By Kyle Ellison
December 17, 2014
Courtesy of Four Seasons Hotels

Sometimes activities that are fun for adults just aren’t quite the same for kids. An all-day drive to Hana, for example, is often more fun for the adults up front than kids who are stuck in the back. Sure, visiting waterfalls is a Maui highlight, but chances are the kids would rather be splashing in the waterfalls back at the hotel swimming pool, or building a sand castle, snorkeling, or boogie boarding on the beach in front of the resort.

Family vacations to Maui, however, don’t have to be all-or-nothing experiences. Most resorts here have daily kids’ programs for those who prefer to just stay on property. They also have staff that are specially tuned in to the needs of guests traveling with kids, and can offer everything from offsite activity suggestions to kids’ menus to extra-generously sized rooms. Here are some hotels whose kid-friendliness can all make a huge difference in the comfort and fun of your family trip. 

Grand Wailea, A Waldorf Astoria Resort

As if the seven water slides, whitewater rapids, and nine swimming pools weren’t enough, this resort has a 20,000 square foot kids’ center with everything to keep children happy. They can play video games, air hockey, pool, or Ping-Pong after building on a wall made of Legos; or join a session of Campe Grande—the kids’ program that features everything from lei-making to carving sandcastles on the beach. 

Westin Ka‘anapali Ocean Resort Villas

First off, one of the pools at this resort has a pirate ship in the middle—which all by itself is enough to drive many kids wild. Second, there’s a high-speed “fish pipe”—a rotating ball that feels like a 90-second water slide. Finally, snorkeling and swimming at Kahekili Beach is just a few steps away from the resort. 

Four Seasons Maui at Wailea

Never mind the fact that kids under five eat free at two of the restaurants, or that the standard rooms can easily accommodate a family with two small children. What truly makes the Four Seasons such a kid-friendly resort is that all of the beach gear and the daily kids’ program are entirely free of charge. 

Ka‘anapali Beach Club

This resort on the edge of Ka‘anapali—which just happens to look like huge pink birthday cake—goes the extra mile for families with kids. In addition to volleyball, a swimming pool, and snorkeling, the resort also has a bowling alley, 18-holes of mini golf, and a full craft center where kids can paint coconuts or string kukui nut leis. 

Hyatt Maui

With water slides, flamingos, a kids’ camp, and a troop of on-property penguins, this massive resort at the end of Ka‘anapali is somewhere between a water park and a zoo. At Camp Hyatt, kids spend the day making culturally oriented crafts such as tiles painted with petroglyphs; there’s also snorkeling, boogie boarding, and fiery lu‘aus offered in front of the resort.