Monday, October 3, 2011

guest post: honeymoon destinations

I want to thank Marcela, of Wanderable, for composing this great post about honeymoon destinations.  Tommy and I wish we would have done a relaxing nature infused honeymoon complete with scenic horizons and alcoholic beverages served in pineapples with mini umbrellas.  :-)  Someday.

Top 10 Honeymoon Destinations for Nature Lovers

Although not a hard-core hiker, I love viewing the exotic and raw landscapes that nature provides, from the sheer cliffs on the Siq to Petra (Jordan) or the lava-ravaged fields of the Big Island in Hawaii. This list is an overview of the ten most popular honeymoon destinations for couples who want relaxing romance in vast nature landscapes.

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Ben McDarmont
 1.   Australia

When: Although good weather available all year, October - March has the warmest climate.

Australia provides a glimpse of everything from busy city lights, to relaxing beaches, the outbacks, the great canopies of the rain forest, and the profound darkness of the caves. The Kakadu National Park is repeatedly mentioned as being two of the world’s top ten national parks and is renowned for its cultural heritage through its aboriginal sites. Also, I would not leave Australia without seeing the Great Barrier Reef and Ayers Rock in Uluru.
2.   Hawaii

When: April - October, recently, the rainy season has not been as prominent, so may still be worthwhile going all year around.
In the small cluster of islands, you can enjoy all sorts of underwater adventures from snorkeling in the Molokini crater, to a submarine adventure, to getting scuba certified in these warmer waters. If you’re looking for wildlife, don’t miss the turtle reef kayak tours, whale watching, or even just swimming with the dolphins. Romance is everywhere; gazing at the sunrise from Haleakala volcano, an amorous walk on the many beaches, or trying new foods at the luau. Exotic landscapes, ravaged by volcanic activity, abound at the Big Island Volcano National Park. On Maui, you can delve deep into the magical wonderland of rain forest canopies and waterfalls, before exploring the Tropical Plantations where you can taste a variety of tropical fruit in their natural habitats.
3.   S. Africa (Capetown and Kruger National Park)
When: April - June; September - November

Explore the gorgeous city of Capetown, with its botanical gardens and its stunning, penguin-populated Boulder Beach. Or head out to Kruger National Park, where you can enjoy the savanna landscapes and African sunsets. It’s one of the largest game reserves with wild animals (the big five), where you can enjoy the thrill of the photo hunt. Kruger National Park has a larger variety of mammal species than any other African Game Reserve (147 species).

mine :-)
4.   Costa Rica
When: December - April

Costa Rica is the perfect mix of cocktails and nature. Relax with a cocktail on one of the many beaches, or submerge yourself into the luscious canopies of the Monteverde Cloud Forest and revel in its famous sky walk. It’s a colorful tropical wildlife paradise with toucans, red-eyed tree frogs and spider monkeys amongst many more. With Arenal Volcano and Lake Arenal, Palo Verde National Park and the Cano Negro Reserves, there’s more than enough for the nature-lover to wander around in.
5.   Maldives
When: November - April

The Maldives are easily one of the most sought-out honeymoon destinations. They are the perfect place to unwind as you sunbathe on the beach with a cocktail in one hand and a good book in the other. You can also explore the gorgeous coral formations with starfish and colorful schools of tropical fish.  It’s the perfect destination for snorkelers and divers out there.

6.   Italy
When: April - October

Italy is one of the most romantic places in Europe. Take a walk through history and explore the streets of ancient Rome and the Vatican, venture through the ruins of Pompeii or just indulge and marvel at the historical arts that frame the romance of Italy. For the height of romance, a serenaded gondola ride in Venice is an absolute must before you leave the country.

If you’re looking to be more in touch with nature, you can revel in the majestic Alps or the charms of Tuscany. In Cinque Terre National Park, you can bask in the picturesque landscape of the Bay of Poets or go through the “Via Dell’Amore”.  Whatever it is you’re looking for, if there’s romance, you’ll find it in Italy.

7.   Borneo
When: March - October
Submerge yourself into this eco-tourism hot-spot and surround yourself beneath the luscious canopies of the rainforest as you roam amidst the wild orangutans and enjoy various treks through the wildlife. Alternatively, you can visit the Gunung Mulu National Park Caves where the most extensive caves reside with hundreds of kilometers worth of passages laden with indoor waterfalls. The caves are also home to hundreds of floral and animal species. As you leave the darkness, you can choose to go to the secluded white sand beaches in Sabah or go to Mabul and enjoy scuba diving in the tropical reef. In Mabul, if you’re lucky, you can even see baby turtles hatching!
8.   Belize
When: Subtropical climate all year round. The driest months are January - May. Try to avoid hurricane season between August - October.

Belize boasts of all of nature’s beauties: plunging waterfalls, lush rain forests, and jungles filled with jaguars, toucans and flitting hummingbirds. For a dive into history, you can explore the largest barrier reef in the northern hemisphere, or visit the “Blue Hole”, an Ice Age remnant of a dry cave system that is now inundated with color and silhouettes of grey reef sharks. For the less experienced divers, try snorkeling in the Hol Chan Reserve, waving at the surge of colorful fish and sea turtles in the exquisite coral reef. Get adrenaline-charged by swimming in Shark Ray Alley among vegetarian sharks and manta rays. Belize is also laden with history; take a land tour through the Mayan ruins in Caracol and explore the massive sky palace of Caana or the sacred Mayan stalactite caves.  
9.   Dominican Republic
When: Any time of year.

In the Dominican Republic you can enjoy laid-back afternoons in the pristine, turquoise waters and soft white sand. You can also visit Jarabacoa, filled with pictoresque waterfalls and kaleidoscopic endangered wildlife. At the Bahia de Samana you can observe humpback whales (January - March) and manatees. The Dominican Republic is famous for having the best windsurfing destination in Cabarete, where there is a vibrant nightlife filled with merengue and salsa dance clubs.
10. Norway
When: Wintertime

If you’re tired of hearing about gorgeous warm weather and beaches, and want something a little different, consider going to Norway in the winter. You’ll enjoy snuggling closer to your partner to generate more warmth whilst indulging in the breathtaking view of the aurora borealis.  This light-filled display is only seen in the Arctic Circle, when the sky is at its darkest and Norway at its coldest. You can enjoy walking across glaciers and crossing distances on a dog-sled. For a unique experience, you can also consider staying in a hotel made out of ice.


  1. My husband and I got married in May and we are going on our honeymoon next summer to.... Yellowstone. There are some nice romantic ranch type resorts there!

  2. I think Thailand is missing here, among these magnificent destinations.
    Thailand is one of the perfect locations for a honeymoon, for its white-sanded, clear-water tropical beaches, the superb hotel and resorts, and its unique experiences.



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