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Plan an Adventure Honeymoon

Trade Secrets

Adventure Honeymoons

The Honeymoonist shares her expert tips on how to plan the perfect romantic adventure

900x500DSC_2923-copia-2Image of Italian Riviera from DuVine Cycling + Adventure Co.

Beaches and palm trees and cocktails are nice, but even the most chill relaxers out there can get antsy after a few days of wedded, lazy bliss.  Why not plan a little adventure into your honeymoon?  From safaris to white water rafting to mountain climbing in the far corners of the world, more and more couples are choosing to mix a little adventure in with their romance.

Recently, my husband and I wanted to plan a romantic anniversary trip, the first since our honeymoon, so essentially a second honeymoon.  While relaxation and a break from the real world were certainly a priority, exploring new horizons and getting a little exercise along the way (so we could eat and drink as much as we liked!) were a big focus.  We turned to The Honeymoonist, a honeymoon and destination wedding specialist to help us choose and plan the perfect luxury trip, because adventure doesn’t have to mean roughing it!

“Most of my clients are well-traveled and looking for something above and beyond just sitting on a beach,” explains Susan Moynihan, aka The Honeymoonist.   “If they do something classic like the Maldives, they’ll start off with a few days exploring Dubai on the way, or pair it with Sri Lanka, which is a great adventure destination. African safaris are one of my favorite adventures, as are destinations in Southeast Asia where you can start off with jungle trekking and temples, then slow down and end up at a gorgeous beach with that perfect honeymoon accessory, a plunge pool.”

We decided on a bike tour of the Cinque Terre and the Italian Riviera. Susan’s best advice? Don’t skip on the downtime completely.  We began our trip with some pre-biking R&R in Lake Como at the to-die-for Grand Hotel Tremezzo.  With three pools, four restaurants and a luxury spa, our jet lag was a distant memory in no time. We spent two days in prosecco sipping heaven, but unfortunately no Clooney sightings.

Susan’s Must-Read Tips

  • Pick a place you’ve never been before—that’s what makes it an adventure!
  • The destination should also incorporate some gorgeous aspect of nature; epic landscapes always put life in perspective
  • Finally, the location should involve something you’ve never done before. That could be the purpose of the trip. For example, a trip dedicated to biking some serious hills, or it could be just an element, such as going on a helicopter tour in the Maldives, or hiking the fjords in New Zealand. One thing you don’t have to do is rough it—there are amazing luxury adventure lodges and outfitters around the world, you just have to know where to look. And that’s where I come in!

Rather than just sitting on a beach for a week sipping sugary cocktails, you and your new spouse can take on an active adventure and end the week feeling like you’ve accomplished something together. You still have all the added benefits of an unforgettable honeymoon—incredible wine, gourmet food, stunning backdrops, fantastic luxury hotels and amazing guides who take care of all the details, allowing you to relax and enjoy the ride.—DuVine Cycling + Adventure Co.

Bike tours in both the U.S. and remote areas around the globe are quite in vogue now and there are a number of high-end, luxury companies to choose from.   Companies such as Backroads, Trek Travel Tours and Butterfield & Robinson all offer top-notch tours with four or five-star accommodations, experienced guides and picture-perfect spots off the beaten path.   After much deliberation and feedback from Susan and her numerous Italian connections, we selected DuVine Cycling + Adventure Co.

DuVine offered the perfect combination of biking, hiking with an emphasis on experiencing all the regional food and wine of the region.  We choose a private tour because we wanted it to be just us, but in reality we were afraid of not being able to keep up with a group of expert cyclists. DuVine tours are categorized by levels: occasional, weekend, active or competitive/pro riders.  Our tour was for active riders and after biking up to 30 miles a day, we still had time for hiking, kayaking and lots and lots of first class eating (and drinking).  Who knew you could eat three courses over a bottle of wine and then bike up a mountain?  Surprisingly, we did it!  But if we couldn’t our guide was always close by in a van to whisk us to the top. 

For us, this was the perfect anniversary trip.  Great food, wine, location and we were able to explore a new part of the world while sharing a pastime we both enjoy.  All the essentials for a romantic yet daring vacation!  Because in marriage, is there ever really a dull moment?!?