What Do You Wear to a Luau?

What Do You Wear to a Luau?

Casual beach dress is appropriate for a luau. For men, a Hawaiian shirt and khaki shorts are a good choice, and women can wear a long, floral sundress, sarong or muʻumuʻu. Both men and women can wear flip-flops or go barefoot. Accessorize with puka shell leis and fresh flowers.

In addition to aloha wear, grass skirts are also appropriate attire for both men and women. Traditionally, women wore them bare-chested, just as men did. Today, women pair them with a bikini, tank or tube top. Bikini bottoms or shorts can be worn underneath.

Traditionally, Hawaiians would celebrate important or auspicious occasions with a feast. They honored and enjoyed fellowship with their gods and shared their good fortunes with family and friends. These feasts, called 'aha'aina, included food, song and hula.

Hawaii is a melting pot of Asian, Anglo and Pacific Island cultures, and that heritage is reflected in the food. Common luau foods included roast pig, poi, poke, teriyaki chicken and lomilomi salmon. Salads made with purple sweet potatoes and Chinese noodle dishes are also popular menu items.

Luaus were always considered private family celebrations. They didn't become commercial attractions until after World War II when tourism to the Hawaiian Islands increased.