Family Travel in Honolulu, HI
The Pacific Beach Hotel boasts a summer kids program, including cultural activities, crafts and trips for kids ages 5-12. While you're there, take advantage of free Ukulele lessons, or treat yourself to "snuba," where you can snorkel in the massive three-story, 280,000-gallon saltwater fish tank in the hotel's Oceanarium Restaurant. Ample room sizes leave plenty of room for menuvering, even when you request a complimentary cribs for your youngest family members.
The Waikiki Aquarium is a great introduction to the exquisite marine life of Hawaii. The 7,500-gallon outdoor Edge of the Reef habitat, Moi hatchery and Monk seal pool are just as impressive as the indoor reef sharks and piranhas. The aquarium grounds are large enough to hold kids' interest, but small enough to get through in an hour or two.
There's more than just pineapples at this plantation. Take in a train ride on the Pineapple Express, stroll around the garden tour and learn about how pineapples are grown at the Dole Plantation. Or wander through the Guinness Book of World Records-declared world's largest maze, which is stroller-friendly and spans more than two miles of paths between 14,000 Hawaiian plants. Be sure to indulge in some pineapple ice cream or a pineapple whipped drink before you go, but be warned, the gift shop can be overpriced.
The Honolulu Zoo features tropical birds, Nile crocodiles, elephants, giraffes, orangutans, and live humans wandering from animal to animal! In th Children's Zoo, everyone can stand within spitting distance of a llama, rub pot bellies with a pot-bellied pig, touch the horn of a goat, and feel the feet of a red-footed tortoise. The Honolulu Zoo is proud of their Galapagos tortoises, which they were the first to breed in captivity. Bring your picnic lunch and munch amongst the flamingos, because outside food is welcome. Birthday parties come with a guide who lets kids feed the fish in the crocodilian and monkey island waters! Metered parking is available at one dollar per hour in the lot just outside the zoo on Kapahulu Avenue.
Kualoa Ranch offers plenty to see and do for your family. Over 4,000 acres of unspoiled Hawaiian landscape has served as the backdrop for countless Hollywood productions. Explore the ranch via ATV or horseback, or watch your younger children ride on a horse led by an instructor. Put the fun back in outdoorsy activities with Kualoa's hands on guided Animal Tour, Ancient Hawaiian Fishpond Tour, and Environmental Tour. Amidst all the hubub, don't forget that Kualoa is a working ranch with 100% grass-fed beef packaged and ready to go home with you. Despite the rocky shoreline, swimming is safe year around. However, if you choose to explore the reef at low tide, be sure to keep a close eye on your kids; a wave could easily cause them to slip off the reef.