The A to Z of Exotic Honeymoon Destinations
Whether you’re planning a long trip or a brief escapade, Vanessa Tai recommends 26 unique destinations for you to choose from.
Wondering where to head to for your honeymoon? We give you the lowdown on 26 unique and interesting destinations you may want to consider
a is for Aruba
If you thought Aruba sounded vaguely familiar, that’s because it was popularised by the Beach Boys in the hit song, Kokomo. Apart from the usual beach activities, this Carribbean island also offers plenty of other attractions such as the mysterious Guadirkiri Caves, and Arikok National Park, which consists of a diverse array of lava formations and limestone formations.
b is for Bhutan
A kingdom famed for its remote and pristine beauty, and its emphasis on its citizens’ wellbeing—they were the ones who pioneered the Gross National Happiness index—Bhutan is one of those fabled places you have to visit in this lifetime. For a truly unforgettable experience, book your stay at Amankora, a series of award-winning lodges spread across the central and western valleys of Bhutan. Because of its historically isolated topography—think 7,000-metre high peaks in the north and low-lying plains in the south—you and your beloved will certainly get a sense of being cocooned away from the rest of the world.
During your stay in Bhutan, you can opt to stay at just one of the lodges and explore the surrounding areas. However, if you’ll like to better experience what else the country has to offer, the team at Amankora is able to customise a journey for you that includes its various lodges located in Paro, Thimphu, Punakha, Gangtey, or Bumthang. Amankora Paro, which is situated 30 minutes from Paro International Airport, is where most travellers usually start their journey. The 24-suite compound features beautiful natural elements such as rammed-earth walls and wood-panelled interiors. While there, be sure to trek up the breathtaking Tiger’s Nest Monastery, located along the cliff-side of the upper Paro valley.
From Paro, you can venture towards the other lodges located several hours away. Amankora Gangtey is nestled in the scenic but little-visited Phobjikha Valley, and offers panoramic views of the broad valley and the 16th-century monastery, Gangtey Goemba. For a
royally good time, make your way to Amankora Bumthang, situated adjacent to the first and second King of Bhutan’s palace. Along the way, you’ll be treated to spectacular views of the former royal sports grounds, a traditional and much-used archery area, as well as apple orchards and pear trees.
c is for Christmas Island
Christmas Island is a territory of Australia located in the middle of the Indian Ocean, south of Indonesia. Because of its strategic position, Christmas Island culture is a melting pot of influences from Asia, to Europe, and of course, Australia. Also, because of its relative isolation from the rest of the world—the entire island only has a population of 1,402—you and your love will definitely feel like you’re in your own little world here. One of the best places to stay on the island would be the luxurious Christmas Island Resort. Its clean and contemporary facilities integrate seamlessly with the surrounding natural beauty—calm, azure waters and lush greenery.
If you consider yourself a nature lover, Christmas Island will be a veritable treasure trove. Sign yourselves up for a guided Rainforest Walk through the island’s national park. At 135 sq km, it takes up 63 per cent of the entire island and you’ll get to see rare flora and fauna species such as the famous migrating Red Crabs and the endangered Abbott’s Booby. Or, take to the waters and explore some of the world’s best scuba-diving and snorkelling spots. From a vast array of tropical fish species to turtles, sharks, and even whalesharks and mantas (between November and April), there’s plenty to see beneath the deep blue. For something a little more slow-paced, the various beaches are perfect for going on those long, romantic walks.
d is for Denver, Colorado
Denver may not be the first city you think of when it comes to romantic cities but the capital of Colorado actually has quite a few options when it comes to a romantic holiday. The Brown Palace Hotel & Spa used to be a favourite of former US president Dwight D. Eisenhower, and is also popular among honeymooners because of its old-world charm. Another charming and
historic hotel, the Oxford, is especially popular during Valentine’s Day. The hotel offers couples a package that includes a complimentary CD of handpicked love songs, a book of poetry, chilled champagne, and rose petal turn-down service.
e is for Egypt
There is something deeply sensuous about Egypt, land of the Pyramids and the Nile Delta, and where Cleopatra once reigned. As you explore the ancient ruins and colourful bazaars together with your love, the electric thrill in the atmosphere is so palpable you can almost reach out and touch it. One of the best places to stay while there is La Residence des Cascades, which is perched atop the highest point of the Soma Bay peninsula, offering you amazing views of the Red Sea.
f is for Fiji
Miles upon miles of powdery white beaches, crystal-clear waters, and lots of privacy for you and your beloved… all that is available to you on the private luxury island of Vomo Lailai. Vomo is a privately owned property at the top of the Mamanuca Islands group, and is only accessible via helicopter or seaplane from Fiji’s international airport. Vomo Lailai is a completely private island to the west of Vomo, and is the perfect honeymoon destination for couples who crave some alone-time after the hustle and bustle of the wedding.
g is for Galápagos Islands
The Galápagos Islands sit astride the equator in the Pacific Ocean, and are actually the tips of ancient volcanoes, many of which are still active. Famed for its many indigenous flora and fauna, Galápagos Islands is an absolute playground for nature lovers. For a truly dreamy honeymoon, book yourselves a stay at the Royal Palm Galapagos, a secluded hideaway nestled in the lush highlands of Santa Cruz Island in the heart of the Galápagos. Because of its commitment to preserving the environment, the hotel has been designed and crafted to complement its natural surroundings.
h is for Hokkaido
Hokkaido is Japan’s northernmost island prefecture and is renowned for its rugged beauty and spectacular cuisine, especially its seafood. One of the best ways to immerse yourselves in Japanese culture would be to stay at a traditional ryokan (Japanese inn). For over 1,300 years, the ryokan tradition has developed and maintained the Japanese spirit of omotenashi, which is a form of respect and admiration for Nature and its four seasons. This is why whenever you visit a ryokan, you can expect the cuisine, floral decorations, and even the staff ’s uniforms to reflect the current season.
There are plenty of beautiful ryokan in Hokkaido to choose from, but for a truly luxurious escapade, Takinoya Ryokan is second to none. Nestled among the verdant forests of southern Hokkaido’s Noboribetsu resort area, you will feel the stress of wedding planning ebbing away as you soak in the glorious hot springs. At Takinoya, the onsen baths boast five different types of healing water, piped in from the famous Jigokudani onsen source, each with its own mineral content, acidity, and alkalinity.
During your stay at Takinoya, you and your sweetheart can spend idyllic days exploring the many natural attractions in the area. One such attraction is Jigokudani, also known as ‘Hell Valley’, which is an aptly-named valley located just above the town of Noboribetsu Onsen. This is the main source of Noboribetsu’s hot spring waters and here, you’ll find hot steam vents, sulfurous streams, and other forms of volcanic activity. From the valley, you can follow the various walking trails through the wooded hills to reach other sulfurous ponds or mud ponds. Just be sure to hold on tight to each other!
i is for Iceland
Iceland is one of those places where you have to experience for yourself to fully grasp the magical quality of the place. Home to just over 300,000 inhabitants, Iceland is the most sparsely populated country in Europe. From volcanoes to the Northern Lights, the scenery in Iceland is unlike anywhere else in the world.
Hotel Glymur is a charming countryside hotel located just outside the capital of Reykjavik, overlooking the majestic ‘Hvalfjordur’ (Whale Fjord). Honeymooners should definitely take advantage of the hotel’s Honeymoon Package, which includes accommodation at the elegant Red House, an 80 sqm holiday house that affords you with breathtaking views of the Hvalfjordur.
In addition, you’ll also be treated to a romantic dinner of your choice, a special wedding cake for two, and a guided tour of the Golden Circle. The Golden Circle is a popular tourist route of about 300km, and it covers the national park Þingvellir, the waterfall Gullfoss (Golden Falls), and the geothermally active valley of Haukadalur.
Hotel Glymur is also situated close to Snaefellsnes Peninsula, where you and your love will have a whale of a time (pun intended) visiting the area’s numerous waterfalls and glaciers. Some of the more popular activities on Snaefellsnes include boat trips around the various islands, which offer whale watching and sea-angling as part of the itinerary. If you’re feeling brave, there are also plenty of lava caves in the area, with the most popular ones all located within Snaefellsnes National Park. For those who prefer something more slow-paced, there are plenty of museums worth visiting—from the Haraldur Sigurdsson’s Volcano Museum in Stykkishólmur, or the Shark Museum at Bjarnarhöfn Farm. After a day of adventure, get cosy in one of Hotel Glymur’s many outdoor hot tubs overlooking the fjord.
j is for Jeju Island
Located just off the coast of South Korea, Jeju Island continues to be a popular spot for honeymooners. If you and your sweetheart are the sort that loves wacky humour, you definitely need to make a trip to the hilarious overthe-top adult theme park, Loveland. There, you’ll find grotesque oversized casts of Western-looking nudes twisted in all kinds of—ahem—positions. For something a little more traditionally romantic, Jeju Island is also ideal for long road trips where both of you can spend quality time talking about your future together.
k is for Kenya
From spectacular wildlife of the Masai Mara to stunning beaches, Kenya offers a rich diversity of landscapes. For an unforgettable honeymoon, book yourself into the Naibor, a beautiful tented camp set in the centre of the
ROMANTIC CHARM The Amankora Bumthang is one of the most spectacular properties to stay in when visiting Bhutan
NATURE’S BEST Christmas Island is a treasure trove for nature lovers
PRIVATE SANCTUARY The Takinoya Ryokan in Hokkaido features intimate pools and an authentic onsen experience, complete with a spa menu