10 ROMANTIC PLACES
FOR TRAVELING LOVERS
Let’s face it, love is something you have to pack with you. No matter where you might be, it’s the person you are with that makes the time and place really special. However, it does seem some destinations have a certain quality about them that seems to spark the flame. Perhaps it’s the light, the architecture, or maybe something in the air. Here are ten of our picks for romantic getaways.
This medieval city oozes romance. Swans grace the canals, and there is even a Lovers Bridge, a serene spot in the confines of the city. Gardens situated between ancient buildings provide terrific picnic locations, and the many cafe and coffee shops are small and intimate settings.
Here is an island made for romance. Warm water, lovely beaches, and the twin Pitons from your hotel window. There are many couples-only resorts and romantic dining venues. A sunset cruise is a perfect way to end a romantic day (or begin one) on this Caribbean jewel.
Many think of Mykonos as a party island, but it turns out love lives here as well. The waters of the Mediterranean are crystal clear here, and the beaches are some of the best and most varied in the world. Get lost in the labyrinth of the town’s streets and soak in the charming whitewashed houses with blue doors and the shops, galleries, and cafes. The picturesque Little Venice area of Mykonos town is the perfect setting for a sunset cocktail.
This is an island with everything, and that includes amazing romantic spots. Maui is almost in a class by itself. Take in the morning sunrise on Haleakala at 10,000 feet above sea level. Drive the curves of the Road to Hana, stopping to enjoy and swim in the many hidden waterfalls along the way. Take in a Luau at night and next day splurge on a helicopter ride and view the spectacular scenery from the air. There are activities for everyone from scuba, beaches and surfing, horseback riding and biking.
Hawaii, United States
Here is a location you may not have initially thought of as romantic, but Chiang Mai is known as the “Rose of the North” for its beauty, and the people are among the friendliest in the world. At night the markets are alive with activity and Thai cooking classes are everywhere. The surrounding countryside is spectacular and inexpensive day trips are easy to arrange. Be sure to experience a couples massage, a Thai specialty!
What do history, architecture, canals, great food, gondolas, and bridges add up to? Romantic Venice. Strolling along the maze-like streets of Venice, visiting the shops, and wandering about the canal-lined streets topped off with a Gondola ride is almost the definition of romance. Venice is known for its sunsets, and the city's many great hotels and apartments offer spectacular yet intimate canal views.
Does it seem unfair to include Paris in our list of favorite romantic locations? Paris is the archetypal romantic city: “We’ll always have Paris.” Maybe no city anywhere has more lovely cafes and intimate restaurants, and strolling along the Seine is a requirement for all visiting couples. It is no longer permitted to place Love Locks on bridges, and yes, the Eiffel Tower is romantic, but even the cemeteries in this city are romantic!
The island of Bali’s mix of Hindu culture, amazingly friendly people, great mountain and farming scenery, and magnificent beaches all contribute to our choice of Bali as one of the top romantic spots in the world. Hiking on the Campuhan Ridge alongside the island’s volcanos, visiting the serene temples, eating the fresh seafood grilled along the shore or watch the sunsets at Uluwatu are all experiences to be shared.
Does our choice of Marrakech surprise you? The visual appeal of the most visited city in Morocco will remind you of every movie you have ever seen about the country. Musicians and other street performers like acrobats and snake charmers fill the marketplace. The streets of the medina are more than 1,000 years old, and visitors can easily get lost, so keep track of your path! It is possible to join day tours for horseback riding, hikes, or riding across sand dunes.
Be sure to take a Calèches ride, a traditional horse-drawn carriage. Enjoy a sunset from one of the cafe terraces and have dinner in the casbah. Finally, have a couples massage and bath, known locally as a hammam. The exotic atmosphere of the culture is intoxicating and will provide a store of memories to draw from for years.
James Michener referred to Bora Bora as the “most beautiful island in the world,” and it certainly ranks high on anyone’s list. One of the 118 islands making up French Polynesia, the island of Bora Bora has long been a favorite of couples, attracted not just by the beauty of the island and its beaches but also by the famous overwater bungalows. Breakfast can be served at your bungalow’s balcony courtesy of a canoe, and private beaches offer intimate picnicking spots.
Performances of Polynesian dancers are everywhere, and the dining is nothing short of gourmet. Mount Otemanu, the volcano in the middle of the island, is visible from most points and is the backdrop to many of the island’s attractions, like star gazing at night in the near-total darkness of the South Pacific.