As divers, we’re unashamedly obsessed with the underwater world. We buy our pets critter costumes, then speak in hand signals, and even let scuba puns creep into our dating life. When it comes to choosing the perfect baby moniker, it’s no surprise that ocean names are top of the list for scuba parents who want to share their love for the big blue.

In this article, you won’t see America’s most popular baby names, such as Noah or Emma. Instead, you’ll find beautiful and unique ocean names, each inspired by the sea, waves, or even mermaids. The list includes:

Read on for a selection of 100+ ocean baby names and meanings, as well as tips on deciding what is the best ocean name for your scuba tot.

A mythical mermaid swimming underwater, whose folklore names can create some unique ocean girl names or water names for boys
Image Credit: @verobeachmermaid / @mermaid.keke

Ocean Names Based on Myths and Folklore

  • Selkie (girl): in Celtic and Norse lore, these ‘seal folk’ can morph between seal and human form.
  • Nerida (girl): Nereids were sea deities in Greek mythology. The name also means ‘mermaid’.
  • Pania (girl): this mythological mermaid is a Maori symbol from Napier, New Zealand.
  • Nixie (girl): in Germanic folklore, this cute ocean name means ‘water sprite’.
  • Nerissa (girl): previously in Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice, this means ‘sea nymph’.
  • Davy (boy): in Welsh folklore, Davy Jones was actually considered a guardian of sailors.

A colorful undersea scene with a coral reef, divers and fish, and which inspires many ocean related names for scuba babies

Of the Sea Names

The following names all share similar meanings that include ‘sea’, ‘from the sea’, or ‘of the sea’:

  • Aerwyna (girl): friend of the sea — English.
  • Muriel (neutral): of the bright sea — Celtic.
  • Iravan (boy): king of the ocean — Sanskrit.
  • Cordelia (girl): daughter of the sea — Celtic.
  • Rosemary (girl): dew of the sea — Latin.
  • Halimeda (girl): thinking of the sea — Greek.
  • Dylan (boy): son of the sea — Welsh.
  • Marnie/Maria/Mary/Marissa (girl): of the sea — Latin.
  • Murphy (neutral): warrior of the sea — Gaelic.
  • Doris/Dorian (girl/neutral): gift from the sea — Greek.
  • Varindra (boy): lord of the ocean — Hindi.
  • Morwenna (girl): waves of the sea — Celtic.
  • Delmar (boy): of the sea — Spanish.
  • Marina/Marino (girl/boy): of the sea — Latin.

A giant manta ray as seen from above, a graceful creature whose name 'ray' can also be used for ocean boy names

Ocean Life Baby Names

  • Coral/Coraline (girl): this reef-inspired name has been used since the Victorian era.
  • Olive/Oliver (girl/boy): both are popular Latin names and akin to that of the Olive Ridley turtle.
  • Pearl (girl): just like an oyster’s gem, this baby’s name is undoubtedly precious.
  • Delphin/Delphine (boy/girl): this joyous Greek baby name means ‘dolphin’.
  • Fin (neutral): taken from Finley/Finn, there’s certainly nothing fishy about this adorable nickname!
  • Hector (boy): as well as being a rare species of dolphin, its Greek origin also means ‘Anchor’.
  • Sandy (neutral): best known from Grease, this name also evokes images of beautiful beaches.
  • Shelley (neutral): although meaning ‘clearing on a bank’, its spelling makes a fun ocean baby name.
  • Sirena (girl): this pretty name is a nod to both mythical sirens and real sirenians.
  • Ray (boy): manta, eagle, or… a boy’s name meaning ‘wise protector’ instead.

A scuba diver's baby with a regulator pacifier, whose parents are likely to want to know what are some ocean names for kids?

The Ocean in Different Languages

For one of the purest ocean names in the world, how about one that literally means ocean or sea?

Avisa (boy): SanskritMeri (girl): FinnishSagara (girl): Sundanese
Deniz (neutral): TurkishKai (neutral): HawaiianMira (girl): Sanskrit
Jaladri (girl): SundaneseUmi (neutral): JapaneseArnav (boy): Hindi
Samandar (boy): UrduBien (boy): VietnameseZaria (girl): Kurdish

A blue tang fish aka Dory, the cartoon character from Disney's Finding Nemo, a film which features many cute ocean baby names

Ocean-Themed Names from Disney Movies

Whether it’s The Little Mermaid or Finding Nemo, our favorite Disney cartoons can conjure up some magical old and new ocean name ideas. For example:

  • Ariel (neutral): the famous red-haired mermaid princess’s name is Hebrew for ‘lion of God’.
  • Moana (girl): this titular heroine’s name also means ‘ocean’ in Hawaiian.
  • Sebastian (boy): meaning ‘venerable’, this one’s perfect for charismatic cartoon crabs (and kids!).
  • Dory (neutral): our favorite blue fish’s name comes from Greek and means ‘gift of God’.
  • Bruce (boy): “Hello, my name’s Bruce” … say no more!
  • Destiny (girl): the name of Dory’s whale shark pipe-pal means ‘fate’.

An artist's impression of Neptune, a sea god whose name often appears on lists for what are good ocean names for baby boys

Sea Gods and Goddesses

There are some obvious choices: Neptune, Poseidon, Amphitrite, Aphrodite, or Triton, to name a few. But, for something more enigmatic, try any of these:

  • Thalassa (girl): the Greek primordial goddess of the sea.
  • Aegir (boy): a Norse god of the sea, this name also means ‘ocean’ or ‘sea giant’.
  • Mazu (girl): also known as Matsu, this Chinese sea goddess is a deity of seafarers.
  • Lir (boy): this god is considered the personification of the sea in Irish mythology.
  • Ceto (girl): the Greek goddess of sharks, sea monsters, and the dangers of the ocean.
  • Salacia (girl): the Roman goddess of salt water and ruler of the deep ocean.
  • Thaumas (boy): another ancient Greek god who represents the wonders of the sea.
  • Sedna (girl): this Inuit sea goddess is also known as the ‘Mother of the Sea’.

The beautiful azure ocean seen from above which also provides inspiration for some of the best ocean names in the world

Sea-Related Names Based on Real Places

  • Ocean (neutral): for the ultimate ocean baby name, how about the ocean itself?
  • Adrian/Adrienne (boy/girl): meaning ‘from Hadria’, this name also shares Latin roots with the Adriatic Sea.
  • Tasman (boy): ‘Taz’ for short, and named after the sea between Australia and New Zealand.
  • Caspian (boy): between Europe and Asia, the Caspian Sea is in fact the world’s largest lake.

Three dolphins jumping and playing in giant white-crested waves, the translations of which can create many ocean like names

Ocean Names Inspired by Waves

For a name that represents the strength and power of the ocean, try one of the following, which take their meaning or translation from waves:

Tarni (girl): AboriginalDwyn (girl): WelshAalto (boy): Finnish
Ondine (girl): LatinGali (girl): HebrewBo (boy): Chinese
Alda (girl): IcelandicNaia (girl): BasqueNami (girl): Japanese
Valdrin (boy): AlbanianOnda (girl): Italian/SpanishMalik (boy): Greenlandic

Actor Morgan Freeman, whose first name means 'sea circle' in Welsh and often comes up when asked what baby name means ocean?
Image Credit: Kelso

Celebrity Ocean-Themed Baby Names

  • Meryl (girl): Actress Meryl Streep’s name means ‘shining sea’.
  • Ridley (neutral): filmmaker Ridley Scott shares his name with the Olive Ridley turtle.
  • Nori (neutral): Japanese for ‘seaweed’, it’s also a nickname for Kim and Kanye’s daughter.
  • Morgan (neutral): meaning ‘sea circle’, this Welsh name was made famous by Morgan Freeman.
  • Ronan (boy): singer Ronan Keating’s name means ‘Little Seal’ in Irish.
  • Jennifer (girl): meaning ‘white waves’, Jennifer Aniston and Lopez share this Cornish variation of Guinevere.
  • Maisie (girl): Game of Thrones star Maisie Williams’ name means ‘pearl’ and also sounds like the sea!
  • Jacques (boy): no ocean names list would be complete without French scuba legend, Jacques Cousteau.

A stunning orange and red sunset on the beach, where the sea is also the meaning of many unique ocean names for scuba babies

The Ocean Names That Sound Like the Sea

The meanings of these names aren’t necessarily related to the ocean. However, try saying them out loud. Each one has ‘sea’ as part of its pronunciation, making it a wonderfully aural ocean name.







A close-up of a seagrass meadow lit up by the sun's rays in the sea, a place that is the source of many rare ocean baby names

Even More Beautiful Ocean Baby Names

  • Murray (boy): with Scottish and Irish roots, this means ‘settlement by the sea’.
  • Zulimar (neutral): specifically, this means ‘blue ocean’ in Spanish.
  • Hurley (boy): an Irish name meaning ‘sea tide’.
  • Oki (neutral): this adorable Japanese name means ‘ocean centered’.
  • Marvin (boy): sometimes spelled Mervin, this Welsh name means ‘sea friend’.
  • Vaiana (girl): this beautiful Tahitian name means ‘water cave’.

A sleeping baby in a crocheted mermaid tail, whose parents probably want to know answers to 'what are cute ocean names?'

What is a Good Ocean Name?

Whether you’re inspired by Disney, destinations, or mythical ocean names, you may still be torn between a few favorites. Perhaps you’ve even shortlisted your top 5 ocean names, so here are some tips for picking the perfect one:

  1. Research wider meanings; you might then be drawn to one with a particular quality or translation.
  2. Be mindful that some names still have religious or cultural connotations.
  3. Consider how it might be shortened or turned into nicknames instead.
  4. Check it complements your surname (and don’t forget to check the initials).
  5. Consider how it might also fit with siblings’ names.
  6. Test how it sounds out loud (while making sure little ones will be able to say and spell it, too!).
  7. Do a quick Google to eliminate any unfortunate associations.
  8. Don’t be afraid to wait until you’ve met Baby before making your final choice!

Have you already chosen one of these ocean names for your little one, or have even more ideas to share? Tell us your favorites by tagging #PADI on social media.

Of course, the best way to show your love for our ocean planet is to help preserve it for your family’s future generations. Join the global community of Ocean Torchbearers today!

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