Planning Your Hawaiian Happily Ever After

Well Travelled Bride Guide to Planning a Destination Wedding in Hawaii.jpg

Soaking in Hawaii’s Aloha Vibes

Our Well Travelled team had been dreaming of a trip to Hawaii for what seemed like forever, and our time in what could rightly be described as “Heaven on Earth” didn’t disappoint. It was clear from the start why this Mecca of the wedding industry is hailed as one of the world’s leading destination wedding locales.

We spent several weeks island hopping in this sundrenched paradise, visiting each of the five islands and left for home with not only bikini tan lines, but memories of some of the warmest individuals and jaw-dropping sights we’ve ever encountered.

Looking to plan an elegant Hawaiian wedding or honeymoon that draws inspiration from local gems scattered across the islands? Then you’ll want to keep reading to discover how our team unearthed the most beautiful venues, florals, designers, and more that Hawaii has to offer.

 
Well Travelled Bride Hawaii How to Plan Your Destination Wedding.jpg

So You’ve Been Dreaming of Hawaii?

We knew our brides would be drawn to these islands as we were, for obvious reasons. For American citizens, Hawaii provides the excitement of an exotic locale with the practical ease of a domestic marriage, and for international brides, it is most often an ideal meeting point between continents and a relatively inexpensive island getaway compared to other tropical destinations. The islands are balmy and bright all year round, so local vendors and venues are always in the midst of “wedding season”, meaning no matter when you’ve set your date, it’ll be shorts and sandals weather in Hawaii.

The vendors and planners in Hawaii really are A-List contenders in the international wedding industry. Because these islands are always buzzing with nuptials ranging from intimate elopements to six figure events, the professionals we interacted with often had decades of experience with hundreds of events tucked neatly under their belts.

Many industry professionals reminded us that, in Hawaii, weddings occur every day of the week. It truly is a 24/7 destination wedding hotspot, and brides who travel there will reap the benefits of having an incredible array of options to suit every price point and aesthetic. But what we loved most about Hawaii was the incredible sensation that, even in the midst of all the industry hubbub and flurry, the aloha spirit is always present - reminding both locals and visitors alike that taking the time to welcome and serve each other is what island hospitality is all about. On the craziest big day, we hope our Well Travelled Hawaii brides are able to take a breath and soak in the gracious beauty around them. Afterall, this is the happily-ever-after in paradise you’ve been dreaming about your whole life!

Well Travelled Bride Hawaii Destination Wedding Planning Idea Inspiration.jpg

Where to Start?

The first step to planning your Hawaiian wedding is selecting which of the main islands will kick off your happily ever after. The truth is, each island offers something completely different, so it’s important to evaluate your own vision, budget, and the physical needs of your wedding day! Read below for a few tips we gathered from our island-hopping that will hopefully shed insight into your big decision.

Maui
Maui was a highlight of the trip for our team - a verdant, highly creative island where one can still find traces of the old-school, bohemian charm it has always been known for. It is perhaps the island with the most diversity in regards to nature and microclimates, but also offers a wide variety of luxury resorts and incredible, industry-recognized vendors who are centrally located to make it as easy as possible to hire them for your wedding day.

Oahu
Oahu is Hawaii’s main island and hosts the city of Honolulu, the state’s most buzzing metro area. For brides looking to accommodate a larger, more extravagant wedding without complications, this is the island we recommend. The Honolulu airport is an easy landing spot for international guests, and just outside of the city you will still find long stretches of beach with fabulous surf. Waikiki is lined with four star resorts and many of Hawaii’s leading vendors call this island home, making it easily accessible for them even during busy weekends.

The Big Island
The biggest isle of Hawaii, Big Island is an incredible vast landscape of microclimates, ranging from verdant green hillsides to black lava fields. The island hosts many volcanoes - both snowy and actively spouting lava - as well as the renowned Mauna Kea Observatory, where visitors can enjoy exceptional stargazing. Most of The Big Island’s resorts can be found on the west coast near Kona and have been made popular for their coral reefs and quiet beaches.

Kauai
Often called “The Garden Isle,” Kauai is well known as Hawaii’s most lush and tropical island. Appealing to athletic travellers from all over the globe, this island offers no shortage of outdoor activities including hiking, ziplining, and sunset cruises along the Na Pali Coast. Nearly half of Kauai’s landmass is comprised of nature reserves, state parks, and botanical gardens, making it an attractive choice for adventurous couples who long for a wedding with a view. The North Shore is the most popular spot for destination weddings and elopements - offering luxe resorts and private villas that are perfect for hosting an intimate reception encapsulated by crystal beaches and verdant mountaintops.

DAILY INSPIRATION AT YOUR FINGERTIPS VIA OUR HAWAII PINTEREST BOARD

 
Well Travelled Bride Hawaii Destination Wedding Planner Questions.jpg

YOur Questions Answered

Looking for professional advice from local vendors with experience? We know that planning a destination wedding can be a tricky and, well, foreign experience. What’s the best time of year to marry, who makes the best vegan wedding cake on the island? Luckily, we’ve got answers to all your burning questions.

Join our Hawaiian discussion group on Facebook to connect with us, our vendors and other couples planning their vows.

Well Travelled Bride The Legalitities of Planning a Destination Wedding in Hawaii.jpg

The Legalities of Planning a Wedding in Hawaii

We’re currently putting together advice and guidance to the legal process of getting married in Hawaii. This section will be update soon and in the meantime we suggest you see further information in our downloadable guide to weddings, elopements & honeymoons in Hawaii.

 

IMAGE CREDITS
Coordinator:
Well Travelled Bride, Photography: Ashley Goodwin, Wedding Planner: Maui Angels, Ceremony: Haiku Mill, Reception: Montage Kapalua, Hair & Makeup: MeiLi Autumn Beauty, Wedding Dresses: Kelsey Genna, Grooms Suit: Mandatory, Jewellery: Rue Bell, Florist: Bella Bloom, Cake Designer: Cake Fanatics Bride & Groom: Roisin & Shen, Stationery: Alannah Rae, Celebrant: Pia Aluli