Satisfy your wanderlust with the best spots to visit in Hawaii

Satisfy your wanderlust with the best spots to visit in Hawaii

Best place to visit in Hawaii with family- Discover dreamy destinations

A trip to Hawaii will be fun for the whole family, especially if they’re looking for some sunshine and relaxation.

However, deciding which place to visit in Hawaii can be quite daunting, especially if it‘s your first time there!

We’ve gathered together some of the best Hawaii family vacation destinations. Whether you’re traveling to Hawaii for vacation or just wanderinglusting, we can all agree it is one of the best destinations in the world.

With its beautiful beaches, cascades of waterfalls, volcanoes, and amazing attractions, it offers something for everyone! As we celebrate our 50th state, I thought it would make sense to highlight some of the best things to see and do in Hawaii.

There are lots of fun things to see and do in Hawaii, whether you’re an adventurer, a budget traveler, or a family vacationer. If you want to visit Hawaii but aren’t sure which one to pick, here are some of our favorites.

Best place to visit in Hawaii with family

Road to Hana

waterfall on the road to hana in maui hawaii
waterfall on the road to hana in maui hawaii

My favorite place is the road to Hana. It’s not just about the destination but the journey too.

Along this famous winding road, there are stunning gardens, beautiful waterfalls and delicious bananas for sale!

Renting a car is easy and affordable. There are lots of options available for renting cars.

Diamond Head

Diamond Head-Best place to visit in Hawaii with family-source: loveoahu
Diamond Head-Best place to visit in Hawaii with family-source: loveoahu

If you look up, you won’t be able to miss Waikiki Beach.

is a popular activity for tourists visiting Hawaii. It’s not too strenuous and offers an incredible view. You can take a hike up Diamond Head.

A pro-tip: If you want to avoid the crowds, get there early.

Visitors from outside Hawaii who want to visit Diamond Head State Monument must book their tickets well in advance.


sunrise on hanalei beach kauai hawaii
sunrise on hanalei beach kauai hawaii

One of the most beautiful things about Kauai is the Hanalei Bay Beach Park. It’s a cute North Shore surfing town that is packed with amazing food, North Shore beaches, and breathtaking views.

If you’re going to be in Hanalei, there are some really good beaches to visit. One of them is Hanalei Bay. It’s a nice place for stand up paddling or for families who want to enjoy a kid-friendly beach.

Hanalei is among the best places to visit during the summers.

Polynesian Cultural Center

polynesian cultural center-source: gohawaii
polynesian cultural center-source: gohawaii

If you want to see one of the best attractions, go to the Polynesian Cultural Centre in Laie.

You’ll be able to experience six different Polynesian villages, participate in fun activities (such as crafts and dancing), see amazing performances, take a boat ride, and so much more.

Plus, they provide a unique and spectacular theatrical experience called “fun luau.”

It’s one of our top activities when we’re with kids!

Haleakala National Park

Haleakala National Park
Haleakala National Park

On Maui, one of the most unique locations is at Haleakala National Park. There, the landscape looks more like Mars than any other place in Hawaii.

You take Highway 50 north from San Francisco to Hana, then turn left onto Route 30 toward Haiku. ike

If you’re going to go there, one of the most fun things to do there is to watch the sunrise from Haleakalā Crater. You can either drive up yourself or take a Haleakala Sunrise Tour. Find the best prices here.

If you’re a cyclist, then Haleakala National Park is one of the best mountains to ride down.

Pali Lookout

aerial landscape view of shoreline and na pali coas
aerial landscape view of shoreline and na pali coas

There are lots of wonderful lookout points in Hawaii, but the best one for sheer enjoyment is Nu’uanu Lookout on Oahu because it’s one of the windier spots and it really feels like you could be blown away.

It also has a big Hawaiian historical significance. This is where King Kamehameha I won the Battle of Nu’uanu and united the island of Oahu under his rule of Hawaii.

Wishing Well Shave Ice

shave ice hawaii
shave ice hawaii

Shaving ice is one of the best foods in Hawaii. However, not all shaving ice places are the same!

In Hanalei (Kauai), Kauai features all natural, organic fresh fruit syrup and delicious toppings. Wishwell Shave Ice

They source their ingredients from local farmers and use environmentally friendly packaging.

One of my favorite activities on Kauai is snorkeling for less than $10.


waikiki beach hawai
waikiki beach hawai

One of the best known destinations is Waikiki. It has some of the best hotels, restaurants, and shops on Oahu.

However, Waikiki is best known for its beaches. The waves are fairly calm and the water is crystal clear, making Waikiki ideal for families and beginners.

Plus, there are tons of beachfront restaurants where you can listen to live music while sipping a and enjoying the sunset. tropical drink

Many people say that Oahu is the best Hawaiian Island for a family trip.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

flowing lava in hawaii
flowing lava in hawaii

Hoping to see some lava in Hawaii? You’re better off visiting the Big Island of Hawaii than anyplace else.

There are actually several Hawaii tourist attractions here, including exploring on your own or joining a Big Island lava tour!

This UNESCO World Heritage site has lots of activities for kids, including hikes, museums, lava tube tours, camping spots, special rangers’ programs, and more.

Pearl Harbor

pearl harbor memorial hawaii
pearl harbor memorial hawaii

One of the most well known is Pearl Harbor. It was here that Japan attacked the United States and started World War II.

It’s one of the most popular tourist attractions in Honolulu today.

Most tourists visit Pearl Harbor to pay their respect at the USS Arizona Memorial. There’s also an interesting, a sub, and an aviation museum.


Duke's-source: wanderlustyle
Duke’s-source: wanderlustyle

If you’re looking for a great waterfront dining experience in Hawaii, check out Duke’s. Named after legendary Hawaiian surf legend Duke Kahanamoku (who was born in Honolulu), Duke’s serves great food with an island twist.

They’re best known for their decadent Hulapie. A Hulapie is made with rich maca­damia nut icedream piled high on a chocolate chip cookie crust and topped with chocoloate fudges, whiped cream, and a whole lot more macadamias.

It’s huge and can easily be shared among an entire family.

What’s even cooler is that you can find Dukes locations in Waikiki (Hawaii), Maui, and Kaua’i!

Waimea Canyon

waimea canyon
waimea canyon

Did you know Hawaii actually has its own Grand Canyon? It’s called Waimea Canyon, and it’s located on Kauai. It’s absolutely stunning!

People love visiting here for hiking the many trails or taking a helicopter flight.

Families can easily park their cars and enjoy a short walk to the observation deck for amazing views of this natural wonder

And if you’re lucky, there might be a booth in the car park selling fresh fruits and yummy snacks!

Ala Moana Center

ala moana center-source: waikikitrolley
ala moana center-source: waikikitrolley

On Oahu, Hawaii’s largest shopping mall has more than 350 shops and eateries. It includes department stores, luxury retailers and local boutiques.

Visiting Ala Moana Center is one of the simplest things to do in Honolulu when visiting with children.

They have some really awesome free programs, including a Hula Hoop Dance Party on their stage. And, they just opened up a Fun Playground for kids.

Molokini Crater

Molokini Crater
Molokini Crater

If you want to go snorkeling in Maui, then one of the best spots for snorkeling is Molokini Crater (Molokini).

This crecsent shaped island is found just off the coastline of Maui and can be reached only by boat. It’s a popular destination for people who want to see Hawaiian green sea turtles and other amazing tropical marine wildlife.

You can sign up multiple tours at once.

Because of Molokini Crater, Maui might be considered the best Hawaiian island for kids who enjoy snorkelling.

 Poipu Beach

 Poipu Beach
Poipu Beach

One of the best beaches on the South Shore of Kauai is at Poipu Beach.

It has lots of beaches and shallow waters perfect for little children, and it’s also a great spot to see Hawaiian green sea turtles as well as monk seals.

Iolani Palace

iolani palace hawaii
iolani palace hawaii

Nowadays, the only royal palace in America is found on Oahu. It used to be home to King Kalakaua, who was the last ruler of Hawaii.

They offer self-directed and small group tours and these are absolutely fascinating.

Visitors learn about the history of the palace during its construction in the late 1800’s, and hear all the reasons why Queen Liliu­kalani wrote the famous song “Aloha oe.”

Lanikai Beach

Lanikai Beach
Lanikai Beach

If you picture Hawaii, chances are you probably don’t realize it was actually Lanikai Beach on the island of Oahu.

Because it’s been named one the best beach in the world and has had lots of photos taken there, it’s probably worth checking out.

What makes Lanikai Beach so special is that the sand is extremely soft and the waters are calm enough for beginners.

And, it’s one of them, specifically because you can go paddling out to these little islands near the shore!

Glass Beach

Glass Beach-source: onlyinyourstate
Glass Beach-source: onlyinyourstate

One of the most unusual beaches in Hawaii is Glass beach in Ele Ele on Kaui. Visitors here will find millions of tiny glass pebble in colors like blue, green, brown, and clear.

The pebbles were thoroughly cleaned and polished in the sea for years and years and came out super smooth.

It’s a fun way to spend time with children and let them play with different colored rocks. However, be respectful and don’t break any pieces of the rock collection.

And there you have it! My top add number things to do in Hawaii!

There are so many more cool things to see in Hawaii than we covered here. We’ve got some awesome stuff for you!


sailboat on the ocean in maui hawaii
sailboat on the ocean in maui hawaii

On Maui, there’s always something new to see and do. You’ll be longing for more time to enjoy everything that Maui has to offer.

The island has more than 30 beautiful beaches where you can enjoy swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, and paddling.

If you want to learn how to surf, you can either take lessons from an instructor or go out and practice by catching waves yourself.

There are lots of things to do in Maui besides shopping. Explore its history by hiking the Lahaina Historic Trail; go for a swim at Kaanapali beach; or watch the sun set from the cliffs at Wailea Beach.

Haleakala National park is one of the most popular Hawaii attractions. It offers visitors an amazing view of the island from its summit. You can take a train ride through the sugar cane fields and see the ocean from the top of the mountain.


cave war
kauai cave

Kauai is traditionally considered the adventure capital of the Hawaii archipelago and the fun begins when you get off the plane.

Besides snorkeling, diving, and sunbathing (which you can enjoy during your stay), you can also enjoy fantastic scenic/snorkelling boat tours along the coast of the Na Pali, where you have a good shot of meeting dolphins, or take part in kayaking the beautiful Wai’ula River.

There are plenty of activities unique to Kauai including hiking through the historic water channels of Lihui, zip lining high above the Kauai forests, and off-roading through the rugged terrain of the island.

There are lots of things you can do here besides surfing. For example, you could hike in the Kokee state park or Waimea Canyon; take a helicopter tour of Oahu; or even go for a swim at one of the local beaches.

Mount Cross Summit

Mount Cross Summit
Mount Cross Summit

Mauna Kea, located on the Hawaiian Islands, is a dormant volcanic mountain. It is the tallest mountain in the state of Hawaii, and its summit is the site of the world’s largest telescope, which is operated by astronomers from 11 different countries.

It’s not an easy feat reaching the top of Mount Mauna Kea. You’ll need a 4WD vehicle to get there, and people who hike up the mountain often suffer from altitude illness.

At the visitor’s info desk, you can take part in a free nightly star gazing event or a regular Saturday night astronomical or astrophysical event.

Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve

hanauma bay beach park and reserve in oahu hawaii
hanauma bay beach park and reserve in oahu hawaii

Hanauma Bay, located within a volcanic cone, offers its guests some of the most unique snorkling and diving experiences on the Hawaiian archipelagos. It was declared a protected marine conserva­tion park in 1967 and supports a diversified collection of marine wildlife, including green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas).

If you want to see the bay from above, there are several outfits where you can rent gear and take snorkel lessons. To get a good view of the bay, there are several hiking trails or you can take a short tram trip up to the crater rim.

Which Is The Best Hawaiian Island For A Family Vacation?

Perhaps you’ve been inspired to go on a Hawaiian holiday because of a movie, song, inspirational beach quotes, or some other reason. However, there is something very special about going on a family holiday to Hawaii.

Each of the Hawaiian Islands has its own distinct personality and feel to them. They’re different from one another, but they share some common characteristics too. And there are plenty of things to see and do on each island.

There are six major islands in Hawaii, but most visitors know about four of them. Oʻahu, Maui, Kāuaʻi, and the island known as Hawaiʻi are most often visited. Discover the best diving sites in Hawaii.

Where should I go in Hawaii for the first time?

It really depends on which island you prefer. Oahu is full with tourists, Kauai offers plenty of outdoor activities, Maui has some amazing luxury resorts, and the big island has some cool volcanoes.

Which island has the best beaches?

If you want easy beach access, visit Hawaii’s island of Maui. It has plenty of beaches with less crowds than Oahu.

If you want to go to Hawaii, go to Kauai. If you just want to visit beaches, skip Big Island.

Which is the best island for hiking there?

Hiking in Hawaii offers the most trails and diverse experiences.

The Kalalau Trail on the Na Pali coast of Kauai is known for its beauty and difficulty. It requires hikers to obtain a hiking permit.

Is Hawaii a good place for a family vacation?

Yes! Just make certain you bring sunscreen and apply it! No SPF eight either. Hawaii sells it in fifty to one hundred SPF and that’ll do the trick. The sunlight is extremely intense here and you’d burn if you weren’t careful.

Trust me I’ve fried myself a few times…I’d seen a lady on the beach once from around 8:30am until after 5p.m. I had to get her to leave. She was so burnt she was purple but couldn’t say because of the booze through the day.


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