Thoughts of a Hawaii honeymoon automatically set our minds free. It’s a lush, tropical destination with plenty of waterfalls and colorful flowers. Complete relaxation comes to mind as we imagine ourselves with refreshments by our hotel infinity pool or on the shore with ocean views. Or think about how romantic it would be to look down on the landscape of Hawaii hand-in-hand with your partner, from the perspective of a helicopter tour. No wonder Hawaii is Honeyfund couples’ all time most popular honeymoon.
Newlyweds flock to this area of the world because of its breathtaking scenery, ease of arrival for honeymoons and the laid back yet memorable experiences you can have enjoying island life, even if only for a couple weeks.
The Islands of Hawaii
Hawaii became the United States’ 50th state in 1959, and it’s an absolute national treasures. Hawaii is comprised of 8 islands surrounded by the Pacific Ocean.
The Hawaiian Islands include:
- Hawaii (or “The Big Island”)
Niihau is a privately owned island that most people do not visit, and Kahoolawe is uninhabited.
The first five islands are the ones that are most frequently visited by tourists, especially if your Hawaii honeymoon is your first time in this part of the world.
Traveling to Hawaii
You won’t need any special passports or visas to get to Hawaii. Though it may seem like an international destination, it’s part of the United States. You’ll certainly have to fly there from mainland America, though, because the islands are very much surrounded by water.
COVID-19 Information for your Hawaii Honeymoon
Every state can decide on its own rules and regulations for COVID-19 safety, even though they’re all a part of the United States of America. The islands of Hawaii currently have a mandatory 14-day quarantine requirement for anyone flying into the islands in an effort to keep Hawaii safe.
There is an exception to this. You can bypass the quarantine for your Hawaii honeymoon with negative COVID tests. However, Kauai is excluding itself from this testing exception and you must quarantine for 14 days upon arrival into the island regardless of COVID test results.
Test results must be registered and uploaded to an online system, called Safe Travels. A Travel Health questionnaire also has to be filled out 24 hours prior to departure.
Check Hawaii’s state website for the most current information as COVID-19 safety and travel requirements are forever changing. Also beware, a lot of the state’s parks and landmarks are temporarily closed as a result of the pandemic.
Flights to Your Hawaiian Honeymoon from Three Major U.S. Cities
You’ll likely fly into Honolulu in Oahu for your Hawaii honeymoon. Their international airport is the main entry point for most visitors to the state. From there, you can island hop to other Hawaiian destinations (but remember if it’s during COVID times, you need to follow regulations regarding inter-island travel).
It’s easy to fly to Honolulu International Airport (HNL) on major airlines. Flying to Hawaii from the New York City area is furthest away from the islands, while flying from Los Angeles is the closest with the least amount of air travel time.
Here are some example airfares during the month of May, from three major urban areas in mainland U.S.A: NYC, Houston and Los Angeles.
- NYC to Honolulu: $700-$800, nonstop (11 hour flight)
- Houston to Honolulu: $720, nonstop (9 hour flight)
- LAX to Honolulu: $400, nonstop (6 hour flight)
Weather and the Best Time to visit Hawaii for your Honeymoon
The weather in Hawaii is warm and sunny year round, between 75 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit, daily. (It is about 10 degrees cooler at night.) It’s longitude coordinates are very similar to those of the Dominican Republic, though they’re oceans and land masses away from each other.
It rains a bit more from November through March than the rest of the year, though big rain storms or thunderstorms usually don’t occur. Higher ocean swells are brought on during the rainy season so if you’re a couple visiting in part to surf Hawaii, you may want to consider visiting this honeymoon destination during winter.
The real factors regarding when to travel (or avoid travel) to Hawaii are more so holidays and school vacations, like spring break, when hotel prices may be higher, availability lower, and crowds greater.
Hawaii’s Time Zone
Hawaii is on Hawaii Standard Time. It’s two hours behind California and five hours behind NYC. (And three hours behind CA and six hours behind NYC during Daylight Savings time. This is because Hawaii does not observe Daylight Savings.)
So, for example, if it’s summer on the east coast it’s 9:00pm in NYC, 6:00pm in Los Angeles, and 4:00pm in Hawaii. This varies by one hour, however, when most of the continental United States observes Daylight Savings time from fall through spring.
Is Hawaii LGBTQ+ friendly?
Hawaii was one of the first states to legalize same-sex marriage. They’re also one of the world’s friendliest destinations for the LGBTQ+ community. A Pride parade is held annually in Honolulu, Oahu, hosted by the Hawaii LGBT Legacy Foundation.
Foods to Note and Try in Hawaii
There are a few very Hawaiian dishes and ingredients to try when you travel to Hawaii for your honeymoon, especially if you and your spouse like to try local cuisine.
- Poke, raw fish diced and made into a cold salad. It’s incredibly popular there. So popular, in fact, it traveled to the mainland United States from this destination. It’s a light and refreshing meal by itself, or you will commonly find it as part of a traditional Hawaii food plate.
- Macadamia nuts are grown in Hawaii. They are used in many sweet treats and savory creations at resort restaurants, for example.
- Taro root is also farmed in Hawaii. It has a purple color so it’s easy to identify if a dish has taro in it because its color shines through.
- Spam musubi is a novelty food item and popular snack in Hawaii. It’s most commonly a piece of grilled spam on top of rice, sushi style. You’ll see a lot of it if you explore the islands outside of your resort.
- Luau, a local stew most popularly made with beef brisket and served with – or wrapped in – taro leaves.
- Loco Mocos, which consists of a hamburger patty served on a bed of white rice, topped with a fried egg.
- Shaved ice topped with fresh fruit syrups is a beloved treat in Hawaii.
Most Popular Islands to Visit for your Hawaii Honeymoon and What to Do in Each
There is plenty to do in Hawaii, whether you want to simply relax by the pool or head to the beach for an ocean activity. Overall, here’s the things you can do on any of the islands you’re likely to visit during your honeymoon, including the Big Island, Maui and Kauai:
- Enjoy the beach and water sports
- Relax at your hotel pool
- Indulge in a spa treatment
- Hike through nature
- Attend a Hawaiian luau
- Go zip lining through the treetops
- Go snorkeling in the Pacific Ocean
- Take a whale watching boat tour (December through early to mid-May)
Oahu and the Big Island are the most commercialized of the islands, with Maui and Kauai being less so. Island hopping with short flights between airports will allow you to get a feel for the varied offerings of the Hawaiian Islands.
Things to do on Oahu
Oahu is home to Honolulu, the state capital.
Waikiki Beach is a popular place to visit but because of this, it can get incredibly crowded as well. It’s located on the southwest side of Oahu, in the city of Honolulu. It’s a good beach for couples to learn how to surf because of its calm waves.
Pearl Harbor is a powerful place to visit, known for its historic significance in World War II. Stop by Pearl Harbor National Memorial.
Diamond Head State Monument is great to hike. There’s a trail that guides visitors to the summit within an hour. You’ll love the beauty of the coastline and island below as you gain a bird’s eye perspective at the top of the crater.
Honeymoon Activities in Kauai
Kauai is incredibly green with much of the island being undeveloped rainforest and mountains, mostly in the center of the island. It’s often called the Garden Isle or Garden Island because of this. The outer areas of the island, including its coastline, is where couples will find the areas of beauty reachable by foot, so to speak.
Visit Hanalei Bay on the north shore of Kauai and explore its beautiful village. Stick around to watch the sunset. Sign up for a tour of Waimea Canyon, also called the Grand Canyon of the Pacific. If you love to golf, enjoy the coastline together at the famous Jack Nicklaus course, called the Ocean Course at Hōkūala; it has been awarded the best course in Hawaii numerous times and even the best golf course in all of North America.
Visiting the Na Pali Coast on the northwest side of Kauai is a must. The two most common ways to explore it are by boat, looking back at the island, or by hiking NaPali Coast State Wilderness Park. Most of the hike is for intermediate to advanced hikers so if relaxing with a glass of wine in hand is more your style, you may want to treat yourselves to a catamaran tour of the NaPali coast instead. (You can drive through some of NaPali Coast State Wilderness Park as well, but the road doesn’t completely run through the park.)
Things to Do as a Couple in Maui
Honeymoon resorts in Maui are heavily focused on the northwest of the island, and in the town of Wailea, in the southwest of Maui.
A must-do activity in Maui is to rent a car and drive the Road to Hana. You have to start early in the morning to drive its entire length (it’s advised no later than 6:00am) if you plan on making it back to the main area of the island by nightfall. You will be able to stop at waterfalls and black sand beaches, and interesting gardens. You’ll easily fall in love with the island during your drive, twisting and turning on Hana Highway.
Another romantic thing for couples to do that is unique to Maui is see the sunrise, or sunset, at Haleakala National Park atop one of Hawaii’s most famous volcanoes. (Sunrise reservations are required). Many couples stay a bit longer after sunrise to enjoy the gorgeous scenery as clouds part to reveal views of the island below.
Hawaii Honeymoon and Things to do on the Island of Hawaii (The Big Island)
The Earth’s largest and most active volcanoes are on the Big Island, Mount Loa and Kilauea, respectively. They’re a part of Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, a World Heritage Site. Visit the park to enjoy hiking and scenic drives.
Enjoy Punalu’u beach, one of the black sand beaches on the island created by pulverized lava rocks and unique to Hawaii. Take a night dive to swim with Manta Rays, a coveted activity by couples who enjoy scuba diving and are open water dive certified.
Love coffee? Take a tour of a Kona Coffee farm on the Big Island.
Hotels to Check out in Hawaii
Luxury resorts and world class hotels abound in Hawaii. One of the benefits of going to a popular honeymoon area is that some hotels offer honeymoon packages for your post-wedding celebration. Be sure to specifically look for them when researching where to stay.
Here are some popular honeymoon resorts across the islands to look into:
- The Ritz Carlton: Waikiki Beach in Oahu and Kapalua in Maui on Kapalua Bay
- Four Seasons Resort: Lanai and Maui
- Hyatt: Regency Maui, and Wakiki Beach, Oahu
- Fairmont Kea Lani in Maui
- Marriott: Wailea Beach in Maui, Waikola Beach on the Big Island and Kaua’i Marriott Resort
- Westin: Hapuna Beach Resort on the Big Island, and The Westin Maui Resort & Spa
- Autograph Collection (boutique hotel options): Mauna Kea on the Big Island, Koloa Landing Resort at Poipu in Kauai, and the Laylow in Oahu
You can also look into Air BnBs or VRBOs if you prefer an experience where you and your spouse feel more like residents living in a neighborhood rather than tourists at a hotel or resort.
Register for your Hawaiian Honeymoon on Honeyfund
Karli & McKell raised $3,500 to travel to Kauai for their honeymoon thanks to their Honeyfund registry. Start your own with our sample Hawaiian Islands registry with an inter-island cruise and time in Honolulu to kick things off.
Note: If you purchase through this e-mail, Honeyfund may earn a commission. You will not pay more when buying a product through this link. In fact, Honeyfund works hard to make many recommended products and services available at LOWER rates. We ONLY recommend products and ideas we use and love ourselves.