Hawaii Honeymoon Recap

Since a lot of people are asking about our honeymoon to Hawaii, here’s a quick review of the trip.


First off, let me give you a few tips if you are traveling to Hawaii.  The two most valuable things I can tell you are:

  1. Rent a Jeep – it’s more expensive, but totally worth it and allows you to do a lot of things you couldn’t without a 4WD vehicle.

  2. Download the “Hawaii Revealed” app for whatever island you are traveling to.  This app will tell you everything you need to know about all the sights, food, and activities on any island.  It’s $8, but you’ve already spend thousands to get to Hawaii, so go ahead and splurge for a pricey app for once.  It didn’t let us down once the entire trip.

A few other tips (all secondary to the two tips above):

  • Bring Chacos – My best friend (and now brother-in-law), Matt Hogg, let me borrow his and they were a lifesaver for hiking, swimming, etc.

  • Bring a car charger – you’ll need your phone a lot if you use the app above.  Plus we used ours for pictures.

  • Ask locals for help – we spent a lot of our trip hanging out in places where locals were.  The app helped us find out about them and get 90% of the way there and then often locals would help us get the rest of the way.

  • You can buy or rent snorkel gear.  We bought it, which is probably cheaper if you go at least 3 times.  However, some places let you rent for a week (not sure on pricing for this option).  Either way, it’s nice to have snorkel gear in your jeep all the time.  You never know when you might want to go exploring for fish.

Here’s what we did each day:

  1. Day 1 (Maui) – Sunday, 6/30:
    Drove to the west shore.  Snorkeled at Honolua Bay (excellent snorkeling with lots of fish and a nice reef. Visited a blowhole called Nakaleae Blowhole.  Snorkeled at Honokeana Cove.  Saw lots of fish and about 10 sea turtles, all different sizes, some as big as us.

  2. Day 2 (Maui) – Monday, 7/1:
    Haleakala sunrise & downhill bike ride.  We had to wake up at 1:30 am to get to our tour bus by 2:30 am for a 4:30 am sunrise.  We used a company called Haleakala Bike Company.  It was about $110 / each.  Not the cheapest option, but we think we scored better gear for it.  Also, it was self guided, which was important to us.
    Nick’s – Probably the best dinner we ate all trip.  Awesome food, awesome atmosphere, awesome service.  Get the flaming strawberries.  

  3. Day 3 (Maui) – Tuesday, 7/2:
    Road to Hana.  Use the app and it will tell you all the good stops.  We got kind of a late start and didn’t leave the hotel until 9:30 am, which meant we didn’t make it to the Road to Hana start (on the northwest side) until 10:30.  Try to make it all the way to Seven Sacred Pools.  It’s near the very end.  If you have a jeep (like I told you to), then you can drive all the way around the island and come back on the east side.  It’s a long drive and takes pretty much the entire day.  Be sure to enjoy the journey and don’t focus on the destination.

  4. Day 4 (Kauai) – Wednesday, 7/3:
    We traveled to Kauai in the morning.  Kind of just hung out at different beaches and visited the Opaeka’a Falls Lookout and the Kamokila Hawaiian Village.  Both were convenient, but not must sees.  We found out that the village offers kayak rental for $35 / person on the Wailua River and is close to Secret Falls.  We didn’t end up kayaking, but would probably use them next time.
    Ate at Gaylord’s.  Pretty good food, plantation style atmosphere.  

  5. Day 5 (Kauai) – Thursday, 7/4:
    Checked out the Waimea Canyons.  I haven’t been to the Grand Canyons, but heard it’s comparable.  Check it out if you’re nearby or if it’s on the way to something.  For us it was on the way to Polihale beach.  This is one of the most exclusive, beautiful beaches on the island.  It’s on the west side of the island.  Really rough rocky road near the end.  Pretty cool adventure just getting to it.  Definitely helps to have 4WD.
    Went to a firework show that night.  Probably would have gone to the Smith Family Luau if it hadn’t been the fourth of July.

  6. Day 6 (Kauai) – Friday, 7/5:
    Hiked the Na Pali coast to Hanakapiai Beach (2 miles) and then up to the Hanakapiai Falls (~1.8 miles).  This is a must do when on Kauai, one of the top rated hikes in the world.  It took us just under 7 hours with stops.  
    Bubba’s Burgers for dinner.  Anything tastes good after a 7 hour hike, but the atmosphere and food is actually pretty good.
    We also stopped by Queen’s Bath in Princeville on the way home.  It was dark and was high tide so we didn’t get in.  But looked cool and worth checking out if you have time.

  7. Day 7 (Kauai) – Saturday, 7/6:
    Drove to the Jungle Hike with an 800 foot tunnel you can tube through.  This drive gets extremely dicey the closer you get to the Jungle Hike.  This was the craziest road I’ve ever driven on and is kind of an adventure in and of itself.  You pretty much have to have 4WD to get through it.  You pass the Jurassic Park entrance (not that exciting in real life – nothing left but two tall wooden poles) about 1.5 miles from the hike start.  The tunnel was awesome and nothing like we’ve ever done before.  It’s kind of like a lazy river (but not that lazy) in the jungle and through a dark tunnel.  Bring a headlight and some glowsticks.  Also, get decent sized inner tubes (adult sized).  Ours were too small and we were fortunate enough to borrow some better ones from some locals.
    We ate at Duke’s Canoe Club that night.  2nd best place we ate all trip.  Great atmosphere and good food.

We loved it…so much that we plan to go back in 2 years!