Category Archives: Honeymoons

How To Choose Your Honeymoon Destination

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Planning your honeymoon can be just as difficult as planning the wedding itself, but it’s also got to be up there with one of the best parts of the whole thing too. Kicking back and relaxing after a year or so of intense preparation is going to be pretty blissful, but how do you make sure you get your choice of honeymoon destination right?

Are you looking for an urban escape with plenty of sightseeing? Would you prefer to get a sweat on with some outdoor adventures? Or is your dream holiday sunbathing on a perfect beach somewhere? What if you and your beau have very different ideas of what makes a good trip?

These are the things you need to consider when it comes to picking a great honeymoon destination that will suit you both.

Weather

First things first, what kind of climate do you love – hot, cold, humid, dry, mild? Deciding on this right away will help you narrow down your choices quickly. Make sure you also check out what the weather and temperature will be like in the season you plan to travel in.

Budget

This is a biggie. How much you are able (or want!) to spend will be a huge factor in deciding where you go. If money is tight why not consider a ‘staycation’ closer to home. I bet there are so many amazing places right on your doorstep, many of which you might not have even considered before. You could book into boutique hotel in your own city, rent a camper van and drive around the countryside or a hop down to a local beach town.

Distance

We went on our honeymoon to Tokyo, which was amazing, but the 12 hour flight (complete with very sore heads!) the day after our wedding wasn’t! If you are thinking about going somewhere far-flung you might want to consider a few days down time after the wedding to get yourselves organised before you head off.

Gareth forgot to bring anything warm, when we arrived we realised we’d forgotten to write down our hotel name or address anywhere and we’d forgotten to tell our banks that we were going away so our credit cards got blocked and we had no money for the first few days! This was not the romantic start to married life that I’d imagined!

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Honeymoon Travel Guide: Swimming with the Fishes on The Great Barrier Reef

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One of my ultimate highlights of my trip to Queensland was snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef. It wasn’t something that I ever thought I’d have the opportunity to experience and I nearly squealed with delight when I found out that it was on our itinerary.

Janneke and I were booked onto a morning Reef Sprinter tour. Our captain Steve was funny, entertaining and the perfect tour guide. The jet sprinter was super fast and it took just 15 minutes to zip from Port Douglas harbour to the Low Isles.

Being one of the wonders of the world and a world heritage site, it’s very restricted in terms of where you can actually snorkel and only a few select tour companies are allowed to pull up in this particular area. This not only protects the delicate environment but means that the area wasn’t overrun with people. In fact there were just 12 others on our boat.

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Honeymoon Travel Guide: Port Douglas & Executive Retreats

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Whenever I travel I always prefer to stay in an apartment or house rather than a hotel. Don’t get me wrong, I love a boutique hotel as much as the next person but you really get a lot more for your money when you go self-catering.

After saying goodbye to the Gold Coast, Gala, Shauna and I hopped on a plane with Celeste from Tourism and Events Queensland, our photographer Janneke Storm and headed up to Cairns. We’d had such an amazing time so far that we weren’t sure how anything was going to top it – oh how wrong we were!

After a short flight we landed in tropical North Queensland and took a car up the coastal road to Port Douglas. As we’d had such a non-stop trip so far I really hadn’t had any time to do any research on where we were staying so needless to say I got the shock of my life when we pulled up here.

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We were hosted by Executive Retreats (this is the house we stayed in) who specialise in luxury accommodation in Port Douglas and the surrounding areas. If you’re considering Australia for a honeymoon destination, then you need to put it on your must-visit list. No question.

Not only is it as close to paradise as you can possibly get, but all my favourite activities happened while we were here – snorkelling on the great barrier reef (which I’ll be writing about next week), a sunset boat ride and jungle surfing in the Daintree Rainforest!

Shauna and I shared the master bedroom (it was too good for one of us to have it on our own). The en suite bathroom alone was bigger than my living room at home!

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Honeymoon Travel Guide: Surfers Paradise, The Gold Coast

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The next adventure on our whistle-stop tour of Queensland was Surfers Paradise. After a quick drive from Dreamworld with our Tourism and Events guide for the day, Jess, we arrived ready for a surf lesson and bike tour!

I’m not going to lie, I wasn’t particularly looking forward to surfing. Although I love the water I’m not the most athletic of people and the thought of hurling myself into some rather giant and scary looking waves filled me a little with dread.

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You can’t really tell from this photo, but that’s a grin that says “OMG are we actually really doing this?!”

The beach was glorious, with the Gold Coast skyline just behind it. As Shauna lounged in the sun, Gala and I headed over to meet our surf teacher, Patrick from Cheyne Horan School of Surf.

Patrick didn’t seem to sense our trepidation (or if he did he definitely ignored it!) and he dived right in to the lesson. He also clearly had much more faith in our abilities than we did because after the briefest of introductions he told us to head out into the waves and give it a go. ARGH!

I glanced at Gala nervously and could sense her thinking the exact same thing as I was “Oh crap, are we actually really doing this?”

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Honeymoon Travel Guide: Queensland – Dreamworld, Kangaroos & Cuddles with Brandy The Koala

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When the initial email from Celeste at Tourism and Events Queensland came into The Blogcademy inbox asking us if we’d consider an all-expenses paid trip to Queensland I nearly deleted it, assuming it must be spam. I mean, this kind of opportunity doesn’t exactly come knocking on your door everyday. After verifying that Celeste wasn’t, in fact, just playing a rather cruel prank, we started to plan our epic adventure down under!

Skip forward eight months or so and we were finally there. Celeste and her team had pulled out all the stops and scheduled an action packed five days for us including koala cuddles, surf lessons, boutique hotels and snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef! I’m so excited to share some of my highlights with you guys over the next few weeks. This new Honeymoon Travel Guide feature of mine is working out quite nicely don’t you think?

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Queensland isn’t somewhere I’d ever really considered visiting before, but after this trip I can say with the utmost sincerity that I will be going back, only next time I’m bringing Gareth with me – this tropical paradise is just made for lovers!

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Don’t Want the Usual, Boring Gift Registry? Ask your Guests to Buy Your Honeymoon!

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More couples than ever before are looking for alternative gift list ideas. Adding new pots and pans to a department store registry is about as exciting as it sounds, which is why so many newlyweds are opting to forgo the new linens and ask for money towards getting started in their new married life or for something they’ve always wanted but could never afford.

The whole ‘asking for cash’ thing can be a bit daunting though. Sure, there are cute ways you can do it, with poems in your invites or whatever, but the fact of the matter that asking your guests to show you the money is a bit… er… awkward.

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Apart from the inherent embarrassment of asking for money, the real trouble with requesting cash is that a lot of guests really don’t like the idea of just slipping money into a wedding card. It can easily get lost in the madness of the day but also (and forgive me but) it feels a little bit gross and impersonal too. No thought goes into the gift buying when it’s just cash exchanging hands. A lot of older relatives, in particular, really enjoy the gift buying and giving process. There’s also something quite special about being able to think “Aww Aunt Mildred gave us this china and we’re going to use it forever”.

So what are your options if you don’t need more house stuff and you’ve decided you really don’t want to just ask for money?

There are many services that offer honeymoon gift lists these days, in fact I’d imagine that many of you are already considering using one of them. Because these systems allow your guests to buy a tangible gift that you’ll enjoy on your honeymoon, they also really solve any problems that some guests might have with the idea of just handing over money. So let me take a moment to introduce to you to one the market leaders, a UK based company, who have been around for over six years – Buy Our Honeymoon.

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