Now that I’ve shared about our wedding in California (which you can read about here), I finally get to share about our honeymoon! We originally wanted to have a honeymoon in Thailand but decided to put it off because we had a stop over in Honolulu, Hawaii on our way back home to New Zealand from California.
As part of our wedding gift we asked my dad for two excursions in Hawaii. We used Get Your Guide to help us find activities that we wanted to do. I had never used Get Your Guide before but it ended up being an amazing experience. They have all different options for around the world! We looked at reviews and prices and picked two of our favorites which I’ll share more about below. We also asked for money towards brewery hopping and gift cards to local restaurants in the area we were staying! If you’re wanting to ask for money towards your honeymoon asking for things like gift cards or actual activities you can do is a great way for a guest to give you something to contribute that isn’t just necessarily money.
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We decided to stay in an Airbnb close to the city (well, in the city) which had a pool, sauna, and jacuzzi. It was way less expensive and actually look nicer than the hotels that we would have stayed at. It was nice to be able to have a fridge and ability to cook if we wanted. The view was insanely beautiful! It ended up working out perfectly for us and helped us save money while still getting that luxury feel and being close to everything. Here’s some pictures from our Airbnb:
We got to stay in Honolulu for about five days! If you’re thinking about going to Honolulu for your honeymoon here are some of our suggestions and things we did while we were there!
We split up our excursions over the course of a couple days so that we had time to relax, sleep in, enjoy the pool, enjoy the beach, and have time to walk around the city. Our first excursion was our full day activity! We did the Oahu 120 mile full day tour including Dole Plantation. It was absolutely amazing and I highly recommend it! I did a lot of research before choosing out our activities in Honolulu. This one was incredible value for money! The tour lasted about 10 hours and took us all across the island. The driver, who hosted us for the day, talked the entire time (in a good way)! He was funny, informative, and helpful! We made several stops along the way including a beautiful look out at Hanauma Bay, a rural Hawaiian tourist shop with beautiful outfits, drove through Kahala District (which is where a bunch of mansions are), the Byodo-In temple, Kualoa Ranch (where several movies are filmed), a macadamia nut place (where we got to try all sorts of delicious stuff) and, of course, the Dole Plantation!
For our other excursion, we did the 3-Hour Waikiki Snorkel & Sailing Adventure with Lunch! Again, good value for money especially considering what we saw!! We got tons of drinks on the boat (after snorkeling), a buffet lunch, snorkeling gear to borrow, a beautiful boat ride, and the staff was super fun! We even got to see a pod of mother dolphins with their brand new babies!! I had no idea that dolphins could be so small! They were easily smaller than my forearm! They were flying up in the air and doing all sorts of turns and dances for us! It was adorable!! Then, we got to get in the water and see the turtles! There were so many!! It was such an amazing and beautiful experience.
Other than our excursions, we went shopping, went to a comedy show, went to the pool, and went to the beach! I pretty much lived in one of my three swimsuits from Kayo Collective – if you are New Zealand-based or can get a Kayo suit shipped to you, do it!! So comfortable and flattering! I also re-used the hat that I got from Wedding Apparel New Zealand (also pictured in my bachelorette party blog here). It was perfect for all of our activities!
Some other suggestions and things to do in Honolulu:
- Like I said we wanted to do some brewery hopping which we ended up doing after our sea turtle snorkeling adventure! There are tons of breweries in the area and all were really good (we went to every one)! Some of our favorites included: Waikiki Brewing Company, Maui Brewing, Beer Lab HI, Aloha Beer Company, and Village Bottle Shop & Tasting Room!
- If you love shopping but still want to feel like you’re in Hawaii, go shopping at the outdoor mall International Market Place right in Waikiki – they even have a live show every night! There are tons of great restaurants and most of them have happy hour.
- If you’re not from the States and want to go shopping for items that you might not have in the country you’re from (thinking about you New Zealand and Australia) PLUS you want to experience an extremely large mall, definitely check out Ala Moana! We got coupons for a few free products from Hawaiin Airlines when we landed.
- You don’t need to rent a car! We walked, planned excursions that offered free pick up, took a couple of ubers, and even took a bus. Apparently, renting a car is extremely cheap but parking can be a hassle and theft can be an issue in Honolulu specifically.
- Bring an umbrella! It’s a tropical island so even when the sun was out or it was boiling hot, it was still raining!
I hope this helped you get some Hawaii honeymoon inspiration! We’d love to hear about your honeymoon and wedding too. If you’re a bride and would like to be featured on our blog, please fill out this form here.
Mary Taylor <3