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Where to go on honeymoon.....

MileseMilese Posts: 1,233
edited July 2010 in The bottom bracket
Hi,

I'm getting married at the start of June next year and are looking to go somewhere nice for a 2 week honeymoon afterwards.

We couldn't decide where to go and, in hindsight, a moment of female brilliance led my wife to be to offer me to arrange and book the whole thing as a surprise. I lept at the offer, thinking it would be interesting, but have now realised its a complete pain in the censored .

The world is too big a place to single out any particular place!

Our holidays have typically been £200 self catering med efforts so far, but we went to Sharm El Sheik in Egypt a few years ago which was fantastic. We'd both be happy to go back, but something different is always good.

Criteria:

2 weeks
Max 12 hour ish flight, pref direct
£2.5k (or less.....will fluctuate dependant on inclusivity etc)
Beach weather (warm / hot and dry)
Some natural beauty
Something to do other than lie on the beach
Potential to hire a car and go explore
Not too commerical
Staying somewhere nice but not necessarily pointless luxuary
Activies to do as day trips but not an activity based holiday
Chance to get off the beaten track
Possibly a split location trip, or a mild fly drive?

Where should we go?

Recommendatoions for websites to research? Any thoughts appreciated!
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Posts

  • skyd0gskyd0g Posts: 2,539
    Congrats on your forthcoming marriage. :D A possible idea, rather than a single location - a Mediterranean Cruise?

    A chance to see a pot-pourri of different cultures and locations and the weather is pretty much guaranteed. :D
    Cycling weakly
  • gavmacgavmac Posts: 22
    We went to California and I could see it meeting your needs. We did San Francisco for a few days, Yosimite for a week (brilliant,) back to the coast to follow it South to San Diego, cut inland to Joshua Tree national park and miss out LA. California has an incredible mix of things to choose from, I would love to do it again.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 28,799
    My Honeymoon was most memorable - I had two nights in a static caravan in Scarborough with another couple who were friends of ours (to ease the cost), 5 weeks after we got married!

    I joined the Police 6 weeks before I got married (wedding was planned for ages before) and couldn't get leave during training!

    We made up for it though after MrsNapD became a fully qualified Nutjob Nurse and we went here 6 years after our actual wedding -

    http://www.thomson.co.uk/destinations/caribbean/mexico/mexico-caribbean-coast/playacar/hotels/riu-palace-mexico.html

    It was amazing. Simply amazing! However it cost us 2.5k in 2003...

    Loads to see and do too!
  • LeesykoiLeesykoi Posts: 338
    Hi Milese,

    Ooh June time tricky, some places gonna be pricey !!!!

    Liking NapD's comment, i've just back from a RIU hotel however mine was in Boa Vista (Cape Verde Islands).

    However if it costs in at the time of year you require i recommend ......Costa Rica !!!!

    Went there and stayed at the Grand Occidental and it was intimate however not too much ie nice. ........very peaceful and we also went zip-lining (cool), day trip to Nicaragua (cool) and also overnighted at the Arenal live volcano (again cool).... Absolute great place, just hope it has not been overdeveloped since i was last there.

    Alternatively try NE Brazil .....(superb i went and then went to RIO for 3 days).

    Travelled extensively in the caribbean but if you go there you'll either get ripped off or get stuck in a rat-trip, believe me i've been around a bit !!!

    Congrat's and good luck.

    Lee.
    I like shiny bikes - especially Italian ones.....!!
  • APIIIAPIII Posts: 2,010
    Congratualtions! We got married in June and after some debate settled on Italy for our honeymoon, splitting our time between Bologna, Florence, Rome and Capri. We used the excellent trains to move around (never more than 3 hours travelling). Weather was amazing and Capri was great (as is the whole Amalfi coast). There was plenty to do, but being June was quite busy.

    We've also been here http://www.salaresorts.com/samui, which is my wife's favourite. It's a bit self-indulgent, but I suppose that's what you want for a honeymoon. It will certainly blow your budget, but it's worth it! (the private pool villas are just incredible), and you can tag on a few days in Bangkok
  • ScrumpleScrumple Posts: 3,137
    We did Malaysia, splitting between the Tanjong Jara hotel (Eastern China Sea side) and Kuala lumpur.
    We bagged an upgrade in KL, to the exec level and had a free bar every night! Always argue with the manager - top tip - as they show off and will have the ability to make a difference. Never whinge at a desk jockey.

    We wanted to go somewhere that others didn't flock too (yanks / euro hordes). I'd also recommend the Maldives if you like absolute relaxation, amazing snorkeling, and peace. Meeru is nice, although maybe not the season for it in summer.
  • jibberjimjibberjim Posts: 2,810
    For our honeymoon, I was thinking Majorca or Lanzarote to get some good winter training in during it. Unless we have to wait 'til later in the year, when maybe the alps or pyrennes would be a good option...
    Jibbering Sports Stuff: http://jibbering.com/sports/
  • PokerfacePokerface Posts: 8,640
    I did a week-long cruise for my honeymoon. Really enjoyed it (and used the gym on the boat so didn't gain a full stone like most people!). Med cruise - and got off the boat in places like Rome and Barcelona, etc.

    Not sure a 2-week jobby would be as good.

    California trip would certainly suit. Lots to do there (used to live there myself). Everything from San Fran (one of the coolest cities in the world), to LA to San Diego and even Las Vegas.

    Obviously requires some effort to get from city to city and some planning to find hotels, etc - but would be a memorable trip.

    Otherwise, have heard Egypt is great, as is Greece and even Dubai. Or the Bahamas - been there too and it's beautiful, although not as much to do as other places.

    Good luck!!
  • Borneo is where I went, at a resort where they rehabilitate orphan Orangutans (& yes you get to see them). Did lots of natural beauty stuff too, climbed Kota Kinabalu (the highest peak on this island) with an overnight stay en route, went to see the rain forest and had the best meal ever, slept in a hut next to the river; very basic but great. Went to an island and released baby sea turtles at night. Would highly recommend however not sure of the costs of this now....did this in 1999.
  • gavmac wrote:
    We went to California and I could see it meeting your needs. We did San Francisco for a few days, Yosimite for a week (brilliant,) back to the coast to follow it South to San Diego, cut inland to Joshua Tree national park and miss out LA. California has an incredible mix of things to choose from, I would love to do it again.

    + 1 for this, We did San Fransisco (2 nights), Yosemite(2 nights), Death Valley(1 night), Vegas(3 nights), San Diego(3 nights), LA(2 nights (I would skip this if i did it again) Monteray(2 night) than back up the coast highway back to San Farncisco(2 nights), we took about 2 and a half weeks and hired an awesome convertible for the whole trip.

    We booked everything in advance so didn't have to worry about finding accomadation (Think we used trial finders) added a helicopter ride that flew out over the Grand Canyon then dropped us down at the Hoover Dam, we then rafted down the river and then had champagne picnic before being collected again by the helicopter and flew back over Vegas Strip at night .
    Went Marlin Fishing in San Diego (Only managed a 42lb Tuna though!!) We kept this and the hotel cooked it up for us and other guests on a beach BBQ

    This is not a trip you would ever do with kids so if that is on your agenda after marriage then get this trip in first, like the previous post said California has a bit of everything.
    "BEER" Proof that god loves us and wants us to be happy
  • MileseMilese Posts: 1,233
    Thanks for all the replies.

    Interesting what's come up, because a California fly drive and Italy are my 2 current favourites!

    Jellybelly that sounds great, but all seems a but rushed. I'd rather spend a bit longer at fewer places. Any idea how well that would work or would it mean missing some good bits?

    APIII - any particular places you'd recommend? Anywhere less touristy, but still within reach of some attractions? What about Scilly?

    What are California and Italy like cost wise? IE, how much is a meal out or pint going to cost in comparision with home?
  • prawnyprawny Posts: 5,390
    Don't go to cyprus like I did, what I pile of poo that turned out to be.

    We did California for our 1st anniversary it was amazing. 5 nights in LA 4 in Vegas and 5 in San Francisco, we both loved it.

    We loved LA too, it's worth a visit, just do your sightseeing in the day. we went to Universal studios, watched a tonight show recording, wandered around beverly hills and went to the pier at Santa Monica, I could easily have spent 2 weeks there.

    from Vegas we did the grand canyon in a helicopter, went to see the Hoff in The Producers and went to the Hoover dam followed by a swim in lake mead. We didn;t have much cash to spare for gambling though so we played the slots for a bit and eat doughnuts.

    From San Francisco we did the Golden Gate Bridge and Park from Chrissy Fields, Nappa valley and the Sutter Home Winery (picked at random too many to choose from), Alcatraz, and drove down to Santa Cruz.

    I can't wait to go back, it'll have to wait a while though kids are still too young/not born enough to fly, going to Dawlish in a static caravan this year, joy! :?
    Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015 - Dead - Replaced with a Hack Frame
    Voodoo Bizango - 2014 - Dead - Hit by a car
    Vitus Sentier VRS - 2017
  • davieseedaviesee Posts: 6,473
    Hi,

    2 trips we have done spring to mind:-

    3 stay trip - 3 nights Florence, 4 nights Rome, 7 nights Sorrento.
    Sorrento was nothing special but a superb base for the whole Amalfi coast.

    2 stay trip - 5 nights Vienna, 9 nights Zell Am See. Superb trip but don't do the nights the other way round, that was my mistake :oops: First class train transfer is worth the extra cost. That was our honeymoon and my wife was well chuffed! :P
    None of the above should be taken seriously, and certainly not personally.
  • Milese wrote:
    Thanks for all the replies.

    Interesting what's come up, because a California fly drive and Italy are my 2 current favourites!

    Jellybelly that sounds great, but all seems a but rushed. I'd rather spend a bit longer at fewer places. Any idea how well that would work or would it mean missing some good bits?

    APIII - any particular places you'd recommend? Anywhere less touristy, but still within reach of some attractions? What about Scilly?

    What are California and Italy like cost wise? IE, how much is a meal out or pint going to cost in comparision with home?

    We found this to be fairly leisurly to be honest, we set our own agenda as all the pre packaged tours only seemed to spend 2 night max anywhere, you can of course do it anyway you wish but I get bored quite easily.
    Cost of food etc is alot less and the quantities of everything is huge, we used to have a massive breakfast approx $8.00 and that would set us up for the day and then just snacks through the day. Evening meals are cheap if you want them to be and you never need a starter as the mains are huge, my missus used to have just a starter as they were equivalant to a uk main meal. Beer is avaraege cost ,pretty much same as uk, for some reason wine seamed expensive.
    "BEER" Proof that god loves us and wants us to be happy
  • West coast USA is the place to go to. California is fantastic, as is Nevada. We hired a car for three weeks and visited Las Vegas, Death Valley, Yosemite, San Francisco then back down highway 1 to LA.

    So good we are going back in August!!!

    DSCF6717.jpg
  • nicensleazynicensleazy Posts: 2,310
    Have a great time.......honeymoon ideas....I think Italy is very romantic with its rustic charm etc. However, where ever you go, have a lovely time!
  • MileseMilese Posts: 1,233
    Thanks.

    Any recommendations on agents for California trips? Do you book a specific route with a agent or book your own accom?

    Is the Gran Canyon worth while? Is there anything there apart from some great scenery? I presume the weather means its all looking and no doing?

    Any other tips would be great, places to go, avoid, 2 week route etc.
  • AnonymousAnonymous Posts: 28,799
    Me and Mrs dmclite went to devon for a week camping in a hired fiat punto. It rained the first 2 nights and when I asked her where her sister ent on her honeymoon, she replied "the seychelles" and burst into tears. It was then that I knew that Woolacoombe bay wasn't the best choice but we were skint. Our wedding cost £1100 in 1994, as we were saving for a deposit on a house.

    Glad to say that we had our 15 year anniversary in August, but if I could change anthing, I would have borrowed some dosh and gone somewhere a bit further away. This post isn't much help I know but there are 5 in our family now so I have no idea what a normal "couply" family should cost. have a good one though. :wink:
  • Milese wrote:
    Thanks.

    Any recommendations on agents for California trips? Do you book a specific route with a agent or book your own accom?

    Is the Gran Canyon worth while? Is there anything there apart from some great scenery? I presume the weather means its all looking and no doing?

    Any other tips would be great, places to go, avoid, 2 week route etc.

    There are loads of companies that let you tailor your own route accom,flights etc.
    I think we used trialfinders http://www.trailfinders.com/

    So look at a map decide where you want to go, choose flights and hotels type of car etc and they book them all up for you and make it a package. They will also book excursions etc if yoiu want them.

    The Grand Canyon is something you need to see, preferably from the air, I dont think you get the same impact standing on the edge just looking at it and you can get trips like we did that drop you into the canyon and then do white water rafting down the colarado river.
    If you go to Vegas go mid week as all the hotel prices double at weekends.

    San Diego is good for a rest mid trip, nice beaches etc.
    I would not bother with LA but depends if you like that sort of thing.

    Drive the coastal route from LA to San Fransisco , it is the nicest drive I have ever done.

    Get a convertible.

    If you go into Death Valley take plenty of water in the boot and fill up with fuel, you do not want to get stuck as the heat is beyond what you imagine.
    In death valley vist the artists palllete at sunrise, you will see colours in rocks you won't believe exist in nature.

    Go for a Taxi Ride in San Francisco, all the drivers we had were nuts, and one even said for extra 10 bucks he could get all 4 wheels off the ground over one of the steep hills.

    In San Francisco Hotels do not be afrais to use the concierge,We were struggling to get tickets for Alcatrraz but he got them in minutes for the time and day we wanted and tickets at face value, we did of course give him a tip.
    They also get you into the best restaurants etc and do not expect any reward as it is there job.
    "BEER" Proof that god loves us and wants us to be happy
  • I got married in May 2005 and went to Naples in Florida for 2 weeks on our honeymoon.

    Flew into Miami airport , picked up hire car and drove across, it was sunny , less touristy and has easy access to everglades, the keys and parks (if your a big kid like me!).

    It really gave us chance to do what ever we wanted and was reasonable, you would be able to do 4/5 stars with you budget.

    My other favourite place in the world is banff in the canadian rockies , we spent 5 weeks travelling around there 2 years ago and the scenery is mind blowing.

    Hope you have a great time wherever you go :D
  • Special KSpecial K Posts: 449
    For the time of year, your price range and your other requirements it's Med all the way I think,

    My recommendation is: go to Sicily, specifically Taormina which is lovely and very romantic. More reasons include:

    In your price range.
    The weather will be good.
    It won't be fully high season and therefore bearable.
    The beaches are fine.
    The town is lovely, nice shops and restaurants, greek amphitheatre used as a venue for opera and other events, spectacular views over cliffs to sea and up to M.Etna
    You can explore by car some interesting places, and visit M.Etna etc etc.
    The food is great even on the beach, the people are friendly.
    Short transfer from Catania airport.

    I took my wife there for our first holiday together and it could easily have been bigged up a little to be a great honeymoon destination, in fact we considered going back there for ours. We normally travel independently but found that it was easier and much much more cost effective to use an agent, I think we used Citalia at the time and they were fine.

    Congratulations on your impending nuptials. Usually the engagement is the last independent decision a man ever makes, but it seems that with the selection of the holiday you have a stay of execution so make the most of it and have fun with your holiday shopping! Take care and good luck.
    "There are holes in the sky,
    Where the rain gets in.
    But they're ever so small
    That's why rain is thin. " Spike Milligan
  • MileseMilese Posts: 1,233
    Somewhere Italian is my second choice, but I think I'm going to do the Californian fly drive.

    I've had a look around and reckon its cheaper to book it all yourself than to go through an agent.

    Here's what I'm thinking.

    Route:
    http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?f=d&sourc ... e=UTF8&z=6

    San Fran (3 nights) > Lake Tahoe (2 night) > Yosemite (2 nights) > Las Vegas (3 nights) > San Diego (2 nights) > LA (3 nights).

    We like walking so thought Lake Tahoe and Yosemite would be good. However might ditch Lake Tahoe to make it less frantic?

    About 1100 miles driving in 15 days.

    BA flights - £800
    Convertible - £450
    Accom (3-5*) - £1200

    What are the odds of a BA strike just at the wrong time?!

    Any thoughts on the route? Must do things in the area?

    Places I've missed / changes you'd make?

    All appreciated, as I'm very much feeling myself through what seems reasonable.

    All help much appreciated, and might just save a divorce before its even started!
  • Have a look at Boulder City just outside of Las Vegas. We have just this minute booked a room in the Bellagio on the strip, we will then stay for two nights in the Boulder Dam hotel. One night midweek in Vegas costs more than the two nights in Boulder. Boulder was purpose built for the construction of the Hoover Dam which is down the road......

    Points A-B between SF and Lake Tahoe is all soul less interstate. You could drive towards Santa Cruz and cut across in lnland to Yosemite for better scenery perhaps. I'm not sure I'd bother with Tahoe for an overnight stop, a day trip through was enough for us.

    I think you must have a look down the coast as far as Monterey at least, the Pacific coast is fantastic.

    As already mentioned with Alcatraz, we used the concierge. The advice they gave us after we revealed we had not booked tickets was to que up from 6 am because tickets are available for the first two trips of the day. My advice is if you are going to go book as soon as you have booked your flight!

    I'm sure more usless info will spring to mind :lol:
  • I would break your drive from Yosemite to Vegas(312 miles id a long old drive at 50mph and the cop cars really do hide behind billboards!!) with a stop in Death Valley, its a place you really have to experience.

    Again personal preference but would skip LA or maybe just spend one night then take route one http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_State_Route_1 back up the coast and have 1 night stays at places like Monteray and Carmel for the likes of cannery row and the brilliant Monteray Bay Aqaurium (The sea otters are amazing)
    http://www.montereybayaquarium.org/ and hurst castle http://www.hearstcastle.org/.

    This coast road is truly amazing and you cross the likes of this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bixby_Creek_Arch_Bridge

    Pick up a picnic and take your pick of hundreds of secluded bays which you may share with seals and sea otters for a romantic picnic.

    Completing the loop back to San Francisco will also make your flights and car hire cheaper.
    "BEER" Proof that god loves us and wants us to be happy
  • MileseMilese Posts: 1,233
    Thanks for the replies and all the detail. Keep it coming.

    Maybe this route would be better then?

    http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?f=d&sourc ... 09&t=h&z=6

    Flights seem to be creeping up in price, so I better hurry up and decide!

    Into San Fran and out of Vegas, via LA.
  • MileseMilese Posts: 1,233
    I've booked flights.

    Into San Fran and out of Vegas 15 nights later. The other flights I was looking at shot up in price, so I thought it was time to get some booked!

    I'll now have lots of questions as I fine tune the itinary!

    So, roughly how much does it cost to park? It seems like I wont need a car in San Francisco, so how far is it from the airport into the town?

    What about Vegas? Will a car be worth while there, and how easy is it to get from the strip to the airport?

    I thought I'd book decent hotels in San Fran, LA and Vegas. This will allow us a flexible journey from San Fran to LA and LA > San Diego > Vegas. But how available and cheap are acceptable quality motels / hotels?

    I'll book the Alcatraz trip up front, but are their any other trips worth doing that I'll need to book ahead? What about Helicopter to the Grand Canyon? What's the score with day tripping into Mexico from San Diego, can you do it in your hire car, or would it need to be an organised trip?
  • Ok it's too late now but a couple from the local tri club got their friends to buy them wedding presents in the form of accommodation between Lands End and John O'Groats. They then spent 2 weeks on a tandem discovering what people had booked them.

    But yours will be great too! :D
  • Milese wrote:
    I've booked flights.

    Into San Fran and out of Vegas 15 nights later. The other flights I was looking at shot up in price, so I thought it was time to get some booked!

    I'll now have lots of questions as I fine tune the itinary!

    So, roughly how much does it cost to park? It seems like I wont need a car in San Francisco, so how far is it from the airport into the town?

    What about Vegas? Will a car be worth while there, and how easy is it to get from the strip to the airport?

    I thought I'd book decent hotels in San Fran, LA and Vegas. This will allow us a flexible journey from San Fran to LA and LA > San Diego > Vegas. But how available and cheap are acceptable quality motels / hotels?

    I'll book the Alcatraz trip up front, but are their any other trips worth doing that I'll need to book ahead? What about Helicopter to the Grand Canyon? What's the score with day tripping into Mexico from San Diego, can you do it in your hire car, or would it need to be an organised trip?

    I'll PM you tomorrow with some info, a starter for ten is if you are not using a car in SF you will not pay for parking on the rest of your trip!

    You can see the airport from the strip in vegas.......
  • crakercraker Posts: 2,060
    cjessop wrote:
    Borneo is where I went, at a resort where they rehabilitate orphan Orangutans (& yes you get to see them). Did lots of natural beauty stuff too, climbed Kota Kinabalu (the highest peak on this island)

    + 1 (2004).

    Really friendly, bit of the beaten track, good value, stuff for adventurey types (climbing Mount Kinabalu will stay with me a long time. Dawn at 4000m with altitude sickness = great), snorkling, scaba, white water rafting + islands to explore in a more leisurely way (little ferries bob around them). Ahhhh :-)
  • sampras38sampras38 Posts: 1,917
    I was going to suggest Mauritius but I guess that's out of the price range. Also, Cape Town in south africa is quite nice with lots to do, if you like that sort of thing. We did it a few years ago and loved it. So not our usual type of holiday but really enjoyed it. Highlight for me was visiting Robbin Island where Nelson Mandela was inprisoned. 11 or 12 hour flight but no jetlag coz there's only 1 hour time difference from the UK. And it's quite cheap due to the Rand/Pound exchange rate.
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