How to Pick a Honeymoon Destination: Ideas for Every Type of Couple
There are a countless number of beautiful, unique, amazing places to travel to in the United States and abroad, so how do you choose just one for your honeymoon? This was a question that Greg and I pondered a lot as we considered different spots for our 8-day respite after planning the most ginormous event we’ve ever taken on.
We chose Costa Rica by asking ourselves a very important question. How do we want to spend our honeymoon? Do we want to just relax? Do nothing, zilch, zero, nada. Sit on the beach all day long and sip Pina Coladas. Or do we want an action-packed vacation? One where we would be out and about all day. Sightseeing. Hiking. Cage diving with sharks? Oh my!
For us, we actually wanted a little of both and Costa Rica seemed like just the place for us to have the mix of relaxation and adventure that we craved. One day, went on an all-day excursion to the Arenal region and hike through the rainforest to catch glimpses of monkeys, sloths, and if we were lucky (to some) a jaguar. Another day, we ziplined, jumping off treetops and flying like superman through the jungle. Then, we went back to the hotel and relaxed by the pool or had massages on the beach.
Greg and I horseback riding during our honeymoon on the beach in Costa Rica
I checked in with travel extraordinaire, Shannon Healey, Founder of Camera & Carry On, to breakdown honeymoon hotspots that meet any bride and groom’s criteria for a banging post-nuptial getaway. Shannon has traveled all across the world and her unique perspective can help you and your fiancé find the perfect place to celebrate becoming husband and wife.
Donsol, Philippines - There are only a handful of places in the world where you can swim with whale sharks, and this is one of them. Just getting here is a bit of an adventure, and you’ll literally feel like you’re on the other side of the world when you do. People live simply and natural beauty shines. Not only is this area off the beaten tourist trail, but it’s chock-full of friendly faces, cheap hotels, and some of the tastiest bananas this world has to offer.
South Africa - Safaris? Got em. Great white cage swim? Check. Glamping? Why not?! Pretty much the dream of an animal lover and adventure seeker, this place oozes with wilderness experiences and adrenaline-pumping excitement sure to spark fits of white-knuckle hand holding. For the couple that likes to get up close and personal with the animal kingdom, look no further.
Iceland - Geysers + the Aurora Borealis + whale watching = adventure gold. For the explorers, setting out at 2am in search of the Northern Lights is a quest like no other and
makes for particularly stunning photo candy. From glacier hiking to soaking in the blue lagoon (post adventure of course), this island is the literal fire and ice of destinations.
The French Riviera (from Cannes - Monaco, even though the latter is technically not “French” Riviera… it’s pretty darn close). The Mediterranean has long been a retreat for honeymooners and there’s no question why. Sunshine, sailboats, and croissants are oh-so-pleasing. Mix in the ever-sexy French accent and you’ve got yourself a winner.
Lake Como, Italy - Nestled at the base of the Alps in northern Italy, this destination oozes with romance and postcard-perfect views at every angle. Stroll the streets of Varenna with a gelato in one hand and your partner’s in the other while you ooh and aah over terracotta rooftops, garden sculptures, and morning fog. Plus, George Clooney calls this spot home, and you know that guy’s got good taste.
Santorini, Greece - One of the most stunning islands there is, this setting is ideal for
romance. I dare any couple to go and not fall in love all over again. On this island, you’re really on a getaway. Life moves a little slower, olives abound, and sunsets like you wouldn’t believe light up the sky in a rainbow of hues. Soak up the view with sweet, honey-drenched baklava and wine, followed by leisure strolls through whitewashed streets overlooking the Caldera.
Mix it up...
Switzerland (yes, all of it!) There is such diversity in this modestly-sized country. You can
choose to take it easy in tiny, mountainside towns, breathing in the freshest air around and drifting off to melodic sounds of cowbells in the distance. Or climb the highest hill in sight to reach a suitable hang gliding launch point. Fueled by chocolate, the sweetest aphrodisiac, this destination is perfect for winter or summer. Skiing, cheese tasting, road tripping, boating, castle touring… this place has it all.
Krabi, Thailand - Stunning beaches made movie-famous, there are end less spots to sneak away for a private, sandy love sesh. Hire a longtail boat for a private jaunt around the neighboring islands, or hop in a kayak to burn off the penang curry. Then strap on the rock climbing gear and head over to Railay for an aerial view of the breathtaking land & seascapes. If all that running around has left you exhausted, hit up the spa for a 60-minute Thai massage that will only set you back a couple bucks.
Kauai, Hawaii - Hawaii is no stranger to honeymoons (or destination weddings for that matter), but there’s something special about the Garden Island. One of the most untouched and undeveloped of the archipelago, it has the paradise beaches, swaying palms, and clear waters that relaxation seekers yearn for. But beyond that, there are stellar hiking trails, water sports galore, jaw dropping lookouts, zipline excursions… the list goes on. For an equally balanced relaxation with adventure honeymoon, it’s a wonder this gem is a no-passport-required getaway.