Hawaii Field Trips for Homeschoolers
The Aloha State offers unparalleled beauty, rich history, and pristine landscapes. Made up of over 130 islands, only a handful are inhabited and provide tons of things to do in Hawaii with kids. If you’re looking for homeschool field trips in Hawaii, you have many to choose from including state and national parks, museums, and other educational destinations. Please make sure to contact each site before you plan your visit, as COVID-19 may have impacted their hours of operations.
Start with this printable map of Hawaii so your students can become familiar with the state. You can label all the islands and then download the Time4Learning lesson tie-ins at the end of this post to help supplement your field trips in Hawaii.
Home education is not the same in every state. Make sure you’re getting the information you need to start homeschooling in the Aloha State.
Homeschool Field Trips in the Big Island
- ‘Akaka Falls State Park, Honomu – This park is home to numerous waterfalls where you can take many day trips to. If your student is studying geology and loves nature, this is the perfect location to visit. Get some exercise by walking the paved trail to various scenic points and view the 442-foot ‘Akaka Falls and the 300-foot Kahuna Falls.
- Panaewa Rainforest Zoo, Hilo – This 12-acre zoo first opened in 1978 and is the only U.S. zoo located in a rainforest. Home to over 80 different species of animals, homeschoolers can explore the grounds and see Bengal tigers, lemurs, American alligators, and animals native to Hawaii such as the ‘io, pueo, and the Nene, Hawaii’s state bird.
- Imiloa Astronomy Center, Hilo – Stargazers can learn about the planets and stars at this center that features exhibits, a planetarium, and several theaters. Visitors can also learn about Polynesian voyagers and how they used the stars to navigate the oceans. Homeschooling groups can take part in the school field trip program which offers discounted rates.
- Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hilo – Home to two active volcanoes, Kilauea and Mauna Loa, this park encompasses over 323,000 acres. A visitor center features numerous educational exhibits and information on places to visit throughout the park. Visitors can hike numerous trails or take a drive tour that features various overlooks, steam vents, sulphur banks, and more.
- Pu’uhonua O Honaunau National Historical Park, Honaunau – Once a place of refuge for those who broke sacred laws, this park has a rich Hawaiian history that is sure to enhance your social studies curriculum. Families can listen in on informative ranger talks, take self-guided tours , learn from cultural demonstrators, explore the Royal Grounds, and more.
- Ocean Rider Seahorse Farm, Kailua Kona – Take an educational trip to this 3-acre, family-run business that is home to thousands of seahorses. Visitors can learn about these fascinating animals, marine conservation, and more during the one-hour tour of the farm that also features an interactive tide pool.
Homeschool Field Trips in Oahu
- Pearl Harbor National Memorial, Honolulu – Students learning about U.S. History will gain a deep understanding of the events that took place at this location on December 7, 1941. Families can explore the visitor center and exhibits, take a boat tour of the harbor, check out the bookstore, and more.
- Iolani Palace, Honolulu – Built in 1881, this palace was the residence of several rulers and monarchs, and is the only royal palace in the U.S. Families can take a guided or self-led tour of the palace and its grounds while they learn about the various dynasties that called it home including Kamehameha III and Queen Liliuokalani.
- Hawaii State Art Museum, Honolulu – Art lovers can explore the numerous galleries at this museum with free admission. Free guided tours are available for groups, and special events and activities are held regularly that feature hands-on art activities, artist talks, and more.
- Dole Plantation, Wahiawa – First opened to the public in 1989 and dubbed Hawaii’s “Pineapple Experience”, this location began as a fruit stand in 1950. Families have several fun activities to choose from as they learn about this tropical fruit. They can take a narrated train tour, explore the gardens, and try their hand at the largest maze in the world.
Homeschool Field Trips in Maui
- Maui Ocean Center, Wailuku – Homeschoolers will love exploring this aquarium that first opened in 1998. With tons of interactive exhibits, tours, presentations, special encounters, and more, families can make a Hawaii day trip at this center as they learn about marine animals like whales, sea turtles, stingrays, sharks, and more.
- Waianapanapa State Park, Hana – There are so many interesting points for homeschoolers to explore at this 122-acre park. There is Pa’iloa, a black sand beach, numerous fresh water caves, several hiking trails that offer spectacular views, a lava tube, blow holes and other geologic formations.
- Hana Lava Tube, Hana – Wear sturdy shoes, grab a flashlight and take off on a self-guided tour of this cave that is believed to have formed almost 1,000 years ago. Families can learn the history of the cave and its formations thanks to interpretive signs along the way. Make sure you check out the garden maze on the property before you leave.
- Haleakala National Park, Makawao – Home to a dormant volcano after which the park is named, this national park is divided into two areas: Summit and Kipahulu. In the Summit District, families can explore the expansive crater of the volcano. Kipahulu features a number of pools as well as the picturesque Waimoku Falls. Homeschoolers can take part in guided activities, hikes, tours, and various programs to learn about the history of the area.
Homeschool Field Trips in Kauai
- Princeville Botanical Gardens, Princeville – Discover the beauty of the island’s landscaping by taking a day trip to these gardens that first opened in 2010. Family grown and operated, homeschoolers can learn about the numerous plants, rare flowers, and unique landscape on a guided tour where you can also sample seasonal fruit, local honey, and organic chocolate.
- Kauai Plantation Railway, Lihue – Families can hop aboard a passenger car and learn about the Kilohana Plantation that dates back to the 1800s. Homeschoolers can choose from several tours that allow them to learn about the farms and orchards, feed some of the animals, sample fruit straight from the trees, or even take part in a luau.
- Waimea Canyon State Park, Waimea – Get in some P.E. as you explore the numerous hiking trails of this park known as the Grand Canyon of the Pacific. Students studying Earth science will appreciate the scenery and unique features that nature created. Several lookout points give homeschoolers impressive views and make for perfect photo opportunities.
- Kauai Museum, Lihue – Families will learn about the island’s rich history, its geology, and more at this museum that also features galleries from local artists. Visitors can take part in either self-guided or docent-led tours as well as sign up for classes on hula, lei making, and more.
- Hanapepe Swinging Bridge, Hanapepe – Do you have a student who is interested in engineering and/or thrills? Stop at this historic swinging bridge that was originally built in 1911 and restored after a hurricane damaged it in 1992. At three feet wide, the bridge has a limit of 15 people at a time and is still used by locals to get from one side of the river to the other. If you’re visiting on a Friday, make sure to check out the area’s art night held every week.
Homeschool Field Trips in Molokai
- Kamakou Preserve, near Kaunakakai – If you’ve never explored a rainforest habitat, this is your chance. Hundreds of species of plants, many of which are only found in this area, as well as native birds call this 2,700-acre preserve home. Hiking tours are available several months throughout the year.
- Kalaupapa National Historical Park, Kalaupapa – This historic area was once home to those afflicted with leprosy and were sent to live here in isolation. In order to visit this park that was established in 1980, guests must be 16 and older and families must schedule a tour with any number of tour companies in the area. In addition to hiking tours, mule rides are also available.
- Molokai Museum and Cultural Center, Kualapuu – If you’re looking to learn about the culture and history of this island, this is the place to do it. Families can tour the restored sugar mill and get a glimpse of how sugar is made. Exhibits feature tons of items like pictures, letters, furnishings, and more.
Homeschool Field Trips in Lanai
- Lanai Culture and Heritage Center, Lanai City – Families can explore the exhibits and artifacts at this center that opened in 2007 to learn about the island’s heritage, culture, and its history. The center also features various educational programs and special events throughout the year.
- Lanai Cat Sanctuary, Lanai City – If you have a cat lover in your home, don’t miss the opportunity to visit this sanctuary that is home to hundreds of rescued cats. Visitors can play with and feed the felines on the property, and if you have several hours to spare, consider volunteering your time for a rewarding, hands-on experience.
HI Field Trips Unit Study Suppl.
Is there anything more fun than learning through field trips? To make your experience at these destinations even more meaningful, Time4Learning members will appreciate this download of free activity tie-ins.