Save money on your next flight

Skyscanner is the world’s leading flight search engine, helping you find the cheapest flights to destinations all over the world.

The popular Hawaiian farewell phrase “good night” or “good night hawaiian” has an interesting history behind it. This phrase is not just used to say good night, but can also mean farewell, goodbye, and aloha. If you’re wondering about the origins and meanings behind this expression, read on for a deep dive into the story behind good night hawaiian.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer: Good night hawaiian is a Hawaiian pidgin phrase used to say goodbye. It emerged in the early 20th century from Hawaiian cowboys blending English and Hawaiian. Today it communicates the spirit of aloha.

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the definition and origins of good night hawaiian, look at common variations and similar phrases, explain when and how it’s used, and share some fun trivia around this iconic Hawaiian saying.

Definition and Origins of Good Night Hawaiian

The phrase “Good Night” is a common way to bid farewell and wish someone a restful sleep in many languages. In the Hawaiian language, this phrase is expressed as “Aloha auinalā,” which translates to “Good Night” in English.

Literal Meaning

The Hawaiian language is rich in cultural significance and symbolism. The phrase “Aloha auinalā” combines two important words. “Aloha” is a word that carries a deep meaning of love, affection, and compassion. It is often used as a greeting, farewell, or expression of goodwill. “Auinalā” refers to the time of day when the sun has set and darkness is approaching, signaling the end of the day. Therefore, “Aloha auinalā” can be understood as a loving farewell given at night, wishing someone a peaceful night’s rest.

Pidgin Roots

The origins of the phrase “Good Night” in Hawaiian can be traced back to the Pidgin language. Pidgin is a unique dialect that emerged in the late 19th century as a result of cultural interactions between English-speaking immigrants, Hawaiian locals, and other ethnic groups in Hawaii. It is a blend of English, Hawaiian, and other languages spoken by plantation workers and residents of the islands. The phrase “Good Night” became part of the Pidgin lexicon, reflecting the influence of English on the local language.

Early Usage by Hawaiian Cowboys

Another interesting aspect of the phrase “Good Night” in Hawaiian is its association with the paniolo, or Hawaiian cowboys. These skilled horsemen played a crucial role in the ranching industry of Hawaii during the 19th and early 20th centuries. As the paniolo worked long hours tending to cattle and maintaining ranches, they developed their own unique culture and language. The phrase “Good Night” was commonly used among paniolo to bid each other farewell at the end of a hard day’s work. It symbolized camaraderie, mutual respect, and the shared experience of living and working in the beautiful Hawaiian landscape.

The usage of “Good Night” in Hawaiian has evolved over time, and it continues to be a warm and heartfelt way of saying farewell in the Aloha State. So, next time you find yourself in Hawaii, remember to say “Aloha auinalā” to wish someone a peaceful night and embrace the spirit of aloha.

Variations and Related Phrases

Aloha `Aina

While “Good Night” is a common phrase used to bid farewell at the end of the day, Hawaiians have a unique variation of this phrase known as “Aloha `Aina.” This phrase translates to “love for the land” in English. It represents the deep connection Hawaiians have with their natural surroundings and the importance of preserving and caring for the land. So, if you ever find yourself in Hawaii and want to wish someone a good night, you can say “Aloha `Aina” instead to show your appreciation for the beauty of the islands.

A Hui Hou

Another related phrase commonly used in Hawaii is “A Hui Hou,” which translates to “until we meet again.” This phrase is often used when parting ways with someone, whether it’s for the night or a longer period of time. It conveys the sentiment that even though you may be saying goodbye for now, you hope to see them again in the future. “A Hui Hou” is a heartfelt way to bid farewell and leave a lasting impression on the people you meet in Hawaii.

For more information on Hawaiian language and culture, you can visit the official website of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs. They provide a wealth of resources and insights into the language, history, and traditions of the Hawaiian people.

Proper Usage and Context

Casual Farewell

The phrase “Good Night” in Hawaiian, which is pronounced as “Aloha Au Ia ‘Oe,” is commonly used as a casual farewell. It is similar to saying “Goodbye” or “Good night” in English. This phrase is often used when parting ways with friends, family, or acquaintances, especially in the evening or before going to bed. It reflects the warm and friendly nature of Hawaiian culture, where aloha (love, affection) is highly valued.

Song Lyrics and Titles

The phrase “Good Night” has also been incorporated into various song lyrics and titles in Hawaiian music. It adds a touch of charm and sweetness to the songs, enhancing the overall sentiment and emotional connection. For example, the popular Hawaiian song “Goodnight Irene” has been adapted with Hawaiian lyrics, becoming a favorite among locals and visitors alike. Such songs not only showcase the beauty of the Hawaiian language but also celebrate the island’s cultural heritage.

Business Sign-Offs

While “Good Night” is predominantly used in casual settings, it can also be used as a friendly sign-off in business or professional contexts. It can be a great way to end an email or a phone conversation with a touch of warmth and sincerity. However, it is important to consider the level of formality required in each situation. In more formal settings, using a traditional closing such as “Sincerely” or “Best Regards” may be more appropriate. It’s always a good idea to adapt your language and tone to match the professional expectations of the situation.

For more information on Hawaiian language and culture, you can visit, a comprehensive resource that provides lessons and insights into the Hawaiian language.

Fun Facts and Trivia

Pidgin in Pop Culture

Good Night Hawaiian is a phrase commonly associated with Hawaiian Pidgin, a unique form of English spoken in Hawaii. Pidgin has gained recognition and popularity in pop culture, making appearances in movies, TV shows, and music. One notable example is the famous song “Tiny Bubbles” by Hawaiian musician Don Ho, which features lyrics in Pidgin. The use of Pidgin in pop culture not only showcases the distinctiveness of Hawaiian culture but also helps to preserve and promote the language.

Notable Examples and Quotes

The phrase “Good Night Hawaiian” has been used in various contexts, both in literature and in everyday conversations. It is often used as a farewell greeting, wishing someone a good night’s rest. However, it can also be used humorously to convey different meanings. For instance, a play on words can be made by saying “Good Night Hawaiian” to someone who is about to embark on a late-night adventure. This light-hearted use of the phrase adds a touch of humor and playfulness to the conversation.

One notable quote related to the Hawaiian language comes from Hawaiian singer and musician Israel Kamakawiwoʻole, known for his rendition of “Over the Rainbow.” He once said, “Hawaiian music is the real Hawaiian language. The rest is just Pidgin.” This quote highlights the significance of music in preserving and expressing the essence of Hawaiian culture, including the use of Pidgin.

For more information on Hawaiian Pidgin and its cultural significance, you can visit


The spirit of aloha is beautifully encompassed in the phrase good night hawaiian. This casual, warm-hearted farewell emerged over a century ago as Hawaiian cowboys blended languages. Today it endures as a reminder of Hawaii’s pidgin history and culture. The next time you hear or say good night hawaiian, remember the story behind its origins and meanings.

We’ve explored the varied history and usage of this iconic Hawaiian idiom. From its humble beginnings in the sugarcane fields, good night hawaiian has become beloved in song lyrics, books, film, and everyday speech. This phrase spreads the aloha spirit wherever it goes. Good night hawaiian, and until we meet again!

Sharing is caring!

Similar Posts