Honeymoon TripsGalavante Honeymoons – Seal the Deal
A natural planner, you’ve got your wedding checklist squared away. A wedding singer who stage dives into the crowd at the end of Shout? Check. Six-foot-tall calla lily centerpieces to tactfully sabotage mom’s view of dad’s new girlfriend? Check. A seven-tier wedding cake, cupcake tower, cascading chocolate fountain and s’mores station complete with a fire pit? We commend your commitment to awesome. But while your wedding will be one of the most important days in your life, planning it can take a toll. Why do you think honeymoons were invented? The wedding is your day to shine, but the honeymoon is your time to recline.
It’s not that we don’t want to hear all about the little neck clams you’re flying in for your cocktail hour raw bar, but at Galavante, it’s all about travel. So for us, the real question is, where are you honeymooning? If that decision is still up in the air, we’ve got a few ideas guaranteed to make yours the most epic of vacations. They also work for one-, five- and ten-year anniversary getaways. Because as the old saying goes, couples that travel together stay together.
Laucala Island, Fiji
Good for: Luxury hounds
The details: Traveling to Fiji is no joke, but completely worth it when you’ve got two weeks of island bliss ahead of you. Especially when it’s private island bliss. When you honeymoon here, you’ll feel like Adam and Eve frolicking across 3,500 acres of coconut plantations, verdant mountains and white sand beaches. Set on the northern tip of the island, the resort has just 25 traditional Fijian villas with private gardens and tiki-torch-lit infinity swimming pools. And if you’re worried about island fever, the hotel can arrange for a host of activities like diving, rainforest tours, horseback riding, surfing, mountain biking and golfing on the 18-hole championship course designed by David McLay-Kidd.
Honeymoon tip: Rent the one-bedroom peninsula villa and you’ll be perched on the island’s most secluded spot with uninterrupted views of the South Pacific, a natural pool carved into the rocks and a wooden staircase that leads down to a private stretch of sand.
Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam
Good for: Culture mavens
The details: History, culture and natural beauty merge in this Southeast Asia trio. You can tackle all three or explore every last bit of just one – it just depends on how much post-wedding downtime you want. So hike the ruins of Angkor Wat and sail past the floating village of Chong Khneas in Cambodia. Laze on white sands sipping a Singha in Koh Samui. Or learn how to make banh mi and tom kho at a cooking class in Hoi An. But no matter what you do during the day, spoil yourselves at night by booking a suite at one of the unbelievable Aman properties like Amansara in Siem Reap or the brand new Amano'i in Vietnam’s secluded Nui Chua National Park.
Honeymoon tip: Amansara was originally built as a villa for Cambodia’s King Norodom Sihanouk, and you’ll certainly receive the royal treatment with private tuk-tuk drivers and romantic dinners complete with dance performances at the property’s Khmer Village House.
Good for: Adventure seekers
The details: Lions and tigers and bears – almost. Marriage itself is certainly an adventure, so kick it off right with a trip to Africa. The Serengeti has the largest concentration of plains animals (think wildebeest, giraffes and zebras) on the continent and the Four Seasons Serengeti, tucked in Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park, is the perfect base from which to explore. The resort’s 77 guestrooms have vast views outside but inside they’re luxury all the way. You’ll find contemporary African design, wall-to-wall windows, private terraces and personal plunge pools. And to keep you busy during the day, hop in a hot air balloon for an aerial safari, indulge in a couple’s signature kifaa massage or kick back next to the infinity-edge pool, which happens to overlook a very active watering hole.
Honeymoon tip: For the best wildlife viewing, plan your trip between the months of June and October. Though if you stay at Four Seasons, you won’t even have to leave to get up-close-and-personal with the animals: A herd of 30-plus, luxury-loving elephants is known to frequent the property.
Good for: Foodies (and winos)
The details: Bolognese, Brunellos, burrata. It’s hard to find another place on earth so enmeshed in the gloriousness that is eating and drinking. And let’s face it – at your wedding you barely had enough time between dancing and schmoozing with your new in-laws to savor much more than an oyster snagged from the tail end of the raw bar. To do an Italian honeymoon right, skip the Amalfi (since you can always go) and try somewhere more off-the-beaten-path like Taormina, Puglia or Lake Como for warm Italian hospitality minus the crowds. Not to mention, authentic experiences like catching a performance at Teatro Greco, indulging in fresh-as-can-be fish carpaccio at Ristorante da Tuccino or perusing the silk offerings at A. Picci.
Honeymoon tip: If you plan to honeymoon in Clooney’s stomping grounds, book the recently renovated Honeymoon Suite Maria at the ultra-luxe Grand Hotel Tremezzo. Breakfast in bed will be a daily ritual considering you don’t have to leave the four-poster king for fantastic lake views.
Riviera Maya, Mexico
Good for: Beach junkies
The details: With the lush jungle on one side and the shimmering Caribbean Sea flanked by alabaster sands on the other, Mexico’s Riviera Maya – which runs all the way from Puerto Morales, just south of Cancun, down to Punta Allen – is honeymoon heaven. Between sunbathing, swimming in cenotes, touring the ruins of Tulum and stuffing your faces with all the guac you can get your hands on, the name of the game here is relaxation. And luxury, of course, especially when it comes to the out-of-this-world hotels you’ll find in the Mayakoba enclave, like Rosewood and Banyan Tree. The resorts are so beautiful you probably won’t leave for the first few days – you need to recharge, after all – but once you emerge, you’re close (about a 13-minute drive) to all the action of Playa del Carmen and the city’s bustling Fifth Avenue.
Honeymoon tip: When you book a suite at Rosewood Mayakoba, you get your very own butler, reachable via text or email (in case you want to spend your honeymoon in complete privacy) to arrange for anything from a private dinner on the resort’s lawn to a couple’s Mayan cacao scrub, wrap and massage at the spa.