For an unforgettable honeymoon, think untraditional.
If you and your future spouse are already extensive travelers, or are just looking for something that isn’t chock full of other honeymooning couples, an atypical destination may be right up your alley. Just make sure to plan ahead and do your research.
“If you’re traveling to a small resort or private destination with a limited number of rooms, it’s best to book ASAP,” says Nikos Koklonis, founder of AirfastTickets.com. “Check the weather patterns for your top three destination choices, too. [For example], in the Philippines, typhoon season lasts from June to November.”
Whether you’re looking for an adventure Down Under, a few days of hippie culture or a beachy getaway, these destinations are off the beaten path.
For when lying on a beach all day is not an option
For a romantic, exotic honeymoon, consider this bustling city. You’ll first have to make your way to Casablanca, then take a caravan or small plane to reach the historic medieval city. Give yourself three to four days to experience all that it has to offer, from souks, or open-air marketplaces, to the 12-acre botanical garden at Jardin Majorelle. Don’t forget to make time for a spa trip, too.
When to visit: To avoid summer heat, head here from September to May.
Where to stay: La Mamounia, starting at $425/night, mamounia.com
For the hippie dippie duo
Granola, plaid and “Portlandia” fans, celebrate your nuptials in Portland, which offers both a natural environment and city culture. You can bike, tour wine country, browse the farmer’s market and hike the Columbia River Gorge, when not shopping tax-free. Let’s also not forget this is a food town, and meals at Departure — a rooftop with views of the city, serving pan-Asian inspired cuisine — are a must.
When to visit: To avoid the rainier season, spring and summer are ideal.
Where to stay: The Nines Hotel, starting at $219/night, 877-229-9995, thenines.com
Kangaroo Island, Australia
Adventurous couples need apply
If you’re planning a long honeymoon, consider this small island, a 20-minute flight from Adelaide (after the 20-plus-hour flight to Australia, that is). Spanning the size of Long Island, the destination features vineyards and farms, remote beaches and untouched coastlines for a mix of dining, wining, surfing and sailing. You may even spot koalas, echidnas and, yes, kangaroos, on adventure and wildlife tours.
When to visit: Australia’s summer is our winter, so consider this honeymoon after a winter wedding.
Where to stay: Southern Ocean Lodge, starting at $1,050/night, southernoceanlodge.com.au
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Calling all spa sweethearts
After all that wedding planning, and the 13-hour flight, you’ll deserve some pampering. And the Talise Ottoman Spa is the largest of its kind in the Middle East. Providing a variety of relaxation and detox rooms, such as salt and snow, the oasis is located among 10 restaurants with cuisines ranging from Turkish to Indian to Vietnamese, so you can treat yourself to some specialty meals, too.
When to visit: December to April, to escape NYC’s cold and avoid the hotter summer there.
Where to stay: Jumeirah Zabeel Saray, starting at $275/night, jumeirah.com
Experience a little bit of everything
It’ll take almost a full day in the air, and a pretty penny, to get to the Southeast Asian city. But once there, the exchange rate is in your favor. Meals range from $5-$10, and massages in tourist areas are as little as $10 an hour (hotel sessions tend to be a little pricier). Take at least 10 days to backpack and fly a bit more to experience the beaches and five-star hotels in Phuket, as well as nightlife in Koh Samui, elephant-riding in Chiang Mai and Buddhist temples throughout the country.
When to visit: Head here between November and February to avoid hotter, wetter weather.
Where to stay: The Sarojin, near Phuket, starting at $75/night, sarojin.com