Romantic places have something special to offer
These sites make a great first getaway as husband and wife.
SPECIAL TO THE VINDICATOR
Let's face it: Getting married is exciting, crazy, fun and totally exhausting. So after a whirl of a day that is the culmination of months, perhaps years, of planning, it's time for your long-awaited honeymoon. And whether you're looking for sun-soaked beaches or majestic mountainsides, there's a place on this great big Earth made specifically for you.
Here's our list of some of the hottest places for your first romantic getaway as husband and wife.
Hawaii. From the dramatic cliffs of the Napali Coast on Kauai to the vibrant shores of Waikiki Beach on Oahu, Hawaii sports a climate of "one long delicious summer day," as Mark Twain, who wrote frequently on the islands as a journalist, once said. Besides sun-kissed beaches, each of Hawaii's six major islands offers its own unique gems, such as the hidden hikes and off-road paths of Molokai and Lanai or the local art scenes of Maui and Oahu.
Napa Valley. Sure, you'll come for the wine, but California's Napa Valley also is filled with lush, rolling hills. How about a spectacular hot-air balloon ride above world famous vineyards and estates? Or a romantic dinner on the Napa Valley Wine Train? What's more, Napa is just a two-hour drive from vivacious San Francisco, where couples can check out the city's diverse attractions, from touristy Fisherman's Wharf to artsy Little Saigon to stately Pacific Heights.
St. Lucia. The sort of place that travelers to the Caribbean dream about, St. Lucia is a small, verdant tropical jewel of an island that is still relatively unknown. Only 27 miles long and 14 miles wide, St. Lucia possesses a stunning topography and ecology, from the island's mountainous interior, in which lies the enormous National Rain Forest, to its protected coastal sights, including the breathtaking spires of Les Pitons.
Costa Rica. Ranked first by Carlson Wagonlit Travel experts among the "new, hot sites for honeymooners," Costa Rica boasts rugged highlands, including several active volcanoes, relatively long coastlines on both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans and a number of rivers and streams that attract specialist kayakers and rafters worldwide.
Tahiti. Tahiti has been on Americans' romance radars since the days of the Broadway hit "South Pacific," and offers a bounty of palm-shaded beaches and secluded coves. Sleep in your own private thatched-roof bungalow on the edge of a turquoise lagoon, cruise under star-studded skies propelled by gentle trade winds or spend the day on your own secluded islet.
Santorini. One of the best-known of the Greek islands, Santorini is both beautiful and ruggedly dramatic. Formed by a volcanic eruption that tore the island in half, Santorini is a cliff-rimmed crescent island that offers both unforgettable sunset views and Pompeii-like ruins. Note: If you've got the time, a trip to mainland Greece offers a back-in-time experience bursting with historical and archaeological wonders.
Las Vegas. Sure, what happens here may stay here, but adventurous honeymooners know there's more than the neon magic of Las Vegas Boulevard to fill your senses -- and then some. The city's surrounding areas feature spectacular desert landscapes showcasing jagged mountains, red rock canyons and deep desert valleys, great places for hiking or simply taking in the view, depending upon your preference.