Hawaii island colors

Hawaii Island Colors

Hawaii is an archipelago of eight major islands recognized as the 50th state in the United States. Each island has unique culture and beauty, with many distinct characteristics. One such characteristic is each island’s official color palettes, which represent Hawaii’s diverse landscape. This article will discuss the colors associated with Hawaii’s eight main islands: Hawaii Red, Maui Pink, Kauai Purple, Molokai Green, Lanai Orange, Nihau White, Kahoolawe Silver-Gray, and Oahu Yellow.

Hawaii Official Island Colors

  • Hawaii Island: Red (ʻulaʻula) represents freedom and Goddess Haumea.
  • Maui: Pink (ʻākala) is the color of love, compassion, and understanding.
  • Kauai: Purple (Poni) represents the Goddess Uli and success.
  • Molokai: Green (ʻōmaʻomaʻo) represents plants and the Goddess Laka and symbolizes love and compassion.
  • Lanai: Orange (ʻālani) represents focus and energy and symbolizes fire and volcanos and the deity Pele, the Goddess of the creation of Hawaiian islands.
  • Nihau: White (Ke’oke’o) represents the Goddess Hina, knowledge, and water element.
  • Kahoolawe: Silver-Gray (Hinahina) is the moon’s color and represents the Goddess Hina and growth and reproduction.
  • Oahu: Golden Yellow (pala luhiehu), Yellow (melemele, lenalena) is the element for wind and represents the Goddess Hi’iaka.

The history behind these colors reflects centuries-old traditions that generations of Hawaiians and locals have maintained. As far back as ancient times, people identified different areas on the Hawaiian Islands based on their respective colors; for example, red could signify power or leadership, while white represented purity or spirituality. These hues have become so iconic over time that they are now commonly seen adorning everything from flags to surfboards throughout the region.

By examining this tradition of using distinctive colors to identify each Hawaiian Island, we can gain deeper insight into both past and present cultures in Hawaii today. From a visual perspective, it allows us to appreciate the vibrant spectrum of shades found within nature across all eight islands in one glance. Understanding each shade also provides context around why certain symbols and visuals are linked so closely with specific places in modern-day society, whether it be a remembrance purchased at a souvenir shop or artwork produced by local artisans reflecting their home environment through color choice alone.

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The Meaning Behind Each Island’s Color

Hawaii’s islands’ colors have meanings deep in Hawaiian culture. It is remarkable how the people have maintained their traditions over the years, with each island embodying its unique color.

Hawaii Red symbolizes freedom, while Maui Pink represents love, compassion, and understanding.

Kauai Purple reflects the deity Uli and success, while Molokai Green represents plants and the deity Laka, as well as love and compassion.

Lanai Orange represents focus, energy, fire, and volcanos and symbolizes the Goddess Pele – the creator of Hawaiian islands.

Nihau White symbolizes knowledge, water, and the deity Hina, whereas Kahoolawe Silver-Gray represents the moon, growth, and reproduction.

Oahu Golden Yellow is associated with wind and the deity Hi’iaka.

The colors also represent the plants and elements found on the many islands of Hawaii. These vibrant hues have come together to form an integral part of Hawaii’s identity and serve as a reminder of the past and present significance of these islands in today’s world.

Where To Find These Colors In Nature

The Hawaiian islands’ colors have long captured the beauty and culture of their surroundings. While these hues often adorn postcards, clothing, and other souvenirs for Hawaii tourists, they originate in nature. From Maui pink to Kauai purple, here is a glimpse into where one may find these vibrant island colors:

Hawaii Red comes from the color of the flower Metrosideros polymorpha (ʻōhiʻa lehua), the most common native tree in Hawaii.

Kauai Purple comes from the color of the Mokihana berry from the tree pelea anisata, or Melicope anisata, and is only native to Kauai.

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Molokai green comes from the color of the Candlenut tree, kukui tree, or Aleurites moluccana (pua kukui), also Hawaii’s official state tree.

Lanai Orange comes from the color of the vine Cuscuta Sandwichiana, or native dodder (Kauna’oa kahakai) 

Nihau White comes from the color of the pūpū shells, or momi, laiki, or kahelelani.

Kahoolawe Silver-Gray comes from the color of the shrub Heliotropium anomalum (hinahina kū kahakai), which is said to have the moon’s color.

Oahu Golden Yellow comes from the color of the shrub Sida Fallax (ʻIlima)

Hawaii has colorful islands, so you can check out the state park Waimea Canyon State Park on Kauai, which has a brown-reddish color in the eroded soil. You can look for animals such as I’iwi birds, bright vermillion-orange with black wings. Ohia Lehua trees blossom with salmon pink to rusty red color tones.

You can explore crystal clear tidepools at Poipu Beach on the South Shore of Kauai, where they will find coral reefs exhibiting myriad shades ranging from lavender purple to pale blue-greens. 

Finally, head upcountry Maui for views of awe-inspiring roses alongside sunflowers in full bloom – all producing vibrant colors that come alive against a backdrop of rolling meadows and lush rainforest valleys.

How To Incorporate Hawaii’s Official Island Colors Into Your Home Decor

People see Hawaii’s island colors as a representation of the beauty and vibrancy of its culture. These seven distinct shades – Hawaii Red, Maui Pink, Kauai Purple, Molokai Green, Lanai Orange, Nihau White, and Kahoolawe Silver-Gray – have been used in home decor for centuries to bring an element of paradise into one’s living space. Incorporating these shades into home decor is a great way to capture the islands’ spirit while creating a sense of peace and tranquility.

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When utilizing colors in your home decor, there are endless possibilities. Here are three tips to keep in mind:

  • Furniture: Consider brightening up furniture with bold color accents such as Oahu Yellow or Molokai Green; this will help create an inviting atmosphere that reflects the tropical setting.
  • Accents: Introducing small touches like pillows or rugs featuring any combination of the seven colors can instantly transform your room from mundane to mesmerizing.
  • Wallpaper: Utilize wallpaper depicting scenes from Hawaiian nature, including white sand beaches, lush rainforest foliage, or stunning sunsets as a backdrop for your home décor scheme – all painted in vibrant tones inspired by the island palette!

Incorporating Hawaii’s official island colors into your home decor allows you to experience a little paradise right at home – bringing energy and life into any space! By following these design tips, you can quickly achieve a look that captures the essence of aloha no matter where you live.


Hawaii’s official island colors are distinct, each with a unique history. Millions of tourists visit the Hawaiian Islands annually, with many of them enthralled by their vibrant colors. You can find the color-diversity throughout nature, culture, home interior and decor, and dress styles, and it’s easy to get creative when you add a touch of Hawaii into your life.