The Hawaiian Islands are home to countless incredible hiking trails, but not all hikes are created equal, especially when it comes to trails suitable for the entire family. These nine kid-friendly trails all measure in at under one mile, and are perfect for a quick family hike. After all, there’s nowhere better to lace up your hiking boots than our beautiful islands — whether you plan on hiking for one mile or twenty.
1. Lyon Arboretum Trail, 0.3 miles
While this beautiful arboretum has been open to the public for more than 40 years, many locals and tourists alike opt for the more popular Manoa Falls. The 194-acre research site is home to more than 5,000 tropical and subtropical plants as well as 12 beautiful gardens and seven miles of hiking trails. The Lyon Arboretum Trail, though, is only 0.3 miles.
2. Lapakahi State Historical Park, 1.0 miles
Found within the rugged 262-acre oceanfront park is this easy one-mile loop trail through the partially restored remains of an ancient coastal fishing settlement, with a variety of historic structures to check out throughout the carefully-placed footpath.
3. Waimea Canyon Cliff Trail, 0.2 miles
Nearly 14 miles long, one mile wide, and more than 3,600 feet deep, the stunning Waimea Canyon is full of striking cliffs, incredible colors, and cascading waterfalls; it is perhaps Hawaii’s most unspoiled natural beauty. This extremely short trail will give you a glimpse of the "Grand Canyon of the Pacific" without any real effort involved.
4. Iao Valley State Park, 0.6 miles
Located just south of the West Maui Forest Reserve and near Wailuku is Iao Valley State Park, a lush, 4,000-acre valley with miles of hiking trails, stunning vistas, and the famous Iao Needle. The short nature loop through the park is truly one-of-a-kind, and you’ll want to add it to your Hawaii bucket list.
5. Thurston Lava Tube, 0.4 miles
Located in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, this short 20-minute walk through a thick forest leads visitors to a 500-foot lava tube that once carried molten lava. It's easily one of the coolest hikes in the park and is perfect for adventurous kiddos.
6. Friendship Gardens Trail, 0.6 miles
This beautiful garden got its start in the 1920s as "Hawaii’s first multi-racial community, called Kokokahi ("of one blood"), a place where people of all ethnic backgrounds would come together to live, work and play," according to the Friendship Garden website. The tranquil space is open daily to the public free of charge and features a half-mile of easy hiking trails and some phenomenal views.
7. Polipoli Trail, 0.6 miles
Located 7,000 feet above sea level is Polipoli Springs State Recreation Area, a stunning park home to a redwood forest and countless hiking trails, including the 0.6-mile Polipoli Trail. The short trail gains only 200 feet in elevation and leads hikers on a journey through dense stands of cypress, cedars, and pines.
8. Lava Tree State Monument, 0.7 miles
A 17-acre park that features a forest of lava trees, the result of a lava flow in 1790 that swept through the forest, leaving behind lava molds of the tree trunks. The park is free to visit and features a 0.7-mile loop path and picnic tables.
9. Ualaka’a Trail, 1.0 miles
This short, 1-mile, loop trail through a thick forest canopy begins near one of our favorite lookout points in all of Honolulu, Pu’u Ualaka’a State Wayside, or for those not familiar with the official name, Mount Tantalus. The lightly-trafficked and secluded trail feels world’s away from the hustle and bustle of Waikiki, while still giving us phenomenal views.