Your bags are packed and ready, you’re excited with anticipation, it’s almost time your Hawaiian vacation! Now comes the most important decision of the entire trip, do you book a sunrise or sunset photo session to capture these memories? Okay, I know it’s not actually the most important choice of your vacation, but it is a questions we as photographers often get asked. Now being that we’re a photography company based in Hawaii the most popular time slot will always be sunset. However, there really are some factors to think about before automatically booking an evening shoot.

You really need to consider what you want out of your photos because both morning and evening provide lovely lighting for your pictures, just different. At sunrise, the sky tends to be more vibrantly blue, the ocean and palm trees more vivid. While evening casts a warmer glow on everything, the colors become soft and romantic, and if you’re lucky enough, you’ll even get a spectacularly painted sky of vibrant oranges and soft pinks for your background.

Vibrant Hawaiian Colors

Sunrise vs Sunset

Other than just the look of your photos, there are a few other things to ponder on. Are you a family with small children traveling to Hawaii? If so, then I’d recommend a morning session. With the traveling and the time difference, kids tend to be more alert in the morning hours. They also haven’t had a chance to splash around in the pool all day, tiring themselves out with the day’s activities which usually leads to them groggy eyed for their family portraits. I also personally think that the colorful dawn of day fits nicely with the natural liveliness of children.


Playful Children at Sunrise

Now if you’re a couple looking for a lovely, muted, and romantic setting, then sunset is definitely for you. Once the sun begins to reach the horizon, romance and love are set free and silhouettes are captured.


Silhouette at Sunset

Regardless, in the end of it all, no matter what time you choose, you won’t be disappointed in the photos from either.

– written by Laurel (Marriott Waikoloa Beach Hotel)