Waikiki, Hawaii with Toddlers
Waikiki receives 71,000 visitors daily, making it the most popular beach in Hawaii. People of all ages, including families with toddlers, want to make the dream of Hawaii a reality.
Traveling with toddlers is rarely easy; it requires preparation no matter how often you do it. On a positive note, toddlers generally don’t need fancy theme parks and games to keep them entertained. In fact, the simpler, the easier. And, it gets better as they get older! Until then, let’s get to some work to maximize the aloha spirits!
10 Things to do With Toddlers Near Waikiki
Hawaii is not only for outdoor adventure; it is also a family-friendly vacation spot! However, if you are traveling with a toddler, you may be searching for a toddler-friendly beach, stroller-friendly malls, or activities near the hotel!
The toddler group deserves its own list! Here are the toddler-friendly activities near Waikiki, Hawaii.
1. Waikiki Beaches
Waikiki bay spans 3 km and is divided into eight sections, each offering its distinct character. From Kahanamoku beach, where Hilton Hawaiian Village is located, to the other end of Kaimana Beach, Waikiki beach has more waves with a little steeper entry—followed by Kuhio beach; it has slightly easier entry with just a few waves. A break wall envelops Queens beach, and it is shallow with no waves—a perfect spot for the toddler group.
2. Hilton Lagoon
Hilton lagoon belongs to Hilton Hawaiian Village, this vast open space by the ocean is available to the public to enjoy for free. It has calm, shallow water with some small fish for children or beginner swimmers to enjoy without worrying about the waves. The water is clean and a bit colder than the ocean.
Paddle bikes are available for rental. Restaurants and public restrooms are close by.
3. Friday Night Hilton Fireworks
This is a lovely way to spend a Friday night on the beach watching fireworks with the little one. This free weekly fireworks show is organized by Hilton Hawaiian Village Resort; it starts at 7:45 pm and lasts about five minutes.
Anywhere along the beach near the Hilton Lagoon will give you decent views.
4. Picnic Near Waikiki
Fort DeRussy Beach Park is our favorite picnic area; BBQ stations are available for everyone. The beach park is cleaned and patrolled by the police regularly. Weekends can be very busy, as many local families spend time here.
Kapiolani Park is another option, located at the east end of Waikiki. It offers picnic sites and open grassy areas that are perfect for toddlers to run around in.
5. Diamond Head Crater Hike
Diamond Head Crater is a well-maintained hiking trail; all shapes, sizes, and skill levels of hikers are catered for. There are multiple stairs to the top, but there are also some flat areas with plenty of places where you can take a breather. Toddlers will most likely need a baby carrier for some parts of this hike. Most people get to the top in 45 minutes to an hour. Entry and Parking reservations are required: $5 to hike, $10 to park. Go early to avoid heat and crowds.
6. Sunset at Waikiki Beaches
Hawaii has some of the world’s best sunsets, and Waikiki is no exception! You can enjoy the sunset from Fort DeRussy Beach all the way to Queens Beach. As the sun gets lower in the sky, the rays of light travel through to reach your eyes. When the sun hits the horizon of the beach, it paints the sky with dramatic orange upon the ocean. Sunset at Waikiki is one of the “must-do” activities.
7. Hanauma Bay State Park
Hanauma Bay is a Nature Preserve Park, not a typical beach, and it has an educational element, bringing awareness of keeping the ecosystem alive. It is an excellent place for snorkeling, full of corals, tropical fish, and sea turtles. The little one can play by the shore; the water is typically calm, and you can see quite a few fish just by wading in. Make your reservation at least 48 hours in advance.
8. Strolling Down Kalakaua Avenue
Begin your walk at the King Kalakaua statue. Don’t miss out on Royal Hawaii Center, where the main stage features live entertainment. International Market Place is another popular destination. One of the unique aspects here is the play area designed for kids, with plenty of space for parents to relax. This spot never gets too crowded. Continue the walk down to the nine-foot Duke Kahanamoku statue, often adorned with fresh leis.
9. Waikiki Aquarium
The Waikiki Aquarium is a great adventure to take your little explorer. Children can see beautiful fishes and various sea creatures. It’s a small aquarium; a visit can be completed within an hour. Waikiki Aquarium is not the fanciest or the largest aquarium, but it is a lovely destination for families with young children. Visitors’ entry fees go toward helping conservation efforts, and this is a great way to give back to Hawaii while enjoying aloha.
10. Honolulu Zoo
The Honolulu Zoo is a 42-acre zoo featuring several species of animals, birds, reptiles, and amphibians. The zoo is relatively small compared to others, but very well maintained. You will find several native Hawaii animals and plants there. You will need about three hours and a pair of comfortable shoes to enjoy the park. Honolulu zoo is a fun idea for a family day out!
Be a Sustainable Traveler
Travel is essential, and most people see the need to gain organic experiences from foreign places. Traveling with little explorers offers educational opportunities that no one can take away from them. Each unique experience brings your kids pieces of knowledge they might not learn in school, and every one of those pieces is an element of becoming an individual with a global mindset.
It’s challenging to pack light when you are traveling with toddlers. Still, we can always pack sustainably and be responsible travelers regardless of the age group and circumstances: Avoid single-use products: Less is more, and reduce chemicals used.
Hawaii was the first state to ban sunscreens containing oxybenzone and octinoxate. These toxic chemical sunscreens can wash off in the ocean, threatening marine life and contributing to coral bleaching. Choose a vegan and reef-friendly sunscreen.
Related article: 5 Reasons Why Responsible Travel Matters.
Eco-friendly Properties in Waikiki, Hawaii
There are a number of eco-friendly certified accommodations near Waikiki that are committed to sustainability and environmental responsibility. Here are a few options
The Kahala Hotel & Resort
The Kahala Hotel & Resort is a five-star luxury hotel located on a private beach in a quiet residential area of Honolulu, just a short drive from Waikiki. The resort features spacious rooms and suites as well as numerous amenities, including multiple restaurants, a spa, and a private lagoon. This luxury hotel has been awarded the Green Seal Certification for its sustainable practices, including using non-toxic cleaning products, implementing water conservation measures, and offering recycling programs. The Kahala Hotel & Resort is for those looking for a luxurious and secluded retreat in Honolulu.
Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort
The Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort is a large, beachfront resort located on 22 acres in the heart of Waikiki. This four-star resort features over 3,000 rooms and suites spread across multiple towers, as well as numerous amenities, including multiple pools, a private lagoon, a spa, and numerous dining options, which are great for families with kids. The resort has been awarded the Green Key Eco-Rating Program Certification for its sustainable practices, which include using eco-friendly cleaning products, implementing water conservation measures, and sourcing local and organic food.
The Modern Honolulu
The Modern Honolulu is a four-star luxury hotel featuring a sleek and contemporary design, with stylish and spacious rooms and suites that offer stunning views of the ocean, city, or marina. The hotel boasts numerous amenities, including two outdoor pools, a full-service spa, a fitness center, and multiple dining options. Guests can also enjoy the hotel’s private beach club, which is just a short walk from the property.
The Modern Honolulu has been certified by the Hawaii Green Business Program and has implemented numerous eco-friendly initiatives, such as energy-efficient lighting and appliances, recycling programs, and water conservation measures. The hotel is known for its sophisticated and chic atmosphere, with a focus on providing guests with a luxurious and memorable experience. It is popular with couples, families, and business travelers.
Hotel Renew is a four-star boutique hotel located just one block from the beach. It features modern and stylish rooms and suites, as well as numerous amenities, including a fitness center, beach gear rentals, and complimentary breakfast. This boutique hotel has been certified by the Hawaii Green Business Program for its eco-friendly initiatives, including energy-efficient lighting, recycling programs, and the use of local, organic food. Hotel Renew is a popular choice for those looking for a modern and stylish boutique hotel in Waikiki, with many guests praising its convenient location and friendly staff.
The Surfjack Hotel & Swim Club
The Surfjack Hotel & Swim Club is a four-star boutique hotel featuring a retro-inspired decor and a laid-back, surf-inspired atmosphere, with spacious rooms and suites that offer a comfortable and stylish retreat. The hotel’s amenities include a swimming pool, restaurant, coffee shop, and a range of events and activities, including live music and yoga classes. It also offers a variety of beach gear rentals, and it is just a short walk from the beach.
The Surfjack Hotel & Swim Club hotel has been awarded the Silver Level LEED Certification for its sustainable practices, such as low-flow plumbing fixtures, energy-efficient lighting, and eco-friendly cleaning products. It is known for its fun and relaxed atmosphere, with a focus on providing guests with a unique and authentic experience of Hawaii’s surf culture. It is popular with travelers looking for a laid-back and stylish place to stay in Waikiki.
Vive Hotel Waikiki
Vive Hotel Waikiki is a three-star boutique hotel located in the center of Waikiki. It offers stylish and contemporary rooms and suites with eco-friendly amenities such as LED lighting, low-flow showerheads, and organic bath products. Its interior features modern designs inspired by Hawaii’s natural beauty, making it a unique and trendy place to stay.
Vive Hotel Waikiki is known for its commitment to eco-friendliness and sustainable practices, making it a great choice for travelers who prioritize environmental responsibility. The hotel’s amenities include a rooftop terrace with stunning views of the surrounding area, a fitness center, a complimentary breakfast, and beach gear rentals.
The Equus is an eco-certified boutique hotel. Its interior is inspired by the equestrian lifestyle, with a tropical-themed decor that features horse artwork, leather accents, and rich wood furnishings. The hotel offers comfortable rooms and suites, each with its own unique style and amenities. Some of the suites also include separate living areas, kitchenettes, and balconies.
The Equus is located just a short walk from the beach with its numerous restaurants and shops, making it a convenient and comfortable place to stay for travelers.
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