5 Great Reasons to Honeymoon in Vietnam Right Now

Vietnam – packed with activities and attractions – is quickly becoming an increasingly popular destination for honeymooners.

Below, we’ve listed five of our favorite reasons for newlyweds to take their ultimate vacation there.

1) Four Seasons Resort the Nam Hai

This is easily one of Vietnam’s finest hotels and overall a dream honeymoon spot. Newlyweds will enjoy multiple infinity pools, a mile-long pristine beach, a renowned spa (soon to feature an anti-gravity yoga room), certifiable cooking classes (with fresh food from the hotel’s own garden), and a multitude of daily activities like windsurfing, tai chi, and rice field cycling.

2) Vietnamese Street Food Tours

Treat your tastebuds by indulging in Vietnamese street food. Sour and sweet, crunchy yet soft, soup and salad somehow at the same time, these cheap, quick eats are the best way to taste the culture’s cuisine.

Look for open-air markets, hot steam clouds, and packed seating areas to find the best spots. Ho Chi Minh City offers a world renowned foodie tour where you’ll try the country’s best while being zipped around on the back of a female-driven scooter. Hoi An is also particularly packed with fantastic street food vendors, and easy to enough to navigate your own street food tour.

3) Hiking Adventures in Sapa

Sapa is a mountainous region in Northern Vietnam, and is fast becoming among the best trekking routes in all of Southeast Asia. Home to the tallest mountains in the country, hiking through the peaks and valleys of these many trails gives you a glimpse into hill-tribe villages and a more traditional way of Vietnamese life.

Breathtaking vistas, manicured rice fields and stunning mountain views are in no short supply. Tackle it by yourselves, or book a tour to get more local perspective along the route.

4) Phong Nha Ke Bang National Park

Squeezed between the Laos border and South China Sea, this UNESCO listed national park is teeming with unspoiled jungle, mysterious caves, and underground rivers. Getting there can be a bit difficult, with a lengthy sleeper bus from Hanoi being your best bet, but the kayaking, ziplining, wildlife watching and general trekking are well worth it for adventurous travelers. Oxalis is the best in organizing multi-day hikes and explorations, with sleeping accommodations included.

5) Authentic Culture in Hoi An

This ancient riverside town was a thriving trade port for hundreds of years, and its multi-cultural roots make it a perfect place to experience the fusion of Vietnamese culinary flavors, from street barbecue meats to fresh vegetables, crispy pancakes, and even cau lao, a local noodle specialty from the 17th century.

The scenic homes, Japanese-designed bridges, and meandering boats along the lazy river make leaving the quiet streets of Hoi An’s colorful old town difficult, but historic temples and romantic beaches await just a short bicycle ride away.

 

In case you missed it:

Real Honeymoon Registries: Best of Asia

Your Honeymoon Registry Questions Answered: Are We Required to Purchase All Received Gifts?

What It Feels Like to Win a Trip to Vietnam

Ever wonder what it would feel like to win a trip to Vietnam?! Kelly and John share their amazing story.

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We recently teamed up with Mr. and Mrs. Smith (side note: we are all obsessed with Mr. and Mrs. Smith’s gorgeous hotelsto co-host a Vietnam Giveaway and are so excited for our winners, Kelly and John! You know how there always seems to be that one hip and inspiring couple you know and love? That’s Kelly and John. They are wanderers at heart. In true adventurous fashion, they shared with us their how-to for enjoying life to the fullest and what they’re most excited to try in Vietnam.

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Kelly, what was your reaction when you found out you had won the contest?

My first reaction was of skepticism and disbelief. I received the email from Ann Marie [of Mr. and Mrs. Smith] while I was at work and talking with a co-worker. It was like “OMG, I think I just won a trip to Vietnam” and then I called Ann Marie to see if it was legit and she assured me it was. I was just super floored by the whole thing, I’ll enter these contests from time to time, you know, “The Downton Abbey” sweepstakes, “Win a Trip to Wimbeldon”, “Win a Trip to the French Open” (we’re both big tennis fans), I just fill them out and forget about them, never expecting to win, but this time I did! I called John and let him know and we both still cannot get over how crazy the whole thing is. We’re super, DUPER insanely, excited!

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What are you and John most excited about for your Vietnam trip?

The prospect of taking a REAL, proper, vacation! Overseas! To an exotic locale! On the beach! 5-star hotels! John has never been out of the country aside from Mexico and I’ve only ever been to Paris so having a real vacation is just a dream come true. Neither of us has EVER stayed in a 5-Star hotel. We plan on extending the trip a bit and taking a full two weeks. Seeing the temples of Angkor Wat has been on my bucket list for years and we figure, while we’re over there, let’s just go to Cambodia too! We both love Vietnamese food so we plan on spending a lot of time sampling the offerings of the various street vendors. We’re just so excited to explore a part of the world that’s so different from ours!

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We’d love to hear, where did you and John go on your honeymoon?

Well, we had initially registered for a Croatian and Slovenian honeymoon but because we didn’t have a traditional wedding (we were married in a courthouse in August 2012 and had a party the following October with our friends to celebrate), we didn’t quite make our goal, funding wise. Instead we used the money our friends donated through Wanderable and took an epic two week camping trip through the Eastern Sierras and the Cascades and back down the coast of California with our dog, Juniper. We both love the outdoors, camping, and hiking, and this turned out to be the ideal trip for us at the time. We had a blast!

Why did you choose to register for experiences over things when you got married?

Being an “older” couple (I was 40 when we got married and John 38, first marriage for both us!) we really didn’t have a need for household items, we already had them. Life and marriage for us at this point wasn’t about things or kids, it was just about spending the rest of our lives together. John’s mom had been fighting cancer throughout our engagement and she lost that fight the week that we were married. The importance of enjoying life to the fullest was really and profoundly made apparent to us. We’re both super adventurous and love new experiences, exploring different cultures and foods and really just seeing, smelling, hearing, laughing, loving, doing and living as much as possible! Our time here is short and our time together even shorter, why spend it in the aisles of Target registering for an espresso machine when we could be sipping espresso along the Dalmatian coast, or in this case, sipping Vietnamese Iced Coffees on the beaches of Hoi An!

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How amazing do Kelly and John sound?! Thank you so much, Kelly! And a huge shout out again to Mr. and Mrs. Smith for helping to make Kelly and John’s next adventure to Vietnam a reality!

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#IKnewILovedYou, the Trip of a Lifetime

The winners of last year’s #IKnewILovedYou‬ giveaway share about THE trip of a lifetime!

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Ever wonder what it would feel like to win a dream trip to Bangkok and Bali? We recently caught up with Alexis and Willie, the impossibly cute couple who won the I Knew I Loved You‬ giveaway hosted last summer with our amazing partners, Clear Channel. Alexis and Willie were whisked off to paradise and treated to the trip of a lifetime with the luxurious Alexa Private Cruises and Oazia Spa Villas. Alexis shares her top moments with us, from the mouth-watering food they’re dying to recreate at home to their favorite memory of a spontaneous boat ride down the Klongs. Live vicariously through their images and favorite moments below!

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What was your reaction when you first found out that you won the I Knew I Loved You giveaway?!

We were completely floored! We were so excited to be finalists, but we never thought we would win. Who wins contests?! Particularly when the prize is an amazing trip to Bali!

What sorts of activities did you enjoy while staying at Oazia Spa Villas?

Oazia has all kinds of activities. Whether you want to lounge at your own private pool or have day trips, they are there to make sure you get everything out of your experience you hoped for. For us, they took us on a day trip to Ubud where we saw the Monkey Forest, Rice Terraces, and fed elephants! Had we had more time we could have taken an art class, surfing lessons, or had a spa day. We DID get a couples massage our last day and that evening had a romantic candlelit dinner on the beach 🙂

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What towns/cities did you stop at during your Alexa Private Cruises trip?

Given how remote that part of Indonesia is, there aren’t really towns or cities – mostly tiny fishing villages we passed that were pretty private, where we enjoyed the boat and the diving. The one stop we did do was on Rinca Island to see the Komodo Dragons. What an amazing experience!

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What was your favorite part?

Hah – we have to pick a favorite? That is almost impossible! Can I pick two? If so, I would say eating and diving. We ate some of the most incredible food! It was amazing given the tiny kitchen our chef had. You would have thought he had a huge, full-service kitchen and staff with the things he was serving! Even breakfast came with bread he made from scratch! We loved eating that bread in the morning (and dipping it into the hot chocolate 🙂 while the sun was coming up! The dives were also unbelievable – a once in a lifetime experience. The diving instructor was so knowledgeable and showed us all the wildlife to look for! We saw manta rays, sea turtles, and thousands of species of fish!

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Where else did you go?

Bangkok, Thailand! 🙂 We also had a 10 hour layover in Singapore so we spent the day there!

What is the best moment from the entire trip?

Oh golly…again with the hard ones. If you are MAKING us pick…the manta ray dive. It was pure magic. Well, that or the komodos? Or the beach dinner on our own private island? Or…ugh, you get the picture! This question is impossible.

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Did you pick up any travel tips? Care to share? 🙂

Definitely precise exchange rates :). We had done all our research and were feeling pretty proud of ourselves, but we found out in Bali we had forgotten a 0! We were so confused why everything was so expensive! HAHA – good thing the locals were nice and filled us in :). Also, we exchanged cash at our banks at home so we didn’t have to pay any exchange rates while were there which was awesome…well, until the Bali fiasco and we had to hit some ATMs! We only ended up bringing 20 instead of 200! OH! Also, tipping customs – learn those :).

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Do you have any tips for couples who are planning for their honeymoons?

Since we had about 6 months to plan I took my time and was as detail oriented as I could be. We used literally every resource we had: Tripadvisor, Pinterest, travel blogs. etc. For our Thailand portion we planned every day out, making sure that things we wanted to do were open the day we had planned to go. For example, we had to switch a few things around because of a holy holiday. If we hadn’t planned that day, we wouldn’t have known and may have missed out on the experiences. What I will say is that some of the best stuff wasn’t planned. It just fell into our lap – like the boat down the Klongs. That just fell into place and was one of our favorite days in Thailand!

For Bali, I knew we couldn’t really plan for the boat so we had to look into our 2 days on land. I knew I wanted to go to Ubud for the day so I looked into what activities I wanted to do and how far they were from one another so we could pack in as much as we could. One of the biggest pieces of advice I could give is that you need to remember jet-lag! It was great going to Thailand first so we could really truly enjoy Bali without any jet-lag. We also planned less stuff our first few days so we could adjust. Helped so much!

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What were your travel essentials?

Sunscreen and a camera

Are there any memorable dishes you want to try and recreate at home?

BREAD! I know it sounds silly, but now we are dying to make bread from scratch now! We loved it every day on the boat. Also, we took a cooking class in Bangkok and made some pretty great curry and Pad Thai!

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Did you discover any interesting things about the culture that you didn’t know before?

Oh goodness. Lots. We had no idea about the traditional food of Bali or much about their religion. Bali has GORGEOUS active temples which still are very much alive and worshipped. On our drive back from Ubud we saw all the women of a village walking to a temple ceremony with so much fruit and incense balanced on their heads for the ceremony. To them, it was just a normal routine to carry a shopping cart worth of stuff on their heads, but I can’t even balance a book! It was amazing!

Did you and Will learn anything about yourselves as a couple?

We learn something about each other every day :). I would say we were reminded how well we work together. We worked through any crisis we may have had and we compliment each other pretty nicely 🙂 – if we don’t say so ourselves. This isn’t particularly new info, but we learned that Willie just can’t eat squid. No matter how well it’s prepared.

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Where else is on your travel bucket list? 

Oh this list is QUITE long :). I think our next trip will be South America (thinking the Salt Flats in Bolivia, hiking in Peru, and either Chile or Argentina). Then I am hoping for Greece (Santorini and Mykonos), then Southern Italy and the Italian Islands. Also have our eyes on Vietnam and Cambodia.

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Didn’t their trip sound amazing?! We are so happy that Alexis and Willie experienced so many incredible adventures on their I Knew I Loved You‬ giveaway. Congrats again, Alexis and Willie! And a big shout-out to all their friends and family, as well as Alexa Private Cruises, Oazia Spa Villas and Clear Channel, who helped make their dream trip a possibility.

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Our Favorite Lustworthy Thailand Adventures

Wanderable’s well-traveled globetrotters pick their favorite lustworthy Thailand adventures. 

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Here at Wanderable, we’ve already discovered the best Experience Providers in the world for you. Today, we spoke to some of our team’s wanderers to ask, “Which Thailand activity tops your travel bucket list?”

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Jenny, Engineering Expert

“The Floating Market Full Day Private Tour! Usually, when I travel someplace, I really like to get to know the local culture and interact with the locals. With this tour, you’re taken along the Mae Klong River before you explore the colorful floating markets! I’d pick up fresh fruit to snack on as we drive through the local villages and canals around the area.”

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Sara, BD Hotshot

“Hands down, the Koh Tao Discover Scuba. It’s completely private. You get your own boat to cruise around Koh Tao with a specialized instructor. My boyfriend and I have been wanting to learn SCUBA forever, and what better place than in one of the world’s top-rated scuba diving locations? You experience a gorgeous, secluded bay filled with corals all to yourself.”

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Ilana – Marketing Extraordinaire

“I’m such an animal person, so I instantly honed in on the Phuket Wildlife and Romance Tour. It’s really cool – you first travel to Phuket’s largest Buddha sculpture, then take an elephant trek before lunch and more sightseeing. But, I’m most excited for the last stop at Tiger Kingdom! It’s one of my wildest dreams to be able to cuddle with baby tiger cubs.”

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Marcela, Product Whiz

“Oh, definitely the Bangkok Day Dream Package. Being able to relax in an herbal floral bath before enjoying a body scrub, an aromatherapy oil massage, and a facial relaxation treatment sounds amazing. I feel like I would unwind on years and years of stress in one luxurious afternoon. It sounds like it’ll be so hard to leave afterward!”

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Jacqui, Content Guru

“It would have to be the Full-Day Phi Phi Island (By Speed Boat), naturally. I love the idea of waking up early to beat the crowds and island-hopping in the Phi Phi Islands on this incredible, sleek speed boat. You’ll visit everywhere from the Phi Phi Don to the Maya Bay. And as if that weren’t enough, you also get to go snorkeling. Literally the perfect day.”

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Vicki, BD Mastermind

“I really love the Ayutthaya Relics Tour. It allows you to get in a bit of ancient history. You’re submerged in the the history of Thailand’s past royalty while you explore these gorgeous ruins in the former capital of Siam. And you end the day tasting local sweets – what better way to wrap up a fascinating look into Thailand’s past?”

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Esther, Customer Advocate

“If I were you, I would check out this amazing activity, Discovering Rural Thai Life Over Authentic Northern Thai Cuisine. I’m a huge foodie, so spending the day cooking with a culinary mother-daughter team is right up my alley. Plus, I’m secretly looking forward to impressing all my future dinner guests with authentic Thai recipes!”

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Which Thailand activities would you love to experience? See our other amazing Thailand activities to add to your own travel bucket list, today!

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Top 10 Honeymoon Destinations

The first step of honeymoon planning is choosing a perfect location, which is easier said than done if you’re already busy with Big Day prep work! If you don’t have time for research, get inspired by this quick list of the Top 10 Honeymoon Destinations: AKA the locations that our modern, well-traveled couples register for again and again!

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1. Hawaii

Hawaii is the undisputed MVP for newlyweds everywhere, and for good reason – each island has its own distinct personality, with the sunshine and friendly island culture keeping couples coming back again and again for more paradise.

What to do:
Snorkel amongst 250 different species of fish in the secluded Molokini coral reef.
Explore a lava tube in Kilauea, one of the world’s most active volcanoes.
Savor the local food at the Old Lahaina Luau, voted one of the best luaus in Hawaii.

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2. Italy

Italy seems to run both slow and fast. It’s just as natural to spend hours savoring a leisurely meal with the one you love as the infectious energy of Rome surrounds you, or racing through the quiet hills of the Tuscan countryside on bike.

What to do:
Learn how to make your own fresh, authentic Italian pasta.
Wind through the catacombs that twist under the surface of Rome.
Cycle through the beautiful hills of Tuscany!

 

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3. Thailand

In Thailand, you’re equally likely to experience a zen moment of peace in a jungle, a refreshing afternoon at a budget-friendly spa, or a crazy adventure in the streets downtown. Perfect for spontaneous couples who want it all!

What to do:
Train an elephant for an entire day (we’ve heard amazing things!).
Nosh on dinner as we enjoy the famous, fabulous ladyboy cabaret show.
Cruise along the beautiful coast of Phuket without a worry in the world.

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 4. Greece

Greece shocks upon first look. Its white and turquoise houses stand out against the beautiful Aegean Sea, exactly the sort of gorgeous view that will help you recharge after those long months, planning guest lists and venue details!

What to do:
Taste organic wine at the Mykonos Vioma Farm (along with cheese and meat, naturally).
Watch the sunset on your private cruise on open waters.
Catch big air in this private kitesurfing lesson right off the coast of Crete.

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 5. New Zealand

New Zealand is the rare kind of destination that well-heeled hikers, wine lovers, adrenaline junkies, and culture buffs can all enjoy equally. No matter what you’re looking for, you’re likely to find it in this beautiful and unique country.

What to do:
Sample wine from your pick of 20 different wineries in the Martinborough region.
Tour the locations shot during the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
Horseback ride amongst the mountainous Rees Valley.

 

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 6. Spain

Spain has long been the go-to for those looking to find a place that lives life with passion, whether that means serving the perfect tapas, dancing to the beat of its own song, or boasting some of the best architecture in the world.

What to do:
Enjoy tasty dishes of tapas and wine during this private tour around Seville.
Zip around Barcelona’s best architectural spots on Vespa (yes, Vespa!).
Dance during this private dance lesson to learn the Spanish way to Salsa or Flamenco.

 

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7. St. Lucia

St. Lucia just drips with tropical adventure. You never know what you’re going to find in the next beach you relax on or the next village you dine at. Perhaps it will be the most romantic moment of your life. After all, St. Lucia never disappoints.

What to do:
Soar on high-flying zip lines over the rainforest!
Cruise in a sleek catamaran in one of the best bays in the Caribbean, Marigot Bay.
Relax in a spa treatment set outdoors.

 

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8. France

France immediately conjures up images befitting a classic romantic film. Whether you end up strolling along the bustling cafés of Paris or biking on the countryside roads of Provence, you’ll see life through rose-tinted glasses.

What to do:
Savor the sweetest bites along the Saint Germain des Prés.
Skip the line to gain instant, VIP entry into the Louvre.
Visit all of Van Gogh’s famous paintings in Provence.

 

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 9. Australia

Australia offers more than just perfect weather and golden beaches. Most Australians live in one of the island country’s many hip cities, where you shouldn’t be surprised to find surfers and fashionistas sipping on a world-class cappuccino side by side.

What to do:
Discover the wildlife at Phillip Island, one of the few places in the world with little penguins!
Kayak right under the famous Sydney Harbour Bridge.
Sample your way through all the best coffee spots in Melbourne.

 

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 10. Dominican Republic

The Dominican Republic almost buzzes with good energy. If you want miles of powdery beaches, thundering waterfalls, lush rainforests, and warm village life all in one place, look no further!

What to do:
Find your zen center with a private yoga session right on the beach.
Paddleboard right at sunrise or sunset, a workout and relaxing excursion in one.
Catch waves during this private surf lesson for two.

 

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Want to find more travel inspiration? Browse popular destinations by month, view other couples’ registries, or check out our other amazing experiences!

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