ideas.
13. Read and Color
Well, sometimes a little bit of quiet work is needed. Set up a place for kids to read books and color.
- Don’t Pet the Sharks Coloring Book
- Happy Hula Hawaiian Dances Coloring Book
- FREE Luau Coloring Pages
- Froggy Goes to Hawaii Book (Go on a trip to Hawaii with Froggy. His vacation does not go as planned… but it is fun!)
- Dennis the Menace in Hawaii (Dennis the Menace will entertain the kids and the adults with his adventures in Hawaii.)
14. Surf Board Craft
DIY surf board decoration. These cute, inexpensive surf boards from Craft Cut Concepts, Etsy are perfect for a craft time. They come in various sizes.
The kids can paint them and write their name or Aloha on them.
15. Tiki Mask Craft
Decorate a cool tiki mask from The Wood Shape Store, Etsy. You can get them in various sizes and a couple of different styles. Maybe some of the adults would like to paint a tiki mask too and take it home to remind them of the fun Hawaiian luau party!
16. Luau Themed Ankle Bracelet
With beads and beach themed charms the kids and teens can make cute ankle bracelets. You find the inexpensive bracelet kit at Amazon. It is perfect for this craft!
17. Lei Toss
Use a horse shoe set but instead of horse shoes toss leis. You could also use pineapples as the target!
A lei toss with a partner
You need teams of two people. Ask the team members to stand a few feet away from each other.
One of them throws and the other one catches. The goal is to toss the leis around the catcher’s neck. The catcher can move to make it easier but can’t use hands.
18. Christmas Luau Games
Aloha! Christmas luau party bundle has 5 signs and 7 games including two Christmas gift exchange games. (for readers in the USA)
Get the set today and plan a Christmas luau party for work or home with ease.
19. Printable Luau Games
Fun printable luau games you can play at any luau themed birthday party, baby shower or summer celebration. (Currently, available only in the USA.)
Play pictionary or turn it into charades. Test your Hawaii knowledge, snap pictures to earn points, figure out who is most likely to go snorkeling with manta rays, and so on. Lots of fun for adults.
Also in fun tropical design!
12 luau party games for adults and teens. You’ll have a terrific time playing these! (Currently, available only in the USA.)
20. Luau Baby Shower Games
If you are hosting a luau themed baby shower, you’ll love the cute, inexpensive printable luau baby shower games. (Only for customers in the USA.)
6. Luau Party Favors
- beach bucket
- seashell bookmark
- luau themed ankle bracelet
- surf board decor
- cocktail umbrellas
- tiki cup
- turtle knick knacks
- coconut bowl
- tiki torch
- luau themed book
- beach themed office supplies
- luau stationary
You did it! You went through all the fun ideas for an easy luau party! I hope you’ll have a wonderful time hosting your summer party.
What will you do after the luau?
Make Other Amazing Summer Memories:
- Host a pool party that is splashing fun regardless the size of your pool.
- Enjoy ice cream and fun activities at an ice cream party.
- Invite neighbors over to play awesome lawn games.
- Go on an imaginary cruise – a nautical party you’ll never forget