Last Updated on January 4, 2023 by Karma Hill
In this simple guide, you’ll find the best beaches and venues for the ultimate Oahu military wedding. Plus, we’ve included a ton of tips to help make your Big Day experience as easy as possible. From Hawaii military lodging and military discounts to scenic adventures, we’ve got your planning covered!
Oahu has the 4th largest military workforce in the country, with over 20,000 men and women proudly serving our islands. At Simple Oahu Wedding, we honor and deeply value the members and veterans of our armed forces. And to show our appreciation, we offer a 5% discount off of our base Oahu wedding packages!
Follow along as we go over a handful of our favorite Oahu wedding locations and highlight plenty of military perks!
In the heart of Makua, Yokohama Beach features pristine waters and white sands beneath the foothills of the Waianae Mountains. In Hawaiian “makua” translates to “parent.” Legend has it that this area is the place where humans first walked the earth.
Disney’s Aulani Resort is a quick car ride away from Yokohama Beach. This resort has everything you’d ever want in a Hawaii vacation. Pools, pools, and then some. Spas, hot tubs, and mellow bars. All are packaged in a nostalgic Disney theme to please the kids (and the kid inside you). Aulani is currently offering a 35% military discount for weekday stays from April 16th to June 11th, 2020. However, they’re likely to periodically offer deals throughout the years to come.
Situated on the dry and sunny Leeward Coast, this rustic area is spotted with small towns and rolling hills. With plenty of beaches and hole-in-the-wall gems to discover, Makua is a must-see destination for anyone wanting to experience the “real” Hawaii.
If you choose to say “I do” on this breathtaking shore, consider treating yourself to a mini-dinner reception. Discover unforgettable flavors at the world-renowned Roy’s or the Cattle Company Steakhouse.
Just minutes away from Yokohama Beach and near Kaena Point on the coastline, you can find the Makua Military Reservation (MMR). Located 18 miles from Schofield Barracks, this military training site boasts 4,856 acres and a helicopter landing pad. However, with no cabins or water facilities, this reservation is best suited for a brief visit rather than a stay-over.
Papailoa beach is one of the lesser-known beaches on Oahu’s North Shore. Situated near Waimea Bay and only a 20-minute drive from Turtle Bay Resort, this rustic beauty is the perfect locale for Military weddings on Oahu. Papailoa offers a break from the rush-and-go mentality of Honolulu. With powder-soft sands and a lava outcropping draped in emerald algae, the scenery will take your breath away.
If you’re a member of the Armed Forces Vacation Club, you can rent a room at Turtle Bay Resort starting at $2,959.99* for 7 nights. Booking a day or two at this high-end resort would allow you time to capture getting-ready photos before taking a short trip to the shore for your unforgettable Oahu wedding. *As of May 2020
Known for its paniolo (cowboy) charm, this area is covered in plantation fields with occasional roaming cattle. If you’re an outdoorsy couple, then there’s no shortage of things to do at this location! Go horseback riding on trails that overlook the spectacular forests at Sunset Ranch. Get your snorkel gear on and venture out to Shark Cove. Or hike up Waimea Valley to soak in the beauty of the indigenous greenery.
On the other hand, if you prefer the more relaxing luxuries of life, try crunching a couple of freshly roasted nuts at North Shore Macadamia, sip on a Mai Tai at the Toa Luau, or just grab a coffee and roam the many local art galleries. The North Shore is a great spot to let go of the stressors of life and just enjoy the days surrounding your Oahu wedding.
Situated on the coast of a small town, Waimanalo’s golden sands stretch for over 5 miles. The eastern-facing shore creates soft, luminous lighting during photo opts and vividly highlights the aqua waters and towering mountains.
Waimanalo is just minutes away from Bellows Beach, which offers military discounted cabin rentals, a military mini-mart, and a volleyball court and playground.
In addition, the Marine Corps at Kaneohe Bay boasts cottages, cabins, villas, and a waterfront lodge at affordable military rates. All of the 13 cottages in this pristine villa feature 2 bedrooms with queen beds, air conditioning, a full kitchen and living room, plus BBQ and patio areas. The Marine Corps is ideal for small or large groups and has unbeatable views of the northeastern shore.
Waimanalo town is less developed than Honolulu and offers a great reprieve from the hustle of the city.
If you love beach activities, then this windward location can’t be beaten! With an abundance of vivid coral reefs, Waimanalo is loaded with snorkeling opportunities. If you’re staying near Kaneohe Bay Base Marina, you can rent out their gear to engage in a variety of activities, from windsurfing to water skiing.
Best of all, this location is only a short drive from Sea Life Park. So you can schedule an after-wedding adventure to see the dolphins and feed the sea lions!
If you want Aloha spirit and an island oasis, then Paradise Cove Luau is perfect for your Oahu military wedding. With beachside or lawn ceremony options, this locale melds oceanfront with the comfort and ease of a venue.
If a reception is part of your dream wedding, then follow up the “I do” with their onsite luau. This wild adventure features Polynesian fire dancers, traditional food, and authentic Hawaiian games. As an extra bonus, special military discounts apply for luau receptions at this venue! We can get you in contact with their events organizer for more details.
The Pililaau Army Recreation Center is just a short drive from Paradise Cove Luau. Their modest but clean facilities are available in studio, 1 bedroom, 2 bedroom, or 3 bedroom options with access to a semi-private beach. Priced at $87 – $127 a night, the PARC is ideal for couples who want a simple place to rest. Why spend $300+ on a hotel when you can put it towards activities that create lasting memories?
Likewise, the Barber Point Beach Cottage offers cedar cabin rentals at White Plains Beach for military families. Located near the USS Arizona, these shoreside cabins range between $90 – $110 a day, with 1 and 2-bedroom options, including AC and washer/dryers.
Populated with high-end resorts and shopping complexes, the Ko’olina area is the perfect spot to indulge in modern luxuries. Go snorkeling and view the Leeward oceans or relax during a mud bath and Lomi Lomi massage. Or take a side trip to the Marina or one of the many golf courses in the area.
Be sure to take advantage of the close proximity to Pearl Harbor. A 20-minute drive will bring you right into the heart of this historic site. Tour the museum or visit Hickam Air Force Base or Fort Shafter as you salute the men and women who proudly serve our country.
While Oahu has a prominent public transportation system, we recommend using it for short trips based in Waikiki only. To get around the island, you’re probably going to want the convenience and flexibility of a rental car.
Hertz has a long history of providing great deals to military personnel. Other companies, including AVIS, also offer military discounts. It doesn’t hurt to shop around. You could also check out MVDC for better offers or browse the Hawaii Military Guide for more tips.
Unique Vintage offers a 10% military discount on their special online wedding section for women. The Banana Republic also gives a 15% military discount and can be found throughout the island of Oahu.
Helzberg Diamonds and Tiffany’s offer 10% off engagement rings and wedding bands for active-duty personnel and veterans. On top of that, the Waikiki strip is home to a gorgeous two-story Tiffany’s, both convenient and financially savvy!
This guide is just a peek at the beaches and venues we have to offer! As you’re planning your big day, come check out all of our beautiful Oahu wedding locations!
For more information and tips, check out our sister company’s Hawaii Marriage License guide.
Whether you’re stationed here or flying in with Space-A, we want your wedding to be as breezy as our island! Contact us today!
Karma Hill is the owner of Karma Hill Photography, Simple Maui Wedding and Simple Oahu wedding. Karma writes about weddings and photography in Hawaii.
Interested in hearing more about our Oahu wedding packages or have a question? We would love to hear from you!
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