Oahu, Hawaii is beautiful, fun and has lots to see and do. Little kids will have a blast playing in the sand and jumping in the warm water. But when they need a break from sand, surf and sun there are many different options of places to bring them for some educational fun.
Polynesian Cultural Center: is kind of like the Disneyland of Hawaii. Kids and adults of all ages will have fun exploring the different islands and villages and mingle with actual natives. There are activities and shows at every village and kids can pick up a passport book from the front desk and get stamps from each village which at the end they can show for a prize at the gift shop. There are also luaus and shows at night that are some of the best the island has to offer.
Byodo-In Temple: is a must for little kids. Found in the lush Valley of The Temples and s short 30-40 minute drive from Waikiki. It’s a five dollar donation for adults to enter. Kids will love the ridiculously large koi fish and black swans. You can purchase food for $1 and marvel at these fish as they feed. Also little ones will love ringing the big gong.
Honolulu Zoo: Great location right next to Waikiki beach. A perfect pairing if one of the adults wants to take a surf lesson and the other is looking for a way to entertain children for a couple hours. It is on the smaller side, so don’t expect it to rival San Diego Zoo, but it still has a wide variety of animals, a Keiki Zoo (children’s zoo) and a pretty impressive playground in the middle.
Waikiki Aquarium: Located on the Waikiki shoreline, the aquarium has over 500 different species of aquatic animals and plants. They focus on the Hawaii and tropical Pacific aquatic life. This is a great place to take kids who may be too young or uncomfortable with snorkeling.
Dole Plantation: I’m not going to lie, I do feel this is a complete tourist trap but when I think about it through the eyes of my three year old, she did enjoy it. There are train rides around the plantation, a maze, and a garden (all that require separate tickets). We didn’t do any of those but we had fun looking at how pineapples grow and eating ice-cream. It was a great stop to stretch our legs on the way to the North Shore.