Larry and I decided to go for a hike on Sunday - our last day of being fiancé and fiancée. We didn't want to risk getting sunburned on the beach on the day before our wedding and we thought some physical activity would be a good way to calm any pre-wedding jitters.
Our destination was Mariner's Ridge. When I was researching things to do on Oahu, I was lucky enough to stumble upon the most amazing travel blog/website: Unreal Hawaii. Not only does it feature some of the most beautiful photography I've ever seen, but the site is categorized into various activities on the islands (mostly Oahu, because that is where blogger/photographer David Chatsuthiphan lives) and his blog is hands-down the best travel resource I've ever found! I wanted to visit every location and try every activity that David photographed - he's really into outdoorsy stuff which is just the kind of stuff that Larry and I like to do on vacation. I read every single one of his hiking posts and his extremely helpful Beginner's Guide to Hiking Oahu, which recommends the following three hikes: Mariner's Ridge, Kuliouou Ridge, and Koko Head Crater. I took David's advice and our first hike was Mariner's Ridge - just as he suggested. (Big thanks to David - you are a fantastic virtual tour guide! We also ended up finding our wedding photographer through Unreal Hawaii - we are seriously indebted to this guy, so go check out his blog and follow him on Instagram - it will give you a daily dose of vacation, even if you're sitting in a cubicle.)
Anyway, the hike to Mariner's Ridge starts out in a residential neighborhood, which was a little disconcerting, but we quickly discovered a well-traversed trail up the mountain. It was definitely an uphill hike (my poor knees!), but of course this led to an amazing panoramic view of windward Oahu from the top.
Let's follow Larry up the mountain:
My favorite thing to do when visiting a new place is to get a view from the highest vantage point possible, and this one definitely did not disappoint! BAM:
We could see all the way to Waimanalo Bay and the beach we would get married on the next day:
Remember what I said about the windward side? It is windy. We took many unflattering (and hilarious) photos at the top:
(Now would be a good time to embrace messy hair!)
Then we hiked back down. Whew! I definitely had tired feet at the end of the day.
After a full day of soaking up the great outdoors and getting a little exercise, it was time to head back to the apartment to attempt to relax before the big day...
By "relax", I mean googling things like "how to walk in a wedding dress", "what if I get sunburned during my beach wedding" and trying to find an example of bridal hairstyles I liked on Pinterest at the eleventh hour. (I ended up letting my hair stylist do her own thing.) Everything worked out fine, but I can totally see why brides melt down before their weddings. I never would've survived planning a traditional wedding - this became more and more apparent in the days leading up to our ceremony. Simple was definitely best for us.