If you’re planning an awesome family trip to Kauai, you’re going to need to narrow down your activity options since there’s so much island fun to enjoy. Need a little help building your perfect itinerary? Just take a peek at this list of the top 10 fun things to do with kids in Kauai. Then, use our packing checklist to get ready to go.
Top Kid-Friendly Spots in Kauai
Although you might not have time for all the following activities, it’s definitely worth trying to see how many you can experience.
Snorkel at Lydgate Beach
The rock-enclosed ponds at Lydgate Beach serve as the perfect place for kids to try snorkeling. Upon putting on their masks and peeking into the water, they’re sure to spot many beautiful tropical fish. The lifeguard-protected waters are great for swimming as well, making this a fantastic spot for families to spend the day.
Take the Lydgate Farms Tour
Kids love to get their fill of chocolate and that’s exactly what awaits them at the Lydgate Farms Chocolate and Island Fruit Tour. As you tour the botanical gardens, your family can learn all about growing, harvesting, and processing cacao to turn it into chocolate concoctions of all kinds. Then, you get to sample all the treats made onsite plus grab a Cacao Nectar Popsicle to finish the tour off right.
Watch the Smith’s Garden Luau
For a memorable glimpse into the Hawaiian spirit of Aloha, you can take your kids to the Smith’s Garden Luau. They’ll enjoy watching the energetic dancers show off their skills on stage while digging into a wondrous feast. Although all the dances are awe-inspiring, many kids get into the groove during the Tahitian drum dances and Samoan fire knife dance. After filling up their bellies, they can even get up on the stage to try out hula moves and sing with the crowd.
Cross the Hanapepe Swing Bridge
Kids absolutely adore putting their courage to the test by crossing the Hanapepe Swing Bridge. Built back in the 1900s, this bridge rocks and sways with each step, providing thrills galore while offering a beautiful view of the river below. Once you make it to the end, give everyone a big cheer, and then turn around to try it again before exploring all the shops, art galleries, and eateries back in town.
Jump the Waves at Glass Beach
Although the sea glass is slowly dwindling down, Glass Beach is still a fun spot to jump the waves with your kids. As you hop over each wave that hugs the beach, your kids will undoubtedly delight in seeing the sunlight glint off the polished glass amongst the sand grains. Afterward, have them scoop up handfuls of sand and look at all the different colors of glass shining brightly on their palms.
Go on the Kilohana Plantation Train Ride
There’s perhaps no better way to explore the 105-acre Kilohana Plantation than by taking a train ride across the property. Your kids will get to see tropical flowers, fruit trees, and animal pastures pass them by as they sit at the edges of their seats. Then, at the end, they can feed the wild sheep, goats, and pigs while learning more about the history and culture of the land.
Explore Paradise on Horseback
Although Kauai beaches are plenty magical enough on their own, exploring them by horseback with CJM Country Stables takes the experience to the next level. As long as everyone meets the age, height, and weigh restrictions, your family can ride lovely horses along Mahaulepu Beach while taking in the stellar views and hearing fun facts from your guide.
Check Out the Spouting Horn
Kids of all ages clamor to see the 50-feet high waterspouts shoot out of the lava tubes at Spouting Horn Park. They’re equally thrilled to hear the legend of the giant lizard, Kaikapu, that gobbled up anyone who got close and the brave adventurer, Liko, who trapped him in the lava tubes. With each spout of water that comes out of the tubes, kids swear they can hear the lizard’s mighty roar from deep under the ground.
Enjoy a Mountain Tubing Adventure
The Mountain Tubing Adventure with Kauai Backcountry Adventures lets your kids float down canals, through tunnels, and down to the swimming hole below. All along the way, they get to take in the gorgeous scenery all around plus learn about how the Lihue Plantation ditch and tunnel system helped sugar grow way back when.
Find All the Best Shave Ice in Town
Most kids simply cannot get enough shave ice, especially since there’s dozens of flavors to try all across Kauai. Plus, they absolutely must sample the creations from each shave ice spot to find the best of the best.
To help them find their favorite spots, you can take them to:
- Kauai’s Best Shave Ice
- Wailua Shave Ice
- JoJo’s Shave Ice
- Hee Fat General Store
- The Fresh Shave
Don’t forget to treat yourself to fruity, creamy shave ice as well. You’ll undoubtedly need the extra energy anyway, so you can get through all the fun adventures you have planned for your family.
Packing Checklist for Kids Traveling to Kauai
When traveling with kids, you definitely want to be ready for anything. Thankfully, you can do just that by using this packing checklist for kids traveling to Kauai.
Here’s what to bring:
- One change of clothes per day plus a couple extras
- Light waterproof jacket
- Closed-toe shoes
- Swimming attire
- UV rashguard
- Mask and snorkel set
- SPF 50+ reef-safe sunscreen
- Sunglasses and sunhat
- Water bottle
- Tablet and headphones
- Waterproof disposable camera
- Prescription or over-the-counter medications
- First aid kit with bandages and antibiotic ointment
Your kids’ ages and unique needs will come into play in deciding what to pack, of course. Just reflect on what they need day to day, then try to whittle it down a bit for your trip. Although it’s smart to have bug spray on hand, don’t bring along your bottle from home. Instead, buy some on the island for environmentally-friendly protection against local critters.
As you complete all your planned activities, keep your eye out for additional places to explore on your travels. Kauai is a treasure trove of beautiful beaches, trails, and overlooks to explore as a family. Keep your eyes peeled, and you’re like to come across sustainable farm stands filled with tropical fruit for all to enjoy as well.