Heading to Hawaii !!!
Tuesday, March 22, 2016
By Daniel Blum
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Heading to Hawaii for your Honeymoon? Why Not Check Out the Big Island


Hawaii is known for having some of the most beautiful beaches and rainforests in the world. It's islands are lush, green, wet, and incredibly enchanting.  It offers travelers a little bit of paradise and undisturbed relaxation any time of the year. Oahu, Maui, and Kaui are the usual honeymoon hot spots for about a hundred and one different reasons. Kona is often over looked and passed over for one of the smaller islands but it’s a damn shame. Kona isn’t necessarily as green or lush as the other islands; in fact, it's mostly rough volcano rock that scrapes your feet and tears at the skin. It is very deserty and brown, with thick ribbons of black hardened lava snaking around it. However, there is farming land and coffee plantations galore. All of the islands provide the most perfect atmosphere for relaxing, sipping on Mai Tais, watching the tides roll in, and the hot surfer bods stroll by. But Kona, Kona has a ton of adventures you can go on from bike riding the coast, helicopter rides, to hiking active volcanoes. It's even the home to a rare green sand beach. You see, Kona is it’s own little slice of paradise and offers honeymooners a great place to relax as well as adventure. Kona is relatively a lot cheaper than the other islands so you get a bigger bang for your buck, as they say.  So instead of just indulging in a snorkeling tour now you can swim with dolphins, visit  a natural turtle sanctuary that’s far off the beaten path, and go horseback riding.  Kona was more than I have ever expected and I can't wait to go back and explore more.

 So if you get the chance, buy that ticket and take the ride. Here are 17 Spectacular Reasons to go to Kona, Hawaii: 


Snorkeling: I would recommend packing your snorkel gear (or you can buy it for $20 bucks if you don’t feel like lugging it around with you while you are in transit.  That's what I did and the snorkel was such high quality I carried it all the way home and than on to Thailand.) Or you can rent them; however, if you are snorkeling for more than one day this gets ridiculously expensive. There are beaches upon beaches you can go to that are home to a plethora of sea life including: schools of colorful fish, eels, sea cucumbers, trumpet fish, sea urchins, and sea turtles that will play around with you all afternoon. Make sure to lather up in sunscreen or your ass will get burned, quite literally, mine did. Kohanaika Beach is a great beach to start with. It was a little rocky for sunbathing but the reef is excellent and you will spend most of the time in the water anyway.

Check out the farmer's markets. There you will find fresh infused honey (I am ADDICTED to the ginger one), fresh fish, veggies, and delicious homemade Kombucha right out of the spigot. Seriously, this is a must do and the island is littered with them. It’s a perfect place to get all of the ingredients for a homemade ceviche or homemade sushi. Sometimes you will even see a fisherman selling fresh fish out of the cooler on the side of the road! It is amazing!

If you want to play tourist, check out the markets near the port: Many stores, vendors,  and food booth that are serving shaved ice, mini doughnuts, and homemade popsicles, line the streets in Kailua Pier. This is where all of the cruises stop so it is a bit of a tourist trap but it’s still pretty cool to check out just try and avoid the crowds and venture down when there is not a boat at port. 

Go on a dolphin tour. It is one of the most magical things I have ever done in my life!!!! I highly, highly, highly, recommend Dolphin Discovery. They staff and tour completely blew my mind. We got to swim with dolphins for hours. And I mean really swim with them, one even smacked me in the face with its tail. Try and get Kai as your captain. Not only is he really informative but he also makes sure you get the opportunity to swim with the pod. I can't say enough about him and his skills and the tour in general. It was an EPIC day, one I will never EVER forget.However, if you are in the water or on land with wild animals be sure not to touch them for many reasons. The dolphins, for instance, have a mucus membrane all over them and if you touch them they can contract viruses and bacteria that we have (like the flu) which they are not immune and it is harder for them to fight it. Not to mention they are wild freaking animals! 

Pay a Visit to the Turtle Sanctuary:  It's off the beaten path and you might have trouble finding it but just ask google or a local. The turtle refuge is at Kiholo Bay. It’s a little bit of a hike in but nothing so strenuous, it’s along the beach so there is plenty to explore along the way. Once you arrive at the petrified lava spot you will be able to swim and sun bathed with over forty sea turtles. It’s a special place. 

Scuba Diving: Being Hawaii there is a plethora of scuba diving options available, I didn’t get the chance to do it, it’s still on my bucket list, the night manta ray snorkel and scuba dive come highly recommended. 

Surfing: There is absolutely nothing more breathtaking and exhilarating than a sunset surf session. Just make sure you are aware that there is a coral reef under you. So starfish out when you are going down and respect the other surfers.

Go Body Surfing at one of the sandy white beaches:  Magic Sands, Hapuna, Kolekole, and  Anaehoomalu beaches all offer snorkeling and swimming opportunities. Let’s face it what’s better than a beach in Hawaii? Not much, really. Punalu’u is a wonderful black sand beach that’s worth exploring too. 

Go Cliff Diving: End of the World is a locals spot that offers up some cliff diving for those more adventurous souls. I’m sure Kai will tell you all about it on the Dolphin Tour. But always use caution when playing in the water. Test the depths and play it smart. 

Dine Out: Of course there will be a hundred different options when you are looking for a place to eat but these three places really stand out:

Annie's Burgers is world famous and delicious, read the reviews and you will see what I am talking about. The menu alone can talk for itself.  I got the bacon bleu cheese burger and it was out of this world good, I am drooling just thinking about it. 


Ray's on the Bay is located at the Sheraton on the Kona side of the island. The location is prime and is surrounded  by manta rays and a few friendly felines. It has open air seating and a great bar set up. The food and cocktail menu are innovative and include traditional dishes and intriguing cocktails. Live music dances its way through the hot spot and if you are lucky maybe you will get to see L.T. Spoon perform. He plays every 3rd Wednesday of the month and is one of my favorite artists right now. I say go for happy hour, get one of each appetizers, and a pizza. Then dance the night away and drift into pure bliss.

Try Ceviche: There are fresh ceviche huts all over, try one out or make your own (we bought our tuna from a cooler on the side of the road and it was heavenly).

 

 

 

 

Maybe you are keen for a round of Golf: Hawaii is know for it’s golf courses, here are just a few: Sea Mountain

Golf Course, Hamakua Country Club, Big Island Country Club, Hapuna Golf Course, Mauna Kea Golf Course, and

Naniloa Country Club. 

  

Horseback Riding: This is the agricultural island so you can find horseback riding tours all over. Paniolo

Adventures, Dahana Ranch, and Waipio are good starting points.        


Take a 4 x 4 adventure to the green sands of Papakolea beach. There’s only two beaches in the world that offer

up green sand to dig your feet into and what a better way to get there than by a wild 4 x 4 ride.   

Take a Helicopter Tour around the Island: There’s no better way to see an island than seeing it from the cockpit

of a helicopter hundreds of feet up in the air. 


Ride a Bike down the Coast: There are miles of coastline to cruise along and if you are the athletic type why not

do it by bike. There are some steep inclines so be prepared for that. 

 

 

So why not take a ride on the wild side, let loose, and let your hair down. Kona is a great destination for any type of honeymooners. You can enjoy all of the perks of being in Hawaii and pay a much more reasonable price to create the memories that will last you a life time. 

If you have any questions and/or concerns or are interested in booking a honeymoon please feel free to contact me at soletrips@gmail.com or visit our website at www.soletrips.com .

Photos by Johanna Goodeluinas and Justin Beyers