You’ve planned and planned every last detail of your wedding for months, had the best day of your life with all of your friends and family while marrying your best friend, and now you’re completely exhausted.
Most couples are more than ready to escape to their honeymoon after getting married, and we can’t really blame them. A honeymoon is often the first chance for a couple to be alone together after the excitement of the wedding has passed, and the first trip you’ll take together as a married couple.
When planning your honeymoon, the world is your oyster, and the options are seemingly limitless. Sure, the more typical honeymoon destinations are incredibly amazing, and a trip to Hawaii or Paris is not one you’ll regret.
That being said, there are so many other amazing, less-traveled spots out there to explore! For your first trip as a married couple, why not try one of these six alternatives?
If You’re an Adventurous Couple: Queenstown, New Zealand
Source: Blonder Blog
Some of us want to do nothing but lay on a beach for ten days on our honeymoons, and there are others who cringe at the idea of sitting still for that long. If you fall into the second camp of people, Queenstown may be the perfect spot for you.
Lauded as one of the best spots to visit for adventure lovers, it has everything you could want from a honeymoon: incredible lake and mountain views, a bevy of activities to choose from, and fantastic dining options.
Source: Little Grey Box
What sort of adventurous activities does Queenstown offer, you ask? The list is expansive and includes more traditional options like hiking Bob’s Peak and boating Lake Wakatipu, as well as some of the more atypical picks like skydiving, luge, jet boats, and bungee jumping to name a few! There’s no shortage of activities, and you’ll certainly never be bored.
Your days filled with adventures will likely leave you with a healthy appetite, and luckily Queenstown has some wonderful food options. Rata, run by Michelin starred chef, Josh Emett, should be at the top of your list for its ability to serve up exceptional food in a relaxed, comfortable atmosphere. The bustling Fergburger is another must for enormous, gourmet burgers that draw locals and tourists alike.
If You Want a Beach Retreat: Trinidad and Tobago
Source: Just Ten
Trinidad and Tobago can sometimes be overlooked in lieu of other Caribbean spots, but it makes for the perfect, low-key beach honeymoon spot. The waters are crystal clear, the people are friendly and welcoming, and you’ll be hard pressed to find a more relaxing place to kick back. The country consists of two twin islands, and although most of the tourism takes place on Tobago, you can easily take a boat between the two.
Magdalena Grand Beach & Golf Resort and the Bacolet Beach Club are two beautiful resorts in Tobago that make for a perfect backdrop to your beach honeymoon. If you opt to stay on Trinidad, the Hyatt Regency is a beautiful pick overlooking the Gulf of Paria.
Around the island, there’s a lot to do beyond napping on the sand (though there are plenty of spots for that!). The Nylon Pool, accessible by boat, is one of the best places on the island to experience the crystal clear waters the Caribbean is known so well for.
A visit to Tobago’s tallest waterfall, Argyle Waterfall, makes for a fun afternoon trip, while Pigeon Point is one of the best beaches on the island. Watersports (like snorkeling or windsurfing) can typically be arranged through your hotel making the process easy and seamless.
If You’re Feeling a City Escape: Hong Kong, China
Source: Hisao Mogi via Fine Art America
If a honeymoon in the middle of a bustling city sounds ideal, jet to Hong Kong for a wild city trip full of some of the best food in the world, an incredible nightlife, and a glimpse into the most culturally rich places in the world. The city, known as the gateway to China, offers so much regardless of where your interests lie. Truly, it could be either a trip of its own or a jumping off point for a jaunt through China.
Food is a major part of visiting Hong Kong, and navigating through the plethora of different food spots (ranging from Michelin starred joints to tiny noodle stalls) can be one of the most fun things to do in a new city with your new spouse. Keep an open mind, and get ready to sample some of the most delicious food on the planet (especially the dim sum!).
For drinks in the evenings, head to one of the city’s famed rooftop bars like Sevva for views of the iconic Hong Kong skyline.
Food aside, you’ll want to be sure you don’t miss Victoria’s Peak for incredible views, the Hong Kong Museum of History, and Nan Lian Garden, a tranquil escape from the fast pace of the city.
If You Want to Stay Domestic: Jackson Hole, Wyoming
We can probably bet that Wyoming wasn’t on your short list for honeymoon destinations, but hear us out on this one. For one, it’s stunningly beautiful with the Grand Teton Mountains creating the perfect backdrop for any vacation. Secondly, you can score a pretty incredible deal without sacrificing on style (4 star luxury hotels start at just $150 a night).
Though skiing is popular in the area, go during the summer months for beautiful (and budget friendly!) hikes. Taggart Lake Loop will lead you to some seriously stunning panoramas of the mountains as well as the equally beautiful Antelope Flats, which will serve up jaw-dropping views and the occasional wildlife sighting.
The Granite Hot Springs make for a great day trip as well, and the beautiful drive to the springs alone makes the trip worth it.
If Your Heart is Set on Europe: Dubrovnik, Croatia
Source: It’s One World Travel
Croatia sometimes gets passed over for other European cities, but Dubrovnik is quickly becoming a favorite destination in the region. Located in southern Croatia, Dubrovnik is home to a beautiful and historic Old Town, great beaches, and a surprisingly wonderful wine scene.
There are a number of fantastic lodging options including some great Airbnbs, but for a seriously luxurious honeymoon, the Villa Dubrovnik can’t be beat with its sea views and opulent spa.
Spend your days exploring the Stradun, a pedestrian-only promenade dotted with shops and cafes. As Dubrovnik is a coastal city, you’ll also want to spend at least a few days on the beach. St. Jakov Beach is a stunner that is typically less crowded than others in the city. Lapad Beach is a more crowded option with great amenities like refreshments and changing stalls.
Finally, try to carve some time out to experience the wineries. Though Croatia isn’t as well known as wine regions in France or Italy, the wine is wonderful, and there are some great wine tours leaving from Dubrovnik that can’t be missed.
If You’re On a Budget: Take a Road Trip
Weddings are incredibly expensive as it is, and sometimes a lengthy, international trip just isn’t feasible. Rest assured, a vacation in a far-flung locale is not what a honeymoon or a marriage is all about.
You can easily plan a fun, relaxing honeymoon without blowing all of your savings. Take your honeymoon as an opportunity to pack up your car, and head out on a road trip to that one place you’ve wanted to go to.
You’ll save a lot by driving versus flying, and you won’t have to worry about wasting time and precious vacation hours traveling across the world. We’ve put together a series on the best road trips based on your location that are a great start:
5 Weekend Road Trips in the Southwest
5 Weekend Road Trips in the Northwest
5 Weekend Road Trips in the Midwest
5 Weekend Road Trips on the West Coast
5 Weekend Road Trips in the Mid-Atlantic
5 Weekend Road Trips in New England
Remember, you don’t have to sacrifice a fantastic trip due to budget. Save where you can (on flights, length of trip, etc.) and splurge on a few treats like a fancy dinner or a beautiful hotel.