5 Must-Do Honeymoon Activities in Portugal

Portugal is tailored for a dreamy honeymoon getaway.

Gorgeous riverside streets line its historic capital city of Lisbon, medieval castles sit proudly throughout hilltop towns, world-renowned wines and pastries are celebrated countrywide, and all across its lengthy Atlantic Coast is the ever-present prospect of discovering a perfect, unexplored beach.

While there’s an endless activities list for newlyweds, the following experiences are at the very top for any honeymoon getaway.

Where to Go

No trip to Portugal is complete without exploring Lisbon, the country’s centrally-located capital city. The city is a lovely maze of winding alleyways which weave between colorful buildings, tiny wine bars and fresh seafood restaurants en route to eventual stunning hilltop views (so frequently referred to that they’re known locally as miradouros). Vintage trams rattle and chug through the city’s streets, giving way to trendy cocktail lounges, historic landmarks, outdoor markets, museums and plenty more.

Pink sunsets are frequent, and with them, the beautifully melancholic sound of Portuguese fado will fill Lisbon’s bars and clubs as the evening unfolds – a musical translation of the old, romantic soul that Lisbon really is.

What to Do

The infectiously dramatic sounds of Fado will fill cafes, bars, restaurants and romantic hearts throughout all of Portugal, though it’s most popular in Lisbon. Make an evening out of a performance, with dinner, drinks, loving contemplation and cultural understanding at Clube de Fado, Sr. Fado, or wherever you hear that recognizable heart and soul being sung as you stroll through the city.

Where to Eat

Don’t let the long lines at Pasteis de Belem deter you from experiencing the otherworldly deliciousness of the sweet egg tart pastries that have made this Lisbon bakery famous since its inception in 1837. The recipe hasn’t changed since then, and the recognition only continues to grow, with this establishment recently being crowned the most reviewed restaurant on the planet.

The namesake pastries – buttery, crisp egg custards that don’t shy from sugar – are known as Pasteis de Nata throughout the rest of the region, but the Pasteis de Belem are built on a secret family recipe which warrant the practically permanent queue. Move past the line and opt for table service in the back dining room for expedited delivery of your treats.

Where to Drink

In Porto, Calem wine lounge can bring you into their 160-year-old cellars, spill some of their classic methods for producing the world-renowned Port, and even show you a 5D film (tastings included). Outside of the city, wine resorts like L’And Vineyards and Six Senses Douro Valley compliment intermittent and informative tastings with vineyard tours, grape crushing classes, and even restorative grape-infused treatments in luxurious wine spas.

Where to Stay

Situated on a hilltop overlooking the rolling wine vineyards and winding Douro River below, the Six Senses Douro Valley focuses on wellness, relaxation and rejuvenation. Guests are invited to partake in activities like yoga, pilates, meditation and even guided tree climbing. Three pools, an award-winning spa and rooms with panoramic river views ensure that your days have a healthy dose of leisure time to balance (or overtake) a more active approach to well-being.

 

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5 Things To Do On Your Riviera Maya Honeymoon

Thanks to its many white-sand beaches, jungle terrain, awe-inspiring historic attractions, and countless luxury resorts, Mexico’s Riviera Maya remains an ever-popular honeymoon destination.

Below we’ve listed five of our can’t-miss activities and experiences while visiting on your honeymoon trip of a lifetime.

Where to Eat

Hartwood – You’ll dine under the stars beneath swaying palm trees at this picturesque spot. The restaurant uses wood burning ovens and open grills to prepare fresh, local food (from grilled fish to pork belly). Meanwhile, the beach huts, whitewashed roofs, wooden tables, and candles all add to the romantic atmosphere.

Where to Drink

Gitano – The jungle merges with a club atmosphere at Gitano, one of Tulum’s hottest restaurants. Overall, it’s a terrific choice for capping off the night with mixed drinks and light snacks. Couples have a long list of terrific cocktails to choose from, however our favorite is the Stardust, made with mezcal, dark rum, pineapple, papaya and a homemade coconut cream.

Where to Stay

Habitas Tulum – We’re huge fans of this boutique hotel, which just opened in 2017. The eco-friendly retreat — situated on one of most spectacular stretches of sand in the region — features an elegant bohemian design and glamping-style accommodations. Among the top highlights: fantastic dining on the beach, a seafront infinity pool, nature trails through the jungle, and a private beach.

What to Do

Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve – This massive reserve was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is an astounding home to thousands of species of fauna and flora. Couples can take part in snorkel tours, fly fishing, sunset birdwatching, and even an ancient Mayan tour that combines visits to historic sites with unique outdoor activities like snorkeling.

Bike Tour – With countless historical sites, dreamy beach scenes and ample jungle terrain, the Riviera Maya is a fantastic place to embark on a bicycle tour. Many excursions such as Tulum Bike Tours incorporate food stops, unique shopping detours, and even a dip in a breathtaking cenote along the route.

 

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Hotels We Love for a Honeymoon: Rosewood Baha Mar, Bahamas

The megaresort complex of Baha Mar is the hottest new development in the Caribbean (with a $4.2-billion price tag).

While it’s composed of three different resorts, the forthcoming Rosewood Baha Mar — which is situated on the incredible white sands of Nassau’s Cable Beach — promises to be the most luxe.

Post up in your residential-style room before testing your luck at the 100,000 square-foot casino, playing a round on the Jack Nicklaus-designed golf course, getting massages at the ESPA spa, or dining at one of 20 different restaurants and bars.

We promise nowhere else in the Caribbean will you eat sushi as delicious as at Katsuya by Starck Baha Mar.

Are turquoise waters and soft white sands calling your name? This incredible property will be the perfect fit for your once-in-a-lifetime honeymoon getaway.

The Top 5 Hotels for a Honeymoon in Iceland

With awe-inspiring natural wonders like the Northern Lights, out-of-this-world outdoor pursuits, and a lively capital, it’s easy to see why Iceland ranks as one of our most popular European honeymoon destinations.

If you’ll be heading to the “land of fire and ice” for your ultimate getaway, drop your bags at any of these incredible hotels. Highlights include a brand new resort at the Blue Lagoon, an adventure hotel in the countryside, and boutique properties in Reykjavik.

The Retreat at Blue Lagoon Iceland

Nearly every person who travels to Iceland makes time for a soak in the world-famous Blue Lagoon, a naturally forming geothermal pool surrounded by 800-year-old lava fields. This blue-hued hot spring is not only an Instagram-must, but it also supposedly has healing properties (the average 100-degree waters are rich in minerals like silica and sulfur).

When the Retreat at Blue Lagoon Iceland debuts in late-spring, couples will be able to stay overnight for the first time. The 62 suites open on to a private section of the lagoon, offering 24/7 access to the water (grab a complimentary Icelandic beer from the minibar before you dip in), plus other amenities like a subterranean spa and a high-end New Nordic restaurant, serving seven-course tasting menus at the chef’s table.

Hotel Ranga

Situated about 75 minutes from Rekyjavik, this charming hotel offers premium views of the aurora borealis. The 4-star property boasts a terrific on-site gourmet restaurant and comfy suites with Jacuzzis and specific country or continent themes.

ION Luxury Adventure Hotel

Here’s a great option for couples looking to embrace Iceland’s incredible landscape and plethora of outdoor recreation options. Highlights include 45 rooms with floor-to-ceiling windows, an on-site restaurant, and even a thermal pool. The 4-star adventure hotel is about an hour from Rekyjavik.

Icelandair Hotel Reykjavik Marina

This harborside hotel is stylish, affordable, and overall a great option for newlyweds. On top of excellent food and drink options (read more about Slippbarinn above), guests can’t beat the cozy rooms and convenient marina location.

Canopy by Hilton Reykjavik City Centre

We’re huge fans of this boutique property close to Laugavegur, Reykjavik’s main shopping avenue. On top of modern, cozy rooms, couples can enjoy bikes for exploring the city, complimentary artisanal daily breakfast, local art throughout the hotel, and evening tastings of local beers and spirits.

 

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Photo courtesy of the Retreat at Blue Lagoon Iceland

With the Perfect Mix of Amenities, Arenas Del Mar Resort Beckons Honeymoon Couples

Have you been dreaming of a special honeymoon destination that perfectly blends luxury, relaxation, sustainability and adventure?

Look no further than Arenas Del Mar Beachfront & Rainforest Resort in Costa Rica.

Highlighted by an extraordinary coastal rainforest location, sensational on-site amenities (including a pair of restaurants, two swimming pools, and a top-notch spa) and unwavering commitment to the environment, the 38-room boutique hotel is one of our top overall recommendations for a honeymoon getaway.

Newlyweds will be in heaven thanks to cozy, eco-luxurious accommodations. In addition to premium views of the Pacific Ocean and stunning rainforest, all guest rooms and suites are equipped with a king-sized bed, complimentary mini-bar, free Wi-Fi, and spacious bathrooms with overhead showers.

The “Ocean Breeze Suites” particularly stand out with 330 square feet of terrace space overlooking Costa Rica’s Central Pacific Coast, plus a bathroom with tiled shower, and a private outdoor hot tub. Your spacious deck also provides fabulous opportunities to view the local wildlife.

With the ocean, rainforest and national parks all in close proximity, active honeymooners can surely expect an unforgettable stay. Notable experiences include surfing, horseback riding on the beach, sailing, sea kayaking, whitewater rafting, and zip lining through the canopy of the rainforest.

One of the most impressive aspects of the resort is its dedication to sustainability. The hotel is completely carbon-neutral thanks to the usage of solar panels, electric golf carts, energy-efficient lighting, and much more.

Meanwhile, eight acres of the resort has been transformed into a private nature reserve with nature trails. In fact, this area acts as an ecological corridor to help expand the area surrounding Manuel Antonio National Park (which happens to be one of Costa Rica’s most popular national parks and home to sloths, four types of monkeys, rare birds and many other creatures of the rainforest).

After several days exploring Manuel Antonio National Park, couples will find it extremely easy to relax and rejuvenate. The 11-acre property features two saltwater swimming pools, a sandy beach, and a first-rate spa facility.

Don’t miss a spa treatment at Las Brisas Wellness Center, which offers everything from traditional massages to energizing coffee scrubs. The “Honeymoon Bliss Package” is a must for newlyweds. The experience includes a 50-minute massage for two, couples yoga class, and romantic dinner served with wine.

Honeymooners in search of healthy, local food will certainly be in for a treat. Featuring a beautiful open air setting, El Mirador Restaurant and Bar will serve as your go-to option for breakfast and dinner. The impressive dinner menu focuses on locally caught seafood plus local Costa Rican dishes (don’t miss the Sopa Negra, a traditional culinary in Costa Rica). Couples can also arrange a private candlelit dinner on their terrace or directly on Playitas Beach.

El Mirador Bar is your go-to spot for specialty cocktails, wine, and craft beers. When it comes to mixed drinks, be sure to try the Guaro Mojito, which is made with a delicious Costa Rican liquor produced from sugar cane.

Looking for a casual meal with a view? Playitas Restaurant serves daily lunch where you can literally sink your feet into the sand.

Ready for a sustainable, luxurious and unforgettable honeymoon? Plan your ultimate getaway at Arenas Del Mar Resort in scenic Costa Rica.

 

Images courtesy of Arenas Del Mar