This twenty-seventh edition of state guides to scattering ashes focuses on the state of Hawaii. This beautiful state is home to stunning beaches, brilliant waterfalls, impressive volcanoes, and some of the most amazing sunsets in the world!
With the significant increase in the amount of people in Hawaii and other states choosing cremation, funeral homes are receiving many questions from families about scattering ashes. Some of the more common questions include: Is ash scattering allowed in Hawaii? Where in Hawaii can a scattering be performed? What urn do you recommend to scatter ashes? In this state guide, we highlight key facts and other information to answer these questions and many others about scattering ashes in the state of Hawaii.
Rules in Hawaii Related to Scattering Ashes
In Hawaii, no state laws exist that restrict families from scattering a loved one’s ashes, however, it’s always a good idea to check with local city or county government offices where you plan on scattering to find out if there are any local restrictions in place.
Ashes in Hawaii can be kept in an urn, grave, niche, or crypt. Both, human and pet ashes are harmless and pose no health risks.
Where to Scatter Ashes in Hawaii?
Many people in Hawaii will choose to scatter their loved one’s ashes at a place with special meaning, in the ocean, or at another beautiful location outdoors. Also, many families in Hawaii will hold a celebration or service with family and friends present to go along with the scattering. This gives them the opportunity to be together and share stories and reflect on the person who passed. Many families will also let family and friends participate in the actual scattering.
In addition to the large number of Hawaiians scattering their loved one’s ashes, this beautiful state is also a common destination where families from all over the world come to scatter. It is a favorite vacation destination for many families and some will choose to come back and have their loved one be memorialized at a beautiful location on the islands.
There are many stunning places in Hawaii where people scatter ashes. Below we provide information on a few of the more common ones.
- Scattering at Sea – With Hawaii’s stunning beaches and coastline and its historical connection with the water, scatterings at sea are extremely popular in the state. There are a number of boating companies on each island that provide scattering at sea or water burial services and a visit to the local port on an island or a quick internet search can typically pull up multiple options near you. Also, it’s important to note that if you plan on doing this for your loved one, the U.S. Federal Clean Water Act stipulates that ashes need to be scattered at least 3 nautical miles from shore. Also, the EPA needs to be notified within 30 days of doing a scattering at sea.
- Private Property – There are no state laws in Hawaii that restrict you from scattering the ashes of a loved one (or pet) in your yard or on other property you own. If you’re interested in scattering ashes on private property owned by another person or organization, it’s important to get their permission ahead of time.
- Public Land – In Hawaii, there are no state restrictions related to scattering ashes on public land. However, be sure to check with local government offices where you plan on scattering to make sure no city or county restrictions are in place and that you avoid sacred or religious sites (unless you have permission).
- National Parks – Hawaii is home to eight National Parks – beautiful locations where many families choose to scatter a loved one’s ashes. Prior to heading out to a National Park to scatter, it’s important that you contact the park ranger’s office to find out if scattering ashes is allowed at that park and what rules and regulations may be in place. Every National Park has their own unique set of rules and some may require a permit that can take weeks or even months to obtain – so if this if of interest to you or your family, be sure to plan ahead.
- Scattering Gardens – With the growth in cremation and more and more people looking to scatter their loved one’s ashes, many cemeteries and churches are now designating certain areas on their property for scattering (commonly referred to as a ‘scattering garden’). A quick internet search can typically find you a few options on your island.
- Aerial Scattering – No state laws exist in Hawaii that restrict people from scattering a loved one’s ashes from an airplane, helicopter, or drone. Just be sure that the urn or other container used to drop the ashes from the sky is held on to – federal aviation law prohibits people from dropping objects from above that can has the potential to damage property or injure people.
How to Scatter Ashes in Hawaii?
With the large and growing number of Hawaiians choosing to be scattered, and an increased interest in families visiting Hawaii to scatter a loved one, a number of new urns designed to scatter have recently been introduced. Below we provide information on a few of the more popular urns used to scatter ashes in Hawaii.
Eco Water Urn
The Eco Water Urn is a leading urn used in scatterings at sea and is offered by hundreds of funeral homes throughout the U.S. This patent pending biodegradable urn floats upright (similar to a buoy) for up to a few minutes, then the bottom of the urn opens up and the ashes are gracefully freed in the water. The Eco Water Urn is shipped out in an protective bamboo case - this can be engraved with any custom message or symbol you prefer and is used as a protective cover to take the urn holding your loved one’s ashes to that special place on the water to scatter. This special urn is TSA complaint so it can easily be taken on a plane.
Eco Scattering Urn
The Eco Scattering Urn is an all-natural biodegradable scattering urn offered by thousands of funeral homes nationwide. The urn is constructed from bamboo, one of the strongest building materials on earth! It has a long cylinder (or tube-like) design, which helps people scatter away from their body and avoid having the ashes blown back on them. This patented urn also comes with a unique locking mechanism - this enables families to securely transport the ashes in the urn and to scatter with control and ease. Starting at $49, it’s an affordable option for most families. The Eco Scattering Urns are TSA compliant and can be taken with you if you’re traveling to Hawaii.
Flow, the Ice Urn
Flow, the Ice Urn is a revolutionary new urn option that has won multiple European design awards. It is made entirely of ice, which makes it one of the most eco-friendly funeral offerings available. The urn floats gracefully on top of the water, eventually melting and scattering the ashes. This highly unique urn is offered in select markets in North America and is expected to be available in Hawaii later this year!
Paper Scattering Urns
Another popular scattering urn option available at many funeral homes throughout the country includes ones made from paper. Similar to the Eco Scattering Urn, these have a long tube-like shape to help people scatter away from their body. The paper urns typically come with a nature scene or other image printed on the outside and are available in multiple sizes.
As more people continue to choose to be cremated instead of buried (because of a lower cost of cremation, among many other reasons), a number of new types of memorials are being introduced. With so many new uplifting options, many families are finding it challenging to choose a single memorial to honor their loved one, and instead, are dividing up their loved one’s ashes into multiple memorials. This commonly includes scattering a portion of the ashes and then using the remaining ashes in a bio urn to grow a living tree memorial, or having them placed in a piece of jewelry or stone, among many other options.