Great Family Adventures: Kensington Tours' 'Hawaii Family Adventure'

Yes, we know: The family vacation is a much-parodied event, and perhaps rightfully so. But fumbles, foibles, and hassles aside, families keep taking them for the same good reason: They’re priceless sources of memories.

    Photo: Cristo Vlahos/Wikimedia Commons

HIGHLIGHTS: Kensington Tours offers a nine-day vacation for families who can’t choose between Oahu and Maui. You’ll start by relaxing on Waikiki—its gentle break is a great place to learn to surf—but a tour of greater Oahu quickly proves that the island is much more than Honolulu’s boutiques and mild beaches. You’ll see the North Shore’s raging breaks, the Japanese-style Byodo-In Temple, emerald expanses from Nu’uanu Pali Lookout, and Dole’s pineapple plantation (kids love the walk-through maze). You’ll also take a rainforest hike and be a luau guest. Once you get over to Maui, the tour becomes more animal-themed, with whale-watching, a visit to a sea-turtle nesting ground, and a snorkeling cruise of the Molokini crater. There’s some leisure time built into the itinerary; consider using it to take the kids to Pearl Harbor’s USS Arizona memorial, which still bleeds oil from its sunken grave.

OUTFITTER: Kensington Tours, founded by Jeff Willner, a prolific explorer and a Royal Geographic Society Fellow, offers journeys to more than 90 countries.

ITINERARY: Honolulu (Oahu) to Lahaina (Maui).

DATES: Custom dates available.

PRICE: Starting at $1,863 per person, including lodging, all listed activities, ground transportation, and some meals.

INFO:, (888) 903-2001.

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