Your Honeymoon: Where Do You Start?
Congratulations! After months of planning for the wedding, it’s finally time to start your new life together. What better way to celebrate then with an indulgent, fabulous honeymoon? But where do you go? There are many options that appeal to all levels of budget and activity. Want an adventure or peace and quiet? Want something close to home or exotic? Our top 10 honeymoon destinations are below – with something for everyone!
#1 Portofino, Italy – This beautiful sea-side town, built on a hillside along the Northwest coast of Italy will enchant its visitors. Enjoy walks by the harbor, time on the patio overlooking the town or enjoying a fabulous authentic meal. Our pick for a honeymoon: Hotel Splendido on the hillside overlooking the town. Best times to visit: May through October.
#2 Paris – The City of Light – The City of Love, Paris has many nicknames, but it’s truly an extraordinary city to share with your special one. A trip up the Eiffel Tower, a sunset cruise on the River Seine, fabulous dining, walking hand in hand along the Champs-Elysees and so much more. This is a cosmopolitan favorite. Our pick: Hotel George V. Best times to visit: May through October.
#3 St. Lucia – This beautiful unspoiled island is in the Caribbean but may make you think of the South Pacific with its French and British influences. Known for its beaches, nightlife and shopping, this location is perfect for the couple looking for a tropical retreat. Our pick: Sandals Grande St. Lucian Spa and Beach Resort. Best times to visit: year-round.
#4 Hawaii – A tropical paradise, but still part of the United States. It offers the comfort of domestic travel while feeling a world away. There are no bad choices of islands in this tropical chain but a favorite of honeymooners is the island of Kauai – the Garden Isle. Here you have the option to adventure, spend quiet time on the beach or both with zip-lining, snorkeling, horseback riding and other activities at your fingertips. Our pick: Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort and Spa. Best time to visit: year-round.
#5 Tahiti – This beautiful, mysterious South Pacific island offers a special treat for honeymooners – over-water bungalows. These bungalows are private and exotic, offering ocean views, breakfast delivered by canoe and posh accommodations. Our pick: Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort and Spa. Best time to visit: year-round.
#6 Greek Isles – Set sail on a yacht between the Greek Isles. You’ve heard their names all of your life and now is the time to see these famous, ancient locations. Bathed in sunlight, the white and blue buildings cling to the hillsides of these islands – Athens, Mykonos, Rhodes, Santorini and more. Our pick: Windstar Cruises from Athens to Istanbul, Turkey. Best time to visit: Summer and Fall.
#7 Mexico – Closer to home, but exotic nonetheless, resorts on the Mexican Riviera can cater to any honeymoon wish. Warm sand, beautiful blue water and great local culture this destination is spectacular. Our pick: Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun – an adults-only paradise. Best time to visit: year-round.
#8 Cruise – This category is as diverse as the couples searching for honeymoon destinations. You can find a smaller ship with destinations targeting those wishing to learn more about the ecology of a particular area, or a bigger ship with all the entertainment and luxury options available. From river cruising in Europe, a sailing on rivers in China, an ocean-liner in the South Pacific, a Mediterranean cruise visiting fabulous ports, or a Caribbean cruise sailing from one gorgeous patch of blue water to another. There really is something for any taste here. Our pick: Celebrity Cruises. Best time to visit: depends on the destination but options are available year-round.
#9 Walt Disney World – This destination offers fun, and while the theme parks are certainly a draw for some couples, you can do so much more at Disneyworld. Fine dining at a AAA Five Diamond Award winner, Victoria and Albert’s, a carriage ride around the grounds of a southern plantation, time at one of their fine spas or time by the pool are all options if you honeymoon at this destination. Our pick: Disney’s The Grand Floridian. Best time to visit: year-round.
#10 African Safari – And now for something really wild! Inspired by the adventure of a photo safari or great love stories like Out of Africa, start your married life off together on safari. Tour with an intimate group and see those animals you have always dreamed of seeing like elephants or giraffes in the wild, or witness the migration of the water buffalo. You’ll spend your nights in luxurious camps with electricity and running water and your days will be spent out on safari watching for sights you can only imagine. Our pick: A customized tour from Kensington Tours. Best time to visit: year-round.
Now that you have chosen your dream honeymoon here are some tips on Packing for that magical trip provided by Fodor’s.
- The early bird special. Start planning early and your travel agent can help you find the perfect place within your budget. They will also help you know what the airline carrier’s baggage rules are, health advisory, travel advisory. Inside tip: Call your credit card companies to inform them of your plans.
- Play Doctor. Not the most romantic thing to think about but neither is getting sick on your dream honeymoon. Pack pain relievers, cold remedies, allergy medication, nausea relief, anti-diarrhea meds, sunscreen, aloe, hand sanitizer tissues and bug repellent. Inside tip: if you’re traveling someplace remote your travel agent will be able to tell you what necessary shots are needed in advance to traveling.
- Yours, Mine and Ours. Hedge your bets just in case one of your luggage pieces gets lost. Cross pack. Inside tip: Carry-on bag has your own essentials, like medication; never pack this in your suitcase.
- A couple that weighs together stays together. When it comes to packing, less is more. Just bring your necessities. Choose one outfit for each day or occasion (example your cruising you need fun day clothes but then you have formal night for dinner). Be versatile as well. A shirt can be worn to dinner and then two days later you can wear out during the day to the beach. Insider tip: Choose a color scheme and stick to it, this will allow you to mix and match items.
- The Rings. We know your don’t want to take it off for anything; however sometime activities or destinations will mean removing your new wedding ring (example, when swimming with the dolphins no jewelry is allowed). So bring the box the ring came in. When necessary place the ring in the box and put in the safe. Most hotels and cruise ships have safes.
- In the Bag. To maximize your space roll each item. This will allow you to pack tight. Wrinkle prone clothes, place tissue paper on top of items before rolling to prevent wrinkling. Inside tip: stuff your socks inside your shoes.
- Keep calm and carry on. Know what not to place in your checked bag is important. Always carry your travel documents, itineraries, visas, tickets and passports. Inside tip: Make sure you have at least 6 months left on your passport before your travel date.
- Prepare for delays. No one likes to sit in the airport but it can be less stressful if you’re prepared. Pack a few extra snacks, have a couple extra downloaded books, magazines or even a few movies. Inside tip: Bring extra batteries or have your changers handy so your gadget will never go dead.
- Smile you’re on camera. Your honeymoon is a milestone in your life, document it with some photos. Always take your camera or cell phone with you. Don’t have one, register for one.
- Off the Grid. Leave the computer, pads and cell phones in the room and enjoy your honeymoon with just the two of you. Inside tip: Place your phone on airplane mode for the whole trip, this way you can still take photos and post them once your back in the hotel room with Wi-Fi.
Written by Guest Blogger Kathy Parfect of LBAC Travel
If any of these ideas have sparked your imagination, contact Kathy Parfet your LBAC Dream Vacation Maker today to help customize YOUR special honeymoon! I can be reached at Kathy@lbactravel.com or 631.648-8032 Ext 28. Congratulations on your marriage!!!
For more honeymoon ideas and for everything else you need to plan your wedding, please visit The Perfect Wedding Guide.