Hawaiian Weddings – The Ins and Outs of a Tropical Beach Wedding

best hawaiian weddings

Best ideas for Hawaiian weddings

Hawaiian weddings on the beach are your gateway to a breezy, chill ceremony that also has those cool nature vibes. However beautiful a beach wedding can be, there’s a lot to consider for a beach wedding that indoor ceremonies and receptions don’t have to contend with. Whether you’ve already started planning your beach wedding in Hawaii or are still in the dreaming phase, use this guide to help make your destination wedding into the dream it was meant to be.

top hawaiian weddings

Top Hawaiian weddings

To start, let’s tackle a few major questions.


  1. How important is privacy to you?
  2. Are you just having the ceremony on the beach, or the reception too?
  3. Do you have a wedding planner in Hawaii?


If you answered, “not very” for question number one, I have good news! Typically, Hawaiian weddings that aren’t too private.  It’s more of a community celebration, even if you’re from somewhere else.  Everyone is looking to celebrate, and in Hawaii, weddings are one of the local’s favorites. If you don’t mind some strangers on looking or snapping photos, or the slight risk of somebody crashing the wedding, there’s nothing to worry about in this regard. On the other hand, if you are concerned about privacy, it’s best to obtain a permit to rope off a part of the beach so you can have your privacy and quiet.  Most beaches are public.. in Hawaii 98 percent of beaches are public, even if they don’t have public access.. so that means someone unexpected could show up, but people are mostly polite and will avoid a situation where they’d be in the way.

Best hawaiian wedding photographers

Top hawaii wedding photographers

For question number two, there’s a lot to consider. Hawaiian weddings can be completely on the beach, but it’s hard to light them after the sun goes down.  While lighting for beach events vary, and having food and drink may complicate it. Having a great venue for your Hawaiian wedding can take care of all of this is, and is likely the ideal situation.  Most people opt to have a ceremony on the beach and save the party of the reception for somewhere that is made for it. Plus, without electric ease of access, getting a sound system and lighting out there isn’t the easiest or safest of tasks.  It makes it easy to have it all in one spot, but you can showcase more of the venue’s service and beauty by having a different location.


I hope the answer to the third question was yes, because having a wedding planner or coordinator that knows their way around a Hawaiian beach wedding is paramount. They’ll know the answers to all the questions you didn’t even know you needed to ask. They’re also vital for making sure you remember everything you need. For example, do you know what kind of shoes to wear or fabric to put down so your heels don’t sink into the ground? Did you remember sunscreen? Do you have somebody to act like a bouncer if your wedding is private? A planner is all of this and more. You might also want to consider a destination beach resort. Those resorts are pros at this by now and privacy is not a concern. Worth the price hike, in my opinion!

Top destination weddings in hawaii

Destination weddings in Hawaii

When considering Hawaiian weddings, there are a few other things to consider. Are you going at peak season or off season? Will the tide be in at the time of the wedding? Will your guests be able to hear your voices over the sound of the waves? Will anybody have trouble getting across the sand? Is it legal to have alcohol on the beach?  Making a few calls to venues and learning the different food and beverage minimums can also play a role.  They will also be able to tell you their recommended guest count, making sure your guests accommodations can be taken care of as well.  We’d recommend starting there before moving onto invitations.

hawaiian wedding ideas

Ideas for Hawaiian Weddings

However, once you navigate those concerns, Hawaiian weddings are so worth it. It provides an unforgettable beauty that speaks volumes to a couple’s love for each other.  Whether you’re on a beach or at one of Hawaii’s amazing venues, it’s sure to be a great event for all!

Getting married or know someone who is?  We’d love to be a part of it!  Drop us a line here to start your wedding experience.

Article by Clane Gessel Photography

Read more articles

San Francisco Wedding Destination <– –> Weddings at the Bently Reserve