Putting the 'I' in Hawaii
NAVIGATING through swarms of googly-eyed honeymooners takes commitment.
But that's exactly what I was doing on my recent - solo - jaunt to Hawaii, an island paradise consistently rated among the world's top five Most Romantic Honeymoon Destinations by insiders at places like The Knot and the Travel Channel.
While I may not have had a besotted swain by my side, I discovered that Hawaii is actually a terrific place to travel alone. As is usually the case with solo travel, the ability to change course on a whim, without having to check in with anybody, opened the door to adventure and new experience.
Of course there a few little hiccoughs along the way - all imminently surmountable when one is, after all, traveling in paradise.
Once or twice I felt a little conspicuous, like at the statue of surf god Duke Kahanamoku along Waikiki's main drag on the island of Oahu. A favorite photo stop for honeymooners, I gamely took a bunch of pics for duos until I finally posed alone with Duke, happy as a surfer clam.
In the funky little Maui town of Paia, a plethora of goods aimed at starry-eyed couples included a "Just Maui'd" sign that made me feel a tad queasy. But it wasn't anything an overpriced, locally made bathing suit from Love the Beach couldn't dispel.
Star Noodle, the stellar Asian fusion eatery in the Maui town of Lahaina, inspired the only moment of my trip where I really wished I had company - the better to try more dishes! As it was, I ordered for two and left half of my feast begrudgingly behind.
After I made it out alive from my nail-biting drive along Maui's west coast, I thought maybe it would have been romantic to share the experience with a special someone, sweaty hands clasped as we navigated the highway.
Then I thought, nah, much better to experience the thrills without a backseat driver second-guessing my Formula One moves.
- Beth D'Addono