Elope in Hawaii
The Ultimate Guide for Your hawaii elopement: locations, Marriage license info & permit price
If you're wanting to elope in Hawaii, welcome! I've created this helpful guide to help you learn all the tips and tricks for how to elope in Hawaii. In this guide, I'll be covering four of Hawaii's main islands - Big Island, Maui, Oahu, and Kauai - and recommend 3 locations for each island that offer high pay-off in views and a low commitment in hiking time or distance.
The Hawaiian Islands offer some of the most breathtaking scenery in the world, making them the perfect destination for an intimate and romantic wedding. From the lush rainforests of Kauai to the black sand beaches of the Big Island, the Hawaiian Islands offer a wide variety of stunning locations to exchange vows and start your new life together. Whether you're looking for a scenic beach setting, a hidden waterfall, or a peaceful hike, there's a location in Hawaii that will suit the experience and vibe you want!
Let's take a look at some of the best places to elope in Hawaii. But first, let me share about each island so you can get to know a bit about each one and feel out which one you might gravitate towards for your Hawaii elopement!
The Big Island
also known as Hawaii Island, is a truly special destination as it encompasses the raw power of nature. It is the youngest of all the islands, and therefore the most rugged! Big Island has the most black sand beaches and is truly such a special place. There are also cascading waterfalls, and the majestic Mauna Kea volcano which make this island an unforgettable experience. Kilauea volcano erupts frequently, so you can witness the immense power of nature up close and personal! Fun fact: you can see Maui from the Big Island!
offers a unique blend of adventure, relaxation, and natural beauty. The scenic road to Hana and the stunning landscapes of Haleakala Crater are popular destinations for adventurous souls! Maui has opportunities for whale watching, snorkeling, and hiking through lush tropical wilderness. If resorts are your vibe - there are a variety of options for relaxation, including spa treatments. The island's south side+ west side are ideal for snorkeling because of the calm waters, to scope out snorkel conditions, click here. If you want a local experience - I highly recommend going to the Saturday Farmers Market in Kula. The outdoor market features fresh, locally grown produce (get ready to try all the yummy tropical fruits) and handcrafted goods made by local artisans. The market is a great place to sample delicious local cuisine like: empanadas, fresh coconuts, ramen, acai bowls, poke bowls, listen to live music, and connect with the local community.
is a vibrant hub of culture, history, and entertainment. From the iconic surf spots of Waikiki to the historic landmarks of Pearl Harbor, Oahu. Explore Waikiki for its famous beaches, shopping, and nightlife, or delve into the rich history and cultural heritage of the island with visits to landmarks such as the Iolani Palace or the Bishop Museum. You can challenge yourself with a hike to stunning mountain vistas, like Diamond Head or Koko Head, or indulge in the local cuisine that showcases the island's diverse cultural influences. Oahu is a unique destination offering a fast paced island vibe for those that crave a perfect blend of nightlife & island adventures!
will LITERALLY take your breath away!! She is known as the Grandmother Isle and is truly a nature lover's dream come true. If you have limited time while on the island, just make sure explore Waimea Canyon & the Napali Coast, both locations are out of this world beautiful! Kauai is also renowned for its stunning beaches, such as Hanalei Bay, a popular spot for swimming, sunbathing, and surfing. I recommend trying new food (like taro donuts) at the food truck spot in Hanalei, SO yummy!
Aside from the beautiful, sacred landscapes, Kanaka Maoli (native Hawaiians), are what make the Hawaiian islands so special. To learn more about the negative impacts that colonization has had on Kanaka Maoli and their land, checkout the book, From a Native Daughter: Colonialism and Sovereignty in Hawai'i by Haunani- Kay Trask.
- Punalu'u Black Sand Beach - Truly stunning contrast of black sand against crystal clear waters. This beach is a Hawaiian gem with a permit fee of only $20.
- Kaimu beach - Another beautiful black sand beach on the Big Island, Kaimu offers a serene and intimate setting for your Hawaii elopement. The permit fee is $20.
- Pololū Trail - If you're looking for a breathtaking view and a little adventure, Pololū Trail is the perfect choice. The trail leads to a scenic overlook with panoramic views of the lush green valley and sparkling blue ocean. The permit fee for this location is $110.
- Wainapana Black Sand Beach - A beautiful location of black sand and turquoise waters, with a permit fee of $110, this location offers a serene and intimate setting (if you have a sunrise ceremony) for your Hawaii elopement.
- Waihe’e Ridge - This location offers breathtaking views of the surrounding valley and ocean, making it a truly unique and memorable place to elope. The permit fee for this location is $110.
- Twin Falls - Escape to a private and romantic waterfall oasis with Twin Falls. This private venue, located on the road to Hana but still very close to cute Paia town, offers epic jungle vibes with a permit fee of $100.
- Kahana Bay - Say your vows at the peaceful and picturesque Kahana Bay. With a permit fee of $110, this location offers breathtaking mountain views and a serene setting for your Hawaii elopement.
- Waimanaloa Beach Park - Exchange vows amidst the turquoise waters and super soft sand! Permit fee is $20.
- Kaena State Park - This location offers breathtaking views of the ocean and lush greenery with a permit fee of $110.
- Tunnels Beach - Absolutely epic mountain views from this beach, it does get quite crowded so I recommend a sunrise elopement to avoid big groups of people. Permit fee is $20.
- Hanalei Beach - This spot is surrounded by lush greenery and rolling hills. Permit fee is also $20 here!
- Kokee State Park - Truly a special place on the island of Kauai, only a select amount of trails are legal for photography in this state park- and only commitment ceremonies (exchange vows- but no officiating). This location offers breathtaking views of the surrounding valley and ocean with a permit fee of $110.
if you want to learn more about elopement photography in Hawaii, make sure to checkout my home page!
This is MEGA important! Hawaii has enough struggles with over-tourism causing negative impact on the land, the very least we could do is leave no trace. Here are the 5 principles we will be following on all of our adventures.
1. Plan Ahead and Prepare
2. Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces
3. Dispose of Waste Properly
4. Leave What You Find
5. Minimize Campfire Impacts
6. Respect Wildlife
7. Be Considerate of Other Visitors
© Leave No Trace: www.LNT.org
perfectly imperfect film photo's from my island adventures
How to apply for a hawaii marriage License
- Apply electronically, the cost is $65 USD, click here to apply.
- Click here
- Show up to your appointment with the Hawaii Agent and sign your marriage license. You will need to bring ID like a passport or Drivers license, but your Hawaii agent should remind you of documents you need to bring as well.
- Bring your marriage license on your wedding day to your ceremony, so it can be signed by the officiant.
- Your officiant will turn in your signed paperwork electronically and you will get your marriage certificate in the mail within a couple of weeks!
Eloping in Hawaii is a dream come true for many couples. Whether you choose the black sand beaches of Big Island, the breathtaking waterfalls of Maui, the serene beaches of Oahu or the lush greenery of Kauai, your wedding day will FORSURE be an unforgettable experience!
I sincerely hope this guide has provided you with the information you need to plan your perfect elopement in Hawaii.
ps: If you found this page helpful, make sure to visit my Hawaii Elopement Photography page