I can’t give you any tips about that location since the only time I’ve ever seen it is in pictures on another wedding blog.
However, I can give you thoughts on how we’re making our decisions regarding a wedding in Hawaii. My mother has been once – for my paternal grandfather’s funeral on Oahu when I was 11 months old. Between dealing with a baby and a grieving family, she didn’t get to do much. My future in-laws have never been. Since our attitude is that it’s as much about the guests as us, we asked what they wanted to do. We thought that would make it easy. It turns out that was a bit of a mistake, though it did narrow things down.
My mom wants to see all of the islands, and she’d love to go back to Oahu since she barely got to see it and did not get to see the Arizona at all. However, she made clear that what we pick out is largely irrelevant to her because she’ll either extend her trip with the around the island cruise that will let her see them all in some capacity or will call up my paternal grandmother to go island hopping with her.
The in-laws say they want to see two things – the Arizona and the volcano. Great. Since our two favorites were Oahu and Hawaii, this didn’t help. But, it did confirm that our gut instinct for either of these two islands was correct. Another friend who I talked to has been to both islands, but would gladly come out for a wedding to either. When pressed on what she would really like to do as a vacation for herself, she admitted that she didn’t get to do nearly as much on Hawaii as she wanted.
After that, it has come down to budget. Because of a risky new job venture, we’re kind of stuck at this point. But, I have done research into the type of events we want and made up a spreadsheet to compare various options on each of the two islands. So far, Big Island wins for being the cheapest, and it covers the desires of all of our family who are important to factor in during the big event.
So, my point in telling my story is that you might want to consider your families in this as much as your dream vision for the venue. Yes, having a vision like that is so romantic and fantastic. But, when you’re out there, there’s really nothing much that can piss you off or make you feel anything other than relaxed and amazing. Also, you can’t please everyone, so don’t be tempted to do a flat-out survey of everyone you want to invite.
I suspect that no matter what you choose, you’ll have a great time. I would just consider those you’re inviting out with you if it is likely the only trip they will take to Hawaii. If anything, at least you could maybe help point them in the direction of helpful Hawaiian travel sites that could allow them to plan their own extended vacation around your wedding.