The vows have been said, the toasts offered and the last photographs snapped. There’s just one more thing for the happy couple to do: Party for two, please…let the honeymoon begin. C’est l’amour. But where?
Can you do any better than Honeymoon Bay? Not likely. The small town on Vancouver Island in British Columbia is as picturesque as it is quaint, with a backdrop of mountains and lakes. The shops, golf and beaches will delight.
Stay in the heart of Vancouver at the Shangri-la Hotel, which prides itself on having the latest innovations, such as automatically-closing drapes and centrally-controlled lighting. It also features a heated pool, sauna, steam room, spa and excellent restaurant.
The Four Seasons is where you want to be. Your stay will be inspiring. Just imagine champagne breakfasts in your suite, romantic candlelit dinners in the hotel restaurant, Le Mistral, relaxing massages, picnics for two – and all the trimmings.
Best of all, The Four Seasons’ staff is at the ready to craft your honeymoon to your specifications. In fact, the destination setting has itself been the scene of hundreds of weddings.
The beaches of Brazil are many, gorgeous and varied. Explore Buzios, 120 miles east of Rio, where you’ll find exciting nightlife, great shopping, water sports and easy accessibility.
The beach city sports many small inns, but choose Casas Brancas Boutique Hotel and Spa for its amenities, proximity to the beach, attention to detail and exotic food. Europeans buy vacation homes in Buzios, so you know there’s a lot to do both before and after the sun goes down.
Small but astonishingly beautiful, Montenegro lies on the Adriatic Sea in southeastern Europe, in part of what used to be Yugoslavia. The busy town of Budva on the coast is a lovely old village filled with quaint restaurants and interesting shops.
Enjoy your own private beach at the Hotel Splendid just outside Budva, which lives up to its name with restaurants, bar/lounges, outdoor poolside bars and an indoor pool. Book a room and they’ll give you free access to the hotel’s Spa Becici.
A honeymoon in Hungary will immerse you in the country’s rich heritage of art, architecture and music. More than 1,000 lakes decorate the country – the largest, Balaton, is strewn with thermal springs.
The lively scene in Budapest includes almost-weekly festivals and sports events. The city’s newest all-suite luxury hotel, the Queen’s Court, bathes guests in sumptuous refinements, all within short walks of the city’s most famous landmarks and great restaurants.
Prague, Czech Republic
Located by the river Vltava in central Bohemia, Czech Republic, the fairytale city of Prague is loaded with Gothic architecture, relaxing cafes and intriguing museums – with natural scenery and lower-than-elsewhere prices thrown in as a bonus.
Two good honeymoon hotels in Prague are Mars Hotel and Hotel Maximilian, but instead, choose the President Hotel: 24-hour room service, health club with massage and treatment amenities, in-room refrigerators and mini-bars, blackout drapes and satellite TV.
Straddling the line between Asia and Europe, Istanbul is a feast for the senses. Visit the Blue Mosque and Topkapi Palace, bargain for good prices at the Grand Bazaar, go to a Turkish bath house and then roam Istanbul’s many enchanting shopping neighborhoods and museums.
Stay in the heart of the city at the Uyan Hotel – historic but restored with white painted wooden doors, wrought iron balconies, 24-hour room service and deluxe accommodations.
Southeast Asian culture is unexplainable – it’s sexy, mysterious and romantic all at the same time. Consider Bali. The hotels are memorable, service with a smile, always, and the culture of Bali is diverse and exotic.
One more suggestion: Luang Prabang, Laos and the Santi Resort & Spa. The buildings sit among lush rice paddies and gorgeous hills with tranquil streams meandering through the extensive grounds.
Spot the Big 5 on the Serengeti: lions, African elephants, rhinos, Cape buffalo and leopards, or get away from it all and enjoy a more intimate safari experience – whatever your choice, climate-perfect Tanzania deserves consideration.
The Tides Lodge sits on an enticing beach on the Swahili Coast, voted “One of the Top 6 Secret Beaches of the World” by the Sunday Times. The lodge pampers with spa treatments, fine beachside cuisine, glorious sunsets and early morning tea.
Unlikely as it may seem, Antarctica might be the honeymoon of your dreams. Especially if you take the M/V Plancius, the latest vessel to join the Oceanwide fleet.
Sail out of Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego in Argentina on this former oceanographic research ship, now outfitted with 54 cabins, including 10 spacious suites. Onboard, enjoy the restaurant, lounge, bar and library; but the real fun is the unparalleled opportunities to view spectacular scenery and wildlife.
Snorkel azure seas, then kick back in hammocks built for two while your wine is poured on Wilson Island, a dot of tropical paradise on the Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Your luxury “tent” is surrounded by white sand, palm trees and seclusion.
Or check into The Richardson, a striking new boutique hotel in West Perth near the exquisite Kings Park and Botanical Gardens and also close to the cosmopolitan lifestyle of Subiaco.