Creative Vacations suggests trip ideas for four kinds of couples.
Once the excitement-and, OK, a little bit of stress-of the big day ends, newlyweds have the chance to escape to a honeymoon location of their dreams. Columbus Bride spoke to Jodie Shriver of Creative Vacations & Cruise Centers about the ideal locations for couples of all vacation persuasions.
Not content with lying around when there is so much to be explored, adventurous couples should check out Costa Rica to satisfy their roaming spirit. Shriver says the scenic country offers hiking, whitewater rafting and zip-lining among its many activities. And those looking to hone their surfing skills can hit the waves at one of the country's many beaches.
The rainforests of Costa Rica are also a great alternative to the traditional sedentary vacation; couples can hike, explore and appreciate the natural beauty of the impressive ecosystem. Tour guides are readily available for rainforest treks, as well as hiking and boat rides.
Interested in a colder experience? Skiing in Vail, Colorado, is a great option for those who enjoy getting their workout on the slopes. Honeymooners can expect beautiful snowy mountain scenery along with plenty of great bars, restaurants and shopping.
Depending on the season, couples can hike, fish and bike throughout the area, too. Golf courses, botanical gardens and horseback riding are also available. There's even a dog park for those who don't want to be separated from their four-legged friend for too long. And because Vail caters to all types of guests, couples can expect to meet an interesting crowd wherever they end up.
"Everyone has a different idea of what's romantic, but Tahiti and Fiji are always great locations for honeymooners," Shriver says.
Tahiti offers guests the chance to explore the South Pacific on a luxurious cruise or go scuba diving in the clear blue waters. Though relaxing on the beach with a drink in hand is a popular option with Tahiti visitors, swimming and snorkeling are great chill-out alternatives as well. With the amount of small villages and abundance of resorts, couples have the chance to pick a getaway that's suited to their needs.
Cruises are also a popular option in Tahiti. Or for those who prefer to stay on land but still enjoy marine life, check out the Lagoonarium, an aquarium that boasts more than 1,000 types of sea creatures.
The friendly locals and year-round warm weather make Fiji great for couples looking to escape to a secluded paradise. Expect romantic walks on the beach and swimming near waterfalls as a relaxing way to spend the days. And finding a "couples resort" means there will be plenty of activities with romance in mind. Choosing Fiji as the honeymoon spot may also act as a source of good luck, since thousands of couples come to renew their wedding vows there every year.
These classic vacation spots often offer adults-only exclusive resorts as well.
For couples looking for a reasonable drive from Columbus, Shriver suggestsHocking Hills and theOhio River Museum in Marietta. For couples looking for a reasonable drive from Columbus, Shriver suggests in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. The roughly five-hour drive will take couples through southeast Ohio, where they can explore Old Man's Cave in the and the in Marietta.
Along the way, there's canoeing and horseback riding before arriving at The Greenbrier. Surrounded by the Allegheny Mountains, the resort offers guests unlimited indoor and outdoor activities.
Recently, Shriver had a couple fly to Boston and drive through New England while taking in the beautiful fall foliage.
There are various foliage tours couples can join along the way, as well as wine and history tours. Coastal Maine and New Hampshire offer excellent seafood options, along with sailing for those who would be interested in taking a day or two out at sea. Along the way are many historic buildings and picturesque towns for those interested in soaking up some old-fashioned culture.
Just more than a three-hour drive from Columbus, Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in Pennsylvania offers a spa, golf and shooting course and fly-fishing. It covers 2,000 acres of land, so couples won't have to worry about boredom, as they can take advantage of activities such as snowboarding or dog sledding. Animal lovers can also stop by the resort's Wildlife Academy, and those looking for culture can join one of the daily art tours at the resort.
Wine and Food Lovers
For vino lovers, there's no location more ideal than California's wine country. If you're interested in a more unique Napa Valley experience, consider the Napa Valley Wine Train, a 36-mile ride from Napa to St. Helena and back. And Napa Valley bike tours are a fun option for couples looking to get in some exercise with their wine tasting. Other thrilling ways to experience wine country include hot air balloon, horseback, motorcycle and boat.
There are, of course, international options for those who don't mind traveling for their wine. "If a couple is willing and able to go farther, they could do Chile and the wine regions in Santiago," Shriver says.
Not only are Chile's climate conditions ideal for grape-growing, the warm summer and beautiful coastlines lend themselves to a perfect spot for those on their honeymoon. Couples can take day trips throughout the countryside or go for a private vineyard tour and, in the evening, enjoy the Santiago nightlife.
For food lovers, Shriver suggests the classic French or Italian vacation. In between trips to the Eiffel Tower, couples can sample French cuisine at one of Paris' many famous restaurants and bakeries. And if pasta and gelato is more your style, be sure to check out Naples or Bologna.
Those who wish to remain stateside should look into major metropolitan areas like San Francisco, New York City and Chicago for excellent wine-and-dine options.