How to Say Happy New Year in Hawaiian

Happy New Year in Hawaii
If you are going to be in Hawaii over the New Year holiday, you may want to learn this phrase: Hau’oli Makahiki Hou. It means Happy New Year and it is pronounced as follows:

Hau’oli — “how-oh-lee”

Makahiki —  “mah-kah-hee-kee”

Hou — “ho”

In the Hawaiian language, the word makahiki means year. The Makahiki season (roughly around October to February time) was celebrated in Hawaii for centuries. In ancient Hawaiian culture, the time of Makahiki was a peaceful time to enjoy harvest, feasts, religious ceremonies and relaxation. The Mahakiki season also defined the transitional time between harvest and new planting — e.g. the new (agricultural) year.

The Hawaiian word hau’oli means happy, cheerful, joyful. While hou means new in this context. So, if you try to literally translate “hau’oli makakiki hou” from Hawaiian to English it would be “happy year new”.

If you are thinking or dreaming of celebrating the new year in Hawaii, check out our 2013/2014 new year’s eve island guides for finding fireworks, special dining and celebrations with aloha.

As 2014 nears, I’d like to be among the first to wish you Hau ‘oli Makahiki Hou!


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About Sheila Beal

Sheila Beal is the founder and editor of Go Visit Hawaii. You can connect with Sheila Beal on Twitter, Go Visit Hawaii on Facebook, or Sheila Beal on Google+.

8 comments

  1. I certainly hope it’s happy! :) Right back at ya! Hope you guys have a nice time and enjoy seeing in the New Year!

  2. Thank you, Evelyn! Will you be getting to see any of those fantastic fireworks in your wonderful city? Happy 2008!

  3. You know what? I don’t know! Maybe I’ll go running at 11:30 and head down to Aloha Tower! At least I won’t have to worry about parking! :)

  4. That sounds like a great plan, Evelyn. (I’ll pretend I’m not jealous now.) :-)

  5. Happy New Year, Sheila. Hope that 2008 is a great one for you and Andy.

  6. Hau’oli Makahiki Hou! Have a good one.

  7. Mele kalikimaka tooo!!

  8. HAPPY NEW YEAR Sheila !!
    I hope you are having wonderful days !!

    Myself and Marco will be back to wonderful Hawai’i in Summer 2010 !!! so we will be reading your blog EVERY DAY !!!!!
    We need to learn as much as we can !!!
    Marco and I have already treasured some of your precious info and hints !!!

    PLEASE , keep the excellent work up !!!!!!!!!
    Love from Italy , laura

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