I hope you are all doing well! This post has been a long time coming and I’m sure it’s been very anticipated by all of you! Thank you for your support and love, it means so much to me!
I am going to give you all a synopsis of our vacation and highs and lows that we experienced in case you decide you want to visit the big island some day, and then I will get into our special day, followed by a few recommendations for things to do if you decide to go visit!
We arrived on a Thursday night and went straight to our hotel because we were exhausted from traveling all day. I wasn’t expecting the island to be so dark during the night, but there aren’t many street lights so we couldn’t see much that night. Luckily we woke up to a beautiful view of the water the next morning from out hotel window.
We stayed at the Sheraton Kona Resort and Spa and it was lovely! The room was pretty basic, but the amenities that were offered (especially the pool) were killer and I definitely recommend this hotel if you ever decide to visit the island. Our first day we began at the pool which had an awesome “beach” area for kids to play in. So we brought Bauston there and he played and we relaxed in the sun. Later, we went to the beach and finished our day there. We went to a local bar called Lavern’s that night and danced and had a few drinks and it was a blast!
This was the scariest day of my life. I remember waking up to Sean saying “No, No. No” and I thought maybe someone famous had died or there was some sort of accident but I soon realized that there was an emergency alert that was sent out saying that a ballistic missile was on it’s way to Hawaii and to seek shelter immediately. I was in shock. I threw on pants and a sweatshirt and raced out of my room with Sean. Bauston had stayed over at my parent’s AirBnB so I was already in a panic that we were separated. I began hyperventilating. Sean asked the man at the front desk where to go and the man told us and a group of people that there was no protocol and at least we were with our loved ones. I immediately broke into tears. I didn’t have my son with me. This was the most hopeless feeling I will ever feel. Everyone in the hotel was running around, panicking. I called my parents and they told me that they didn’t have time to pick us up as we didn’t have our rental car yet and that we needed to get into position and that they would take care of Bauston. Sean had found a group of people who were looking for the best possible place to take shelter and scooped me off of the floor and brought me into the bathroom on the lowest level of the resort. It was there that we got the news that it was a false alarm and it was very hard to believe that we were actually safe. We stayed in the bathroom for another 15 minutes until we composed ourselves. I will never forget that feeling.
We continued our day and went to the east side of the island where is was wet and cold and foggy in comparison to the West side of the island. We saw waterfalls and a volcano and it was beautiful! was it worth spending 10 hours in a car? I don’t think so, but if sightseeing is your thing, you may think otherwise.
The next day was the day of our renewal and it was such a beautiful day! We separated in the morning and Sean spent some of the day at the beach relaxing before he got ready. I spent the day drinking mimosas with my sister and best friend and getting ready!
We originally decided to have the renewal at a small beach by Sean’s mom’s hotel but he called me last minute and said that the space we had planned on having out ceremony was occupied, so I immediately looked for another beach area and found one fairly quickly and we met there for our first look! The day was everything I could have wanted and more! I’m so happy that we finally got to celebrate and have a real wedding experience.
After our ceremony we went to a Luau (I know, call us tourists). It was actually really fun and everyone had a great time.
I was finally the wedding experience we had always wanted. Well, I guess that I’ve always wanted. I feel so full and so thankful to everyone who helped us out!
Wedding Attire Details:
Dress: Sarah Seven- Venice- A & Bé Bridal Salon
Flowers: Insta- Ocean_dreamerr
Hair- Zala Hair Extensions (use code ‘ELLAA4ZALA’ for a discount)
I know you’re probably tired of a day by day summary of our vacation so I’m just going to share a few recommendations for things you must do if you decide to visit the big island.
San Francisco Bay Coffee Bar
These are the only three places I was truly impressed with. Everywhere else was alright. Don’/t bother with any of the Mexican places, especially if you live somewhere with great Mexican food like Colorado.
Lavern’s Sports Bar
Friday and Saturday nights are lit with a DJ and dance floor, definitely the most exciting bar in the area, unless your over the age of 50, and like 70s cover bands.
Ocean’s Bar and Grill was also fun and I heard they have a dance floor on the weekends as well.
Unfortunately the beaches aren’t very “beachy” but we managed to find a beautiful little white sand beach called Manini’owali Beach (Kua Bay), but be sure to bring your sun screen. We got fried after a few hours in the sunshine. The water was blue and beautiful and definitely worth the drive and the walk from the parking lot. Be sure to arrive early (before 10) to ensure a good parking spot.
Sheraton Kona Pool
The pool at the hotel we stayed at was lovely and I wish we had spent more time there.
Magic Sands Beach
This little beach was a fun place to hang out for a few hours but it definitely gets crowded and there are a lot of rocks.
Sheraton Kona Resort and Spa
I guess we don’t have a ton of experience staying anywhere else, but the resort we stayed at was beautiful. Like I mentioned before, the pool was great. If you decide to stay there, definitely pay extra for breakfast every morning. We loved waking up and making our way to the restaurant in the mornings and dining next to the waves crashing onto the lava rocks. And the food was great too, there was a lot of options so you could definitely switch up your first meal everyday.
We were so lucky to be able to experience everything we did and I can’t thank everyone enough who made it possible!
Thank you for reading today and I love you all so much! Have a fabulous week!