Once the flurry of engagement parties, rehearsal dinners and wedding activities is over, it’s time for the honeymoon. Here are four romantic island destinations to fit the needs and preferences of newlywed couples.
For nature lovers: Tofino and Ucluelet, B.C.
Tofino and Ucluelet, on Vancouver Island’s west coast, offer a rugged honeymoon backdrop of dramatic rainforest, crashing surf and sand stretches that are perfect for hand-in-hand walks. In fact, the area has a variety of beach and forest hiking trails, including the beautiful Wild Pacific Trail in Ucluelet. Couples can also take surfing lessons (both communities have surf schools), go on a whale-watching tour or paddle the waters of the Clayoquot Sound UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Accommodations in both towns range from high-end beachfront resorts to economical motels, charming B&Bs and campgrounds.
For beach bums: The Out Islands of the Bahamas
The Out Islands of the Bahamas feature secluded, romantic beaches and many even boast pink sand. On Eleuthera, sandy highlights include French Leave Beach for beachcombing, swimming and snorkelling and Surfer’s Beach for world-class surfing. For a truly laid-back vibe, check out Volleyball Beach in the Exumas, where you can also dine on conch salad or roast pig at the Chat ‘N’ Chill. Prior to visiting, create a personal website on the Island of the Bahamas honeymoon registry, sign up for activities and friends can donate money to finance the experiences you’ve chosen.
For explorers: Prince Edward Island
With many accessible beaches and a welcoming vibe, Prince Edward Island is a charming honeymoon destination. Tour its many lighthouses, kayak along the ochre banks in the aquamarine waters of North Rustico Harbour or stand-up paddleboard in Malpeque Bay’s International Migratory Site. Also choose from more than 70 “Authentic PEI Experiences,” like fishing for lobster, digging for clams or learning to step dance. These couple-friendly activities can cost as little as $29 per person. Live like a local by buying fresh ingredients and cooking your meals at one of island’s many beautiful rental cottages.
For seclusion seekers: Jamaica’s South Coast
Definitely off the beaten path, Jamaica’s South Coast is located an approximate two-and-a-half-hour drive along a winding, bumpy road from the airport in Montego Bay. There are no clubs or mega resorts in this remote area, nor is there much nightlife, but newlyweds in search of true escape will fall in love with picturesque towns, waterfalls and the charming bungalows and villas available for rent. Arrange a trip to the Pelican Bar, and enjoy a private beach cookout with the captain, or simply relax on the beach. And don’t miss the Caribbean Sea view from Lovers’ Leap, with its 500-metre drop.
[This story appears in the February 2017 issue of WestJet Magazine and has since been updated]
Four Weekend Island Escapes
If you need an escape from the daily grind, but can’t take a week off, plan a long-weekend island getaway where you and your loved one can spoil yourselves silly. Go horseback riding in the Dominican Republic, eat your way through Manhattan, relax in Santa Catalina, Calif. or explore the streets of Montreal.