If you do it right, your honeymoon is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Unless you get remarried, although that’s probably not something you’re planning on during the first honeymoon. We’ve seen the all-you-can-eat-buffet cruises and the “We took a tour of the Grand Canyon!” Vegas trips, but what about the stuff for those newlyweds who want to live their new life together to the fullest? Hawaii is cool, and yeah, we guess Disneyland is nice, but come on, guys. You can do so much better than that!
And so help us God, if we hear one more “Mall of America” suggestion…
We went back through some of our favorite travels and decided to put together a list of killer honeymoon destinations of our own. This isn’t a step-by-step guide with lists of hotels or day tour phone numbers. You’re a grown man and you can Google it all yourself. Rather, take this as a list of inspiration. Something to get you thinking about somewhere a little more personal.
Hiking Guatemala’s Volcan Pacaya
To some, nothing says “I love you” like the smell of lavender and fresh-picked daisies. Others, however, prefer the rotten egg smell of hydrogen sulfide, lingering outside the mouths of active volcanoes. If you fall into the latter group, hiking Guatamala’s Volcan Pacaya is the honeymoon of your dreams. This beautiful volcano, located near the southern tip of Guatemala in the region of Escuintla, is one of the most active volcanoes in Central America over the last 500 years. It has had eruptions twice in the last seven years, as well as in 1965, 1976, 1998, 2006, and a whole bunch of other years since 1500. Hike the gorgeous lush greenery, take in the beautiful views, and enjoy what life has to offer on the edge—together.
Exploring the French Riviera by Sports Car (Porsche 356 Speedster)
You know, fellas, marriage is all about compromise. This honeymoon idea is the perfect amalgamation of everything a good marriage should be. Take her on a breathtaking tour in the South of France, and do it in a car that could literally make you happycry—Porsche Speedster, anyone? Start off in Nice, then roll on down through Cannes and Saint-Tropez, then down through Hyères, up through Marseille and then onward to Baux-de-Provence or wherever the hell else those four wheels take you!
A Hot Air Balloon Ride in Lazio
Lazio is one of the biggest regions of Italy and includes the country’s capital (Rome), as well as beautiful valleys, sandy beaches, islands, and even small mountains. Long story short, it’s absolutely gorgeous. Frankly, all of Italy, in general, is beautiful, but Lazio is special because it has everything you could ever want to experience about the country all in one awesome place. And a hot air balloon ride is a great and incredibly romantic way to see it all.
Take on Austria’s Alps via Innsbruck
When most people want to vacation in Austria, they think Vienna is the best place to do it. And they’re not wrong. Vienna is an absolutely beautiful place with plenty to do and see. But if you and your bride are looking for adventure, head a few hours west to the resort town of Innsbruck. The town, which is the capital of Tyrol, is located in the picturesque Inn valley between the high mountains of the Karwendel Alps. Not only is the town incredibly charming and a little on the quiet side, it provides direct access to those Alps everyone is always talking about. While winter is ideal for skiing and snow sports, it’s gorgeous in every season.
Honeymoon Under the Northern Lights of Norway
You can see the Northern Lights in various cities and regions across the Northern Hemisphere. When you finally do get to see them, they’ll reinvent your idea of idyllic beauty and unparalleled romance, like your wedding hopefully just did. Norway is great because it offers just about everything you could want to get out of a European honeymoon, it’s gorgeous in both the winter and summer, and the lights can be seen all year ‘round. Plus, you know, Vikings and shit.
The South African Safari of Your Dreams
Life on safari is far from the spouse carrying threshold crossing you’d normally expect on a honeymoon, but if you’re reading this article, that’s kind of the point. Let us also mention that South African Safari getaways aren’t particularly cheap, so if you’re budget-minded, you might want to look elsewhere (See next entry). That said, there are a ton of options out there for honeymooners looking for an unforgettable safari experience. There are tons of reputable companies out there that offer everything from tents in the thick of the brush to world-class custom-tailored camping experiences. But that really all depends on the kind of partners you are and whether or not you think you could fight off a pack of hyenas together.
One Word: Cuba
The world we’re living in is changing. Just a few short years ago, the only way you were ever going to find yourself in Cuba was if you had business there, or if you jumped through the hoops to get on a regular flight, or if you were abducted off your yacht. These days, you can get yourself a direct flight to the beautiful island nation straight from the U.S., and tickets are a fraction what you’d probably expect (we’ve personally found round trip flights from $230). Cuba is a place that is still suspended in the past, whose people are kind, architecture is beautiful, food is delicious, and hotels are incredibly affordable. Grab yourself a cigar and a bit of rum, hop into an old beat up taxi, and experience the sights and sounds of Havana. And act quickly—as tourism opens up between the U.S. and Cuba, you can expect the landscape to start changing dramatically, and probably not for the better.
See it all in Montenegro
Translated in English, Montenegro literally means “Black Mountain.” It sounds intimidating, but what you’ll find when you arrive is something truly special and extraordinary. This place is speckled with beautiful and charming villages, gorgeous beaches along the deep blue Adriatic, mountains, valleys, and beautiful hotels. In the more popular areas, the beaches tend to get crowded, but places like Ada Bojana Island feature long sandy beaches that, while popular, never get too packed. If you want off-the-beaten-path with a little bit of everything for everyone, Montenegro is excellent.