Cosy up in Turkish caves
If you’re looking for a distinctive destination, you will find that Turkey’s intoxicating blend of historic treasures, ancient cultures and spellbinding natural attractions makes for a fascinating adventure. In the 2,000-year-old caves of Cappadocia are some of the most romantic and extraordinary boutique hotels, surrounded by a picturesque landscape that invites exploration. You can even take to the skies in a hot-air balloon. Heritage Travel offers packages designed for couples looking to make the most of this fairy-tale setting, with sunset picnics overlooking beautiful valleys, candlelit dinners and relaxing hammam treatments to ease tired muscles after a day spent exploring the caves.
Need to know: The three-night Cappadocia Enchantment package with Heritage Travel costs Dh2,152 for two people and includes accommodation in a boutique cave hotel in Göreme, a sunset picnic, dinner at a premier Turkish restaurant and a couple’s massage. For more information visit www.goreme.com.
Sail into the sunset in Croatia
When it comes to selecting the perfect island retreat, visitors to Croatia are thoroughly spoilt for choice. The island of Korčula, however, stands out as a particularly romantic getaway, ideal for honeymooners seeking a combination of beautiful scenery, great restaurants — especially seafood — and architectural splendour. It is also home to the fabulous Lešić Dimitri Palace, a luxury hotel located near Marco Polo’s old house within the walls of the Old Town. Book the Arabia Residence suite on the top floor and enjoy panoramic views of the Pelješac Peninsula and Adriatic Sea. The room is magnificent as well – a palatial, tented abode in white, inspired by Bedouin desert camps and created in the most luxurious manner possible. The hotel also offers a sunset sailing experience on its classic yacht Vipera – the ideal way to absorb the beauty of Croatia’s stunning coastline, where natural wonders are ornamented by historic castles and crumbling villages, infusing the rugged landscape with a sense of mystery.
Need to know: Rates for the Arabia Residence start from Dh2,609 a night including breakfast. For honeymooners, special extras such as flowers and a bottle of bubbly on arrival are included. Visit www.lesic-dimitri.com.
Rainforest romance in Sri Lanka
For honeymooners, there are only a few more wonderfully placed spots in the world than Heritance Kandalama, set deep in the heart of Sri Lanka’s cultural triangle. A triumph of Sri Lanka’s greatest architect, Geoffrey Bawa, this beautiful hotel has been designed to blend in harmoniously with the jungle around it. Guests enjoy their time in the midst of nature, with floor-to-ceiling windows offering sweeping views of the lush greenery all around and an elephant watering hole in the valley below, and all-glass showers through which you can see monkeys dancing on the balcony. The property also offers great spa treatments and an infinity pool, as well as private dining options in exotic locations, such as romantic cave dinners, lunch in paddy fields and breakfast on a barge in Kandalama Lake.
Need to know: Rooms at Heritance Kandalama start from Dh609 a night but the hotel runs regular offers for honeymooners. For details visit www.heritancehotels.com.
Love by the lake in Udaipur
Udaipur is undoubtedly one of India’s most beautiful cities. Built along the banks of the breathtaking Lake Pichola, this is the historic capital of the kingdom of Mewar and has the grand palaces and ancient forts to prove it. A good way to catch the highlights while still taking the time to enjoy the romance of it all is to go for Tour My India’s five-day Rajasthan honeymoon package. Soak up the dazzling beauty of the setting sun from Sunset Point, which looks out over the lake, and explore the charming hill station of Mt Abu, an old summer retreat and home to the exquisite Dilwara Temples dating back to the 11th century.
Need to know: Prices for Tour My India’s Romance of Rajasthan package start from Dh1,187 per person including four-star accommodation. Stay options in other categories are also available. For more information visit www.tourmyindia.com.
Magical memories in the Maldives
The Maldives’ utopian isles have long been a favoured honeymoon destination, and for good reason. Glittering white sand beaches — the postcard kind with palm trees swaying in a light breeze — line tropical jungles and disappear into turquoise waters so clear that the sea bed is visible from the surface. This really is a place to escape the world and indulge in doing absolutely nothing. For honeymooners, the Ayada Maldives resort in Gaafu Dhaalu ticks every box — luxurious villas on stilts, sparkling waters, a nearby reef that makes for great snorkelling, a sun-drenched beach leading to a crystal clear lagoon, luxurious spa and a choice of several excellent dining venues. What more do you need for the perfect luxury honeymoon?
Need to know: Beach villas at Ayada Maldives start from around Dh3,300 per night including breakfast. For more information write to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Culture for Qatar: The Gulf state has set its sights on becoming a cultural destination — a chunk of the $20 billion set aside for tourism development will go into the completion of the Katara Cultural Village and National Museum of Qatar.
Maiden voyage: Richard Branson is now giving the cruise industry the Virgin touch with the launch of two purpose-built Virgin Cruise ships, set to “reshape expectations of what a cruise can be”.
New loyalty scheme: Starwood and Emirates’ new Your World Rewards programme will provide reciprocal benefits to their loyalty members. Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) and Emirates Skywards members will benefit from privileges when they fly with Emirates or stay with SPG participating hotels.