Two for the Road
Five once-in-a-lifetime road trips ideal for newlyweds.
With Hawaiian Airlines offering daily nonstop flights to Honolulu from New York, it’s easier than ever to escape to paradise. Tour the Big Island for a wide variety of sights and rent a four-wheel-drive to tackle the rugged terrain.
Day 1: Kona
From Honolulu, fly into Kona International Airport, and then it’s first things first: caffeine. Visit the Kona Coffee Living History Farm to zap the jet lag and learn about the region’s coffee pioneers. Then proceed to the sacred Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park to see the Hale o Keawe, a temple once used to house the bones of deified chiefs.
Days 2–3: Kau
Use the wonderfully laid-back Leilani Bed & Breakfast (from $89; leilanibedandbreakfast.com) as your base for exploring the island’s most remote region. See South Point, Hawaii’s southernmost tip, and then stroll along Punaluu Black Sand Beach, a gathering ground for Hawaiian green sea turtles.
Days 4–5: Volcano
With more than 300,000 diverse acres primed for exploration, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is a naturalist’s dream. Choose from 150 miles of hiking trails that take you into a rain forest, past petroglyphs and volcanic craters, and through a 500-year-old hardened lava tube. The biggest attractions are the two active volcanoes: Mauna Loa and Kilauea. Keep nature at hand by booking a treetop suite at Skye Peterson’s handcrafted Volcano Village treehouse (from $195; volcanotreehouse.net).
Days 6–8: Hilo
Take the wild-orchid-lined road north to Hilo and visit dreamy Rainbow Falls in Wailuku River State Park. Have dinner at Hilo Bay Café (hilobaycafe.com), then forgo a hotel in favor of an impeccably outfitted estate rental at the gloriously lush and secluded Falls at Reed’s Island (from $295; reedsisland.com).
Day 9: Honokaa
Once in sugarcane country, admire the blooms at the Hawaii Tropical Botanical Garden, then stop by the postcard-perfect Akaka Falls, one of the most famous waterfalls in the state, and take in the awe-inspiring panorama from the Waipio Valley Lookout. End your day at the charming one-suite Waipio Rim B&B ($200; waipiorim.com).
Day 10: Waimea
Enjoy a fabulous vista on horseback from the Pololu Valley lookout at Kahua Ranch, then hit Merriman’s for a take on local cuisine by a James Beard Foundation finalist (merrimanshawaii.com).
Day 11: Kohala Coast
Indulge at the Four Sea-sons Resort Hualalai (from $595; fourseasons.com) and visit the white-sand beaches at Hapuna Beach State Park. Enjoy local seafood at Canoe House restaurant at the Mauna Lani Bay Hotel (maunalani.com). When it’s time to jet off, no problem. The airport is a mere fifteen minutes away.
From the Summer 2013 New York Wedding Guide