Beyond the Beaches: Family Activities on Hawaii’s Big Island

We love our keiki but sometimes we need a little break before they do. Taking a family vacation to the Big Island of Hawaii is a dream come true, but even in paradise, it’s ok for parents to take a break. Fortunately, the island offers a plethora of adventures for kids beyond its beautiful beaches. Explore the educational and entertaining options for your keiki with these Big Island family activities:

Big Island family activities for when you need a break!

Children’s Museums:

Hawai’i Keiki Museum (Kailua-Kona):

Alice Birnbaum Mural at Hawai'i Keiki Museum made from collected seaglass

Nestled in the heart of Kailua-Kona, the Hawai’i Keiki Museum is a haven for young minds eager to delve into the realms of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math). Through interactive exhibits, kids can embark on a journey exploring the wonders of the island’s volcanoes, constructing their own coral reefs, and even climbing into a replica canoe. What makes this museum truly unique is its collaboration with local organizations and artists, including the Society For Kona’s Education & Art, resulting in one-of-a-kind murals that add an artistic touch to the learning experience.

Hawaii Children’s Discovery Center (Hilo):

Situated in Hilo, the Hawaii Children’s Discovery Center is a vibrant hub of creativity and exploration. With exhibits ranging from a replica supermarket and a construction zone to a captivating water play area, this center offers a dynamic learning environment for children. In addition to the exhibits, families can enjoy regular storytimes, engage in craft workshops, and participate in cultural programs that add a touch of local flavor to the experience.

Sip Your Coffee While Your Keiki Play

Indoor Playground:

Keiki & Kope Indoor Playground and Coffee Shop:

Keiki & Kope Indoor Playground and Coffee Shop in Kealalekua provides a delightful escape for both kids and parents. While keiki immerse themselves in play, parents can unwind with a cup of coffee, taking a well-deserved break. The establishment also offers playgroups, classes for adults, and party packages, making it a versatile destination for families.

Bonus Attraction in Hilo:

Imiloa Astronomy Center

Imiloa Astronomy Center (Hilo):

Although not strictly a children’s museum, the Imiloa Astronomy Center is a must-visit for families with curious minds. Located in Hilo, this world-class astronomy center offers interactive exhibits, captivating planetarium shows, and stargazing opportunities. It’s an enriching experience for kids of all ages to learn about the wonders of space in a fascinating and engaging manner.


Remember to check the websites or call ahead to confirm current hours, admission fees, and any special events happening during your visit. We hope these recommendations add an extra layer of excitement to your family trip to the Big Island, creating lasting memories for both parents and keiki alike!

When you’re ready to go after a nice break, check out more activities to do with kids on the Big Island