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Best Oahu Family Activities


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Exploring Kualoa Ranch and the Ka'a'awa Valley
Kualoa Ranch, Windward Oahu

Kualoa Ranch, Windward Oahu

Photo by John Fischer, licensed to About.com

The Kualoa Ranch and neighboring Ka'a'awa Valley are situated in one of Oahu's most historic areas. The Ka'a'awa Valley is also one of Oahu's most beautiful valleys - still largely untouched by modern development.

Exploration of the ranch and Ka'a'awa Valley can only be done by special permit or on one of the tours offered by Kualoa Ranch.

Kualoa Ranch offers horseback rides, ATV rides, bus tours, fishpond and garden tours and jungle exploration tours of the valley. All tours begin at the Kualoa Visitor Center.

If you prefer to snorkel, swim, paddle a Hawaiian canoe, or play volleyball on a private beach "Secret Island" is available to you.

The two-hour horseback ride takes you deep into the valley along the 2.8-miles-long Ka'a'awa Valley Road which extends nearly 7/8ths of the way into Ka'a'awa Valley. The return trip takes you on a path along the valley's southeast wall.

If suddenly you feel like you've seen this area before, it's because you probably have. The Ka'a'awa Valley has been used for location filming for numerous major motion pictures and television productions. Here scenes were filmed for 50 First Dates, Godzilla, Lost, Mighty Joe Young, Pearl Harbor, Tears of the Sun, and Windtalkers.

Kualoa Ranch is only 45 minutes from Waikiki on Oahu's Windward or eastern coast.

For more information about Kualoa Ranch, the activities offered and to get directions, you can visit their homepage at www.kualoa.com.

It is best to make reservations for any of the activities in advance since the capacity for each activity is limited and often sells out during heavy visitor seasons.

You can also read our detailed feature on Exploring Kualoa Ranch and the Ka'a'awa Valley of Oahu.

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