Not everyone gets to have two honeymoons, but we were lucky enough to do just that. And after planning our wedding in 5 short months, we felt we deserved it!!
The compromise we made, by having a surprise wedding – was that we wouldn’t be able to go on a big overseas honeymoon straight away. Logistically it just wasn’t going to happen. We hadn’t told our workplaces about our sneaky surprise nuptials, and so therefore couldn’t exactly take a chunk of annual leave, immediately after what everyone thought was just our ‘engagement party’, without risking people getting suspicious.
A long weekend was feasible though, and so Mark and I both took the Monday and Tuesday off, with the promise we’d go away overseas in the New Year.
We had hosted a lunch at our house, the day after our wedding – and then jumped in the car and headed for the amazing Barossa Valley, just for a couple of nights ‘escape’. A chance to reflect on how everything had panned out.
The Barossa isn’t all that far from Adelaide, but when you’re there it feels as though you’re far enough away from the daily grind, to really relax. It’s beautiful countryside, and our accommodation at The Barossa Pavilions, provided us with absolute peace and quiet.
The 75 acre property is simply beautiful. It consists of six freestanding, self contained pavilions. There’s a minimum 50 metres between each pavilion, ensuring absolute privacy. With views across the Barossa Ranges, the accommodation is modern, luxurious and first class. We were very impressed.
We turned our mobile phones off, sat on the balcony, and sipped champagne, indulged in cheese and other fresh produce from the region and just talked for hours. Each of us had different memories from our wedding, that would pop into our head and keep the conversation flowing freely. It was a great way to unwind and digest the events of the past few days.
It is somewhere close enough that we can easily return – we have already flagged another visit for our first Wedding Anniversary in November.
Honeymoon #2 was in May 2013. We had been married for 6 months, and chose a Bali Honeymoon (via Darwin) for a complete recharge. It also seemed fitting, given the story we had told people while planning our surprise wedding, was that we would get married in Bali, in May.
We couldn’t take the time off that’s required for a big US or European holiday. That will have to remain on our ‘to do’ list for a little while longer.
We spent 3 days in Darwin, visiting family. I have been to the Top End before, but it was Mark’s first visit. So we did a few touristy things. I had wanted to take him to Kakadu and Katherine Gorge, but time was against us. Instead, we saw as much of what Darwin has to offer, as possible. Crocodylus Park, the Darwin Races at Fannie Bay, the Military Museum, and the fascinating Cyclone Tracey exhibit at the Darwin Museum. And of course, no trip to Darwin is complete without seeing the famous sunset at the Mindil Beach Markets.
Soon enough, we were sitting in the departure lounge at Darwin airport, waiting for the short flight to Denpasar. Bali is somewhere we have been before, and somewhere we love. We knew what sort of a holiday it would provide, and it was perfect for what we wanted. The Villas in Seminyak is the place we called home for just over a week.
The staff were all lovely. Nothing was too much trouble, and they always greeted us with a smile. We were given the VIP treatment. They knew we were honeymooners, and so we arrived to find our villa beautifully decorated with a rose petal love-heart. Fresh flowers were also replaced every couple of days.
The Villas is only a short walk from the main street of Seminyak, but feels so isolated and remote. Perfect, in assisting with creating that relaxed feel. They have 1, 2 and 3 bedroom Villas available. We had a 1 bedroom, 2 storey villa with our own private pool.
It wasn’t until we got to Bali, that Mark and I both realised how much we needed a decent break. We crashed! Our days were extremely lazy. I read two books in the time we were there! Mark and I would wake, enjoy a delicious breakfast, lie by the pool reading for a few hours, and then jump into the pool when the morning heat and humidity got too much.
We would then go for a walk and find somewhere for lunch, which would be followed by some sort of pampering. The Prana Spa at The Villas was amazing. I can highly recommend their Shiro Dara and Simply Slimming treatments!! Both very different, but both like nothing I have experienced at any Australian day spa. I was completely transported to another world, the décor in the spa is stunning and the attention to detail from the staff is second to none. Chill Reflexology is part of The Villas as well, and was also a fantastic experience! I think I actually did nod off at one point, during my Ultimate Chill treatment, I was that relaxed!
There would be some more reading and lazing by the pool during each afternoon, before we would start to think about dinner. Each night, we made sure we tried a new spot – rather than fall into the trap of going back to the tried and tested.
Having been to Bali before, we didn’t need to go sight-seeing. We knew what was on offer. We could make ourselves as busy or as lazy as we wanted – and that is exactly what we did!
It was all over far too quickly, as holidays always are! But all good things must come to an end. A mini honeymoon, and a longer one – and now I’m very excited about the journey through life, my and husband I have ahead of us!
Images from Kerrie and Mark’s collection
Ms Gingham says: Sounds like heaven! Thanks for sharing your experiences and recommendations with us Kerrie and Mark!
Kerrie says: “I am a radio journalist in my hometown of Adelaide. I love cups of tea, glasses of bubbles and precious time with those closest to me.”