|Quoting Airstud (Reply 3):|
Hawai'i is a family destination. Any place you stay, there's going to be a fair number of kids there. I stayed at the Kaua'i Marriott - and don't get me wrong, I had a great time, but waterside relaxation was not to be had. There were always kids romping around the pool, and the beach making noise, allllll the time.
True, but, but like many of these places, it varies highly on season. Summer and Christmas, spring break- oh absolutely. But other times I don't find it overrun.
Now to business.
Honolulu is a great city, Oahu is a great island. There is so much to see and beautiful scenery on the island as a whole. There is a great cultural melting pot of the entire Pacific rim. Unfortunately the traffic and urbanity The low point is Waikiki. Unfortunately it's where they want all the tourists to stay, and there aren't any real hotels on Oahu other than Ko'Olina and Turtle bay. With a rental car, you can have a wonderful vacation staying in Waikiki but able to drive around and see the gems of the island. It just won't be your quintessential 'relaxing' honeymoon, it's a large city and a populated island.
You are Irish? You're traveling halfway around the world for a great honeymoon. You cannot come all that way and stay for a week on Waikiki. I forbid it! Hawaii is worth it, Waikiki is not. If you're going to stay for a week just int he general Waikiki area, you should just go to Mallorca. First thing you should decide is if you're looking at Waikiki by default, or if you genuinely want to see anything there. If you do, i'd mix in a few nights on Oahu (where you're likely to be transitting in some capacity) and then another island. Or just another island.
First thing you should do is ditch the travel agents hotel advice. They won't have your best interest in mind. They'll give you the big name properties they make nice commissions on.
I'd familiarize yourself with the other islands, and decide what you most like. Maui is a very popular honeymoon spot with a good all around mix of what Hawaii has to offer. Very nice resort hotels (the priciest you'll find in Hawaii). Kauai is also great, and is probably the most relaxing and least crowded (though it always depends where you stay). It has the most stunning scenery. The Na Pali coast, the Waimea canyon, the beautiful north shore. It's a lovely place. Weather can be the most temperamental, but the south is usually sunny. Big Island is one of the most diverse places on the planet. It has a snowy mountain, green highlands with cattle, barren lava fields, tropical rain forest full of waterfalls and rain, flowing lava, and everything in between. It is big, and the Kohala area provides some fantastic resorts with beautiful beaches and the most dependable sunshine in the Islands. They also can be well within your price range, more so than Maui.
I also usually try to make a point to stay at several different places, even on the same island. There are so many wonderful bed and breakfasts and small inns that can really make a vacation, and you won't hear about them from a travel agent. I have many recommendations if you want, especially on the Big Island. A few nights at these places combined with a resort stay could give you an excellent mix of experiences.
One more suggestion: the tiny little island of Lanai and the Four Seasons Lodge at Ko'ele. This is one of the greatest values around. It's a small island that used to be the world capital for pineapple production. When that industry moved, it became primarily the home to 2 beautiful Four Seasons resorts. One is on the beach, and very expensive. The other is up at 1300 feet in Lanai City- that's the lodge. You can usually find rates there for as low as $200-250 USD. It's a true, first class 5 star hotel for a great price. It's perhaps the most relaxing places i've ever visited, and you're only a 15 minute hotel shuttle away from the sister beach property and all of it's amenities. Strangely enough, the grounds have a kind of English feel with cooler temps, greenery, and sprawling croquet and lawn bowling fields. Very unique and beautiful place. Bill Gates actually held his wedding here. You can reach Lanai via a ferry from Maui or air service.
I love Hawaii, go there often, and pretty much know all the options. I've arranged many trips there for friends and family, and if you'd like more detailed info on these places, feel free to shoot me PM.
[Edited 2012-08-29 18:44:33]