Monday, January 09, 2012

Honeymoon planning

So, what is even more exciting than planning a wedding?  Planning a honeymoon!!!

Traveling is something both Derek and I really love doing as a couple.  So far we have enjoyed some amazing vacations together...

A romantic Valentine's Day long-weekend in Quebec City

Celebrating Carnival all day in our snow suits.

After our incredible Valentine's dinner at Le Patriarche.

A couple Easters in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina (Derek's dad owns a condo there...yes, lucky us!)

Just another day at at the beach.

Enjoying Caesars on the balcony at the condo is one of our favourite activities.

A beautiful long-weekend in Savannah, Georgia

One of the many fountains in beautiful Forsyth Park, Savannah.

Out front at our B&B, the lovely Park Avenue Manor.

An amazing time at the El Dorado Sea Side Suits in the Mayan Riviera

Oh, the day beds!

Beautiful sun rises every morning.

Our most recent get-away was definitely the most special.  A one-night stay at the Gananoque Inn for my birthday...when Derek proposed!  

SO excited!

Researching and planning for a trip is really half the fun for us.  Especially for Derek - he really loves it.  So for the past week, he has been glued to the computer and his travel books all evening planning our dream honeymoon.  

When it comes to a honeymoon, here's what we are looking for:
  • sunshine and warm weather
  • romance
  • beaches and pools
  • beautiful scenery
  • not too much hustle and bustle 
  • fun outdoor activities (hiking, cycling, kayaking, snorkelling, tennis...)
  • a little bit of pampering and luxury 
  • relaxation 

We are planning on travelling right after our wedding.  So, the first thing we did was look into what the weather is like in January in a few different places.
  • Although we would love to go to Europe (Greece, Spain, Italy,  France....) the weather is not the greatest that time of year
  • We love an all-inclusive vacation in the Caribbean and the weather is definitely right (not to mention the price), but we are looking for something a little more off-the-beaten-track.  
  • Australia is a somewhere we would both like to go together.  Derek spent 6 weeks in Australia about 10 years ago and would go back in a heart beat.  The weather would be nice and hot - perfect for lounging on the beach!  It is definitely still in consideration, but right now we are REALLY excited about.....
  • Hawaii!  I think the weather is always a pretty sure-thing in Hawaii, and January is no different.  The temperature should be between 20-28 Celsius in the locations we are interested in and we shouldn't receive too much rain fall

After doing a little bit of research we are really interested in visiting "The Big Island", Hawaii.  More specifically The Kohala Coast, Kona and some central Hawaii (for the volcanoes!).

Hawaii (The Big Island).  Map from 

Where we could go and what we could do....

    • Hapuna Beach - the Big Island's largest white sand beach.  Hapuna Beach is a long stretch of white sand with turquoise blue water.  I could definitely spend a couple days relaxing with a picnic, a good book, and a boogie board....oh and my new husband :)

    Photo from

    • The Hawaii Volcano National Park - home to one the most active volcanoes in the world, Kilauea volcano, and Maunaloa volcano.  There are over 150 miles of hiking trails which I would love to discover.  I also think seeing an active volcano would be fascinating!
Photo from Hawaii Magazine

    • A trip to the Mauna Kea Summit is definitely on my list of things-to-do.  The summit is 14,000 feet above sea level and is apparently one of the best locations to star gaze in the world - no joke!  Some of the world's largest telescopes are on the summit.  You can choose to drive yourself or participate in a guided tour (my preference).  I think this sounds absolutely amazing.

      Photo from 

    • Farmers Markets.  I am in love with Farmers Markets!  I need to do some more research on where the best ones are located and when they are open.  Since we are hoping to stay in a vacation rental with a full kitchen, being able to pick up fresh, local food would be amazing.

      Photo from

    • Enjoy some pure Hawaiian Kona coffee.  Derek and I are both coffee lovers, so to be able to taste some of the world's best coffee at its freshest would be a dream!

    • And of course attend a traditional luau would be a must!

Photo from the Royal Kona Resort

We would like to chose at least one other island to visit during our stay.  Maybe Maui or Kauai.  Also, we both have family in Vancouver who we would like to introduce each other to, so we will make a stop on the Canadian West Coast as well.

We are still really in the research stage of our trip and no final decisions will be made right away.  I would like to have accommodations booked by summer time though.  From what I have seen the good vacation rentals book up pretty fast!  I will definitely share some information on some of the amazing looking vacation rentals we've found. 

Has anyone been to Hawaii?  Any suggestions on which island(s) to visit or must-see attractions?  Any referrals/suggestions are much appreciated!

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