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Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

Time together immediately after the wedding is something every newlywed couple needs. Where you go and what you do, of course, depends on your time frame, budget and interests. “Everybody wants something different,” says Abby Bebout, lead travel advisor with Travel Design Lounge in Omaha. “For some couples, it might be the biggest trip they’ve ever taken. For others, it might be a quick weekend getaway.” Most honeymoon arrangements fall somewhere in between. If you’re undecided about a destination, a travel advisor can point you in the right direction based on the type of experience you want. Here, Bebout shares insight on honeymoon-worthy destinations. Which one fits you best?

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Lake Tahoe, California

SHORT & SWEET

For the couple with minimal vacation time; no passport required.

Duration Three or four days

Consider Arizona or California for a change of landscape and sunny and warm climates

Sedona, Arizona

  • Romantic spa resorts against a backdrop of dramatic red rocks and breathtaking canyons
  • Plenty of sunshine for poolside lounging
  • Abundant hiking trails, golf courses, natural wonders
  • Great shopping; art lovers’ paradise; close to the Grand Canyon

Lake Tahoe, California

  • Honeymoon packages galore
  • Mountains, forests, waterfalls, crystal-clear lake
  • Waterfront resorts, warm temperatures and sandy beaches in summer
  • Mountain lodges, world-class skiing and cozy fireplaces in winter and early spring

Sonoma/Napa Valley, California

  • Pair with a two-night stay in San Francisco then rent a car and head for Northern California’s Wine Country.
  • Terrific lodging: quaint inns, French-style chateaus, all-inclusive resorts and spas
  • Mud and mineral baths; couples massages
  • Wine tastings; sip-and-pedal tours
  • Hot-air balloon rides, zip-lining, hiking

REST & RELAXATION

For the couple who wants to get away from it all.

Duration Five to seven days

Consider Mexico or the Caribbean. Quick travel time; lots of options for places to stay, things to do.

Nassau, Bahamas

  • Colorful culture, people, landscape. Pink-hued, colonial-style buildings are strewn across the island’s hilly landscape, adding to Nassau’s charm.
  • Crystal-clear water, coral reefs for snorkeling
  • Harbor Island for pink sand beaches
  • Pig Beach for swimming with wild pigs

Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

  • All-inclusive resorts with great value
  • White sand beaches; lush golf courses
  • Hiking at East National Park
  • Culture and history in the capital city, Santo Domingo

Belize, Central America

  • Second-largest barrier reef in world; incredible diving, snorkeling
  • Laid-back lifestyle; no one is in a hurry
  • Golf carts as your main mode of transportation

Costa Rica, Central America

  • An alternative to Mexico or the Caribbean; perfect for the eco-conscious traveler
  • Hiking, zip-lining, white water rafting, deep-sea fishing
  • Secluded beaches; volcanic-fed springs and other spa experiences
  • Explore Arenal Volcano for a few days before ending on the beach in Guanacaste

Jamaica, Caribbean

  • Easy island travel destination
  • Tons of all-inclusive and adults-only resorts
  • Varied experiences, areas to explore
  • Colorful culture (reggae!); friendly people

Riviera Maya, Mexico

  • Beautiful all-inclusive properties; good pricing for what you get, including second-to-none service
  • Extensive coral reef for diving, snorkeling
  • World-class fishing, seafood dining
  • White sand beaches, lush jungles, crystal-clear lagoons
  • Mayan ruins and legends of love, happiness and prosperity (not to mention fertility)
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Porto, Portugal

GLOBETROTTERS’ DREAM

For the couple eager to travel abroad to experience history, culture and cuisine.

Duration 10 days to two weeks

Consider Europe for ancient ruins, grand cities, stunning scenery, terrific public transportation and plenty of locals who speak English

Italy

  • Iconic art and architecture, movie-perfect scenery, culinary adventures
  • Sunshine and relaxation along the Amalfi Coast
  • Food and wine in Tuscany
  • History and culture in Rome
  • Utilize the Italian rail system to get from city to city when you can’t decide between Rome and Tuscany

Ireland

  • White-capped mountains, romantic castles and buzzing pub scene
  • The Inishowen Peninsula for potential views of the Aurora Borealis
  • Galway, Belfast and Dublin for Christmas markets

Portugal

  • Nirvana for food and wine lovers
  • Dramatic cliffs, scenic beaches, colorful cityscapes
  • Generally paired with Spain (Madrid) for a longer and more “cultural” trip
  • Blazing hot in summer; explore in spring (March-May) or autumn (September-October) for best weather
  • Best rates in off-season (January-February). Expect Porto and Lisbon to be chilly and damp; the Algarve, Madeira and the Azores are more suited for couples chasing the sun
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Machu Picchu

EXOTIC & OUT THERE

For the couple who prefers non-traditional destinations and adventure

Duration 10 days to two weeks

Consider Thailand, Bali, South America; your Instagram feed will be incredible

South Africa

  • Not just the safari. Wine regions, water and beaches
  • Enjoy the history and culture of Johannesburg, then safari in famous Kruger National Park
  • Hike Table Mountain in Cape Town before diving with great white sharks
  • Extend to Zanzibar or Mauritius for a beach getaway to end it all!

Thailand or Bali

  • Both countries offer varied experiences, extremely good value for “different” destination
  • Pretty beaches, unique culture, variety of regions to explore.
  • In Thailand, hit Bangkok (for the temples), Chiang Rai (for the elephants and culture) and Phuket (for the beaches)

Ecuador/Peru

  • Best for active and adventurous travelers
  • The combination makes for a unique experience seeing the Galapagos Islands and Machu Picchu
  • Snorkel with Galapagos turtles, then hike the Inca Trail

Corfu, Greece

  • Definitely not your traditional Greece!
  • More “colorful” than the other popular islands
  • Great for snorkeling
  • Unique island culture

Chris is a magazine and special sections editor for The World-Herald. She writes on lifestyle topics and trends, including interior design, travel and fashion. Follow her on Instagram @chrischristen and Twitter @cchristenOWH. Phone: 402-444-1094.

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