Chances are if you’re remotely into beaches, sunsets, and natural beauty, Hawaii is already on your list of places to consider for your upcoming honeymoon. Read on to find out why you should say “I Do” to this multi-faceted, romantic destination for your honeymoon!
10 Reasons to Honeymoon in Hawaii
1. Honeymooners are Hawaii’s J-A-M
One thing most brides (and grooms!) can admit – your wedding weekend is EXHAUSTING. I mean that in the best way possible, but we all know that between the planning, the financials, and trying to keep your new spouse’s family tree straight, you are ready for some R&R following the big day.
Enter the island of Hawaii – trust me – they GET. IT. Tourism is the number one industry in the state, and you’ll find helpful, friendly service everywhere you go. No matter which island you choose, they all specialize in pampering, from five-star spas to champagne service at your private cabana to private moonlit dinners on the beach. The place is practically designed for honeymooners. Most resorts have multiple pools, with designated “adult-only” or “relaxation pools,” so you and your new spouse can really leave all that wedding stress behind. From “honeymoon” cabanas on the house, to free drinks and appetizers, you’ll receive VIP treatment.
The only heavy lifting you’ll be doing is popping that complimentary bottle of champagne.
While I’m sure you’ll be getting some, um, cardio workouts in while you’re honeymooning, after a few days enjoying the stunning pools and natural volcanic beaches, you may want to venture forth and get the blood pumping in a different way.
Hawaii offers one of the most diverse lists of activities I’ve ever seen. And we’re not talking Bingo. Where else can you swim with sea turtles, snorkel and explore a volcanic crater, and sea kayak with baby squid? Another fun option is to hop on a booze cruise and take in the beauty of the islands from the sea. You can also participate in sea-cave exploration excursions to check out the local water flora and fauna, and SCUBA services are at your fingertips. All this without leaving the country! Make sure to check with your hotel concierge – a lot of these activities are complimentary!
3. More Cool Activities
If watersports aren’t your thing, you can also participate in a number of other exhilarating and challenging experiences. I highly recommend taking a zipline canopy tour; ours ended in a hike to a hidden water hole with a zipline, rope swing, and high dive.
Whether you’re an experienced hiker or a novice just looking for a stroll, Hawaii offers some amazing opportunities to get out in nature and experience the island away from all the luxury. Hike to hidden waterfalls, eat native fruit right from the tree, and soak up the beauty of this amazing place.
If you’re into something a little more low-key, the islands of Hawaii offer some of the best sight-seeing in the world. The Road to Hana in Maui is one of the more well-known adventures. You drive what used to be an old trade route and stop along the way to hike to hidden waterfalls. Another option is to watch the sunrise at Mt. Haleakala. Yes, you have to wake up at 3:00 a.m. (ugh) but, since you’ll likely have the time change working in your favor, it’s actually not that bad, and the experience of seeing the sun burst over the peaks of the summit is something you’ll never forget.
By far the coolest way to sight-see in Hawaii is from the air by helicopter. You can choose to have the doors on or off, and either way you’re in for a visual treat. Our guide was super knowledgeable about the formation of the island of Kauai, as well as the cultural history of the islands. We were able to fly over private property that isn’t open to the public, which was very cool, and our tour included a stop at the waterfalls featured in Jurassic Park.
In addition, you can tour a sugar-cane plantation via a lazy river, as well as a functioning sugar manufacturing plant, to learn about one of Hawaii’s former number one export.
5. The Romance
If you’re still with me, you’ve picked up on the potential for some serious romantic moments if you choose to visit Hawaii. I mean hidden waterfalls, sunrises, secret water holes, private dinner on the beach….Have you booked that ticket yet?
I know most people would include this in the “Romance” section, but see the photo above: Hawaii sunsets are in a category all on their own.
7. The Food
The main factor in any major decision, travel or otherwise. The first thing our friends asked us when we told them we were going to Maui was “have you made reservations at Mama’s??!!?” While Mama’s Fish House more than lived up to its reputation (three lobster tails sautéed in butter and fruit with local veggies, say WHAAAAAT??!) we had many, many delightful epicurean experiences, ranging from the very fancy to the beachy-casual. Make sure you taste the Hawian beer, coffee, and dark chocolate – you will not regret it!
What I found really interesting was the merging of cultures, represented in the food. Breakfast included the traditional American favorites, but also incorporated Asian influences, such kimchi, dumplings, and miso soup. French- and British-inspired dishes were present as well!
Finally, you cannot beat Hawaii for freshness. The fish you ordered for dinner was swimming that same afternoon, and the fruit from your room was likely driven in that morning. You can literally walk along the hiking trails and eat fruit off the trees. If that doesn’t give you something to sink your teeth into, I don’t know what will!
Ok, I don’t mean to get all serious on you, but there is something very cool about starting your life with someone in a place that has so much history. During your time in Hawaii, it is imperative that you attend a Luau or read a brief summary of the formation of the islands. The story of how Hawaii was populated, and the influence of the Chinese, Japanese, and Americans on the formation of the state is very gripping. Most any activity with a guide – zip lining, snorkeling, etc. – will work this in at some point. I highly recommend picking up a copy of James Michner’s Hawaii before you go!
Hearing about the Islands’ long history gave us a sense of how much of a tiny part of the universe we really are – two grains of sand on a big beach, haha. The new knowledge bonded us and we actually picked out the name of our next dog “X” which is Hawaian for “sea turtle.” (Our last name is Snapp, and my husband’s family business has a turtle on their logo). My history-major nerd maybe showing right now, but Hawaii’s very special culture beats the heck out of a week in a total tourist trap where the most you can learn from the locals is how to make a spray-on tank top.
9. The Practicality
I know. You’re like, WHAT is she saying? But hear me out – where else can you get all the things I have mentioned all in one place without busting out your passport? I promise – you will truly feel like you’re in a foreign country, all without the hassle of making sure your travel docs are up to date, or, even worse, facing customs on the way home (when you’re jet-lagged and dreading that first day back in the office). You also don’t have to worry about foreign transaction fees, language barriers, or driving on the opposite side of the road.
Another perk? While you can certainly choose to visit one island and explore it in depth (I highly recommend Maui, if that is your plan), you can easily visit multiple islands during your time in Hawaii. They each offer very unique experiences and are only about a 45- minute flight from one another. Or, if you’re more on the adventurous side, you can charter a boat between the islands. Either way, a trip to Hawaii allows you a lot of flexibly and bang for your travel buck.
Ok, it’s the one thing you can’t predict, but you have a great chance of a beautiful sun-soaked trip if you go to Hawaii – it truly is paradise. That said, we had one rainy day while we were there, so come prepared with a light rain jacket. Plus, I have a feeling you’ll find a way to while away the hours until the sun decides to make an appearance…
11. Since I’ve Already Convinced You….
Bonus Number 11 is a compilation of tips (since as stated, by now you’ve already booked the flights):
- Make sure that you or your travel agent inform your hotel and various restaurants that you’re honeymooners – the staff will always go an extra mile and we got lots (!) of freebies that way!
- If you do choose to do the sunrise, check the temps – it can get as cold as 30 degrees before the sun peeks out! Also, bring a light rain jacket.
- If you’re having an August wedding like we did, Hawaii is a great choice as it’s hurricane season in the Caribbean.
- Don’t shy away from booking early morning activities. Given the time change, you’ll likely be up and ready to hit the beach, pool, or zipline by 8:00 am. We live in Atlanta and the 6-hour time change really worked in our favor!
- Speaking of that time change, most restaurants take into account that their patrons will be zonked out by 10:00 pm. Try to make your reservations for 6:00 pm or 6:30 pm, as you’ll be able to take in the sunset and you won’t be shutting the places down. We had great service our whole honeymoon, however, we could tell our servers were tired and a lot of the specials were gone by the time we were seated.
- If you want to do the private dinner on the beach – BOOK IT NOW. They fill up months in advance.
- Finally – if you want to do a luau (and I recommend that you do – they can be a little cheesy but they have AMAZING food, are truly unique to Hawaii, and provide an entertaining way to learn about the Islands’ history) make sure you do it early in your trip. They are usually offered Thursday through Saturday nights, and are subject to the weather. So, if you have a luau booked for Saturday and it rains, and you leave Monday, you may miss out on the experience.
I hope these tips have been helpful, and that I’ve convinced you that Hawaii is the best EVER place to honeymoon. My husband and I had so many amazing bonding experiences during our time there – whether it was driving up a mountain at 3:00 am, speeding down a 1,800 foot zipline, or sharing our champagne sunsets, we will never have an experience that rivals our time in Maui and Kauai. With its exotic feel, breathtaking natural beauty, and romantic setting, you’d be doing yourself a disservice not to put a ring on this perfect honeymoon destination!
Which of these reasons most makes you want to book your trip to Hawaii?
This guest post is penned by Meredith Bryant Snapp. Meredith is a champagne enthusiast who enjoys long walks on the beach and jamming out to Whitney Houston. She resides in Atlanta with her husband, Wes, and her cherished Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Pawley Wog.
CC images from Flickr: Magnificent Manele by Andy Beale; Lumahai Rocks by Alex Schwab; Na Pali Coast, Kauai, Hawaii by Howard Ignatius; Hawaii Sunset by Cord Cardinal; Hula Dance by Jayul; Maui Morning by Joe Parks; Kaua’I Hawaii by Christian Arballo.