Your honeymoon is a vacation that you will certainly remember for the rest of your life. It might be one of the first times that you’ve ever visited an exotic destination, and it’s also an expense on which you’re very likely to splurge a bit. It might be one of the few vacations in your life, in fact, on which you spend fairly freely without much concern about your budget. After all, you only get one first honeymoon.
You want your honeymoon to be the trip of a lifetime. You’ve got a sizable budget, and maybe Mom and Dad are even chipping in a bit. You’re looking forward to spending time in an exotic locale with your new spouse. Whether you’re interested in spending your time in a traditional honeymoon destination or are looking for something a bit off the beaten path, we’ve got you covered with this list of three incredible honeymoon destinations.
Kohala Coast, Hawaii
When you think of vacationing in Hawaii, the state’s top two destinations – the islands of Oahu and Maui – probably come to your mind first. Instead of spending your honeymoon in those extremely crowded locales, though, consider the quieter – and stunningly beautiful – Big Island of Hawaii instead.
Cited as the world’s second-best honeymoon destination by Town & Country Magazine, the Kohala Coast features several world-class resorts with a variety of impressive amenities including private beach access, tournament-quality golfing and incredible local food. The best Kohala Coast resorts are not cheap – and neither are the best restaurants – but those high prices are balanced out by the fact that many of the best things to do on the Big Island are cheap or free.
Top Honeymoon Activities in Kohala Coast, Hawaii
- Experience dramatic ocean views and see gullies and waterfalls while driving around the perimeter of the island. If you leave in the morning, you can stop for food more than once – and visit the clearly labeled scenic points – and still be back at the resort by nightfall.
- Enjoy some of the world’s most famous golf courses. The Hualalai Golf Course at the Four Seasons Resort is designed by Jack Nicklaus, and the picturesque 17th hole is worth the price on its own.
- Visit Volcanoes National Park and see a real lava lake. As of early 2021, Kilauea volcano is active again after a period of dormancy.
Montego Bay, Jamaica
One of the greatest aspects of enjoying your honeymoon in a nation like Jamaica is the fact that you can experience an unbelievable level of luxury at a much more reasonable price than you’d be likely to pay elsewhere. Even if you don’t have a fortune to spend, it can still be within your reach to rent a Jamaica villa. If you’ve never rented a private villa before, there is no better time than your honeymoon to experience what it’s like to stay in accommodations where staff members attend to your every need. Some villas even include a private car and driver with 24-hour access – an amenity that you’ll never get at a traditional resort.
Montego Bay is at the center of Jamaica’s tourism industry, and it is where you’ll find many of Jamaica’s top restaurants and entertainment venues. Set against a backdrop of dramatic natural beauty, Montego Bay isn’t just a great place for enjoying world-class food and soaking up the sun at the beach. It’s also a great place for viewing amazing architecture, as it’s where many of Jamaica’s wealthiest citizens have their second homes.
Top Honeymoon Activities in Montego Bay, Jamaica
- Visit the Rose Hall Great House. One of the biggest plantation homes in Jamaica, Rose Hall was restored to its original glory in the 1960s and features opulent mahogany flooring, carved stonework and silk wallpaper. Rose Hall is also a popular site for weddings.
- See the gorgeous Doctor’s Cave Beach and Bathing Club. The beach does charge an admission fee, but it features numerous amenities and gives you an unforgettable view of aquamarine water set against a light sandy beach. Local legend holds that the water at Doctor’s Cave has unique restorative powers.
- Feed exotic birds by hand at the Rocklands Bird Sanctuary. Located within a unique jungle microclimate about a half hour from Montego Bay, the exotic birds at the sanctuary are well accustomed to human attention and will happily drink nectar out of your hand.
One of the most important things that you want your honeymoon destination to feature is, of course, an air of romance. What could possibly be more romantic than the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance? Besides boasting a heritage in the arts with which few cities anywhere in the world can compare, Florence also features a mild climate that remains quite comfortable throughout the year. During the summer, the temperature in Florence may approach 90 degrees but seldom exceeds that threshold. In winter, the temperature usually doesn’t dip below freezing – so although there might be occasional snow flurries, it generally isn’t cold enough for snow to accumulate on the ground.
Top Honeymoon Activities in Florence, Italy
- Visit the Uffizi Gallery. The Uffizi began its life when the last heir of the House of Medici died and donated the family’s massive art collection to the city of Florence. Today, the Uffizi is one of the most famous museums in the world. It houses key works by Rembrandt, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael, Caravaggio and many others.
- Walk the Ponte Vecchio bridge. Spanning 30 meters across the gorgeous Arno river, the Ponte Vecchio was originally home to butchers and tanners who used the river as an easy way to dispose of carcasses. Swept away by floods more than once over the centuries, the Ponte Vecchio has been rebuilt in durable stone and is now home to some very high-end shopping destinations. If you have an eye for fine jewelry, you’ll love the Ponte Vecchio.
- Visit the Florence Cathedral and view one of the world’s most elaborate Gothic churches. Completed in 1436, the cathedral boasts the world’s largest brick dome. In all, the site has been used as a church for more than 1,500 years. Home to some of the finest frescoes and stonework that you will ever see, the Florence Cathedral represents the pinnacle of Renaissance architecture.
Image Credits: Trevor Cameron