By Dana Saccoccio
The sun beams down as you lay out on your towel, pressing your toes into the soft white sand. You look over to your new husband, flick your sunglasses up on your nose and decide to take a stroll along the shoreline; adventure waits as you dive into sightseeing.
Wherever you dream to wander and roam, Annie’s Escapes can help bring your honeymoon aspirations to life. But first, we’ve gathered up the top five most desired honeymoon escapes and can we just say, wow, they’re simply stunning. Whichever you choose, please, take us with you!
1. Bora Bora, French Polynesia
Nestled within a turquoise lagoon northwest of Tahiti, this tiny South Pacific Island is full of crystal clear ocean adventures. Snorkel in the coral reef, take an off-road tour or Jet Ski in a sea of paradise. Bora, Bora is a luxurious destination waiting to be explored.
2. Santorini, Greece
Do you already have an image of Greece in your head? Santorini is likely to be the place that you are imagining. As a part of the collection of the Cyclades Islands, Santorini’s cliffs observe the blue waves of the Aegean Sea. The hillsides are bursting with white and blue homes, filled little restaurants that craft meals for Gods. Enjoy the view, chase the sunsets and embrace the culture.
3. Maui, Hawaii
Grab some leis, put a pineapple drink in your hand and say aloha to one of the Central Pacific’s most breathtaking islands. At every sunset on Kaanapali Beach, enjoy the island’s daily cliff diving ceremony. Whale watch in Lahina and stroll along the historic trail—filled with National Landmarks. Learn to surf alongside of the Pacific waves or set your towel down on the shoreline. Relax and take in the ocean breeze.
4. Queensland, Australia
If you are longing to explore the land down under, Queensland is chockfull of countless adventures. Experience Great Barrier Reef from Port Douglas to Bundaberg. Discover whimsical National Parks and plunge into the Goudwana Rainforests. Swim within picturesque waterfalls of freshwater in Cairns. A romantic destination is waiting for you with loads to see and do.
5. Paris, France
Bonjour! Majestic courtyards of Ile Saint-Louis dazzle the romantic eye. Take a boat tour as you immerse yourself in the grace of the city’s historic architecture. Watch the sun lower down from the sky as the Eiffel Tower glitters in the distance. If beaches aren’t your thing, you’re sure to fall in love with the cityscape Paris, France.
Okay, now that you have some destinations in mind, just how do you go about booking them? Ann, owner of Annie’s Escapes, has just the answers you are looking for.
1. Do you have any package deals available for honeymooners?
Absolutely, although most couples are looking for something more customized than what they’d find in the typical online “package deal”. The honeymoon is the one part of the wedding planning process that is truly all about the couple themselves; they don’t need to worry about pleasing their family and friends. I encourage clients to get really specific about what they want to see and do, and we create a truly custom experience!
2. How much money would you suggest a couple budget for their honeymoon?
As much as they are comfortable with, which sounds like a cop-out, but is really true. If a couple is paying for their own wedding and buying a house and can only allocate $1,500 to a honeymoon, we can put together a fabulous mini-moon! On the flip side, if the honeymoon is the number one priority in their wedding budget, we can create a knock-your-socks-off bucket-list trip that they’ll be re-living for years to come.
3. If you could travel to any destination on your honeymoon, where would you go and why?
That’s a tough one, because my wish list changes from day to day. Right now, I think my “dream honeymoon” would be to South America. I am dying to get back to Argentina, which I visited briefly last year, and this time around I would add Chile to the mix. I would explore the rugged natural beauty of Patagonia, drink some fabulous wine, and go see some penguins!
4. What are the steps in choosing the best honeymoon destination?
The first step is to sit down and think about what the two of you love to do together in your free time, what new places you’ve been dying to explore, and what kinds of stories you want to tell when you get back. Give some thought to timing (how long you can be away) and budget (how much you can comfortably allocate to this trip), and then look for a professional travel planner to help put it all together.
5. How far in advance should a couple book your services?
Ideally, I like to start the discussion at least 6-8 months in advance, but I find that some couples want to start much earlier than that, while some leave it until the 6-8 week mark because they are so busy with the other wedding details. I can accommodate all of those time frames, but it’s important to keep in mind that last minute planning does mean we’re limited in terms of what’s available.