Family Activities

By Tannya Joaquin

Family Activities #1 Recommendation: Beach Time

Bringing the whole family to Hawaiʻi?  Plan on lots of beach time and sunscreen.  This is our favorite of family activities, because beach time is the easiest way to keep everyone happy and entertained.  The little ones will want to wade and splash at the shoreline and dig into the sand.  Older children might want to learn to body board or surf.  Parents can sunbathe or hide out under a sunbrella, sneaking in salty kisses and soaking up the gleeful squeals and happy splashes of their children.  (Speaking from experience, this is one of the most joyful experiences a parent can have.)

Check out our list of Hawaiʻi’s best beaches.

Family Fun

Family boat trip off of the Kona Coast. Photo courtesy of Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Tor Johnson.

Adventure for Tweens and Teens

Looking for some family-friendly adventure for those tweens and teens? Ziplining through Hawaiʻi’s forests, over waterfalls and rivers, under towering tree tops, is sure to bring smiles to their faces. If they cry for more, take them on an ATV tour where they’ll trek through mountain trails and get good and muddy. (Age restrictions apply and vary, so be sure to check your individual tour.)

Had Enough of the Sun, Check Out These “Cool” Places

Need to take a break from the Hawaiian sun? Here are some “cool” places. On Oʻahu check out the Waikiki Aquarium, an indoor-outdoor air-conditioned marine life center, or the Hawaii Children’s Discovery Center, tailored to younger children, this hands-on play center is a gift to parents looking for relief from the island heat. On Maui, the Maui Ocean Center is the most expansive indoor aquarium in Hawaiʻi and offers wonders for the whole family. On the Big Island, bundle up and head to Mauna Kea’s Visitor Information Center for an evening of high-altitude stargazing that will leave everyone star-struck. On Kauaʻi, the Kauaʻi Museum is a “cool” place to learn about sea voyaging Polynesians, Hawaiian royalty, and hula dancing. These “cool” places also make great rainy day activities.

Tasting Hawaiʻi

A final recommendation for vacationing in Hawaiʻi with the family, book accommodations with a kitchen. Hawaiʻi’s food will be full of new flavors; some flavors the children will enjoy, some they will not. Preparing meals together can be a fun experience for children. Shop at a local farmer’s market and bring home some dragon fruit or mountain apples. Let the children help wash and prepare their exotic finds. Take a video of their first taste. These are precious memories in the making.

Enjoy your time reconnecting with your family in Hawaiʻi!

Win a Trip for Two to Maui, Hawaii