Under-the-Radar Honeymoon Destinations
The last thing anyone wants on their honeymoon is a crowded beach with really expensive cocktails. Forget Jamaica; say adios to Mexico! These are the best under-the-radar honeymoon destinations.
Honeymooners in the know are saying Honduras is the new Costa Rica, and the island of Roatan’s coral reef (the world’s second largest) is a snorkeling paradise. Just 30 miles off the country’s north coast, this unspoiled enclave has small villages with secluded hotels, Caribbean flavors and few crowds.
Who needs the beach when there are hot springs? With more airlines making stopovers in Iceland, it’s easier than ever to find romance in the north. Take a hot-springs tour and spend the day soaking in the Secret Lagoon, or marvel at the northern lights after taking in Reykjavik’s nightlife.
The Canary Islands, Spain
These islands are part of Spain but sit on the northwest coast of Africa with sandy beaches, breathtaking forests and consistently pleasant temperatures for year-round resort relaxation. From visiting Tenerife’s lava fields to hiking the mountains of Gran Canaria, there’s tons to do including beach bars and spas without the price tag of mainland Spain. (lead image also from Canary Islands)
This Canadian province offers dozens of romantic destinations where you can nest with your lovebird. Devour Montreal’s epic food scene and European flair, stroll the cobblestone streets of historic Quebec City, then kick back and enjoy the spas and lakeside B&Bs of the Eastern Townships.
Gili Trawangan Island, Indonesia
Bali has become a quintessential honeymoon destination, but there are hundreds (actually more than 17,000) of islands in Indonesia boasting pristine beaches and secluded hotels. Gili Trawangan and neighboring islands Gili Meno and Gili Air don’t allow motorized vehicles, so peaceful romance is paramount, paired with chic bars, food stalls and resort hotels.
Lake District, United Kingdom
Known as Lakeland by locals, this mountainous region has drawn writers like William Wordsworth and Beatrix Potter for centuries. Home to a national park, ancient castles, picturesque countryside and of course crystal clear lakes, the Lake District has many romantic B&Bs to relax in.
Biarritz holds the allure of a French honeymoon without the crowds of Nice. What was once the go-to beach town for Napoleon is now a surfing nerve center -- it’s one of the best beach resorts in the country with lots of ritzy hotels. Stroll along the waterfront promenade, devour the local fare, or take a surf lesson in the Atlantic.
From mountaintop monasteries to world-class resorts, this Tibetan town is full of wonders to discover at a very high altitude. Explore Potala Palace, which seems as if it sits on top of the world, wander Barkhor Street surrounding Jokhang Temple, or spend the day at Yangpachen Hot Springs.
Spend a week on the Albanian Riviera without the crowds and hype of Croatia. Vlore sits along the Adriatic Sea with amazing beaches, medieval architecture and four-star hotel stays for one-star prices. Spend the day at Dhermi beach or explore the 16th century Muradie Mosque and Zvernec Monastery’s Byzantine architecture.
While Santorini is one of the most popular honeymoon destinations in the world (for good reason), idyllic island beauty and delicious Greek fare can also be found on many other islands of the Cycladic archipelago. Check out Sifnos for a more traditional Greek experience and enjoy an epic sunset without the crowds of Mykonos.
Gabby Peyton is a writer based in Toronto. A photographer, dabbling archaeologist, and Champagne aficionado, Gabby’s travel is dictated by food; her favourite places are Istanbul, Bologna and St. John’s, Newfoundland.