Ukele is a member of the guitar family of instruments and it was originated in the 19th as an hawaiian interpretaion of cavaquinho or the braguinha or rajao (this last two originated from Madeira, a portuguese overseas island), small guitar- like instruemnts taken to Hawaii from portuguese sailors.
So we can say that Ukele is a portuguese gift to Hawaii.
I only knew this when Fado was recognized as World Heritage last year (fado-is-world-heritage) in Bali, Indonesia and journalists said that the instrument people from Polinesia play, the ukele ,was originated from Portugal. Even an indonesian man played a portuguese guitar which is used in fado songs.
Here it's the picture fom the ukele migration:
It's clear: Portugal gave new worlds to the world with the spirit of adventure and discover and even I recognizing the bad things that happened with the colinization process I must admit that the true spirit of the portuguese were mostly one: discover new places and meet and change ideas with other folks. The result is there: the world has a bit of Portugal...that tiny little country lost in the mists of History which several times is denied its greatness.
Being a portuguese is something special and I'm very proud of it.
Here's my favourite ukele song, and one of the most famous ones: Somewhere over the Rainbow from Israel.