Hawaii is a magical paradise that invites millions of visitors each year, and even though the weather is usually balmy and beautiful, and the beaches inviting, it can often be difficult to find family-friendly luau activities that are suitable for all ages. Luckily one of the most quintessentially Hawaiian activities is also one that is great for those young and old…a traditional luau!

With its combination of delicious food and unforgettable entertainment, a family-friendly luau is one of the most popular activities to do when visiting the islands of Hawaii. Not only is it a fantastic way to experience Hawaiian and Polynesian culture, but also a great way to celebrate special occasions, or simply have a wonderful evening out with friends and family of all ages.

Keiki Luau

What is Hawaiian Luau?

First and foremost, a luau is a celebration, a party filled with food an entertainment. It is said that the first rendition of the modern day luau began back in 1819 when King Kamehameha II ended the segregation of men and women eating together. He also allowed food that was once only allowed for royalty to be eaten by commoners. Once men, women and children could eat together, and all of the many food delights could be eaten by everyone, the iconic Hawaiian celebrations or “luau” began.

Hawaiian Fire Knife Dance
© Paradise Cove Luau

In modern times, a luau is often held by families for birthdays, graduations, weddings, and other big events. It is often a huge event where family and friends from across the state and beyond come to celebrate, and with lots of live music and dancing, it is normally a full day of food and fun.

For those coming to visit the islands of Hawaii, you may not have the opportunity to experience a local luau. However, there are authentic luau that can be found all across Oahu for you to experience!

Which Luau are Best for Kids?

Luau Kids Free?
Kids Rates? Location
Paradise Cove Luau Yes – 3 years old and below Yes – 4 to 12 years old Ko Olina
Waikiki Starlight Luau Yes – 3 years old and below Yes – 4 to 11 years old Waikiki
Toa Luau Yes – 4 years old and below Yes – 5 to 12 years old North Shore
Polynesian Cultural Center Luau Yes – 3 years old and below Yes – 4 to 11 years old Laie

While adults often enjoy luau for their entertainment, food and drinks, kids can often find themselves looking for things to do to keep themselves entertained. One of the good things about the family-friendly luau that we have chosen are that these top-rated Oahu luau are not only fun for adults, but also great for kids too. We have hand selected the best luau for you and your family to have the time of their lives while on Oahu!

When we chose these luau, we wanted to be sure that you and your whole family would have fun. With such a wide variety to choose from. we have selected the best authentic luau in Hawaii that both kids and parents will always remember. Get ready to get a taste of the islands from these amazing Hawaii luau choices:

Paradise Cove Luau

Lei making tutorial
© Paradise Cove Luau

Located on the west shore of O’ahu in the Ko Olina resort area, the Paradise Cove Luau is one of the few beachfront luau on the island. One of the great things about this authentic Hawaiian family-friendly luau that makes it great for kids are the pre-dinner activities. There are many things for kids to enjoy while at the Paradise Cove Luau, including games, crafts, and more. Keiki, or children in Hawaiian, will find themselves with lots to do once you check in.

  • Canoe Rides: Hop on a canoe, and enjoy a quick canoe ride around the calm and sheltered bay. Not only is this a great way to experience one of the ways that ancient Hawaiians explored the ocean, but you and the kids can do it in a safe and secure way.
  • Lei Making: Although you will receive a lei when you arrive, the kids can also learn how to make one themselves! Sit down with one of the cultural experts and see how these beautiful garlands of flowers are made.
  • Polynesian Tattoos: Don’t worry parents, these aren’t permanent! But kids will have lots of fun getting their arms decorated with Polynesian designs, and they make for great photo opportunities as well.
  • Hawaiian Games: Kids will have lots of fun as they take part in traditional games like Ulu Maika which is similar to bowling. Take a try O’o Ihe which involves throwing a spear at a target.

Key Point: Lots of activities for kids to enjoy!

Hilton Waikiki Starlight Luau

Luau dancers performing at Starlight Luau
© Waikiki Starlight Luau

Waikiki is definitely the most bustling area of O’ahu, and also has most of the island’s resorts and hotels. Most guests to O’ahu choose to stay in Waikiki due to its convenient location and beautiful beaches. For the families that choose Waikiki as their vacationing spot, the Waikiki Starlight Luau is one of the best choices for families with kids.

The luau is conveniently located within the Hilton Hawaiian Village, and is a quick walk from many Waikiki hotels and vacation rentals. Instead of having to wrangle the kids for an hour-long bus ride, you can either walk or take less than a five-minute car ride to one of the best luau in Hawaii.

Once you are there, kids will enjoy some pre-show activities like lei-making or learning how to dance a hula. The main perk of this luau and what makes it great for kids is that there is a separate buffet tailor-made for kids! The more exotic choices of kalua pork (Hawaiian-style pulled pork) or lomi lomi salmon (salmon and tomato cevice) can sometimes be too much for the keiki. With that in mind, the kid’s luau buffet includes BBQ meatballs, teriyaki chicken bites, tater tots, corn on the cob, and fresh fruit.

Now everyone who attends can be sure to find something tasty to eat before enjoying the amazing Polynesian performance!

Key Point: A separate kids’ buffet is available!

Toa Luau

Visitors doing coconut husking as on of Toa Luau activities
© Toa Luau

Waimea Valley, an area in O’ahu’s famous North Shore, has been a popular destination for residents and visitors for decades. Both an Audubon center and a botanical garden, Waimea Valley features one of the best collections of Polynesian plants in the world, and a waterfall where you can safely swim and explore.

The Toa Luau has its home in this amazing location, and not only do you get a free day pass to explore the area before the luau, but the luau features a number of activities that are sure to keep the kids having fun and entertained.

Depending on how early you arrive, keiki will have plenty of time to have fun before the luau begins. For the kids that are feeling adventurous, arrive at least two hours in advance, and they will have time to jump into the water and splash under a waterfall. You parents and guardians won’t have to worry since flotation devices are required, and there is a place to rinse off and change as well.

Once the luau begins, there will be a number of hands-on crafts and activities like weaving a headband from coconut fronds, learning how taro is pounded to make poi, and twirling poi balls. No matter how young or old, your group will be sure to have tons of fun.

Key Point: Includes a day pass to Waimea Valley for outdoor adventures!

Polynesian Cultural Center

Kids learning the traditional fishing
© Polynesian Cultural Center

If you are wanting a full day of family-friendly fun, there is no better place than the Polynesian Cultural Center. One of Oahu’s most popular attractions, the Polynesian Cultural Center provides a unique opportunity to experience the many cultures and traditions of Polynesia.

In one day you can visit Samoa and see how coconuts are picked and husked, and then head to New Zealand to lean how to do the haka or use poi balls. There is still more since there are areas to learn about Tahiti and Fiji, and even one of a kind canoe pageant in the afternoon.

If the kids start to get tired, you can escape the heat with one of the many IMAX movie presentations which make for a perfect respite during your exploration and adventures.

With so many activities, kids will be sure to find lots of fun things to do, and that doesn’t even include the luau with all of its yummy food and incredible performances.

Key Point: Lots of activities from all across Polynesia to keep everyone in your group happy and entertained!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

When selecting these luau, we made sure that they completed the following criteria. Does the luau have activities that would be entertaining for kids? Is there food that children with pickier or simpler tastes would enjoy? Would we want to take our own children, nieces, nephews and little cousins? If the luau answered “Yes,” to at least two of those questions, they made it on to the list! We want to make sure that all family members have a fun and exciting time at the luau.

We recommend embracing the spirit of Aloha with colorful prints and matching sets. For a more contemporary casual look, opt for cute sun dresses, jeans, and t-shirts. When it comes to footwear, leave the high heels at home and opt for comfort. Flat shoes like flip flops, sandals, and sneakers are totally acceptable. And if you’re planning a visit to the Polynesian Cultural Center, comfortable walking shoes are a must. While the weather in paradise is generally warm, it’s always a good idea to be prepared. Bring along a light jacket or hoodie in case the evenings get cooler or the tradewinds start blowing. Stay comfortable and stylish throughout your Hawaiian adventure!

Indulge in Kalua pork, cooked to perfection in a pit with heated lava rocks and served shredded. Savor the flavors of Lomi lomi salmon, a tantalizing mix of fresh salmon, sea salt, sweet onions, and green onions. Dive into the traditional Hawaiian staple, Poi, made from taro root and mashed into a creamy paste. And don’t forget to delight your taste buds with Poke, featuring cubed raw fish marinated in either sea salt and seaweed or spicy mayonnaise.

Hawaii’s best family-friendly luau on Oahu offers fire and knife shows, hula and Polynesian dancing performances, singing, and storytelling.

Yes, a variety of beer, wine and cocktails are available for purchase during the luau.

Yes, an all-you-can-eat Hawaiian feast is included with admission to Hawaii’s Best Family Friendly Luau on Oahu.

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Join Us for an Unforgettable Experience!

All of the amazing team members at HawaiiActivities.com personally attend and vet each and every activity of Oahu’s best family-friendly luau on our website. We guarantee an amazing luau experience filled with plenty of tasty food, dancing, music, gorgeous scenery and special surprises that will make it a night to remember for your entire family!