shot of margot and tony getting married at the alter with a tropical background

How to Plan for a Fall Hawaii Wedding

Summer is coming to a quick end, and fall is just around the corner. With that being said, it’s time to start preparing for all the fun fall festivities and activities- pumpkin patches, apple cider, weather changes, and warm undertones that radiate coziness. As an elopement photographer living in Hawai’i, I get a lot of questions around this time of year from couples wanting to elope during Oahu’s fall season. In this post, I’m sharing a few of my best tips on How to Plan for a Fall Hawaii Wedding.

black and white portrait of the wedding dress hanging and portrait of the bride getting ready while looking in the mirror

black and white shot of the mother of the bride fixing her dresses train

bride getting ready with her family

black and white portrait of the bride grabbing her dress

 

Working with the weather forecast

In many states, fall is notorious for being inconsistent regarding its weather forecast- Hawaii is similar in that aspect but not in the “typical” way you may have been thinking. Yes, Hawaii does have beach-enabling weather year-round; however, mother nature still likes to surprise us here and there. Knowing what to expect with Hawaii’s climate and having a backup plan is key to planning the perfect fall wedding!

Temperature

The average temperate during Hawaii’s fall months ranges from low to mid-80s. These moderate temperatures are only slightly a few degrees cooler than the tropical island’s typical climate in its summer months. For couples who may not be so accustomed to warmer weather, a fall wedding in Hawaii could likley be the perfect time!

Typical Rainfall

The fall season, especially the beginning of October, is considered the beginning of Hawaii’s “rainy season” (which can last up to late April). Don’t let this be a huge determining factor, though! Rain in Hawaii can be described as a “mild rainstorm,” which usually results in light rain that lasts no longer than 30 minutes, and many times only 5-10 minutes. As time gets closer to your fall wedding, aim to check the forecast more closely and make any needed adjustments to ensure your special day goes perfect. Check with your photographer to see if they are able to photograph in rainy weather (I have photographed many weddings and couples sessions in the rain, no problem!) or if a back up location may be needed (for eloping couples), and with your venue if there is an indoor space or tents to put up. 

shot of the bride adn groom hugging while looking at the ocean

groom is hugging the bride from the behind and kissing her forehead

bride and groom are holding hands and laughing together. black and white shot of the bride and groom kissing at the alter

portrait of the bride holding her bouquet on the beach

black and white shot of the bride and groom walking down the aisle

Hawaii visitors in the fall months

With tourism being one of Hawaii’s most prominent economic sectors, like any state, it still has its “slower,” less populated months. If you are trying to avoid larger crowds, fall is an excellent time to plan your wedding! It’s the in-between period where summer has just ended and big, upcoming holidays are still far away. That’s not to say that there are no visitors, but it increases your chances of having the intimate, fall wedding you’ve been dreaming of.

blurry candid of the bride playing with her dress at the beach

black and white shot of the groom getting his first look of the bride. portrait of the bride and groom embracing in a hug

bride and groom are holding hands and walking towards the trees

shot of the bride and groom of at the alter during their fall hawaii wedding

bride and groom are holding hands walking along the beach, bride is looking back and smilling at the groom

Waves during the fall season

Another highly known fact is that Oahu, specifically the North Shore, is home to some of the biggest waves you can surf. With that in mind, it may be less than ideal to try and plan your fall wedding if you want to jump in the ocean on that side of the island. The fall time is a shoulder season, so the wave size can really vary day to day. During the fall, the waves can potentially reach high swells but are nothing compared to what’s to come in winter. Because the waves can be unpredictable- I suggest checking the wave forecast through the web or through apps such as Surfline.

Snorkeling

Snorkeling is one of the most popular activities you can do on the island. There is nothing more magical than seeing all of the underwater creatures living in the Pacific. While snorkeling in the summer season is ideal because the waves aren’t as big, that’s not to say you have to avoid snorkeling during the fall!

As I mentioned, check the wave forecast in advance and plan snorkeling around that!

portrait of the bride. shot of the father of the bride walking her down the aisle

bride and groom are holding hands and walking along the beach with mountain scenery in the back

black and white shot of the groom fixing his jacket with a lei wrappeda around his neck

bride and groom are kissing and are standing in tropical green forestry

long shot of bride and groom holding hands while walking along shoreline

Favorite fall venues

Being an elopement and wedding photographer has allowed me to get to experience so many beautiful venues on the island, there really is something for everyone. Below are a few of my favorite wedding venues on Oahu that are perfect for those planning a fall wedding.

Koko Crater Botanical Garden

Located near Honolulu, Hawaii, the Koko Crater Botanical Garden is open from sunrise to sunset. This stunning garden is known for hosting rare, dryland plants you wouldn’t find anywhere else on the island- it almost looks like a piece of the Arizona desert was placed on the island! This particular venue makes for unique scenery to add to the beauty of your fall wedding.

Male’ana Gardens

If you desire to have a small intimate wedding/ elopement- this venue may be the one for you. Male’ana Gardens can be described as a luxurious spot for hosting magical weddings with unique beauty and a tranquil atmosphere, only offering services that cater to intimate weddings and elopements.

Hawaii Vista Weddings

A fruit and flower farm that offers up a stunning, picture-perfect backdrop for your fall wedding bridals. With the Manana Garden overlooking the forest and the Adventure Elopement Site showcasing the Waianae Mountains, Hawaii Vista Weddings does an amazing job of providing breathtaking views.

bride and groom are standing on the beach, encircled by trees and looking at the camera seriously

groom is kissing the bride on the forehead

blurry shot of the brides wedding dress on the beach

shot of bride and groom running along beach. black and white shot of groom kissing bride on the forehead

bride walking in front of groom on the beach

Planning your fall Hawaii wedding

As time gets closer to your fall wedding in Hawaii, remember that the most crucial thing with planning is to enjoy the process! Often couples get highly overwhelmed with ensuring that their arrangements go precisely as planned- which can lead to some high expectations that may not go exactly as you envisioned. One of the traits I love most about Hawaii’s culture is its laid-back, go-with-the-flow vibe. It’s always essential to have a solid game plan, but it’s also just as important to remember that sometimes the best things in life don’t go according to plan! Hawaii is truly a fantastic location to host a wedding centered around your love for you and your partner. There really is something for everyone here.

portrait of groom kissing bride on the forehead from the behind

black and white shot of palm trees

bride and groom are embracing in a hug and looking off at the mountains in the distance

black and white shot of bride and groom running along the beach and laughing together

shot of groom walking behind the bride as they walk along the shoreline

More Wedding/ Elopement Planning Resources

Check out my guide on how to elope in Hawaii

My best tips for planning a trip to Hawaii

Choosing the perfect florals for your wedding

groom is holding up the brides hands as he gets his first look at the bride

bride is holding the grooms hand and looking back at him

black and white shot of the bride and groom holding hands

 Check Out These Posts For More Hawaii, Venue Locations

Best South Shore elopement and intimate wedding venues

Best North and East Shore elopement and intimate wedding venues

 

Hey friend!

Hi! I’m Emily, a couples, elopement and brand photographer based on Oahu, Hawaii.
 
You want a stress free, meaningful, and inspired approach to photography-something creative but still refined. Comfortable, but still elegant. I deeply value every couple that I get to create with, and can’t wait to hear your vision and collaborate with you!