JOURNEYS

Bask in Family-Friendly Fun in the Heart of Honolulu

HeroImage_Hawaiian

The lagoon, beach, and famous Rainbow Tower

Hilton Hawaiian Village

For all Hawaii’s wonders, there’s little question that the island of Oahu remains its beating heart, housing some 70 percent of the state’s total population and making it a quintessential destination in the islands. For some, the perfect vacation here features top amenities, fine dining, and romantic sunsets. Others look for well-rounded fun for the kids, or awesome natural beauty. Enter the collection of first-rate, well-located Hilton Resorts around the globe, including one of the world’s first and finest resorts, the Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort, which has it all. There’s perhaps no hotel more iconic for the type of rewarding stay in nearly every corner of the planet—whether you’re after the technicolor seascapes of French Polynesia and the Caribbean or Mexico’s culinary delights—offered by Hilton.

First opening in 1955, Hawaiian Village’s expansive, self-contained structure of was revolutionary for its time. And it remains an ideal homebase for families interested in exploring Oahu, with every convenience within easy reach. With an assortment of twenty bars and restaurants, multiple pools, lagoons, and waterslides, and a non-stop spate of activities to enjoy, guests could stay for weeks on the premises and still have more to discover.

For the adventurous, however, an array of cultural and educational activities awaits throughout the island. And while the resort offers ample transportation options, a rental car will open up a world of even more to explore. From the unique history of Iolani Palace—the only Royal Palace in the United States—to the important stories to be told at Pearl Harbor National Monument, this trip is certain to make lifelong memories for all involved.

“When you think of iconic images of Hawaii—Hilton Hawaiian Village’s famous Rainbow Tower framed by the widest stretch of beach in Waikiki, the five-acre Duke Kahanamoku Lagoon and the Pacific Ocean is among the top that come to mind,” said Debi Bishop, managing director of Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort. “But what makes us truly iconic are the experiences our guests have with us that keep them coming back year after year. We’ve seen parents bring their kids to experience our Friday night fireworks—the same show they enjoyed on their honeymoon with us—or to learn to surf the beginner-friendly waves at world-renowned Waikiki Beach. There’s a magic about this resort that inspires guests to want to share memories made here with younger generations.”

Looking for other places in Hawaii to stay? Hilton Resorts have been the first name in Hawaiian travel for decades, with multiple properties spread over three islands, from the Big Island’s Hilton Waikoloa Village to Waikiki’s DoubleTree Alana, each offering its own take on the company’s signature brand of hospitality.

image_1_hawaiian

TRIP HIGHLIGHT

Hālona Blowhole

The protected beach cove surrounding Hālona Blowhole has long been featured in films and music videos, and for good reason. Formed from the flow of lava into the ocean thousands of years ago, the Blowhole emits geyser-like bursts of water with each crashing tide. When the sea is calm, the cove is also great for spotting sea turtles and humpback whales or to examine the jewels of its tide pools, from starfish to sea urchins to moray eels.
Hilton_Logo

TRIP DESIGNER

Hilton Resorts

Taking Hilton’s world-famous hospitality to a whole new level in terms of style and convenience, Hilton Resorts has properties spanning the globe, each offering its own kind of extraordinary experience. Whether you’re looking for family fun, a grand escapade, or something in between, Hilton Resorts will exceed your expectations.
image_2_hawaiian

Paradise Pool and its famed waterslide

Hilton Hawaiian Village

Day 1Aloha Means Welcome

When you arrive at Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort, you step into what feels like another world entirely, a vast, beautifully maintained paradise set squarely within, well, paradise. As one of the world’s first resorts, opening in 1955, Hilton Hawaiian Village was deliberately designed to bring your family’s wants and needs to within a few footsteps of your spacious, light-filled room.

Once you’ve settled in after your travels, you’ll have no lack of options to cool yourself down, whether at Waikiki’s widest stretch of white-sand beach or in one of the resort’s five pristine pools, featuring the longest waterslide in all of Waikiki. Once you’ve dried off, head over to the Great Lawn for the iconic Waikiki Starlight Luau, complete with a lei greeting, a Polynesian feast, and traditional live Polynesian music and dance.
image_3_hawaiian

The five-acre Duke Kahanamoku Lagoon

Hilton Hawaiian Village

Day 2Soak in the Sun

Today you’ll travel deeper, plunging 100 feet below the surface with a child-friendly submarine ride exploring the reefs around the resort, home to sharks, green turtles, and the coral-crusted wreckage of sunken ships. After you’ve had a glimpse of what lies beneath, head over to the hotel’s own Duke Kahanamoku Lagoon, where the kids can take surfing lessons, rent a stand-up paddleboard, or take a kayak around an island as you sit back with a book and a Blue Hawaii. The classic cocktail was first invented by head bartender Harry Yee, known for helping popularize Tiki culture, on these grounds back in 1957. (Fun fact: the drink predates the Elvis film Blue Hawaii that includes scenes shot at the hotel in 1961).

Finish things off at Aoki Teppanyaki to see succulent lobster and prized A5 Wagyu beef cooked right before your eyes in an immersive Japanese-themed setting, all without ever leaving the village.
image_5_hawaiian

USS Arizona Memorial

Unsplash/Robert Linder

Day 3Embrace History

Now that you’ve had a few days to explore the resort, head over to Pearl Harbor National Memorial, arguably among the most popular—and significant—destinations in all of Hawai’i. From here, there’s a full day’s worth of educational activities for you and your family, including a visit to the USS Bowfin Submarine Museum and Park for firsthand insights into what life was like on this WWII-era vessel, followed by a bus tour of historic Ford Island with a National Park Service Ranger to help shed some light on the U.S. Navy’s longtime center of strategic operations in the Pacific.

On your way back, treat yourselves to something light with a stop at Nisshodo Candy Store, the century-old home of handmade, cloud-soft mochi and a valuable testament to the Japanese-Hawaiian culinary traditions on the island.
image_6_hawaiian

A restaurant in Honolulu’s Chinatown

Wikimedia/Alan L

Day 4Exploring Honolulu’s Heritage

Punctuate yesterday’s history lesson with a visit to the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific at the Punchbowl, or Pūowaina, a site once used for human sacrifices and now the final resting place for the thousands who lost their lives in the Pacific during World War II. From the caldera of this spent volcano, your family will have the opportunity to pay your respects to the servicewomen and men interred there in this singular setting, complete with unmatched views of the island.

From there, head to Honolulu’s Historic Chinatown District to sample a crucial part of Hawaiian culture and cuisine. Before heading back to the resort, grab some Coco Puffs to go at the legendary Liliha Bakery, a perfect dessert to follow fresh tuna poke, steamed clams, and other family-friendly fusion fare back at the resort’s Blue Water Shrimp and Seafood Market.

image_1_hawaiian

Hālona Blowhole

Wikimedia/ ©CC BY-SA Thomas Tunsch

Day 5Embracing Mother Nature

Though there’s still much to be done at the resort, a visit to the Hālona Blowhole will leave you in awe of Hawaii’s natural might, with stunning views of Moloka‘i and Lāna‘i, geyser-gushing lava tubes, and a tranquil beach cove that has served as the stunning backdrop for films such as Pirates of the Caribbean and From Here to Eternity. Not far from the cove, the kids can also get their hands dirty with a farm tour with Keiki & Plow or Sun Farm, where they can harvest and enjoy tropical fruits and flowers. If that’s not enough, be sure to stop by Leonard’s Bakery for a type of Portuguese doughnut called a malasada, one of Oahu’s most beloved pastries.
image_7_hawaiian

Diamond Head from above

Unsplash/Cosmin Serban

Day 6Culture and Cuisine

On the east end of Waikiki lies the famous Diamond Head, a short and easy hike, providing yet another breathtaking, 360-degree view of all of Oahu. At the base of this crater is the former estate of billionaire heiress Doris Duke, a unique palace containing some 4,500 pieces from her travels around the world, now comprising the Shangri-La Museum of Islamic Art, Culture & Design.

It’s a quick walk from there to Cromwell’s Beach, a pristine, local-friendly cove named for Duke’s husband, a perfect place to dip your feet and take in a stunning sunset. By dinnertime, you’ll have surely worked up an appetite for Bali Oceanfront, Hilton Hawaiian Village’s flagship, award-winning restaurant featuring local produce and exotic flavors. If you happen to be here on a Friday, the eatery’s unbeatable open-air setting should provide a perfect vantage for the resort’s spectacular fireworks show, a tradition dating back some three decades.
image_8_hawaiian

Friday Night Fireworks at Hilton Hawaiian Village, a tradition for more than 30 years

Hilton Hawaiian Village

Day 7Taking the Aloha Spirit With You

With your stay coming to a close, be sure to drop by the historical International Market Place to take home a bit of Oahu with you. Founded in 1956 by the godfather of tiki, Donn Beach, every purchase from the recently renovated shopping center will help fund Honolulu’s largest private, nonprofit hospital. With your souvenirs in tow, snap a selfie with some of the statues commemorating the Hawaiian heroes who once haunted the place, including surfing legend Duke Kahanamoku and musician Don Ho.

Now that you’ve explored the beauty of Oahu, embrace a new adventure at another Hilton. That same effortless experience found on their Oahu property awaits in destinations including Anguilla, Tulum, and on the other side of the sunset.