While there are places that conventionally lend themselves to being honeymoon destinations, don’t blindly follow the pack. There are some beautiful and unexplored destinations that can make your honeymoon special and truly extraordinary
It’s surprising that more honeymooning couples don’t head to beautiful Budapest. This stunning city, nestled on the banks of the Danube River, spells romance in every breath. There is a rather interesting old world aura that hangs thick in the air—beautiful cobbled streets, ancient stone structures and church spires rising into the skies. Stop a moment to look around—you are sure to experience the ‘magic’in the air. Take long, leisurely walks around the city, soaking in the views from its various bridges, the beautiful architecture and sunset on the river. You can’t help but fall in love with Budapest!
MUST-DO: Budapest is also home to several hot springs, with the bathhouses themselves a work of art. Prepare to relax and unwind in true Hungarian tradition! Those who enjoy soaking in the art scene can visit Budapest’s many fascinating museums and galleries. Don’t miss the historic Royal Palace and the spectacular Great Synagogue. Speed junkies should plan a trip to the Hungaroring Formula1 circuit, northeast of Budapest.
Zanzibar Archipelago, East Africa
Here’s a honeymoon destination that is truly offbeat and extraordinary in every sense. Located off the coast of east Africa, the Zanzibar Archipelago is a melting pot of cultures from Africa, India and Arabia. Zanzibar boasts of some stunning beaches—white sand meeting the deep blue sea to create postcard-perfect views. Stone Town, Zanzibar’s main attraction, is a picturesque little place with whitewashed houses; colourful markets nestled in narrow streets, hidden mosques and cobbled streets. It is the perfect place to get lost with your partner!
MUST-DO: For the perfect romantic meal, a visit to The Rock Restaurant is mandatory. The restaurant is poised on a massive rock that rises from the Indian Ocean off the shore of the Michanwi Pingwe Beach in Zanzibar—a very special location indeed! Diners can reach The Rock by boat (during high tide) or amble through ankle-deep seawater (during low tide). Thanks to its priceless position, The Rock boasts of stunning views of the sea all around. Enjoy a wonderful meal of local, fresh seafood.
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
A popular destination for backpackers, Ho Chi Minh City can make for an interesting offbeat choice for honeymooners. Thanks to Vietnam’s undulating history and unique natural topography, there’s so much to see and experience. The culinary options test and tease your palate; and the favourable currency exchange rate makes you feel like a millionaire! The locals, with their toothy smiles and large hats, will win your heart over. Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam’s largest city (formerly known as Saigon), is the real life version of the fast and furious. Bikes whiz across its busy streets, while the sidewalks are filled with stalls and food carts. The city is always on the move. The maze-like lanes, cramped with homes, tiny eateries and wall paintings are a delight to explore. The Reunification Palace (Independence Palace) is a must visit for those fascinated by history. Another must visit is the Ben Thanh Market crammed with hundreds of tiny stalls. You will find everything here, from little-known local fruits to branded knock-offs.
MUST-DO: A definite must-do is a visit to the Cu Chi Tunnels (a day trip). Cu Chi played an integral part during the Vietnam War—it is a vast network of underground tunnels, the location of several encounters. Excitingly enough, you can wield military weapons at the Cu Chi shooting range, including an AK-47.
Chadar Trek, Ladakh, India
For a honeymoon that’s all about disconnecting from the world and connecting with each other, beautiful Ladakh makes for the perfect destination. The sweeping landscapes and stunning views transport you into another world of snowcapped mountains, lush valleys and sparkling lakes that look straight off a postcard! Begin your honeymoon with a road trip of a lifetime. Drive down from Srinagar to Leh, stopping by at Sonmarg, Kargil and Drass.
MUST-DO: The Chadar Trek, which is along the frozen Zanskar River, is an amazing experience. A seven-day journey in sub-zero temperatures, the trek is not for the faint-hearted. But if you push to the end, you will be rewarded with a feeling of accomplishment, countless stories and wonderful memories!
Lead Photo: Maurice, Flickr