Hawaii is made up of 6 unique islands*. Each island has a unique feel and different offerings. Each island is very different and even within each island, there are lots of different things to experience and explore.
The islands are not far from one another, making island hopping a breeze! Flights between islands range from 20-50 minutes and some be reached by ferry. A hawaiian cruise allows you to see many of the islands in one trip.
80% of Hawaii is inaccessible by car. Consider a helicopter, boat, or hike to really experience the authentic and cultural aspects of the islands.
Here are some descriptions of each island to help determine which island is right for you:
Kauai is known as the "Garden Island" due to it's lush greenery. As the oldest island in the chain, the Kauai landscape includes tropical rainforests, sprawling rivers, and gorgeous, accessible waterfalls. Although it is not possible to drive completely around Kauai due to the beautiful Na Pali Coast, it is easy to drive from the north shore to the south shore in about 50 minutes. If seeing a Hawaiian waterfall is on your bucket list but you don't want to hike, Kauai is the island for you! Wailua Falls offers a waterfall accessible by car! Additional activities include kayaking, snorkeling, hiking, ziplining, and laying on a beautiful beach. Regulations only permit buildings to be built as high as coconut palm, giving Kauai a relaxing, small town feel.
Oahu is known for its energy, art and surf culture. Oahu's different regions provide various options of activities. In the south shore, you will find the vibrant capital, Honolulu. Famous Pearl Harbor, Diamond Head and Waikiki Beach are also located in the south where museums, restaurants, and water activities are in abundance. Contrastly, the north shore, has gorgeous beaches with restaurants and activities more spread out. If you are short on time and want to experience culture, beaches, activities and quite time; Oahu is right for you!
The "Valley Isle" . Maui offers something for everyone! The most popular attraction is Mt. Haleakala where visitors can watch a spectacular sunrise from above the clouds - a truly magnificent experience. Whale watching is also popular in Maui with the season running from November – May (Jan-March being peak season). The famous road to Hana is an adventurous experience combining the thrill of the journey with the laid back enjoyment of entertainment once you have arrived. Amazing hiking trails, watersports, local farms, and recreation all make Maui an amazing destination for a honeymoon!
Hawaii - The Big Island
You have probably heard about this island in the news recently... Kilauea volcano erupted in May 2018, leading to destruction of homes and landscape. But don't rule out this island so fast, the volcano is on the east coast of the island, while the tourism is on the west coast (in and around Kona) which was, generally speaking, unaffected by the volcano. If you love geology and nature, this island is a perfect fit! You can experience climates ranging from Wet Tropical to Polar Tundra in this unique setting! Of course, you won't miss out on shops, restaurants, entertainment, taro farms, black sand beaches, and splendid waterfalls!
Lanai and Molokai
You can access Lanai from Maui via ferry or plane. Generally a day trip but you could opt to stay at one of the 2 hotels on the island. Snorkeling, and golf are popular activities while visiting Lanai.
Molokai is accessible from Maui by plane but mostly geared towards natives with not much tourism.
*There are actually 8 Hawaiian islands. Niihau is privately owned and Kahoolawe is uninhabited.
I wasn't a germaphobe until after working in a hospital for many years. I learned the proper way to wash my hands and all about the transmission of germs. Staying healthy largely means not allowing germs to come into contact with the face (eyes, mouth and nose). Here are a few ways to stay healthy while traveling...
and here's why...
Time. Documents take a long time to arrive, from the marriage certificate to the passport, it can be weeks before it is all sorted out. Most couples don't have enough time between the wedding and the honeymoon to make a name change.
Free name changes. If you don't currently have a passport in any name, you may be tempted to get it in your married name. DON'T FALL FOR THAT TRAP! As mentioned above, you simply don't have the time to get the proper documentation. And there is good news, the State Department will allow you to change your name within 12 months of issuance. So although it requires a bit more form filling... you will be able to complete a name change when you return from your honeymoon without stressing about getting everything in time!
(NOTE: Don't let it slip past 12 months, it will be more costly and time consuming)
Additionally, if you are renewing your passport within a year of the name change; there is no cost to change your name.
Original Blog post 6/16/2016, updated 7/23/18
Hi! My name is Buffy and I am the owner of Sunlit Travel! I love to plan special occasions like HONEYMOONS! My favorite part is adding special touches to make the trip especially romantic or adding a fun surprise for the bride or groom!