DH and I planned our entire honeymoon on our own using a guide book and the internet. Our trip was amazing!
Hawaii The Big Island Revealed and Oahu Revealed guidebooks from Wizand Publications Inc: A++++
These guidebooks were amazing! There were reviews of hotels, restaurants, and activities. It also included descriptions, directions, and suggestions for all sorts of drives, activities, beaches, and other off the beaten track things to do. We discovered so many cool places using these books. Particularly on the Big Island, we saw tons of people with this book, even locals! If you are going to any island of Hawaii, get one!
Best Western Coconut Waikiki: A
This hotel is a few blocks from Waikiki Beach on the canal. It was within walking distance to tons of restaurants and shops. The hotel was pretty simple, but including a nice breakfast in the morning. The room was clean and bright with a good size balcony. The bathroom was also clean and a descent size. Both appeared to be recently renovated. The staff was also nice and helpful!
Volcano Village Lodge B&B in Volcano on the Big Island: A+
The B&B was beautiful, luxurious, and relaxing! It was located in the rainforest just a couple of miles from the entrance to Volcanoes National Park. It was the perfect retreat for a few days. The buildings were all wood and glass and, despite being close together, it was very private. Each afternoon a basket of snacks was left on the table and a nice breakfast was put in the fridge. There was a toaster oven, microwave, fridge, and coffee maker in the room. Each cabin also had its own private entrance and deck.
Royal Kona Hotel in Kona: B+
The location of this hotel was the best. It was a 2 minute walk to all the shops and restaurants in Kona, which feels like a beach town. The hotel was right on the bay and had perfect spots to view the sunset and all of the water sports activities going on. The room was simple and clean but pretty basic. The bathroom was very small. Although there was a bar, restaurant, and luau at the hotel, we chose to go into town most of the time. We watched the sunset from the bar one night and the drinks were pretty bad- some tasted like soap. They did not charge us the full bill though.
We loved all of our activities and highly recommend them. They all get a top score! We definitely took advantage of our Jeep that we rented to get around to do as much as we did! We also drove around to a bunch of beaches, did small hikes and drove off road. Most of the places we went were suggested in our guidebooks.
Pearl Harbor (USS Arizona, USS Missouri, USS Bowfin)
Romy's Shrimp Shack
Volcanoes National Park
Paradise Helicopter Tour: Extreme Doors Off Waterfalls and Volcanoes tour
Captain Zodiac snorkeling and dolphin tour
Big Island Eco Adventures ziplining
Summit of Mauna Kea (we drove to the top ourselves to see the sunset)
If you are planning and have any questions, let me know!