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Hawaii is literally swimming with water-based activities. Kids can pet a sea lion at Sea Life Park, learn to surf from a pro on Waikiki Beach, and see massive humpback whales splashing around during a whale-watching tour on Maui, Molokai or Lanai. Snorkeling is a kid-approved activity all year long; popular spots include the shallow, protected tide pools of Poipu Beach on Kauai and the island of Hawaii’s Kona coast, where you can even swim with dolphins and manta rays.
Beyond the beach, our amazing museums and natural attractions will bring you closer to Hawaii’s fascinating culture – and each other. Learn to dance the hula at the Smith Family Garden Luau, Polynesian Cultural Center and many other authentic luau on every island. Kids can watch planetarium shows and participate in lava demonstrations at the Bishop Museum, or learn how Hawaii’s early explorers navigated to our shores by the stars at the Imiloa Astronomy Center. Or, let the little ones burn off some energy at our national and state parks, lush gardens and green spaces – from hikes through the clouds at Iao Valley State Park to zipline adventures at Kualoa Ranch, a filming location of Jurassic Park.
If you’re staying at a hotel or resort, take advantage of keiki (children's) programs that range from lei-making to scuba lessons. Aulani Resort brings Disney magic to Oahu, with daily activities and pool parties with appearances by Mickey and his friends. On the island of Hawaii, Hilton Waikoloa Village boasts a lazy river and sprawling saltwater lagoon that’s home to several dolphins; kids can even shadow a dolphin trainer during their stay! More great family-friendly Hawaiian hotels include Turtle Bay on Oahu, Grand Wailea and Kaanapali Beach Hotel on Maui and Hilton Garden Inn Kauai. Best of all, many resorts offer day camps for kids that give parents some much-needed solo time.
Check our calendar to see what fun events and festivals are happening during your visit. You don’t have to be a kid to love the Big Island Chocolate Festival, and daily farmers markets throughout the islands offer more exotic fruits and sweet treats than a candy store. Bust a move to hula grooves during the Slack Key Guitar Festival or Ukulele Festival Hawaii. And if you’re visiting during the holidays, lighting festivals, canoeing santas and brightly colored boat parades are just a few of the ways we celebrate.
Family Fun by Island
Play in the tide pools at Poipu Beach Park, explore larger-than-life wonders at Waimea Canyon or learn to dance the hula at one of Kauai’s many luau. And don’t forget a ride on the Kauai Plantation Railway at Kilohana Estate.More
From underwater to outer space, the island of Hawaii is a family favorite. Snorkel the crystal-clear Kona coast, stargaze at the Imiloa Astronomy Center and see bubbling lava at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Say cheese: Liliuokalani Gardens makes a scenic backdrop for a family photo.More
On action-packed Oahu, explore a submarine at Pearl Harbor and navigate a massive garden maze at the Dole Plantation. Have wild encounters at Sea Life Park, Waikiki Aquarium or Honolulu Zoo, and play authentic Hawaiian games at the Polynesian Cultural Center.More
Walk through a tunnel surrounded by a 750,000-gallon water tank as manta rays and sharks swim overhead at the Maui Ocean Center. Get hands-on at the Hawaii Nature Center in Wailuku, or become a Junior Ranger at the Haleakala Visitor Center.More
With lots of unspoiled beaches and rustic back roads ripe for exploring, Lanai is a perfect playground for families. Take a horseback ride, explore the tide pools of Hulopoe Bay and enjoy a family picnic at Dole Park. Or, simply splash in the pool at Lanai’s fine resorts.More
Generations of families have made Mauna Kea Beach Hotel their home. Children have forged lifetime friendships here while building sandcastles or exploring the shoreline. Program available seasonally or for three or more with prior arrangements.
Maui's Leading Snorkel & Dive Center offering dive gear rentals, sales, instruction & beach wear, Maka Koa, our 48' custom dive boat, offers dives to Molokini, Back Wall, Cathedrals, & Wreck Dives. Maka Koa offers a full breakfast & deli lunch. Free Transportation provided south & west Maui.
Garden Island Chocolate is the premier gourmet Hawaiian chocolate company. We make organic dark chocolate bars,(85% cacao) chocolate truffles and a hot chocolate drink. We have guided chocolate farm tours and tastings every Mon, Wed, & Friday at 9:30am. The tours are very popular so book in advance.
A venue for the Art in Public Places Program of the Hawaii State Foundation on Culture and the Arts, the Hawaii State Art Museum (HiSAM) features works of art primarily by artists with a connection to Hawaii and exhibits on topics of interest to communities in our state. Admission is always free!
Hawaii Pacific Parks is a non-profit cooperating association working in partnership with the National Park Service in Hawaii and in American Samoa. Proceeds from our bookstores support interpretive and educational programs, research projects, publications, and cultural activities.
Mystery Maui Escape Room is a live, physical adventure game where players find clues in themed spaces to open locks and solve the mystery of the room within 60 minutes. It's an ideal indoor, rainy-day or late-night activity that is fun for couples, families or co-workers.