Before founding Menguin, CEO Justin Delaney spent years as a travel writer. He and his wife have traveled the globe, making him our resident guru on all things destination. So, we asked him to share the best of the best beaches for honeymoons from around the world.
Here are his Top 10:
Turks and Caicos
For the western half of the globe, Grace Bay is about as clean and perfect as a beach gets. Sure there are more jet set celebs in St. Barths and Anguilla, but it is impossible to beat the accessibility of Turks and Caicos. Thanks to a ton of airline capacity, it is an easy destination from most east coast hubs to Grace Bay. You can go from city to beach in just a few hours. Also check out the secret snorkeling spot at Smith’s Cove and live it up at a ridiculous beach front Airbnb or a hotel like The Tuscany.
From the United States, it does not get much farther than The Maldives. Those that brave the jet lag and stopovers are rewarded with the lowest lying country in the world – a smattering of atolls and islands where cabs are airplanes and back yards are Technicolor coral reefs. Splurge for an above water bungalow at Gili Lankanfushi and hire a day trip yacht to explore the atolls. Or hail a sky-cab for some truly mind blowing views of this special country.
Ko Phi Phi. Thailand
Thailand is growing in popularity as a honeymoon destination, and rightly so. The country boasts beaches that shame anything stateside and the highlands offer a wealth of cool outdoor adventures and a rewarding mix of cultures. On the beach front, it is hard to beat the scene on the Phi Phi islands. Known for full moon parties and the filming of the painfully mediocre but aptly named Dicaprio flick “The Beach,” Phi Phi is an island paradise just a few hours boat ride from Phuket. Monkeys, turquoise waters, and perfect white sand. What more do you need?
The beauty of Mykonos is in its simplicity. Great food: Check. Great beaches: Check. A beast of a club scene: Check. Exploring the island on a 4 wheeler and breezing by old world farms lined with goats en route to the next empty beach cove is what travel is all about. For the adventurous who want some clubbing mixed in with their sun, check out Mykonos. It also pairs nicely with Santorini – just a few hours away by boat.
Imagine for a moment an island next door to Bali, with no cars (all transport is by horse drawn carriage), great affordable accommodation, and a laid back vibe that is almost unmatched globally. Gili T is all of those things. An island fringed in reef and home to calm waters filled with sea turtles, Gili T is a great kept secret.
Also known as the King’s Landing set from Game of Thrones, Dubrovnik is an almost impossible seeming place that has survived wars, countless tourists, and the fictionalized reign of Joffrey. The fortressed town is a perfect romantic European setting to launch your honeymoon from. Whether you are skipping stones on the nearby island of Lokrum, playing pickup water polo with the locals, or even exploring the Adriatic sea in a hired sailboat, Dubrovnik is an epic place to return to from your adventures.
Beaches of every color. Towns that cling precariously to the ridge of an ancient volcano. Santorini is many things, above all else unforgettable. Images do not do it justice, and when you arrive, it is like meeting a famous person that exceeds your expectations in every way. The sensory experience of Santorini is not easy to shake. Grab a villa at Fanari and watch the sun set over the Aegean every night. This is as romantic as a place can get.
Anguilla – Meads Bay
Mead’s Bay is the best beach in the western hemisphere. Perfect sand. Perfect water. Not crowded. The nearby Four Seasons is an impeccable property perched above the bay on a rocky outcropping. Go there.
Middle Eastern glam has a place in the 21st century, and Dubai is its poster child. The beaches are well kept and come with every amenity a modern explorer needs. Stay at any Jumeriah residence for a lesson in unparalleled Arabian hospitality, but if you really want to go all out, grab a honeymoon suite at Jumeriah Al Qasr at Madinat. Be sure to reserve a spot of afternoon sky tea at the next door and legendary Burj Al Arab (pictured).
I spent many years working as a travel writer and airline employee before becoming CEO of Menguin, and so global travel is a big part of my life. A lot of people ask me, “What is your favorite place in the world?” I always tell them Bali, especially for a honeymoon. It has more of everything than just about anywhere, including beaches, culture, adventure activities, temples, and so on. It is a small island with a magnitude of wonder. Everyone should go there at least once, and a honeymoon is a perfect excuse.
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