Top 5 Reasons to Honeymoon in Indonesia

The Top Five: Indulge in an opulent Indonesian oasis (yachts included)

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All Aboard: Alexa Private Cruises is the epitome of luxury travel

Let us begin by emphasizing this is no ordinary blog post– you’ve been warned: We’ve gone ahead and outlined the creme de la creme of cruise & spa getaways, a once in a lifetime experience that will redefine what travel means to you… and in a location you probably haven’t considered before: Indonesia.

Here are 5 reasons to honeymoon in Indonesia

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1. Alexa Private Cruises: First of all, this earthy and majestic yacht is akin to something out of a Hemingway novel or maybe even Peter Pan. The magical feeling that fills the air is contagious from the moment you step on deck.  Oh, and, did we mention, you’ll be the only guests? That’s right, it’s a private yacht for two that includes seafood barbeques, expert spa therapy and pro diving instructions at gorgeous points in Flores & Raja Ampat. Mmmm. What more could you ask for?!

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2.  You’ll get cultured: This archipelago in Southeast Asia is the second most biodiverse country in the world (narrowly beat by Brazil); it’s known for its rich history of Buddhist and Hindu Kingdoms, and has a reputation for being extremely kind. Also, the beaches are literally to die for. How could you ever resist this perfect honeymoon oasis?

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3. Oazia Spa Villas: it is an oasis reminiscent of traveling to a different planet. Billowy fabrics catch the wind as you inhabit indoor/outdoor pods for various spa treatments offered from all over the world (sounds pretty incredible, am I right?!). With its three total villas, you will have complete privacy and freedom to get centered and one with the universe, and will leave with a newfound zen. #Namaste, Wanderers!

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4. The Coffee: One local treat to look out for while in Indonesia, perhaps on par with the prestige of Alexa Cruises & Oazia Spa Villas, is Kopi lukas coffee. To make the coffee, the palm civet, a cat-sized mammal, is fed coffee berries. After the berries pass through its system, the action of the civet’s stomach enzymes gives the coffee an unrivaled richness of flavor without any of the usual bitterness. As a result, Kopi luwak is the world’s most expensive beverage, costing around $1,000 per pound. If not now, we ask, then when?

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5.  Alexa Private Cruises and Oazia Spa Villas is a marvelous, indulgent, all-inclusive voyage.  It’s our ultimate ode to romance, and the most delicious way to explore the islands of Indonesia. This voyage is probably unlike any other trip you or anyone you know has taken or will take. But isn’t that what a honeymoon is supposed to be? Doesn’t love deserve that kind of nod? We think so. After all, what are we but a collection of our experiences…?

Basically….

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#WanderOn

#WanderableGypset: The Broke Backpacker

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Will, the Broke Backpacker, is a self-described “wandering adventurer, travel writer and amateur photographer.” Although, judging from his photos below, we’d like to call his bluff on the “amateur.” He starts his bio on his well-trafficked site by saying, “I like to get muddy, naked and painted.” He has lived in India for a year, worked on bars in Vietnam, herded goats in the Holy Land and conquered the highest navigable pass in the world armed with a poorly drawn map and a packet of ritz crackers. Will insists that if you know how to travel cheap, you really can travel forever, and his beautiful blog generously teaches you the tricks of his trade. We had to interview him for our Gypset series, for obvious reasons, and he graciously obliged.

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Wanderable: Walk me through an average day in your un-average life.

Broke Backpacker (Will): Pretty hard to do to be honest as every day is totally different. Sometimes, I wake up early, do a bit of a workout and then hit the town / mountain / beach or jungle to explore for the day! Other times, I have work to do and end up spending most of the day on my laptop… but I try to avoid that!

W: How did you come to lead such a life? Did you always want to be a traveler, or did you just fall into this?

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BB: I’ve always wanted to travel, I like maps… since I was a kid I have been obsessed with putting pins in maps and collecting National Geographics. I first started travelling when I was 18 and although there has been the odd hiccup I would not change it for the world…

W: Which Wanderable Experience would you most love to try ?

BB: Wow! These look pretty awesome – Ok, I guess I would have to go for one of the Hawaii experiences, I have never been there– it looks likes an amazing place to be.

W: What pays the bills?

BB: I make some money off my website but I also write articles for a few travel companies on a freelance basis – this is what keeps me travelling and pays for flights!

W: What do you miss about “home” (where you’re originally from)?

BB: Crossfit. I am obsessed. My biggest complaint about travelling is I miss out on my workouts… I actually wrote an article about the 7 things I miss about home just last week.

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W: If you could bring anything/anyone from home, what/who would that be?

BB: I miss a couple of my friends particularly badly – we’re like brothers. I also miss my actual Brother! But I am heading to the Philippines with him in a few months 🙂

W: Advice for aspiring backpackers? Go.

BB: The best advice I can give anyone who want’s this kind of lifestyle is make the transition, make an active decision to get out there and explore on your own. Don’t wait for the perfect time, the perfect flight or the perfect travel buddy – none of these things will ever align, just grab your pack and hit the road.

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 W: What location is on your bucket list, and why?

BB: Iran – I’ve heard the people are amazingly friendly and I’m a mountain junkie… there’s a lot of mountains. I would also love to explore Papau New Guinea, it’s raw, untamed and largely unexplored by the backpacker crowds.

W: What are your go-to travel essentials?

BB: I never travel anywhere without my Morakniv Knife. My iPod Touch is also super useful, I can write entire articles on a super bumpy bus!

How to Choose

W: What was the best thing you recently ate?

BB: Just today, I found one of the best ice-cream parlours I have ever visited… in the middle of a tiny fishing village in the middle of nowhere.

#WanderOn

Climb & Unwind with WildChina

WildChina Lets You Adventure, But Not Stress About It (score).

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What is your #1 hangup about going oversees to China? Is it the language? The culture? Or is it the feeling that no matter how much research you do, you’ll end up feeling like a tourist?

Well, our new partner, WildChina, makes China feel less overwhelming: almost all of their tours include an English-speaking guide (so you feel like you’ll fit in) and they go out of their way to make their clients feel at home, and not like they’re in such a foreign place.

To give you an idea of the next-level service that Wild China offers, we picked the brain of Jenny, a fellow wanderer (and our Co-Founder!) who recently toured the country with them (and especially, her tour guide, Jerry):

“Jerry was one of the best tour guides that I’ve ever worked with!  He quickly noticed how Andrew (my boyfriend) is really interested in history and adjusted the daylong tour to dive deeper into various attractions and stories that he knew would be more fun for us. Jerry took us around Beijing for the day – we got to see the Temple of Heaven, Forbidden City, and even do a taichi workshop. Wild China made the entire planning and trip experience really simple.”

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Take a look at these three itineraries, and tell us with a straight face that you don’t want to hop on a plane tomorrow.

WILD CHINA: ADVENTURE

Discover China’s unbeaten paths. Enjoy a day trip to the Great Wall, take a 3-day excursion into the heart of Shangri-La, and commemorate your love with a private blessing ceremony by a Tibetan Lama. Do it all with boldness in your step and calmness in your mind, knowing that WildChina has thought of everything.

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WILD CHINA: REST & RELAXATION

Wild China has curated all the details of this itinerary to provide more than a little R & R for well-worn travelers with dalliances like a private blessing ceremony in the picturesque Yi Village, a guided hike through Lijiang Old Town, and a tour of a tea plantation. With such a prestigious itinerary, you will find the experiences you’ve always been dreaming of to rejuvenate your ability to be in the present.

WILD CHINA: CLASSIC CHINA

Zip through the sky on a helicopter tour from Beijing to to the Great Wall, tour through Beijing’s 798 contemporary art district, and learn how to cook some seriously famous dumplings. Moment to moment, this trip will redefine all of your understanding of China’s strange and beautiful juxtapositions.

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Hmmm…we’re not sure our wanderlust has ever been more piqued. Have fun at your own party, while WildChina demystifies the mythical intricacies of Chinese culture and makes sure you catch the highlights of every neighborhood. Actually enjoy your honeymoon.

#WanderOn

Secret Retreats: Ancient Kingdoms in Indonesia, Cambodia & Laos

Where luxury meets tradition: 7 unique hotels that will evoke a sense of wonder

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Like a strong espresso on an early morning walk, reading about Secret Retreats has us awakened the dreamer and doer in us. We have never encountered such a luxurious approach to traveling in Asia, so we had to partner with these guys so you could reap the benefits! Secret Retreats prides itself on being fuller than full service, offering melt-worthy accommodations, off-beat activities, rejuvenating spa services, and idyllic excursions.  Here are seven exclusive properties for our Wanderable couples where incredible luxury meets tradition. You can thank us later.

1. TUGU BALI(Indonesia): Following the coast of Bali along Canggu Beach, this resort is a dream for the still at heart. Get lost on the walkways of a wild garden, where winds are rumored to whisper of Balinese spirits.

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2. TUGU LOMBOK (Indonesia): Periwinkle waters mirror the sunrise over Mount Rinjani, fixed with plunge pools, tropical gardens, and bamboo bungalows. This hotel evokes ancient Hindu times, an honest oasis from the daily grind.

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3. MISOOL ECO RESORT (Indonesia): A sustainable paradise for the urban treehugger, this exclusive hotel and conservation center is located on a private island just south of the equator and holds only a maximum of 32 guests. Suffice it to say, what happens in Misool stays in Misool.

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4. THE SAMAR VILLAS & SPA RESORT (Cambodia): A haven of well-being, the Samar Villas envelop you in a cloud of peacefulness and offer the richness of fantastic archeological ruins and ancient temples for the culturally curious daytripper.

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5. BALI JIWA VILLA(Indonesia): These lavish modern villas offer the royal treatment. In true Balinese style, politeness and minimalism are paired with indulgence and luxury in nonchalant conversation.

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6. JEEVA BELOAM BEACH CAMP (Indonesia): A beachfront “glamping” experience on a secluded cove with white sand beaches, this is an untouched gem that can center and stun even the most jaded traveler.

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7. SATRI HOUSE (Laos): Here you’ll taste sumptuous homemade dinners and soak in the gorgeous colonial Laotian architecture. Immersed in the city’s heart, you can enjoy quiet moments with your lover and unwind while observing the everyday life of locals from your balcony. People-watching is our favorite sport.

Secret Retreats quotes the Buddha on their website, saying “when the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves.”  So clear your mind while you experience ultimate relaxation, grab a drink with the one you love and sit back while all your needs are met.  We promise, your joy will never, ever want to leave. Secret Retreats: you deserve it.

#WanderOn

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ImagineAsia: A Hidden Gem Situation

ImagineAsia and Wanderable have created four customized itineraries, just for you.

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Have you ever been gotten lost in your own city, wandered down a cobblestone alley and ended up in a little shop? It has no sign on it, but you see intriguing jewels in the window, so you head in and end up finding the necklace that will soon become your everyday staple; your good- luck charm.

Well, ImagineAsia is the travel equivalent of this little daydream. A complete white-glove luxury service, they plan your entire trip, tailored to the vibe and focus you want. Every moment of your travels, espeically its energy and aesthetic, is tailored to your desires.  The thing that’s magical about ImagineAsia is “ ‘forty-five minutes here and back on the bus’ is not part of [their] vernacular, nor will it be part of your travel experience.”

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For the nervous traveler, they leave absolutely nothing to chance: the company is off-the-beaten-path and small enough that they care about each traveler on a human level. They have no social media presence, and we only found them ourselves through word-of-mouth raving of their stellar approach and attitude. We also love their hipster mentality of traveling: “Our experts have lived and traveled throughout Asia since 1982. We know where to go years before the crowds arrive.”

Their guides are cool locals, not wannabe ex-pats, and they travel with you as much or as little as you desire. It’s a new thing for us to offer a complete pre-designed trip, rather than relying on you to be your own honeymoon architect. It’s because we really trust and love these guys.

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Together, we have designed four gorgeous trips for you, and they are all in the Kingdom of Thailand (a.k.a. paradise).

The first is Bangkok, Chiang Mai, & Phuket, where you can gaze at Buddhist temples, adopt an elephant, and learn how to cook like a Thai Nigella Lawson.

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The second trip is Bangkok Golden Triangle & Phuket, with focus on roaming city streets after a stop at the mythical Emerald Buddha.

The third is Bangkok & Koh Samui, a chance to catch up on some history…and then hop back into the present, shopping for keepsakes & snorkeling in lagoons.

The fourth option is Bangkok & Khao Lak, where you’ll indulge in a culinary taste fest then hop on a boat for Thai music & dancing. ImagineAsia appeals to the different travelers within each of us…the student-at-heart, the food lover, the art groupie, and the overworked A-type.

Eleven days of bliss tending to each of these hungry parts of my heart, and I think I’d feel like a brave new human. Which of these trips appeals to you most? Leave your musings in the comments section below, and let’s continue the conversation.

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