Hawaii, translated from the ancient Hawaiian language should mean paradise, because that’s what it is. Hawaii has a climate that varies only several degrees in temperature year round and the sun always shines. The rainy season is in January, but it isn’t so rainy that it deters visitors. In fact, winter is one of the most popular times of year to visit Hawaii. This is probably because it is cold and dreary just about everywhere else in the United States. Hawaii makes for the perfect getaway for Californians because it is only about a three hour flight.
Hawaii makes for a great family vacation because of the wide variety of activities or no activity at all. Even if laying on a perfect sandy beach is your thing. All of the islands offer a variety of family friendly activities. Such as swimming or surfing on one of Hawaii’s amazing beaches. Wakiki is a family friendly beach located on the island of Ohau. The waves are long and shallow offering a good family atmosphere. Wakiki is a good place for beginners to learn to surf because the waves are not very treacherous. Because Honolulu is a big city, you can even find fast food to satisfy those hungry youngsters.
While on Ohau, be sure not to miss the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor. This memorial is both powerful and sorrowful. After watching a brief movie depicting the horrific attack on Pearl Harbor, visitors will take a short ferry ride out to the memorial. The memorial actually floats on top of the sunken ship. Once you get off the ferry, you can walk back to the wall that lists the name of every person that died on that dreaded day in December.
Ohau is also home to the Wakiki Aquarium, the Honolulu zoo, and the Sea Life Park. The park has a 300,000 gallon tank, where you can see sharks, rays and thousands of reef fish. You can even swim with the dolphins here. The kid’s will love the dolphins.
The island of Maui hosts the Maui Ocean Center, which is the largest tropical aquarium in the United States. Maui is also a good place to windsurf, and has tons of different waterfalls. The resort area of Ka’anapali is located on the western coast of Maui, and is home to the island’s best golf courses. This is where you will find the large high-rise resorts. They have plenty of pools for the kids to swim in. The beach here, however, is not quite as kid friendly as Wakiki Beach. The rip currents can be strong and Maui is much windier that Honolulu. The calmer beach at Kihei, might be a little more kid friendly.
If horsebacking riding is more your style, you should visit either the North Shore of Ohau, or the big island of Hawaii or Kaua’i. Of course, don’t forget the Luau. Luaus make for great family fun and can be found on any of the Hawaiian islands. The fire eaters and beautiful Polynesian dancers are sure to impress kids of all ages. Whatever your idea of family fun, Hawaii is sure to please.