Top 15 Activities for Kids on Oahu

By Brandi-Ann Uyemura

Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Tor Johnson

Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Tor Johnson

Oahu has a plethora of activities for kids if you know where to look. Beaches are an obvious option, but there are also other fun things to do for children of all ages.

1. Dolphin Quest

Photo courtesy of Dolphin Quest.

Photo courtesy of Dolphin Quest.

Swim with Dolphins!

Dolphin Quest, certified for animal welfare from the American Humane Conservation program, provides an up close and person dolphin experience.

$189 and up BOOK NOW

When you’re on Oahu, swimming with the dolphins is a must. The Kahala Hotel & Resort gives families that once-in-a-lifetime experience. Its educational programs of varying durations allow kids to interact with dolphins in a 26,000 square foot lagoon.

2. Kualoa Ranch

Photo: Kualoa Ranch Jungle Expedition Tour.

There are multiple things to do here from horseback riding to going on a movie site tour.

3. Pacific Aviation Museum

Photo: Courtesy Pacific Aviation Museum

If you’re looking for an educational activity that’s unique to Hawaii, the Pacific Aviation Museum delivers with flight simulators, aircrafts, and historical footage depicting the infamous December 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor.

4. Shave ice

Photo courtesy of Matsumoto Shave Ice.

Photo courtesy of Matsumoto Shave Ice.

There’s nothing better than an icy snow cone or shave ice as the locals call it. Make a trip of it by trying various renditions from Island Snow in Kailua to Matsumoto Shave Ice in North Shore.

5. Luau

Photo courtesy of Amir Zakeri.

Photo courtesy of Amir Zakeri.

A luau is full of family fun and is a must-do for those who desire the complete Hawaiian experience.

6. Hanauma Bay State Park

Aerial view of Hanauma Bay. Photo courtesy of Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Heather Titus.

Aerial view of Hanauma Bay. Photo courtesy of Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Heather Titus.

Snorkel with tropical fishes, sea turtles and other marine life in their natural habitat.

7. Bishop Museum

Bishop Museum. Photo courtesy of Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Tor Johnson.

Bishop Museum. Photo courtesy of Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Tor Johnson.

The Bishop Museum offers a slice of Hawaiian history and culture with rotating exhibits especially for kids.

8. Children’s Discovery Center

An interactive center with educational activities and exhibits for kids, it’s a perfect indoor option for a rainy day.

9. Honolulu Zoo

Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Tor Johnson

Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Tor Johnson

This 42-acre zoo centered in Waikiki showcases native plants and animals that will be a big hit with the whole family.

10. Waikiki Aquarium

Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Tor Johnson

Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Tor Johnson

It’s air-conditioned, near the zoo and gives kids a chance to interact and experience Hawaiian marine life.

11. Beaches

Exploring Ko Olina. Photo courtesy of Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau (HVCB) / Linda Ching.

Exploring Ko Olina. Photo courtesy of Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau (HVCB) / Linda Ching.

Oahu has some of the best beaches for kids. The Lagoons at Ko Olina, Lanikai and Hilton Hawaiian Village lagoon are just a few beaches with calm ocean conditions that make it safe for families.

12. Parks

Feeding the ducks and fish at Hoomaluhia Botanical Garden. Photo courtesy of Shelly Lyons.

Feeding the ducks and fish at Hoomaluhia Botanical Garden. Photo courtesy of Shelly Lyons.

Botanical gardens are perfect places for kids to frolic and explore. Ho`omaluhia Botanical Garden has guided nature hikes, and fishing on the weekend.

13. Sea Life Park

Sea Life Park. Photo: Hawaii.com member Timmy I.


Interact with marine animals, watch a dolphin show, take in the exhibits and do it all in a beautiful Hawaiian setting.

14. Hawaiian Railway Society train rides

Photo courtesy of Hawaiian Railway Society.

Ride aboard a 90-minute narrated train ride on a historic railroad in Ewa.

15. Byodo-In Temple

Photo courtesy of Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Chuck Painter.

Photo courtesy of Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Chuck Painter.

This memorial park in Kaneohe features a replica of an ancient Japanese temple, peacocks, and koi fishponds.

Family Activities

Hanauma Bay Snorkel Adventures

Experience the underwater wonderland of scenic Hanauma Bay, the most popular place to snorkel on the island of Oahu.

An affordable $25 snorkeling package includes: Hotel pick-up and return (Waikiki only), professionally sanitized snorkel equipment (a mask, snorkel and fins), instruction and assistance for enjoy a perfect day at Hanauma Bay!

$25 BOOK NOW

Swim with Dolphins!

Dolphin Quest, certified for animal welfare from the American Humane Conservation program, provides an up close and person dolphin experience.

$189 and up BOOK NOW

Side-By-Side ATV Rides at Coral Crater

Explore Coral Crater by driving an off-road side-by-side ATV on a specially designed off-road trail. No experience necessary. Adults and children love the action-packed adventure of real off-roading.

$59.99 BOOK NOW

To explore more cool things to do in Hawaii and to book your activities, please visit www.hawaii.com/things-to-do

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