My Kids Favourite Things: Aloha Style!1
Hawaii definitely has my heart ever since our first trip there as a couple. I feel like as soon as you arrive on one of the islands you’re transported to this total sense of tropical bliss that gives you that feeling like you’re home. There’s that warm thick air that greets you as soon as you get off the plane to those island birds you hear chirping first thing in the morning. It is a true love affair.
It turns out that my kids also have a bit of Aloha fever and loved every minute of our family holiday. Each kid had a different favourite and I love hearing what they had to tell me. At the end of each day I’d ask them, ‘what was your favourite part of today?’. We often do this at home but I felt like being on a family holiday invites this question even more. Plus, it encourages them to learn how to be reflective and also grateful.
My oldest, eight and a half year old Ben, wasn’t so sure about doing a snorkelling trip with his dad. We had talked about it before we left and practiced in our indoor pool with the snorkel gear. When the time came closer he said he was nervous about swimming in the ocean. So, off we went to Baby Beach to practice snorkelling in some calm waters. However, even after a day at the beach he still was not sure about going on the trip.
Later that day he told us that he was now excited to go. Phew! I was really glad he changed his mind as we had bought the tickets ahead of time and they were non-refundable. My two boys left before 6 AM and were gone all day. They came home utterly exhausted and filled to the brim with tales from the ocean. Ben was able to use a wet suit and the guides worked with him so that he felt really comfortable. I love seeing my kids conquer their fears! He saw so many amazing animals; schools of fish, dolphins and turtles were just a few of what they saw. He said it was his, ‘best day ever!’ and I believe that.
Alii Nui Maui– snorkel boat trip
Josie is five years old and the last time she was in Hawaii she was just a toddler, so this time around everything was still very new to her. She loved saying ‘Aloha!’ to people and was interested in absolutely everything that we did. She loved meeting new friends at the pool but her ultimate favourite experience was swimming in the ocean and sailing in a boat looking for whales.
This girl is such an ocean lover and her zest for catching waves made me feel like an overly cautious mama at times. She definitely loved every moment that we spent at the beach and would have stayed even longer if it was up to her.
Pacific Whale Foundation– Family friendly whale watching
Te Au Moana Luau in Wailea – Kids five and under are free (yeah!)
You might wonder what a not yet two year old can even get out of going on a trip like this. Lizzy, who turns two next month, loved hanging out at the beach. Another vote for Baby Beach! It is seriously perfect for families that have mixed levels of swimmers.
This toddler learned lots of new words while we were away. Which is always a fun milestone, even the third time around. Pineapple, aloha, fish, boat and beach are all new words that she loves chatting about. Lizzy got a big kick out of going to the Maui Ocean Centre. She could have sat at these tanks and watched the life inside forever. We’ve been to this aquarium a few times before and it’s always a fun experience. If you haven’t been before but are thinking of going with kids, plan to spend about 1.5-2 hours there.
Just like that our trip is over! It was a sad moment boarding the plane back to Vancouver, knowing we were trading in sun and sand for raindrops and cold. My kids were in for a bit shock the day after we arrived home when I handed out their Winter coats for our outing.
Until next time Hawaii!