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6 Rookie Mistakes to Avoid on Your First Trip to Hawaii

6 Rookie Mistakes to Avoid on Your First Trip to

6 Rookie Mistakes to Avoid on Your First Trip to Hawaii

Thinking about planning a vacation to Hawaii? You’re not alone. Almost 10 million tourists chose Hawaii as their paradise vacation destination in 2018. 

But, not everything about Hawaii is paradise. Just like any other vacation destination, there are a variety of rookie mistakes that could ruin your first trip to Hawaii. 

In the land of sunshine, rainbows, and beaches, a lot can go wrong. Keep reading to learn what not to do on your first trip to Hawaii.

1. Forgetting the Sunscreen

Nothing ruins a vacation quicker than a sunburn on the first day of your trip. For this reason, locals often recommend not spending your first day in the sun. 

You may be tempted to start enjoying the beach right away, but the sun in Hawaii is harsher than most places around the world. For this reason, give your skin and body a little time to get used to the climate before sunbathing or swimming. 

Instead, spend your first day exploring the local town. Talk to locals, visit some shops, and eat authentic Hawaiian cuisine.

When you are ready for the beach, make sure you’re using the right sunscreen. Pack a sunscreen that’s at least 30 SPF, you’ll still get a tan without getting the dreaded sunburn. Remember to reapply this often throughout the day. 

Hawaii recently passed a sunscreen ban that goes into effect in 2021, but we suggest you abide by their recommendations now. Make sure your sunscreen does not contain the reef-damaging chemicals oxybenzone and octinoxate. This helps ensure that the coral reefs will remain healthy for years to come. 

2. Taking Souvenirs From the Beach

If it’s your first time to Hawaii, you may be tempted to grab a free souvenir from the beach. 

Many island beaches enforce fines for people who take lava rocks or sand from the beach. If every tourist who visited Hawaii took a lava rock or a bottle of sand, the scenic beaches wouldn’t be the same. 

Even more convincing than a fine is the story of the Hawaiian Deity Pele. For years, people who take items from the beach find themselves subject to bad luck until they return the item. Locals believe Pele, the creator of the Hawaiian Islands, is responsible for the bad luck. 

So to protect your wallet and your karma, buy your souvenirs from a store.

3. Not Following Local Laws

Hawaii has a plethora of weird local laws that tourists wouldn’t know about. 

For example, in Hawaii, it’s illegal to have more than one alcoholic drink in front of you at one time. While it may be tempting to order two drinks after finally getting the bartender’s attention, don’t risk it! Instead, order one drink at a time and follow the local law. 

Even the fundamentals of prosecuting crimes in Hawaii are different than in other states. If you find yourself arrested for breaking any weird local laws, make sure you find yourself a Hawaii defense attorney. They’ll help you navigate the Hawaii judicial system quickly so you can get back to enjoying your vacation. 

4. Staying at the Resort

It happens all the time, tourists spend months researching the best island to visit in Hawaii for the first time. They find a ton of amazing activities on the different islands and write out a daily itinerary. But, when they arrive, they never actually step foot off their resort. 

Hawaii resorts are amazing with a lot of amenities and entertainment options during your trip. While there may be enough activities to keep you busy at the resort, don’t fall into the temptation of staying onsite the whole time. When you do this, you’re missing out on the local culture, personalities, and everything the islands have to offer. 

Instead, make it a point to spend at least one full day outside the resort. Find a local town to explore, hike a scenic trail, or drive to a unique beach. No matter what you do, you’ll have a more authentic Hawaii experience than your resort offers. 

5. Ignoring Swimming Safety 

Swimming in a pool and swimming in the ocean are two totally different things. And swimming at a Hawaii beach is a unique experience altogether. 

To swim safely, never swim alone. Even if you were on the swim team in high school, swimming alone is just foolish. Instead, always have a swimming buddy or someone on the beach keeping a lookout to make sure you’re okay. 

Then, make sure you pay attention to posted signs or flags referring to the water’s condition. Not all beaches have lifeguards and it can be hard to tell if the water is safe to swim in or not. These signs and flags will warn you about dangerous shore breaks or rip currents. 

6. Saying You’re From the USA 

When someone asks where you are from, do not — under any circumstances — say that you are from the US, USA, or the states. Many times people forget that Hawaii is part of the USA and make this mistake.

Not only is your answer unhelpful, but it’s also rude to locals. Instead, always respond with the state your from. Also, avoid using phrases like the midwest or east coast as these phrases only take the contiguous United States into consideration. 

Make the Most of Your First Trip to Hawaii

By avoiding these things, you can help make the most of your first trip to Hawaii.

But remember, if you do end up making a mistake, don’t let it ruin your whole trip. Brush off the mistake, apologize to anyone you may have offended, and move on. You’d have to try really hard not to enjoy a trip to paradise. 

Looking for more great advice before you head to Hawaii? Bookmark the Travel and Leisure section of this site and check back often for new content. 


10 Cities You Need to Visit on Your Trip to France

10 Cities You Need to Visit on Your Trip to

10 Cities You Need to Visit on Your Trip to France

Did you know that France is the most visited country in the world?

France is a magical and romantic place, full of lush plains, snowy mountains, and beautiful coastlines.

As spoken by Ernest Hemingway: “If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast”.

In truth, almost anywhere in France will leave a grand impression on your for the rest of your life, from Paris to villas in Saint-Tropez.

The country of France is full to the brim with cities to discover, and an entirely unique culture to enjoy.

In planning a trip to France, consider including some cities besides Paris to your list. With a diverse geography of 248,573 square miles, you won’t get disappointed.

Read on to learn ten destinations in France that may surprise you with their beauty.

1. Nice

This coastal town is well-known, and once was a hot-spot for British aristocrats. Its location on Cote d’Azur makes it ideal for a beach getaway.

Be sure to soak up the sunshine in this temperant environment, perhaps before taking a dip in the clear blue sea.

Nice also occurs delicious seafood cuisine, nightlife, and a charming old-town full of history, and is reason enough to take a trip to France.

2. Champagne

The name of this lovely town says it all. It is in fact, known for some of the best champagne in the world.

In France, the only sparkling wines allowed to hold the label “Champagne” must be from this region, by law.

That said, France takes this beverage seriously. Come to sample this historic beverage, and stay to enjoy the quaint towns in this region.

3. Marseille

The city of Marseille, known as a casual and interesting city, with history at every corner.

But, take notice the more modern, hip additions like street performers and artistic exhibitions during your trip to France.

This city is also known as a melting pot, and as such has a multiculturalism about it. Enjoy the museums, architecture, and the cuisine in this picturesque city.

4. Lyon

If you or someone you are traveling with is a foodie, you must go to Lyon. Lyon, considered the unofficial foodie capital of France, is heaven for your taste buds.

The city also offers a light festival, museums, churches, Roman ruins, and plenty of shopping to keep up with the French Fashionistas.

It is the perfect destination to get a taste a France. As a tip for your stay, learn to slow down. The French are notorious for living slowly, and with pleasure in each moment.

5. Saint-Tropez

Saint-Tropez is a quaint little seaside town, full of villas in Saint-Tropez and cobblestone streets.

The location is perfect to explore the coastal scenery and hop from beach to beach. In addition, make sure you explore the various fishing villages in the area, as it is hard to find fresher seafood.

Consider looking into villas in Saint-Tropez when planning the trip, as this luxurious destination is not one to miss.

6. Riquewihr

A charming village nestled on the eastern side of France that is the setting that inspired the creation of Beauty and the Beast.

The age of the city is quickly realized as you wander the cobblestone streets, surrounded by 15th-century structures.

Better yet, take the time to notice the different colored buildings, as legend says this represented the type of business long ago.

7. Chamonix

The city of Chamonix is truly a winter wonderland, perfect for snuggly nights by the fire with hot chocolate and French wine.

It is ideal for those interested in skiing and was even the site of the first winter Olympics in 1924.

From hiking to skiing to mountain climbing, it is a nature-lovers heaven. However, don’t fret about isolation, the neighboring areas are bustling with life and French cuisine.

8. Carcassonne

The ancient town of Carcassonne looks like a fortress from a mystical tale. It is a completely fortified town, complete with an entire city within it.

However, inside it is fairly modern, but with ancient and medieval history at every corner.

Be sure to check out both La Cit? and the lower city, Ville Basse. The two towns, connected by Pont-Neuf and Pont-Vieux bridges, are a must visit.

9. Normandy

Normandy is in the Northern part of France and is often remarked to be housing two different places in one.

It’s lush green countrysides on one side and rough, choppy water of the English Channel on the other make it seem otherworldly.

The region has plenty to do, including food, history, and architecture. Be sure to check out Mont Saint Michel and the D-Day Beaches.

The chalk cliffs are another noteworthy sight to see. As well, don’t forget to sample Norman cheese and clams during your trip to France.


Toulouse is one of the most popular destinations for students, and is also known as the “Pink City” or Ville rose in French.

There are many different squares in the town, and it is perfect for drinking and laughing with fellow travelers.

There is also a well-known Japanese Garden near the city center, which can help soothe you during your stay in this robust city.

The Key to Having the Best Trip to France

The country of France is beautiful as a whole, and your trip is maximized if you visit cities outside of Paris.

In addition, the villas in Saint-Tropez provide the most luxurious lifestyle you can imagine, which is only increased by the quaint atmosphere.

Take your time to savor the fresh seafood, relish every sip of fabled wine, and laugh often.

The French are many things, good and bad, but more than anything they truly understand the power of pleasure.

If you are saving for a trip to France, be sure to check out our post on content marketing to boost your sales long term and take that dream vacation.


8 Places You Can’t Miss on Your Next Trip to Italy

8 Places You Can't Miss on Your Next Trip to

8 Places You Can’t Miss on Your Next Trip to Italy

Along with England, Italy is one of the hottest tourist spots in Europe.

The country has something for everyone: history, rich culture, famous art, breathtaking views, and amazing cuisine. From Florence and Tuscany to Milan and Venice, the vacation destinations are endless — which can be kind of overwhelming!

Excited for your next trip to Italy but not sure where to start with planning?

We’ve compiled a list of the eight places you can’t miss on your next trip to Italy, so you can get the most out of your fabulous Italian adventure!

Where To Go For Your Trip To Italy

1. Milan

Milan is one of the fashion capitals of the world, known for its designer shops and unrivaled style. If you’re someone who loves shopping, Milan is the place for you.

It’s also a great city for art and music lovers, as it’s home to Da Vinci’s famous painting, The Last Supper, as well as the iconic La Scala Opera House.

2. Amalfi Coast

The stunning beauty of the Amalfi Coast makes it a non-negotiable stop for any tourist. The 30-mile coastline showcases stunning cliffs, beautiful bays, lemon tree gardens, and multi-colored villas.

Tip: If you’re a couple looking for a romantic getaway, stop by the city of Positano. The coastal city has beautiful pebbled beaches and incredible mountain views.

3. Venice

Known as the “City of Romance”, Venice is one of the most beautiful and romantic cities in Italy. The city has incredibly unique architecture with hundreds of footbridges and boat canals connecting the floating city.

Tip: If you choose to visit Venice on your trip to Italy, make sure you take a Gondola ride!

4. Florence

Florence is the ultimate destination for any art lover. The city, which houses over half a dozen art museums, was an influential place during the Italian Renaissance.

It’s also home to the Duomo, the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, which is known for its gravity-defying dome.

5. Cinque Terre

The Cinque Terre is an isolated string of five fishing villages located on the Italian Riviera. With breathtaking harbor views and beautiful cliffs, Cinque Terre is the perfect place to relax, recharge, and sight-see.

6. Vatican City

Covering just over 100 acres, Vatican City is the smallest country in the world governed by the pope. From the Vatican Museums to St. Peter’ Basilica, Vatican City is a place unlike any other.

If you’re visiting Vatican City on your trip to Italy, you need to visit Sistine Chapel. It’s renowned for its Renaissance art, especially for the “Creation of Adam”, painted by Michelangelo.

7. Pompeii

In 7.9 A.D., the bustling town of Pompeii was destroyed by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius. Today, its one of the world’s most visited archaeological sites in the world.

Pompeii is rich with history and has a great archaeological museum for travelers who find its tragic background fascinating.

Tip: Before you leave, make sure to check out Mount Vesuvius in the distance. While it may have destroyed the city, it also preserved it.

8. Rome

If you’re not sure where to visit, Rome is a great place to start. From the Colosseum, where gladiators fought to the death, to the Pantheon, where Rome’s kings were buried, the city is full of incredible spots.

Here are a few tourist spots you should check out in Rome:

  • Roman Forum
    Trevi Fountain
  • Piazza Navona

Ready for Your Trip to Italy?

Italy is the perfect place for any beginner traveler or seasoned explore. It has something for everyone.

Whether you’re looking to relax in Cinque Terre or shop til you drop in Milan, Italy is an excellent choice for your next European adventure.

Have you been to Italy? Any tourist spots we left out? Let us know in the comments!


5 Quirky Things to Do on Your Trip to London

5 Quirky Things to Do on Your Trip to London

5 Quirky Things to Do on Your Trip to London

In a heavily tourist-trafficked city like London, sometimes the best experiences the area has to offer are off the beaten path.

Take your travels to the next level with these insider tips on the best quirky things to do in London and then share your experiences with the world!

Check out these 5 cool stops on your next trip to London:

Visit God’s Own Junkyard

This little treasure trove boasts the largest collection of vintage and neon signs in all of Europe.

God’s Own Junkyard is the brainchild of artist Chris Bracey. Bracy is renowned as the “Neon Man” and has amassed a cult-like following over the last 37 years.

The art featured at the Junkyard features new and used neon signs ranging from old movies props, retro displays, circus lighting, and salvaged vintage neons.

Climb Big Ben

With 334 steps to get to the top, everyone’s inner fitness freak will be incredibly pleased to take on this nontraditional workout with a view.

Once you reach the top of Elizabeth Tower where the clock bell is, you’ll have a beautiful view of Westminster Bridge and the surrounding area.

This is an inexpensive, fun way to get a beautiful view that most people aren’t aware is available!

Enjoy the Nightlife at Scandal London

Scandal Club London is a cool, sexy way to experience the nightlife that London has to offer.

The club combines the classiness of London’s Mayfair with the rather seedy vibes of Amsterdam’s Red Light District.

Features like an entrance with tasseled curtains, a large VIP area, and a sunken dance floor complete with cabaret-style dancers pull together a cohesively decadent atmosphere.

Detour to the House of Dreams

Another unconventional display of art, the House of Dreams is the home of artist Stephen Wright that features a house-wide mosaic of recycled and repurposed goods.

Wright is an artist and textile designer with over 3 decades of experience in the scene and has been creating his little House of Dreams since the 90’s.

The entirety of the first floor of the house, as well as the garden and exterior, have been slowly turned into one giant sculpture with every available inch of wall, floor, and ceiling space covered in art.

The House is only open to the public for a handful of days a year, so plan your trip accordingly. This isn’t a place you want to miss.

Experience Magic at Platform 9 3/4

The Harry Potter series, which has tens of millions of fans from all over the world, is partially played out in London. That means if you happen to be one of those millions of fans, this is your chance to live out a little bit of fantasy.

Let your nerdy side out to play by visiting the famed Platform 9 3/4 at King’s Cross station and experience a little bit of the magic that Harry and his pals do.

There are Many Quirky Things to do in London!

Use your insider knowledge of these quirky things to do in London to make your next trip one for the books.

Which stop is at the top of your list?

Comment and let us know!