Ocean & Desert ideas for relaxing but adventurous destination locations
I love to travel. I love the ocean. And I’m a romantic. SOOO…. I often go to these really amazing locations all over the world that are some of the BEST Honeymoon Destinations. As a wedding photographer, I’m constantly giving my couples recommendations for their Honeymoon ideas.
These locations are mostly centered around the ocean besides one! I have spent time at all destination and have experienced it first hand. If you need more information about a location don’t hesitate to reach out and I’ll give you ALL the deets!
When I think of Tulum I think: romantic, sexy jungle vibes, with humidity, margaritas on the beach and strolling along boho palm tree vibes. Tulum is one of my very favorite locations in the world. I love the Mexican culture because it’s slow paced and all about food and family. There are two options here:
You can either stay at the resorts along the beach which are all inclusive. You won’t get the culture while staying at resorts. But you also don’t have to worry about finding a place to eat and you can REALLY rest/relax. I would suggest going on day trips to Tulum, the cenotes and ruins.
- Dreams Tulum Resort
- Mi amor Colibri Boutique Hotel
- Piedra Escondida
The other option is to stay downtown Tulum right along the beach in boutique hotels. This can be expensive but also affordable depending on where you are staying. It will be more expensive if you stay closer to the main part of town. If you don’t mind walking in 10-15 mins (along cute shops and jungle vibes) then I would stay a little outside of town.
- Air B&B options
Other things to do in the area:
- Swim in the Cenotes
- Visit Mayan Ruins
- Shop downtown- super cute shops!
- Zipline in the jungle
- rest. on the beach.
- Happy hour on the beach- always a great idea
2. BALI, INDONESIA
I FREAKING LOVE BALI. But be warned, it takes a while to fly there. Depending on how much time you have for a honeymoon, Bali is a trek to get to. It’s on the literal other side of the world from the US. If you don’t have 10-14 days for a honeymoon I would stay somewhere closer. Bali’s culture is rich and full. There are so many options to stay here because the island has so much to offer. The islands surrounding Bali are freaking amazing as well. It’s VERY cheap once you get on the island as well. So you can splurge on resorts or nicer AirB&B’s because it’s half the price of something in the states. It can be more of an adventurous type of honeymoon. If you just want to lay on the beach and do nothing, I wouldn’t go to Bali. Bali has SO MUCH to offer and it would be a shame if you didn’t explore.
Locations to stay/explore:
- Nusda Lomongaon
Things to do:
- Scuba Diving
- Mountain Biking
- Cooking Class
- Live a Board Ship
3. SEDONA, ARIZONA
Sedona is freaking amazing and deserves to be on this list. People travel ALL over the world to come to see the amazing Red Rocks and experience such grand nature. I know many people who have come to Sedona for their honeymoon because of the restful energy it holds. From hiking, jeep tours, the Grand Canyon, spas, wineries and creekside naps, Sedona has so much to offer.
Places to stay:
- La Abuerge
Things to do:
- Hike: Cathedral Rock, Doe Mountain, West Fork, Bell Rock
- Pink Jeep Tour (merry go round rock)
- Page Spring Winery
- Spa experience
- Red Rock Crossing- for creek swim
- Grand Canyon- 2 hours away and easy drive
- Walk around Tlaquepaque (cute shops and restaurants )
- Aura Reading / Physic
- Eat at Local Juicery, Indian Gardens, & Mariposa
4. SAINT JOHN, U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS
LOVE all things Caribbean but I really fell in love with this little island. It’s quaint, cute and has amazinggggg beaches. White sand and blue oceans! I spent most of my time on St. Thomas but I would highly suggest St. John’s over St. Thomas. I felt like it was more of a vacation spot and quiet. We stayed at a cute AirB&B but I’m sure there are a few resort type places to stay to get that luxury honeymoon feel.
Things to do:
- Trunk Bay
- Cinnamon Bay
- Boat / booze cruise
- Sucba Diving
- Hanging in the downtown area
- Jump over to St. Croix or St. Thomas
5. ITALY- SORRENTO/CAPRI
I left my heart in Sorrento! It is truly a magical place. Located south of Naples and a little north of the Amalfi Coast, it’s right in between olive and lemon groves. The most magical dreamy place I’ve ever been to in my life. From this town you can get to many places quickly for day trips. I personally loved Sorrento the best because it has this Italian beach town vibe – really relaxed but not overly touristy.
Things to do:
- Day trip to the Island of Capri (swim in blue grottos!) It’s easiest if you get on a boat tour for the day. They will take you around the whole island to see all the grottos and let you off to see Capri for a few hours
- Eat all the pizza you possibly can
- Drink ALL the limoncello. Before dinner, during dinner, and after dinner
- Day trip to Amalfi Coast
- Day trip to Naples- visit Mount Vesuvius + Pompeii
- Regina Giovanna Bath- for a hike + dip in the sea
- Swim in the Mediterranean Sea at sunrise
The Hawaiian Islands are my favorite places in the world. I cannot get away from the beauty and rest that they offer. Hawaii also offers intense adventures if you are interested in not just lounging on the beach. (Although, plan many days for just hanging on the beach because they have some of the best beaches in the world). There are 8 islands apart of the Hawaiian Island chain. Maui, Kauai, Big Island, & Oahu are the 4 I suggest going to for vacation. For each island, there are a variety of things to do and see. I’ll suggest a few:
- Stay in Kihei, Kaanapali, Hana, or Paia. They all offer different parts of the island.
- Must drive the road to Hana- stop along the way for waterfalls + beaches
- Eat at Flatbread in Paia
- Sunrise on top of Haleakalā
- Snorkel or scuba dive
- Whale watching tour (during whale season)
- Stay- Princeville, Hanalei, or Wailua.
- MUST go on Napali Coast Tour through Capt. Andy’s
- Waimea Canyon State Park (mix of Sedona + Grand Canyon)
- Hike part of Napli coast if open
- Queens Bath
- Kilauea Lighthouse
- Stay in Kona or Hilo area
- MUST go to green sand beach
- Drive up Mauna Kea Volcano to see the stars at night
- Snorkeling near Captain cook
- Cliff jump off South Point
- Drive around the whole island (12 of the 13 climate zones are on Big Island- so you will see MANY different things)
- Akaka Falls State Park
- Waipi Valley + Pololu Valley
- Swim at Kua bay (favorite beach)
- Visit Punalu’u Black Sand Beach
- Stay Kailua, Honolulu, North Shore, or Ewa Beach areas! They all offer something different
- Pillbox hike in Lanikai then go to Lanikai Beach for the day
- Hike Diamond Head
- Dole Plantation
- Pearl Harbor Memorial
- Koko Crater Railway hike
- ALL of North shore- spend time up there for a day or two
- Makapu’u Beach
7.PUNTA CANA, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
I visited Punta Cana when I photographed a destination wedding!! It was so freaking beautiful, lush, and restful. I cannot rave enough about the Zoetry Agua Resort. It was the most peaceful, restful resort I’ve ever been to. I know there are many all-inclusive resorts in Punta Cana. The food is AMAZING and the sun is HOT!
Things to do:
- Rest and relax at your resort
- Swim in the ocean daily
- Take a boat tour
- Hoyo Azul – zip line
- Scape Park
- Manati Park
- Arena Gorda Beach- amazing white sand beach
- Surf or wind surf
- Go downtown to Coco Bongo Show!
WELL friends. Those are my 7 favorite locations for vacation and honeymoon locations. I tried to give you a variety of locations and things to do. Whether you want to just straight chill or go on adventures, this world has plenty of things for you to do with your love. Remember to soak up time with each other and STAY PRESENT!