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Best place to go?

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Best place to go?

We are planning a trip to Hawaii with our 2 kids age 5 and 8. Which island would you recommend for us?

Saint Cloud...
Destination Expert
for Oahu
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26,355 posts
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1. Re: Best place to go?

Lots to do on Oahu:


You might want to repost your question on the Hawaii forum.

To do this, click on any message on the Hawaii forum. Then you can start a new topic that will show up on the Hawaii forum.

Other info:

www.bigisland.org free brochure

www.visitmaui.com free brochure


www.kauaidiscovery.com free brochure


www.visit-oahu.com free brochure

st paul, mn
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2. Re: Best place to go?

Big Island- Waikola Hilton for kids that age. Like a disney land but will cost. Try beaches just to north. You will drive alot on this island so bring along their electronics. You go to room one of three ways electric tram, mahoganey boat(on rail system) or walk through life size oriental art. Sandy cove for swimming, water bikes, kayaks with waterfall and turtles etc or lots of pools with waterfall into hot tub. waterslide pools also. Oahua is too crowded but has nice beaches in north and east as well as pearl harbor. Beaches on Maui are nice. Kauai is another travel round the island and you have to be aware of months you are there in order to choose which side to stay on North summer, south winter. They have alot of cliffs and the grand canyon of Hawaii. You fly into Oahu so spend couple of days there and visit Pearl Harbor (get there early as long lines and have to wait) (see forum for this island) then spend rest of vacation (at least week on another island, the big one-visit volcano natl park you can do circle drive tour. Either Big Island(Hilo side) or Kauai do helicopter tour.

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3. Re: Best place to go?

If you can only do one island, you might go with Oahu...if you can do 2 I'd do Oahu and the Big Island (BI) or Maui...

We've taken our kids twice (when they were 6 & 10, and then 7 & 11 years old)...we did Oahu only the first time and then Oahu and BI the second time.

Here are their favorite things:


1) The Dole Pineapple Plantation maze---they had a blast in here...spent a couple of hours wandering the maze but they still talk about it...

2) Have a shave ice at Matsumotos on the north shore...this is a "must do" with the kids...shave ice is like the best snow cone you will ever eat. Have it with ice cream...and the beans if you are adventurous. Don't let the line scare you off...it moves very quickly.

3) Hang out at the North Shore...we found glass artisans and spent hours watching them at their craft. Fun shops and great places to eat.

4) If they enjoy walking around and seeing cultural things, the Polynesian Cultural Center is like a mini-EPCOT of the Pacific.

5) Snorkel at Hanauma Bay---my son still talks about seeing the giant see turtle and all the fish! Get there early, wear lots of sunscreen and be sure to wear bathing suits that cover the backs of your upper thighs (we got some bad sunburns...think of what floats up when you snorkel). You can rent equipment from Snorkel Bobs in Honolulu.

6) Take a drive around the island---the kids will love seeing the Blowhole and looking for Rabbit Island and Chinaman's Hat island.

7) Take them to a luau. There are many to choose from. We have always gone to the one at the Royal Hawaiian because it was easy to get to.

8) If you have adventurous eaters, try Genki Sushi. There are 2 locations in Honolul----one in the Ala Moana Center and the other is out past Waikiki. They serve the sushi on little plates on a conveyer belt---as the plates pass you by, you select what things you want to try. It's a little like dim sum on a conveyor belt. At the end of your meal the waitress counts up the number of plates you have taken and that is what you are charged. You can order rice bowls and any items you don't see on the conveyor. My kids LOVED doing this.

9) Swim and play at Waikiki beach...but also try some of the other great beaches on the island.

10) My kids loved staying at the Hilton Hawaiian Village...so much to do, see, and shop...

11) Go to Hilo Hatties for souveniers...it's a huge store...

12) Go to the Bishop Museum...it's a science museum and a history museum. My kids were facinated by it and loved exploring it.

13) Arrange for a lei greeting at the airport...they can make candy leis for the little ones...or flowers or nuts...

14) Climb Diamond Head...or at least go to see it. It may be too much for the 5 year old but just taking them to a dormant volcano is an experience.

We didn't do the Arizona Memorial or Pearl Harbor because the lines were long and I felt my kids wouldn't have the patience or respect for it at their ages....this is not a judement of your children or those who take young children---it is simply that MINE were not ready for it.

If you go to the Big Island...

1) Go to Volcano National Park....we spent a few days here and the kids really enjoyed it. We did try to walk out on the lava field but it is tough going with the little ones...of course mine were jumping like gazelles from each chunk of lava and it was my hubby and I who were struggling! If you do this, get gardening gloves to prevent hands getting cut from the lava (it has a high concentration of silica---glass!) and flashlights and bring water. There was a lot to see as we drove around.

2) When we were in the Kona area we stayed at the Sheraton Keohou (I think that is the right spelling)...it had an amazing water slide and pool---the kids loved it! The HIlton is further north up the coast and my friends have raved about it.

3) The BI is such an island of contrasts....lava fields, lush valleys, rainforests, pretty beaches (Kohala)...it's a slower pace than Oahu.

4) If you are on the Big Island---eat at the Big Island Grill in Kona. It was one of our favorite restaurants to eat at----it's in what appears to be an old Denny's (or something like that) but the food was amazing!

My good friend LOVES Maui...I haven't been there for 25 years but I remember it being fun....my family always loved the BI and Oahu so I guess that is why I love them so much...

Have a great time!

4. Re: Best place to go?

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