Opposites Attract: Honeymoon Ideas That Any Bride and Groom Will Love

by Jane Reynolds on May 23, 2012

After the wedding, comes the honeymoon! A Wedding on the Beach at the Melia Caribe Tropical -- Dominican Republic

After the wedding comes the best part: the honeymoon! Here's a wedding we snapped in the D.R.

We truly believe the old saying “opposites attract.” I mean, check out all the oddball celebrity couples out there — on the surface, at least, they seem to have different opinions on everything. Travel included. Found yourself in a similar jam while planning your honeymoon?  Put the boxing gloves down — you needn’t argue anymore about where to go. Our comprehensive honeymoon guide features four hot spots with a little something for every kind of couple. Easy, right?  Now all you need to figure out on your own is where to live, how to raise your children, and with what frequency you visit the in-laws…

Honeymoon Spot: Barcelona

Pool at the H10 Marina Barcelona Hotel

Pool at the H10 Marina Barcelona Hotel

The Ideal Couple for the Destination: When the bride seeks culture and the groom longs for the beach, Barcelona is the perfect spot for both. Barcelona is Spain’s coolest and most modern city. Tourists pour from every corner of the world to experience the town’s vibrant nightlife, excellent cuisine, beautiful Gothic and one-of-a-kind Modernist architecture, and cutting-edge design scene. But that’s not all — the Catalonia capital is also home to a nice city beach with a hopping waterfront.

Where to Stay: The H10 Marina Hotel is perfect for those looking to split their time between the beach and the streets. The hotel is within walking distance of sights such as the Picasso Museum, the La Barceloneta beach, and the gorgeous Gothic Quarter. Highlights include a lovely rooftop pool with city views and a bar, a romantic spa with great treatments, and a Mediterranean restaurant with a solid wine list.

Honeymoon Spot: Maui

Scuba Pool at the Grand Wailea Resort Hotel and Spa -- Maui

Scuba Pool at the Grand Wailea Resort Hotel and Spa -- Maui

The Ideal Couple for the Destination: Couples have to balance each other out — especially when one likes to live on the edge — so Maui is for the couple in which one is a thrill seeker and the other prefers to play it safe. Maui is an adventurer’s paradise; there’s windsurfing, surfing, road and mountain biking, and, perhaps best of all, scuba-diving. Molokini Crater, one of the island’s most famous dive locales, promises sightings of eels, rays, massive schools of fish, and even occasional sharks or whales. But while the adventurer dives deep to check out these predators up-close, the more timid one can enjoy snorkeling along the water’s surface instead.

Where to Stay: The beautifully designed, 780-room Grand Wailea is awe-inspiring in its scale: It’s got the best pool in Hawaii, one of the top U.S. spas, and a prime location on one of the best beaches in the states. Plus, the on-site dive shop offers a full range of dive trips and a PADI certification program. For the one who plays it safe, he or she can eventually work up to joining their better half on one of the more adrenaline-spiking dives by taking free daily introductory scuba lessons in the separate scuba pool.

Honeymoon Spot: Botswana

The Safari Tent at the &Beyond Xaranna Okavango Delta Camp -- Botswana

The Safari Tent at the &Beyond Xaranna Okavango Delta Camp -- Botswana

The Ideal Couple for the Destination: For couples in which one likes to rough it and the other prefers to sit in the lap of luxury, it used to be hard to find a middle ground — until “glamping” came around, that is. Thanks to this hybrid of glamor and camping, couples with differing takes on what constitutes a fun vacation can now agree on something. Botswana is an excellent choice for newlyweds looking to merge the rugged with the luxe. Numerous companies offer safari-like adventures where guests are taken to secluded jungle locations to experience nature firsthand. But rather than staying in lackluster DIY tents, guests stay in beautiful tents prepared for them by the staff and feast on large, gourmet buffets.

Where to Stay:  The ultra-remote, luxurious safari lodge at &Beyond Xaranna Okavango Delta Camp isn’t a hotel, it’s an experience, where everything — including the excellent food and the guided excursions (game drives, bush walks, river cruises) — is included in the price of the stay. Guests can get up close to exotic wildlife on both land and water (think: lions and hippos), and even arriving to the property is an adventure, requiring transport by small plane, safari vehicle, and a boat. The nine safari “tents” are fully screened in and thoroughly high-end, with huge soaking tubs, four-poster beds, lots of wood, and private pools.

Honeymoon Spot: Phoenix

Golf Course at The Boulders Resort & Golden Door Spa -- Phoenix

Golf Course at The Boulders Resort & Golden Door Spa -- Phoenix

The Ideal Couple for the Destination: Some (read: most) want their honeymoon to be relaxing. But for some active types out there, it isn’t relaxing unless some activity is involved. These couples may be a bit rare but we wanted to help them out too — if you’re a couch potato who is marrying an exercise fanatic (or vice versa), Phoenix is a great spot to honeymoon. With an average temperature of 72 degrees Fahrenheit year-round, Phoenix features hundreds of superb golf courses and some of the best resorts in the U.S. The town’s fabulous golf courses are a main draw, but the surrounding desert, with its amazing views and beautiful trails, is also a tourist-magnet. Visitors have a wide array of hotels, resorts and spas to choose from, either in Downtown Phoenix or in the suburbs (known as a whole as the Valley of Sun). So while one of you hits the links or the dusty trail, the other can chill by the pool or indulge in a lavish spa treatment.

Where to Stay:  Arguably the most scenic resort in the Southwest, The Boulders is built to impress. Its spa remains one of the most beautiful in the country, and its two golf courses, gym, tennis facilities, and numerous restaurants all vie for the title of best in Phoenix. But the grounds, dotted by cacti, an organic citrus orchard, and the region’s famous boulders (some bigger than houses), might just be the resort’s most impressive highlight.

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