In celebration of the release of our latest beach aerials from Hawaii, I am sharing some of my top tips and picks from the three islands I recently captured: Oahu, Maui, and Kauai. This is clearly just scratching the service when it comes to everything these islands have to offer but for now, I'm happy to give you my very own, Hawaii Travel Guide.
Oahu, known as "The Gathering Place," is home to Hawaii's state capital, Honolulu, as well as Hawaii's most visited island. Oahu has two thirds of the state's population and Honolulu certainly feels more like a bustling city than a tropical escape when it comes to all of the shopping and restaurant options. Naturally, this makes it pretty amazing because it's actually both!
Simply walk the main drag of Kalakaua Avenue to find the block aptly named Luxury Row. Chalk full of all the big names including: Tiffany's, Gucci, Yves saint Laurent, Chanel, and the list goes on, so whether you're window shopping or doing some serious souvenir shopping, this is where you'll find it at its finest.
Stroll along Waikiki Beach Walk for the traditional garb like the Aloha shirt aka Hawaiian shirt and other local art as well as Hawaiian keepsakes.
For the most straight forward of them all, you've got the Ala Moana Center, which is the premiere shopping mall on the island. I know what you're thinking, "Why would I go to a mall when I'm in a tropical paradise?" To which I reply, it all depends on what you consider paradise, and for those shopping lovers out there, this is a 'must visit' mall. You might even have one or two Gray Malin sightings.
Hanauma Bay is a Nature Preserve and a Marine Life Conservation District, so there are rules to follow but nothing too extreme to where you can't enjoy snorkeling in this beautiful place. In fact, 400 species of fish are known to inhabit the bay and it's also a nursery ground for the immature turtles, so there's definitely plenty to see under the sea!
On the south shore of Oahu, there is Waikiki Beach, a beachfront neighborhood of Honolulu. Lined with an abundance of both high-rises and resort hotels, the beach is a popular one for surfers and for those who like to watch surfers.
Kailua means "two seas" or "two currents." Once I saw it in person, I quickly realized how fitting the name indeed was, and it was also part of my inspiration in naming this new image, Kailua Bay Swirl, Oahu.
Second largest of the islands, Maui, is a major draw for tourism from all around, but noted as being most popular with Americans and Canadians, whereas Oahu attracts the highest amount of Japanese visitors.
The Fairmont - Perfectly located along Maui's Wailea coast, this luxury hotel will meet your every need. This is where I personally stayed, so I can attest to the beautiful grounds and superb quality of service.
Helicopter Tour - OK. I know this might not seem like a big reach of a recommendation coming from me, but I really do encourage anyone traveling to Maui (or any Hawaiian island for that matter) to take a ride soaring above the beauty beneath. Maui has a spectacular selection of waterfalls...just saying.
Better yet, embrace the culture and take a solo session or with some friends out in an outrigger canoe.
Then, once you've had your fill of all of the extreme activities, get loose and be one with nature with a refreshing dip...wink wink.
For all you honeymooners out there, I'm sure you're well aware of the Princeville Resort, Kauai. Aside from its lovely piece of beachfront property, the hotel also boasts a 5,000 square foot infinity pool. NBD.
Salt Pond Beach - Named for its traditional Hawaiian salt collecting ponds, this beach is protected by an outside reef, so it makes for warm waters and great snorkeling.
Poipu Beach - So, Poipu literally means "crashing waves" in Hawaiian, and it's by far one of the loveliest of all of Hawaii, in my opinion. I'm not alone either, as it was named America’s Best Beach by The Travel Channel.
Hope you enjoyed reading through my Hawaii Travel Guide, and I hope to read some of your tips, too! Be sure to share yours on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook as I'm always all ears when it comes to things to do and see in Hawaii!