Luau Party Ideas To Create A Perfect Hawaiian Luau Birthday Party

Fun And Fabulous Luau Party Ideas
That Are Sure To Create An Exciting Tropical Getaway!

Aloha! Create a tropical paradise using some of our birthday party ideas for a luau. Transform your backyard into a colorful and exotic tropical party atmosphere and prepare for some fun in the sun!

If you're fortunate to live in Hawaii or some other tropical paradise, you've got it made in the shade with a built-in balmy breeze, a bit of sand and surf, and a whole lot of sun--the perfect setting for this type of party. But no need to fret if you live inland, we'll help you create a beach-like paradise that'll have everyone mentally riding the waves of fun and frolic. So get ready to transform your party area and take a trip to the tropics!


luau party ideas image

Here's your chance to start setting the luau mood. Listed below are a few options to check out so you can get creative with your invitations:

FLOWER LEI LUAU INVITATION – To create this invitation, you will need to have enough flower leis for all of the guests you plan to invite. Try to find them in many different colors so the leis are not all the same color. On pieces of brightly colored cardstock, write or print out all the party information. Punch a hole in each invitation using a hole punch. Use pretty ribbon to tie each invitation to a lei. Since these will not fit in an envelope, you will need to deliver these invitations by hand, or you can box them up in small boxes and send these out. Add a note to the invitations reminding guests to wear their leis to the luau birthday party.

TROPICAL PARTY POSTCARD INVITATION - Either create your own tropical scene postcards by downloading a beach scene onto a postcard size card or buy ready-made postcards. Put "Aloha! Wish You Were Here!" on the front. On back put:

Hula on over to or Limbo on down to(Address of party)
On (Date and time of party)
(Birthday teen's name) is turning (Age)
Bring your swimsuit OR
Wear Hawaiian attire.
RSVP: (Name and phone)

LUAU-RELATED SHAPED INVITATIONS - Cut out a palm tree, shell, starfish, sandcastle, pineapple, coconut, etc. shape from colored card stock. On one side write, "Come Splash The Day Away", or "Come Celebrate And Don't Be Late", or Life's A Beach And Then You Have A Party", or "Aloha! Wish You Were Here!" On reverse side, write out all your important party info.

Luau Party Ideas For Invitations

AIRLINE TICKET INVITATION - Make reservation look like an airline ticket. At top put "South Pacific Airlines" and download a fun piece of clipart to create the airline logo. Things like a smiley face with sunglasses, or a beach ball, the sun, starfish, octopus with a face, etc. Then say:

Boarding Pass For Joshua's (Name) 16th (Age) Birthday Party.
Arrival/Departure Time: (Party hours)
Flight #IAM16 (Insert age)
Destination: Address
Class: 1st Class Hawaiian, Grass Skirts, or Swimwear
Meal: Hawaiian Luau
RSVP: (Name and phone)

BEACH BALL INVITATION - Blow-up the beach ball, write the party particulars onto the ball, and then deliver your ball invites or opt to deflate and mail them out.

LUAU PARTY IDEAS TO CREATE LUAU ITEM-RELATED INVITATIONSCut out a palm tree, shell, starfish, sandcastle, pineapple, coconut, etc. shape from colored card stock. On one side write, "Come Splash The Day Away", or "Come Celebrate And Don't Be Late", or Life's A Beach And Then You Have A Party", or "Aloha! Wish You Were Here!" On reverse side, write out all your party info. Attach to a pineapple, coconut, silk flower lei, plastic bucket and shovel, etc.

EMBELLISHED READY-MADE LUAU INVITATIONS - Buy ready-made luau theme invitations and embellish the picture. Add glitter on palm trees, tiny silk flowers on top of flowers, etc.


Listed below are a few luau party ideas for beachwear costumes: Invite your guests to come in costume or at least wear Hawaiian shirts, shorts, beachwear, sarongs, mu-mu's, straw hats, and flip-flops. As guests arrive, you might opt to give them puka shells, floral leis, or a grass hula skirt.

If you're in the market for an Unusual Luau Costume, here's some great options.


Turn your backyard into a tropical paradise with rich, vibrant colors. Transport your guests to the island of Maui-Wowie using some of the following luau party ideas:
  • Place luau yard signs in your front yard to alert every one of the party's location.

  • Line walkway with bamboo tiki torches.

  • Hang luau-themed spirals and danglers from your ceiling to add a little color and to help bring the theme of the luau to your party room.

  • Hang a Luau Banner on the front door and greet everyone with a floral lei and a big "Aloha!"

  • Put a palm tree at the front door.

  • One of the best luau party ideas is to transform the walls with some fun luau themed wall murals, covers, gossamer, etc.

  • Hang fishnets on fences and attach plastic fish, lobsters, crabs, and sea horses.

  • Be sure to add a few colorful parrots throughout the room.

  • Display live or silk plants around party area, including palm plants.

  • Display large basket of leis at the front door and let guests help themselves to a few.

  • Place pineapples and luau centerpieces on your tables in your party room.

  • Display a surfboard in the entryway or hang from the ceiling over the buffet table.

  • Place some fun luau-themed balloons around your party room to liven up the area.

  • Place various luau-themed decals on your party room walls to give the room a little luau ambiance.

  • Put bamboo matting on the party floor.

  • Hang tropical cutouts, posters, and birthday banners on fences and house siding.

  • Put a raffia table skirt on your coolers and tables. Attach white Christmas lights around edges of tables.

  • Serve munchies in upside down beachcomber hats.

  • Cover your food table from the sun with a fun tabletop tiki hut cover. It will add to your luau decor while keeping the sun off of your food.

  • Hang some fun luau-themed banners on your walls or fences to help bring your luau theme alive.

  • Keep your drinks cold in a theme related inflatable cooler. They come in various shapes, sizes and themes.

  • Hang and lay flower leis on walls or tables.

  • Hang strings of lights with paper lanterns or tropical designs around your front door, porches, decks, etc.

  • Set up a hammock in the yard or hang between 2 trees.

  • Fill decorative bowls with river rock and a tea light in the middle.

  • To create mood lighting, put tiki torches throughout the yard.

  • Put yard stake and/or table citronella candles throughout the yard.

  • Place raffia umbrella covers around your yard to provide shade, while adding to the luau ambiance.

  • Add some pink flamingo yard stakes around your yard.

  • Use tropical-themed tableware, napkins, centerpiece, and tablecloth.

  • Decorate tables with luau or palm tree confetti.

  • Use tropical toothpicks for finger-food and straws for drinks. Use plastic coconut or pineapple glasses.

  • Line beachcomber hats with plastic wrap and use them as serving dishes for chips, crackers, nuts, and other dry items.

  • Create edible centerpieces with pineapples. Slice bottom off so it sits level on serving plate. Stick shish-ka-bob skewers of grapes, pineapple chunks, apples, and strawberries into pineapple. Put flowers around bottom of pineapple.

  • Be sure to play some luau music in the background to keep everyone in the luau mood.

luau party image


To insure your party doesn't go stale and you keep the fun flowing, you'll want to plan some games and activities so everyone stays engaged in the party frame of mind. Games will add excitement to your party atmosphere and keep things lively.

When it's time to play a few games, be sure to have several ready to go. Check out this page for some ideas. It has several Luau Party Games and Activities that are suitable for your Hawaiian Par-Tay:
  • Luau Fashion Show
  • Luau Coconut Bowl
  • Luau Sea Shell Guessing Game
  • Hula-Hoops
  • Hula Dance
  • Limbo
  • Pass The Coconut
  • Tossing Water Balloons
  • Luau Relay Race
  • Beach Volleyball
  • Musical Luau Beach Towels
  • Luau Hula Simon Says

PRINTABLE GAMES - If you want to calm things down a bit, printable games are a perfect party game add-on! Check out the following options and see if any of them would be suitable for your crowd.


Be sure your party food is in keeping with the luau party ideas theme. Listed below are some yummy options that would be great for this type of party:

TUNA SALAD - Make your favorite tuna salad and serve with crackers.

CHICKEN & RIBS - Fire up the BBQ and grill some chicken and ribs. Brush with fruit sauce for the Hawaiian flair.

MEATBALLS & CHICKEN WINGS - Sweet and sour style, of course.

SEAFOOD - Prepare some shrimp cocktails, grilled salmon, or crab legs.

LUAU TROPICAL FRUIT SALAD – Make a delicious fruit salad full of tropical fruits to serve up at your luau party. Use mandarins, mangos, kiwi, bananas and strawberries. Mix together all of the tropical fruit in a large serving bowl. Add a cup of small marshmallows to the mix as well as 8 ounces of vanilla flavored yogurt. Drizzle with a bit of honey to add a bit of sweetness without sugar. Toss until all the fruit is well coated. When serving up the fruit, have a bowl of toasted coconut on the side to top the fruit with, allowing guests to decide if they want to add the coconut to their salad or not.

FRESH PINEAPPLE SLICES – Pineapple goes hand and hand with your luau party theme and they are often grown throughout Hawaii. Simply slice up some nice slices of pineapple to serve at your party, adding a sweet taste of Hawaii to the food. Not only is pineapple delicious and refreshing, but it is a healthy choice as well. If you want, you can chop the pineapple into pieces instead of serving in slices. Serve with a bit of fruit dip or some toasted coconut for topping.

PINEAPPLE BOATS - Cut a pineapple in half and hollow it out. Then fill it back up with fresh cut fruits.

PIZZA - Hawaiian style of course!

HAWAIIAN LEMONADE - Combine in large punch bowl:
12-oz. can frozen lemonade, thawed
Two 12-oz. cans apricot nectar, chilled
Two 12-oz. cans unsweetened pineapple juice, chilled
1 1/2 cups water, chilled
Right before serving stir in 2 1/2 cups chilled ginger ale. Add ice cubes, decorate with lemon, and lime slices.

HAWAIIAN ISLAND FRUIT PUNCH – If you’re looking for some Hawaiian luau party ideas for drinks, your guests are sure to enjoy this Hawaiian island fruit punch. Start by taking a can of concentrated Hawaiian punch and place it in the freezer. After it becomes nice and slushy, add it to a big punch bowl. Then, place about a half gallon of tasty pineapple sherbet into the bowl. Add two 2-liter bottles of your favorite brand of ginger ale to the punch bowl. Mix everything together and you’ll end up with a tropical punch that tastes wonderful.

LUAU MUNCHIES - Macadamia nuts, goldfish crackers, Swedish fish candies, molded white and milk chocolate in fish, shell, and star shapes.


luau party ideas
Photo courtesy of: Misocrazy

PINEAPPLE UPSIDE-DOWN CAKE - Prepare cake mix. Place pineapple slices in bottom of sheet cake pan. Fill holes with maraschino cherries. Pour pineapple liquid over pineapple slices. Pour cake batter over pineapple and bake according to box directions. When done turn cake over onto platter and insert paper umbrellas into each cherry.

PINEAPPLE CAKE - Make a cake in the shape of a pineapple and decorate it using frostings in the various pineapple colors.

ERUPTING VOLCANO CAKE - Make a Bundt cake. Cover with chocolate frosting like a volcano. Just before serving place dry ice in the center and present the eruption.

LUAU-THEMED CAKE - Bake a sheet cake and cover lower half with blue tinted frosting to create water. Cover other half with white frosting and sprinkle crushed wafer pieces on top to create sand. Create a Hawaiian scene with plastic cake toppers. Use hula dancers, palm trees, tiki torches, sharks in water, etc.

HULA GIRL CAKE – For this cake you will need a Barbie doll with a bikini top on. The cake will be the hula skirt for the doll. Create a domed cake to be the hula skirt. Start with three round cakes, then stack them on top of each other. Cut the cakes to create a dome shape like a skirt. Use some plastic wrap to cover the Barbie doll’s legs, placing her in the top of the cake so only her upper body is showing. Use green frosting to decorate the cake, using a fork to add lines in the icing so the cake looks like a grass hula skirt. Add some edible flowers all around the bottom and add a fake flower to the Barbie’s hair. If you want, you can use sugar letters to add a birthday message to the cake as well. This cake is sure to be a hit. Just make sure that you remove the doll before you try to cut and serve the cake to your guests.

If you want, you can use sugar letters to add a birthday message to the cake as well. This cake is sure to be a hit. Just make sure that you remove the doll before you try to cut and serve the cake to your guests.

PALM TREE CAKE - Bake cake in palm tree shaped cake pan and decorate according to pan's directions.

UKULELE CAKE - Make a sheet cake and cut it into the shape of a ukulele. Decorate it to coincide with your luau colors.

LUAU CUPCAKES - Make your favorite flavored cupcakes and top them off with some luau cupcake pics.

Check out our visitor-submitted LUAU CAKE photos and how-to tips.


Be sure to send everyone home with some favors to help them remember your special luau party. Here's some luau party ideas that you might want Items to consider as favors:

Sunglasses, puka shells, beachcomber hats, tiny bubbles, macadamia nuts, beach towels, sunblock, flower lei necklace, grass skirt, tropical hair clips, or a Hawaiian key chain.


luau party table image

Hopefully you found some ideas that will help you to turn your backyard into a tropical paradise and bring the magic of Hawaii to life. After all is said and done, we'd love for you to share your luau party ideas and perhaps a few photos. We'll then create a webpage that you can share with friends and family which will showcase your talents and help to inspire our site visitors so they too can create their own fun in the sun Hawaiian style!

Luau Party Ideas

Do you have some favorite Luau Party Ideas? Do tell! Please share all your party tips and ideas for invitations, decorations, games, etc.

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