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Real Honeymoon Story: Maui

My husband, Steve, and I envisioned traveling somewhere tropical and exotic for our honeymoon. As soon as we stepped off the plane in Hawaii, we knew we had made the right choice. The intoxicating cuisine and culture made us feel as if we were in another country, yet we were still able to experience all the comforts of being in the United States. Check out our photo diary below!

By: Rachel Dichter

Enter Slideshow
  • Fairmont Kea Lani

    Fairmont Kea Lani

    We arrived at the Fairmont Kea Lani in Maui during a gorgeous sunset and were presented with beautiful leis and fresh POG juice (passionfruit, orange and guava). We soon came to learn that this drink is a staple in Hawaii, and we enjoyed it at almost every meal during our two-week trip.

    Photo courtesy of The Fairmont Kea Lani

  • Oceanfront Suite

    Oceanfront Suite

    Our suite had a beautiful master bedroom and bathroom, and a spacious living room with a couch and TV. Our king-size bed felt like heaven after months of wedding planning, partying all night at our reception, and traveling for 14 hours (room rates start at $499 per night, fairmont.com).

  • The Lanai

    The Lanai

    We immediately ran out to the lanai (balcony) to check out our view. We could see the Fairmont’s pools to our left and the ocean to our right. Maui is famous for its spectacular sunrises and sunsets, and it became a ritual to watch both from our lanai every morning and evening. 

  • Luxurious Amenities

    Luxurious Amenities

    Waking up the next day, we were ready to hit the beach and pool. The ocean felt like bathwater, and we relaxed on the beach for hours.

    We moved to the main pool's swim-up bar in the afternoon (the Fairmont has three pools in total). My favorite drink was the "Molokai Mule" (made of vodka and pureed ginger), and Steve sampled different craft beers from a local brewery, Kona Brewing Company. We ate our weight in fish tacos and stayed in the pool until dark. 

  • Haleakalā

    Haleakalā

    Next morning, we woke up at 3 a.m. to travel to the top of Haleakalā Volcano (elevation: 10,023 feet). The hour-and-a-half drive to the summit had steep, winding roads, and we were grateful that we chose to take a tour bus instead of making the trek ourselves.

    From 5:45 - 6:30 a.m., we watched the sky turn a hundred different colors before the sun finally rose. It was the most beautiful thing we'd ever seen — even Steve admitted it was worth waking up so early!

  • Haleakalā

    Haleakalā

    Even though it was 80 degrees Fahrenheit in Maui, it was 40 degrees cooler and very windy at Haleakalā's summit, which made for a surreal experience. Dress warmly — we bundled up with jackets and scarves, drank hot chocolate, and were still freezing! 

    Being the unadventurous type, we took the tour bus back down the volcano, but there was an option to ride bikes down, as well. 

  • Willow Stream Spa

    Willow Stream Spa

    After our Haleakalā adventure, we were ready for some relaxation. The Fairmont's Willow Stream Spa was voted the best spa in Hawaii by Travel & Leisure Magazine, so what better place to try our first-ever couples' massage? We opted for the Lomi-Lomi massage, a Hawaiian massage which includes long strokes from your neck down to your toes.

    The spa’s other amenities were amazing too: we enjoyed the mud masks, sauna, steam room, and rain-imitating showers.

    Photo courtesy of The Fairmont Kea Lani

  • Local Shopping

    Local Shopping

    We drove about 45 minutes away to a historic town called Lahaina, which means "relentless sun" in Hawaiian, to do some souvenir shopping. We sampled authentic Hawaiian cuisine, including shaved ice and pokē (cuts of fresh fish). We bought Hawaiian shirts, straw hats, and freshwater pearls as mementos for our friends and relatives.

  • Luau

    Luau

    A major highlight of our Maui trip was going to a traditional luau in Lahaina called The Feast at Lele. Hula dancers performed traditional dances from the Pacific Islands of Hawaii, New Zealand, Tahiti, and Samoa. During each cultural dance, waiters served us food indigenous to that island. At the end of our four courses, they served miniature desserts from each island, with a special "congratulations" message for honeymooners.
  • The Feast at Lele

    The Feast at Lele

    We observed how the culture, outfits, and food vary greatly from one island to the next, despite their proximity to one another. The performances culminated in an exciting fire-throwing finale!

  • Snorkeling Cruise

    Snorkeling Cruise

    Another highlight of our trip was a snorkeling cruise we took with the Pride of Maui tour company. The weather and sightseeing were spectacular. Not only did we see tons of fish and sea turtles but we were fortunate to have a pod of hundreds of dolphins pass our boat and flip in the waves around us!

    If you travel from mid-December through April, there are whale-watching cruises, which are supposed to be exceptional, as well.

     

  • Five-Star Dining

    Five-Star Dining

    While we were at the Fairmont, we sampled all of the restaurants on the resort: Nick’s Fish Market, The Kea Lani Restaurant, Ama, and Ko. Each restaurant was spectacular.

    Our favorite dish was called opah, also known as moonfish. It's a rich, flaky fish that is very popular in Hawaii and Southern California, and we enjoyed it at almost every restaurant on the property.

    Photo courtesy of the Fairmont Kea Lani

  • Romantic Twilight Dinner

    Romantic Twilight Dinner

    The most memorable dining experience from our honeymoon was the Romantic Twilight Dinner at Ko, on our last night in Maui. We ate sushi, fish dishes, and lava cake for dessert, and we had a bottle of wine.

    The setting was incredibly romantic: Steve and I sat in a candlelit cabana by the Fairmont's adult pool. At $430 per couple (including tax and tip), the four-course dinner was a splurge but we will treasure that night forever.

    Photo courtesy of The Fairmont Kea Lani

  • Romantic Twilight Dinner

    Romantic Twilight Dinner

    We were able to choose what we wanted for each course out of three or four options from a pre-selected chef's menu. When we finished and couldn't take another bite, our waitress gave us keepsake menus tied with a beautiful hibiscus flower to take home with us.
  • The Trip of a Lifetime

    The Trip of a Lifetime

    We absolutely loved our honeymoon in Maui. Coming from New York City, Maui’s relaxing pace was perfect for us; we enjoyed that we were able to relax with drinks on the beach but also go sightseeing and do tons of activities.

    In fact, we loved our trip so much that when we got home and bought a puppy, we named her Kona, which means "lady" in Hawaiian. Now, we will always think of our amazing trip!

Real Honeymoon Story: Maui

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