If there’s ever a time to splurge on your deepest travel desires, it’s on your dream honeymoon. The possibilities are boundless, from castaway beach retreats to Big Five African safaris and culture-soaked Asian tours. Need some help deciding where to go when on your honeymoon? Here’s a breakdown of the most romantic destinations to visit by season. Whether you’re travelling in January to March, April to June, July to September or October to December, we have the perfect destinations for your honeymoon.
The Philippines beckons with its 7,000 islands, many untainted by tourism, where you can spend your honeymoon sprawled on sherbet-sand beaches lapped by azure waters. Gorge on lazy beach days where your only obligation is to sip a cocktail or cool off in clear waters teeming with rainbow marine life. The weather in January and February is hot and dry, perfect for winter weddings.
Island-hop your way around paradisical El Nido, which is loved for its hidden beaches and secret lagoons where you can kayak and snorkel with sea turtles. Stay in secluded resorts like Lagen Island, a forest sanctuary with luxury over-water cottages and a spa. Alternatively, head to Bohol, home of the Chocolate Hills, for a pool villa at the cliffside Amorita Resort. Take boat trips to spot dolphins and whales and hike through tropical forests.
Adventurous honeymooners will revel in India’s endless possibilities. Travel from rickshaw-choked cities and desert forts to tiger-inhabited jungles, frosty Himalayan peaks and snaking backwaters. Then of course, there’s the beaches. Any Indian adventure should include a dose of Goa’s golden sand or a stint on the spice-scented Keralan coastline. Time your visit to coincide with Holi, the festival of colour, which takes place after the full moon of March.
Romance abounds in India, with stays in fairytale cottages up in the Shimla Hills, private beach villas and even ornate palaces where you’ll ride in a horse-drawn carriage and get sprinkled with rose petals. Don’t miss the iconic Taj Mahal, the world’s most famous monument to love, which is best viewed at sunrise when it’s bathed in buttery light.
Japan’s cherry blossom season is perfect for spring honeymoons. Wander among parks laden with pink-petalled trees for romantic picnics and photo shoots. Blooms reach Kyoto and Tokyo in April and May, when you can enjoy pleasant weather with sunny days and cool, crisp nights. If you visit in May, you’ll catch local festivals like the parade of Kyoto (Aoi Matsuri).
Aside from cherry blossoms, Japan is a haven for culture-seekers, blending ancient tradition and modern, tech-savvy culture. Explore frenetic cities and zip across the country on a high-speed bullet train, then tour incense-tinged temples and stay at traditional ryokans. Susukinohara Ichinoyu, a hot spring hideaway in Hakone, offers open-air onsen baths with magical forest views.
Combine a wildlife-rich safari in Botswana with Mozambique’s pristine beaches. Botswana’s swanky safari lodges, lantern-lit barge dinners and Okavango helicopter rides make for a show-stopping honeymoon. It’s the start of dry season in Southern Africa, with comfortable temperatures in Chobe National Park and Moremi Game Reserve. The Okavango Delta remains a watery wonderland to be traversed by mokoro canoe, while you can horse-ride and spend a night under the stars on the moonlike Makgadikgadi Salt Pan.
Finish by jetting to nearby Mozambique, where you’ll be graced with dry, clear skies and temperatures in the mid-twenties. The Machangulo Peninsula with its rolling dunes and the white sands of the Bazaruto Archipelago are coveted destinations, lapped by the Indian Ocean with its dive-worthy reefs. Stay in an Oceanview Villa overlooking the sea at Machangulo Beach Lodge or take a speedboat to the Anantara Bazaruto Island Resort for candle-lit beach dinners and sunset dhow cruises.
If you’re after an African safari honeymoon, Kenya will bring all your dreams to life. Between July and September, the country plays host to the world’s most famous wildlife show: the Great Migration. Head to the Maasai Mara to watch as million-strong herds of wildebeest, zebra and antelope flood the plains in search of lush grasslands, pursued by fierce predators. Stay in five-star tented spa camps like Mara Bushtops and savour sunrise hot air balloon rides with champagne breakfasts and private bush dinners. If you want something quieter, head to Laikipia which boasts half the world’s population of Grevy’s zebra and luxury lodges including Mugie House, which offers views across the Laikipia Plateau to Mount Kenya.
The Mombasa Coast is ideal for a post-safari slice of R&R, infused with a blend of Arabian, Swahili and Indian culture. Relax on the ivory sands of palm-fringed Diani beach, protected by a distant reef home to kaleidoscopic marine life. You’ll experience barefoot, Robinson-Crusoe-style luxury at Kinondo Kwetu. Travel further along the coast to Hemingways Watamu, a boutique beach hotel set in a UNESCO biosphere reserve, with ocean-view rooms and a spa.
Tanzania tempts honeymooners with its fabled spice island: Zanzibar. Here, you can discover the romantic architecture and winding bazaars of UNESCO-listed Stone Town and then hit the powdery beaches. All-inclusive Emerald Zanzibar is the island’s newest resort, offering decadent jacuzzi suites made for honeymoons, beach-front infinity pools and a spa. If you’re craving a far-flung adventure, the nearby island of Pemba has world-class diving and a barefoot luxury resort by the sea, Fundu Lagoon.
Pair your Zanzibar getaway with a safari on the mainland. The Great Migration kicks off in the Serengeti between June and July when herds make the daring Mara River crossing; get a front-row seat at Serengeti Bushtops, enjoying sundowners in the bush after a day of Big Five spotting. Alternatively, stay in a mobile camp that relocates twice a year to follow the Migration, such as Lemala Ndutu Camp. You can also visit the UNESCO-listed Ngorongoro Crater, or venture off the beaten track to Nyerere National Park for quieter drives.
For an active honeymoon, fly to Rwanda, where you can embark upon gorilla treks in mist-shrouded mountains. June to September is dry season with temperatures in the mid-twenties. This is the best time for trekking, although you’ll need to organise your permit well in advance, as competition is fierce. Volcanoes National Park is the headline act, home to a population of around 340 endangered mountain gorillas.
Stay within a stone’s throw of the park at Gorilla’s Nest, a treehouse retreat with a spa and infinity pool. Spend your days trekking through thick forests, coming across groups of grazing silverbacks and babies clinging to their mothers. In the evenings, relax by the fireplace at The Nest restaurant, where they infuse their own gins and whiskies, then head back to your room under a sky full of stars, surrounded by hulking volcanic peaks.
Honeymoon in South Africa between October and December for balmy temperatures and blue skies. The diverse nation has a treasure trove of landscapes to explore, from sun-baked beaches to forested national parks, buzzing cities and wildlife-spotted plains. Start in the Mother City, checking into the One&Only Cape Town Hotel where you can look out over Table Mountain and order Michelin-starred Nobu cuisine for room service. Soar over the city on a helicopter ride or tour the rugged peninsula.
Head to the beloved Cape Winelands for cycling tours to Constantia vineyards where you’ll enjoy tasting sessions and gourmet meals. If you relish a road trip, drive down the Garden Route for whale watching in Hermanus and sunset oyster cruises in Knysna, while the Blue Train will take you on a two-night sojourn from Cape Town to Pretoria, complete with butler service and opulent suites. Add a taster safari in a private reserve along the Cape or at Kruger National Park to spot the Big Five.
Namibia offers the self-drive honeymoon of a lifetime. Drive a 4×4 from the Sossusvlei sand dunes to the shipwreck-littered coast, petroglyph-covered cliffs of Damaraland and Etosha National Park, Namibia’s safari star. The weather is cool and dry through the autumn, drawing animals to spring-fed waterholes in Etosha for wildlife watching. Then there’s the planetarium-worthy skies in NamibRand to dine and even sleep beneath at a star-bed lodge.
Adrenaline-pumping adventures include sandboarding in the world’s oldest desert, the Namib, scenic flights and fat bike tours. The wildlife in Namibia is just as impressive in the sea as on land; take catamaran cruises complete with oysters and wine in Walvis Bay to spot everything from migrating whales to starfish and dolphins. Namibia boasts romantic escapes in the form of eco-desert oases and mountain retreats to tented safari camps and remote shipwreck lodges.
Contact us and one of our UK team will help shape your ideas into the trip of a lifetime. Someone like Malcolm who's travelled extensively in Namibia. But they won't do it alone. They'll draw on the expertise of our contacts on the ground, connecting you to the people who'll make your holiday one you'll always remember - the expert guides who can help you spot rare animals or the fat bike enthusiasts who can take you on a cycling adventure through the Namib Desert. Give us a call, set up and appointment or enquire online to start planning your tailor-made Namibia holiday.
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