Things to Do With Kids in Honolulu: A Parent’s Guide
Honolulu, the perfect family vacation destination, promises endless opportunities for an exhilarating expedition!
From captivating cultural activities and enriching learning experiences. To vibrant botanical garden and exciting marine life encounters. Honolulu offers a treasure trove of activities for kids that will ignite the imaginations of your little ones. Follow along as we list all the best things to do in Honolulu with kids.
Whether you’re building sandcastles on pristine beaches, uncovering the fascinating heritage of the Hawaiian islands, or embarking on thrilling water adventures, Honolulu is a paradise for families wanting to create lasting memories.
So first, pack your bags. Then, gather your young explorers. And finally, get ready to embark on an incredible journey with our highly recommended family activities that your kids will love. Let the adventure begin!
Uncover History’s Secrets at Pearl Harbor
Visiting Pearl Harbor is a family friendly activity that offers an awe-inspiring glimpse into United States history.
Explore the magnificent Battleship Missouri Memorial, where you can witness the ship’s decks, quarters, and remarkable exhibits. Experience life at sea through the eyes of the crew, from the galley to the sleeping cabins.
Don’t miss the excitement of the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum & Park and discover the WWII submarine that destroyed 44 Japanese vessels.
Please Note: Children under four years are not permitted on the submarine.
Complete your Pearl Harbor exploration at the enchanting Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum. Marvel at the collection of WWII aircraft and indulge in intense flight simulators.
To make the most of your visit, consider our Passport to Pearl Harbor, granting access to all three attractions. Or join our Pearl Harbor & Historic Honolulu Tour to step foot on the hallowed grounds of the USS Arizona Memorial, witness the grandeur of Iolani Palace, and more.
Immerse Yourself in Polynesian Culture
The heart of Hawaiian culture lies at the Polynesian Cultural Center. It’s not just an attraction but a living museum that invites families to embark on an incredible journey through the diverse Polynesian islands. Spanning over 42 acres, this center offers an array of interactive exhibits, traditional dances, and immersive demonstrations that bring the colorful heritage of Polynesia to life.
Step foot into the center’s eight simulated tropical villages, each dedicated to a unique Polynesian island. Watch as your kids’ eyes light up with excitement as they explore the traditional games, engage in hands-on activities, and learn about the customs and traditions of each island nation.
From fishing with authentic Tahitian gear to trying their hand at crafting, the Polynesian Cultural Center will let your kids surround themselves with the rich tapestry of Polynesian culture.
Embark on a Fun Learning Journey
Expand your children’s knowledge and curiosity at the Bishop Museum. With its jaw-dropping collection of over 25 million natural, cultural, and historical treasures, this museum provides an intriguing exploration that traces the history and traditions of the peoples of Hawai’i and the Pacific.
As you wander through the museum’s signature galleries, your children’s imagination will soar. They’ll uncover the extraordinary stories behind each artifact, gaining a deeper understanding of the unique island universe and developing an appreciation for Hawaii’s remarkable environment.
After a half-day of exploration at the museum, the adventure continues. Just a short 9-minute drive away, you’ll find the Ala Moana Center, the world’s largest open air shopping center.
Treat your family to a delightful shopping, dining, and entertainment experience as you browse through over 350 shops, indulge in diverse cuisines, and enjoy live entertainment. Visit the historic Aloha Tower and its observation deck, offering breathtaking views of the harbor and the city.
Explore the Artistic Treasures
Islamic textiles, Japanese wood blocking, and the evolving cityscape of Honolulu. Diving into this modern museum’s multi-faceted world of art, history, and culture is one of the best things to do in Honolulu with your kids.
With over 50,000 pieces in its Asian Art collection, the Honolulu Museum of Art takes you on a sojourn through the rich artistic traditions of Asia. But the artistic exploration doesn’t stop there. The museum is also home to 18,000 European and American art pieces, offering a diverse range of artistic styles and movements.
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Marvel at the works of renowned 19th-century European artists, including Van Gogh, Cézanne, Rodin, and Monet. The collection takes you on a visual journey through the evolution of European art, from Impressionism to post-impressionism and beyond.
Find Tranquility in Sacred Serenity
Escape the bustling city and embark on a serene family adventure at the enchanting Byodo-In Temple. Nestled in the breathtaking Valley of the Temples, this scenic area provides a picturesque backdrop for exploration and discovery. As a non-practicing Buddhist temple, the Byodo-In Temple welcomes visitors of all faiths to immerse themselves in its beauty and tranquility.
Kids will be enthralled by the temple’s unique features, such as the half-scale replica of the 900-year-old structure from Japan, built entirely without nails. They can also encounter wild peacocks roaming the grounds and marvel at the mesmerizing reflecting pond filled with Japanese Koi.
With its stunning architecture and lush surroundings, the Byodo-In Temple provides a perfect opportunity for peaceful exploration and quality family time. So, make sure to add visiting this temple to your personal list of things to do in Honolulu with kids.
Discover Adventure at Kualoa Ranch
Don’t let your mouth hang open as you witness the natural beauty of Oahu at the renowned Kualoa Ranch. As you set foot on this wonderful landscape, you’ll instantly recognize its scenic valley, which has served as the backdrop for blockbuster Hollywood movies like 50 First Dates, Jurassic Park, Godzilla, and Lost.
From horseback riding through lush trails to soaring through the treetops on exhilarating ziplines, and exploring rugged terrains on thrilling ATV tours, Kualoa Ranch offers an array of outdoor activities that cater to every adventurer’s spirit.
For those seeking a comprehensive exploration of Oahu’s natural wonders, our Oahu Grand Circle Island Tour is a must-try experience. Along the way, indulge in a delectable lunch at the ranch, surrounded by the sprawling 4,000-acre property.
Indulge in Pineapple Paradise
If you’ve ever found yourself wondering about the origin of those irresistibly juicy Dole pineapples, prepare to be delighted. The answer lies right here on the tropical island of Oahu, where the renowned Dole Plantation takes center stage.
Located in the heart of Oahu, you’ll gain a newfound appreciation for the pineapple’s journey from seed to table. The lush greenery and the tantalizing aroma of freshly picked pineapples will welcome you as you step onto the plantation.
Embarking on our North Shore Dole Pineapple Farm Tour with your kids is the perfect way to dive deeper into this pineapple paradise. You’ll have the “Complete Pineapple Experience” as you traverse the plantation’s eight bewitching plantation gardens.
If you have the time and are wondering what more of the best things to do with kids in Honolulu are, keep reading!
Get Lost in Nature’s Wonderland
Immerse your senses in the enchanting world of the Foster Botanical Garden, where the air is filled with the intoxicating scent of blooming flowers. Spanning over 13 acres, this public botanical garden is a paradise waiting to be explored by you and your curious little ones.
Wander through lush landscapes, encounter exotic plants and flowers, and engage in educational activities designed to spark your children’s curiosity about the natural world. Take a leisurely stroll along the winding paths, allowing the serenity of the surroundings to wash over you.
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Find a peaceful spot to sit and listen to the sounds of nature, or have a picnic amidst the alluring greenery. It’s a perfect respite from the bustling city and an opportunity to connect with the tranquility of the natural world. This is a can’t-miss on your list of “things to do for kids Honolulu”!
Make a Splash and Beat the Heat
Wet ‘n’ Wild Water Park is Hawaii’s biggest and best water park, so visiting it clearly rests among the best things to do Honolulu with kids.
For the youngest guests, Keiki Kove is a kid’s spray ground filled with interactive water activities. Mini-water slides, water cannons, and sprinklers offer endless fun for kids to splash and play.
For a fun-filled racing experience, challenge family and friends on the Volcano Express. Race head-first on racing mats through an enclosed tube, competing for victory.
With its exhilarating slides, lazy rivers, and interactive play areas, this water park guarantees hours of fun and a refreshing escape from the Hawaiian heat.
Dive into Marine Paradise
Take a trip to the North Shore with your kids and witness the majesty of sea turtles in their natural habitat. To ensure you have the best chance of encountering these incredible creatures, we recommend booking one of our guided snorkeling tours:
These tours not only provide opportunities to swim with sea turtles but also allow you to explore the diverse marine life. Alongside the turtles, you may encounter dolphins, whales, and exotic fish during your underwater adventures.
Join our Dolphin Snorkel Sail tour for a scenic cruise along the Leeward Oahu coast, where you can snorkel for hours and marvel at the beauty of the ocean.
For more information on the best snorkeling spots in Oahu, check out Snorkeling North Shore Oahu – 5 Most Beautiful Locations. Feel like an expert as you navigate the stunning waters of Oahu’s North Shore.
Enter a World of Aquatic Fun
Looking for kids activities near Waikiki Honolulu Urban Honolulu? Waikiki, dubbed the “Manhattan of the Pacific,” is a vibrant neighborhood with turquoise beaches, luxury resorts, designer stores, and lively nightclubs.
Head to the renowned Waikiki Beach and discover a world of aquatic adventures. H20 Watersports offers thrilling rides and activities perfect for family vacations.
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Prepare for smiles and laughter as you embark on a variety of water rides suitable for all ages, including:
- the exhilarating Banana Boat Ride
- the bouncy Bumper Tube
- the adrenaline-pumping Jet Ski Oahu, and
- the breathtaking Parasailing Oahu
Pro Tip: Keep in mind that Waikiki Beach can get crowded, especially during the peak tourist seasons, which typically include the summer months (June to August) and major holidays such as Christmas and New Year’s. To make the most of your visit, consider going early in the morning or during weekdays to enjoy a more relaxed and spacious experience on the beach.
Psst… looking for even more things to do in Honolulu Waikiki? Check out our 10 Top Things to Do in Honolulu, Hawaii.
Conquer the Majestic Diamond Head
Strap on your hiking boots and enjoy the 0.8-mile climb with your kids to Diamond Head State Park. Rising 560 feet from the crater’s floor to the summit. As one of the best Honolulu things to do with family, the hike takes you to the highest point of the iconic volcanic crater, offering stunning panoramic views of the city and shoreline.
Do you want to explore the Diamond Head with less walking involved? No problem! Cruise around Waikiki on a hoverboard by booking our Diamond Head Waikiki Aloha Tour or Sunset Glow Waikiki Diamond Head Tour.
It’s a great alternative for those who prefer a more leisurely way to explore this natural wonder. Don’t miss a majestic journey that seamlessly combines adventure, sightseeing, and cultural exploration.
Encounter Wildlife Wonders at Honolulu Zoo
Discover a world of cuddly, cute, and scaly critters of all shapes and sizes at the dazzling Honolulu Zoo. Nestled between the glorious slopes of Diamond Head and the vibrant Waikiki, visiting this zoo is among the top activities in Honolulu for families.
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Fun Fact: This remarkable conservation establishment holds a special place. It’s the only zoo in the United States that a King originally granted as royal lands.
Marvel at the graceful movements of Asian elephants. Witness the lightning-fast speed of cheetahs. Then gaze up in awe at the elegant giraffes towering above. The Honolulu Zoo is a place where the bond between humans and animals is celebrated.
Cool Down with Hawaiian Shave Ice
No visit to Honolulu with kids is complete without indulging in the iconic Hawaiian shave ice. Grab a spoon, cool off from the island sun, and treat your taste buds to a refreshing delight. Sample various flavors and experience the true essence of island sweetness.
From Aoki’s Shave Ice’s sweetened condensed milk topping to Matsumoto Shave Ice’s unique Italian Ice flavor infused with all-natural tastes. And Waiola Shave Ice’s no-frills simplicity, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.
Whether you opt for traditional flavors or adventurous combinations. This icy treat is a must-try experience for the whole family. Especially when you explore Oahu with kids.
Discover the Magic of Honolulu: A Family Adventure Awaits
Find out the real essence of family fun Oahu in the vibrant city of Honalulu. A tropical paradise ready to provide your family with joy and cherished memories. Let the laughter echo through the palm trees, the waves carry your delight, and the smiles on your kids’ faces be the true reflection of the magical experiences that await in Honolulu.
Plan your getaway with Tripster today and book the best hotels in Honolulu for families. With Tripster, you’ll enjoy the convenience of hassle-free booking, competitive prices, and a wide selection of family friendly accommodations.
So, what are you waiting for? Lather on some reef-safe sunscreen, lace up your walking boots, and brace for Honolulu kids style excitement!
What Family Activities Honolulu Would You Add To Our List?
What other fun things to do with kids in Honolulu did we miss? Tell us in the comments below!