Choosing where to go on honeymoon for many seems an enviable task but the reality can be really rather more taxing. With so many options available to the modern couple the novelty of being spoilt for choice can become quite bewildering. With this in mind I have taken a closer look at the top 10 honeymoon destinations from around the world to give some idea of the range and diversity of experiences that are on offer.
OK, so for many it may be on the other side of the world and a long flight away but there must be something special about this vast island nation that keeps honeymooners going back. An abundance of natural landmarks and incredible geography assert Australia as one of the most diverse and beautiful countries in the world. From the rugged coast of Southern Victoria to the iconic Eastern seaboard; the rainforests of Cape Tribulation to the world famous Great Barrier Reef there is something here to do and to see to cater for every budget and taste. Whether you want a romantic and intimate honeymoon on a remote lodge or immerse yourself into the hustle and bustle of a metropolis like Sydney or Melbourne the only difficulty will be making you mind up
An eclectic South East Asian country, travelling across Thailand feels like navigating through four or five different countries rolled into one. Saturated with ancient culture and heritage but with an eye to the future this is a place that promises both striking modernity and fascinating tradition. The beaches and more remote islands of the south are amongst the most pristine in all of Eastern Asia and there is no where quite like Bangkok with its bustling markets, street stalls and boutiques. Getting off the beaten track with a trek up north is a truly rewarding adventure, uncovering the beauty of the highlands and forests.
Synonymous with glamour, luxury and romance Barbados is a community that seems to seamlessly encapsulate both breathless energy and vitality whilst enjoying an entirely laid back and relaxed outlook on life. This is an island fringed with white sand beaches and lapped by perennially warm and crystal clear waters. The real star of the show though is the people who with that irrepressible Caribbean charm will make you feel right at home. Bridgetown is the vibrant capital and home to many of the best restaurants, bars and lounges that can be found on the island; leaving without trying some delicious fresh caught seafood would be a crime!
A land known as the rainbow nation, South Africa certainly is alive with colour. Diverse and delightful from the whale migration around the Southern Coast to the Cape Winelands and the beautiful garden route; the industrial history of Kimberley or the beaches of Durban there is always a new way to experience South Africa. That is of course not to mention two of its biggest draws; the shining cosmopolitan centre of Cape Town with its culture, history and contemporary undertones and the rugged wilderness of the Kruger National Park, offering one of the most complete and rich safari experiences in Africa. Although some may not consider a safari as the ideal honeymoon experience, for those in search of something a little different and a little exciting or adventurous; a safari is the ideal complement.
The island of romance; it was said that Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love was born on this isle and what more fitting place could there have been. From the expansive beauty of the Trodos Mountain range to the harbour and beautiful beaches of Paphos. This is an island that can serve up romance and exhilaration in equal measures with lazy summer days, relaxing walks and remote retreats juxtaposed against lively night spots, bustling markets and water sports galore. A trip wouldnít be complete without an excursion to the Tomb of the Kings, an ancient necropolis that provides an insight into the glorious days of ancient Greece.
Already the site of one royal honeymoon this year it is no wonder that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge chose this group of granitic islands to spend their post-nuptial break. A sprinkling of small, private islands along with the larger centres of Mahť and Praslin offer honeymooners the ideal choice of intimate hideaways.† Whether you are looking for colonial opulence or contemporary eco-luxury the numerous resorts and hotels established across the archipelago contribute toward a portfolio of properties that is second to none. Enjoy swimming, diving, romantic boat trips and bathing in the year round sunshine.
Voted at the World Travel Awards 7 of the last 10 years as the leading honeymoon destination there certainly is something quite unique about this tiny Caribbean colony. St Lucia epitomises bare foot chic and with its countless pristine beaches, rich and dense interior and stunning coral reefs it really does offer picture postcard bliss. A hike to the grand Piton Mountains is certainly worthwhile with its stunning views out across the Western side of the island and out over the Caribbean Sea. A select group of luxury resorts have been thoughtfully established around St Lucia, boasting all of the qualities one might expect of a five star retreat but all the while conscious of their responsibilities to maintain and nurture the islandís fragile ecology.
Back to the Indian Ocean and one of the worldís most remote and spectacular island groups. The Maldives lay just south west of the Indian peninsula and are made up of a double chain of 26 atolls. One of the worldís true last remaining paradises the Maldives appeal to honeymooners looking to really get away from it all; to escape to a dream-like world where they can relax and enjoy each otherís company framed by spectacular and unspoiled panoramas. Island hopping is a particularly popular activity around the Maldives and provides couples with the chance to explore the depths of this multi-faceted community.
A jewel of the Indonesian archipelago Bali was once considered as a backpackerís paradise but today this pint sized island is regarded as one of the most exclusive honeymoon destinations in the world. Famed for their intelligence, artistic flair and general conviviality the Balinese are amongst the friendliest people you are likely to meet. Exploring the rich tapestry of the Hindu religion that defines the island there are a number of spectacular temples and shrines that simply must be explored. Along with its many pristine beaches and remote retreats Bali offers honeymooners the ultimate combination of cultural and natural wonder.
Nestled in the Pacific Ocean, Tahiti and her islands must be considered as one of the most remote and secluded honeymoon destinations in the world. Tahiti promises complete abandonment and the chance to leave behind the stresses and strains of the modern world. Lose yourselves in this unspoiled island paradise with its hauntingly blue waters, stunning lagoons, colourful reefs and deserted beaches. Whether you choose to stay on Tahiti itself or head to one of its other iconic sister islands such as Moorea or Bora Bora you will be greeted with the same warm hospitality and quality service that has become a trademark of the luxury properties established here by the likes of Hilton, Four Seasons, Intercontinental, Legends and Sofitel; a rather formidable inventory indeed.
James Bell is a Director of Turquoise Holidays.