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Honeymoons In Paradise - Where To Go In June

Image via Tourist Destinations

Summer, for many, exudes an air of romance. While the Southern Hemisphere experiences short days and long nights in June, the Northern Hemisphere is just gearing up for plenty of sunshine and heat. As such, destinations kick into high gear as holiday makers, young and old, seek out the best places to spend their long-awaited summer vacation.

1. Kaua’i, Hawaii
There is no wrong time to visit Kaua’i, one of the oldest of all Hawaiian islands. The timeless honeymoon favourite is home to breathtaking scenery and a perpetually warm, tropical climate. In June, temperatures are near-perfect and the surf is the calmest all year.

Where to Stay
St Regis Princeville is a favourite for couples on this Hawaiian island. The resort of Kaua’i North Shore includes an 11,000-square-foot spa offering taro-clay wraps and maile-oil massages and a 5,000-square-foot infinity pool. The 251 rooms – some of the largest on Kaua’i – are all gleamingly new and decorated in pale blue and warm wood tones.

Image via St Regis Princeville

What to Do
June offers ideal weather conditions for a leisurely boat tour of the rugged Na Pali coast. Enjoy the sunshine and take a swim in Hanalei Bay, or take in the dramatic cliffs and valleys of the Waimea Canyon, the Grand Canyon of the Pacific.

Image via Kaua’i

2. Stockholm, Sweden
If you are looking for a refreshingly different honeymoon destination, Stockholm may just be the place. The city offers both a chance to relax and explore a vibrant nightlife and music scene set against a picturesque backdrop.

Where to Stay
The Hotel Lydmar offers classically designed rooms with a contemporary and cool feel. DJs and performers take to the terraces and open air bar, where people relax and choose from a delicious selection of food. If the weather will allow, the first floor terrace provides a perfect view over the waterfront, with a mix of people, young and old, soaking up the atmosphere. The rooms are stylish and the decor mixes the classic and the modern perfectly.

Image via Hotel Lydmar

What to Do
Visit the Västerbron Bridge, where couples secure padlocks and throw away they keys, representing everlasting love. Then, take a walk through the Haga Park and discover tranquility beside a lake and the see the current resident of Sweden’s Crown Princess Victoria.

Overlooking the water is one of the oldest inns in Stockholm, which is now the Haga Park Hotel. If time allows, take a short boat ride out of Stockholm to the Stora Fjäderholmarna, a destination for Stockholmers as well as tourists. Home to a new Brew Pub opened by Pelle Ågren and Andreas Willman, it is possible to try the beer which is brewed onsite, with windows facing into the brewery enabling visitors to take a look at the origin of their ale!

Image via View Stockholm

3. Zagreb, Croatia
Croatia is currently going through a tourist boom and counts July as its peak tourist season. So, consider June as Croatia’s sweet spot, where the days are long but hotels have yet to reach capacity. The islands along the Croatian coast are dreamy destinations best seen by yacht, but Zagreb, the capital and heart of Croatia’s culture, is the place to be.

Where to Stay
Built in 1925 as a glamorous stopover for passengers on the Orient Express, the five-star Esplanade is unquestionably Zagreb’s most upmarket hotel. Restored to its former glory in 2004, it offers a level of opulence you will find nowhere else in Croatia. The resort’s 208 spacious rooms and suites are decorated in rich, warm tones and opulent golds, heavy dark wood furniture and luxuriant textiles.

Image via Esplanade

What to Do
Zagreb’s historic town is best explored on foot where you can marvel at the beautiful Austro-Hungarian architecture. Chief among them is the Cathedral of the Assumption of the Holy Virgin Mary (Katedrala Uznesenja Blažene Djevice Marije). Although this landmark of Zagreb has long been veiled behind construction sheathing, its neo-Gothic twin towers, visible over the city, are as close as Zagreb gets to a visual identity worthy of calling-card status.

Spend some time at Mirogoj, one of the city’s architectural gems. Behind a series of green, onion-shaped cupolas that cap ivy-covered brick walls are tiled arcades – monuments to Croatia’s most prominent citizens and the final resting place of 300,000 souls of various religious backgrounds.

Image via Broke Tourist

4. Beijing, China
June is one of the best times to travel to Beijing – not a single Chinese holiday or national celebration falls in June, which might be the reason why, though the weather is still pleasant, it is one of the cheapest times to travel to this bustling city.

Where to Stay
Set in elegant pavilions that were once imperial waiting rooms, boutique hotel Aman Summer Palace in Beijing offers a taste of pampered Qing Dynasty living. Set in clusters of three pavilions surrounding a tranquil inner courtyard, rooms are dressed in natural hues and polished wood inspired by the Ming Dynasty. The Imperial Suite is its own little compound, with drum-stool seating, a private spa treatment room and floor-to-ceiling carved-wood panels.

Image via Aman Summer Palace

What to Do
The best perk of travelling to Beijing in June is being able to take advantage of fewer crowds at the typically busy monuments such as the Great Wall and Tiananmen Square.

The past and the future merge in China’s political capital, where hutong alleys compete with mega-malls, five-star hotels and world-class art institutions. Walk into China’s  imperial past at the Forbidden City and marvel at its beautiful oriental architecture. Enjoy a boat ride across the Shichahai Lake on a boat decorated with a lantern. Add the moonlight, some instrumental songs, local snacks and tea while viewing the lake at night. What could be more romantic than that?

Image via Paradise in the World

5. London, England
London is always booming – and beckoning. England’s capital is also its crown jewel, as much entrenched in its history as it is in its future. The backdrop of many blockbuster movies is sure to offer some memorable experiences on your honeymoon.

Where to Stay
The bright, feminine rooms at Number Sixteen’s well-groomed Kensington hideaway are as refreshing and tasty as a cup of Earl Grey on a spring morning. Number Sixteen’s wonderful location makes this London boutique hotel a great base for shopping, weekends or culture trips, or for tacking a little pleasure onto your business affairs. Every room is uniquely decorated with a different mix of Kit Kemp’s trademark flirty florals and savvy colour combinations; rooms feel spacious thanks to high ceilings and plenty of natural light.

Image via Number Sixteen

What to Do
Destinations such as London Bridge and Buckingham Palace need no further introduction. So, pack a picnic rug and spend a glorious afternoon at Hyde Park. Here you can go paddle-boating, see a number of swans and take in a breath of fresh air in the centre of the city. A trip to London isn’t complete without a visit to the iconic London Eye. Originally constructed to celebrate the millennium, the Eye is a giant ferris wheel offering gorgeous views across the city. At night, the wheel is lit up in seasonal colours.

Image via Travel+Leisure

Ms Chinoiserie Says: The beauty of the Croatian coast has always fascinated me – but the glamour of Esplanade is something else again!

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The Common Wanderer

Mark and Miranda are talented writers, photographers and travel bloggers originally from Australia, but are now based in London.

They are an everyday Australian couple with a love of travel and adventure, who swapped their ordinary lives for something more extraordinary. Now they travel the world creating content for brands and for their own website.

Mark and Miranda created The Common Wanderer to share some of the incredible, humbling, exciting places and human stories they’ve discovered during their travels, and hope that through them, they can inspire their followers to wander too.

This power couple have explored over 28 countries together since 2015 and have an Instagram feed that reads like a bucket list. We couldn’t wait to hear what made their list of favourites.

What is your favourite region?

That is a really tough question, because we love mountains and the coast in equal measure!

For mountainous regions, we’d go with the Himalayas. There’s just something about being up in the Himalayas and breathing in that rich, fresh air that makes you feel absolutely alive. There’s also the spiritual aspect which can’t be adequately put into words. We’ve hiked the region twice and can’t wait to get back and explore.

For coastlines, we’d say Cinque Terre in Italy. It’s a super cliche destination, but visiting there and experiencing the stunning beauty of the region was, and still is, one of our favourite travel moments. Not only are the views majestic, but the food is incredible and the Aperol Spritz is cheap! What more could you want?

Top resort recommendation?

We’re not really big on resorts due to our travelling style (that’s not to say we don’t love them!), but we did stay in the most incredible resort in Zanzibar, Tanzania called the Dhow Inn.

It was after our Mt. Kilimanjaro hike, where we both got really sick. All we could think of was a place to relax and regenerate, and the Dhow Inn was exactly the place. Our days consisted of late breakfasts, walks on the beach, afternoon siestas, seafood buffets, and late nights under the stars. Sounds amazing, right?!

Suggestions for great honeymoon activities?

We believe a honeymoon shouldn’t just be about relaxation – it should be the celebration of the rest of your life together. So doing something challenging – and also relaxing – would be ideal.

We’re thinking hiking through the French Alps and meandering through the stunning countryside at your own pace, stopping off at pretty villages for cheese and wine and camping out under the stars.

Having said that, a fortnight lounging about in the Maldives does sound quite appealing!

The ideal location for a proposal

Mark can’t be giving too many secrets away here, but somewhere that means something to the both of you is always a smart idea.

Where that is, only you’ll know, but for us, potentially up in the mountains with a stunning backdrop!

Best kept secret honeymoon location

Is Sri Lanka secret? Maybe, maybe not? But we think it would be a wonderful location for a honeymoon. It’s so small you can visit all its corners with relative ease, and it has the most incredible culture, food, scenery and above all, coastline. And it’s hot, which is another tick!

All images via Mark and Miranda at The Common Wanderer

Ms Chinoiserie Says: Hiking through the French Alps with cheese sounds like my idea of bliss; perhaps a stop off in Sri Lanka on the way home. Perfect!

Festival Vibe - Where To Celebrate Your Love In May

Image via Afro Tourism

Festivals across the world give honeymooners the incredible opportunity to experience something new in a sea of unfamiliar culture and tradition. At every turn there is a new adventure that adds to the heart-warming atmosphere that settles over the cities and towns that hosts them.

As these locations are transformed under the lights of the celebration, embrace the history and enjoy the pleasure of the company of your partner during a time when love and commitment are made more magical.

Image by Dominic Alves via Spanish Fiestas

Rose Festival
The Dades Valley in Morocco has affectionately been dubbed the Valley of the Roses after the gorgeous sea of pink Persian roses. Here the fragrant rose oils and rose water are manufactured and sent across the country, but it’s nothing quite like standing among the subtle aromas swirling in the air and admiring the colours against a Moroccan backdrop.

To celebrate the economic success of the Valley, the Dades Valley puts on the annual Rose Festival and invites visitors from everywhere to enjoy the blooms. There’s almost nowhere prettier to celebrate a new marriage.

Image via moroccopedia

The festival takes place both in the Valley of the Roses, and in the nearby town of El Kelaa M’Gouna. To stay close by and for the best opportunity to experience everything this festival has to offer, consider staying in the Kasbah Aitmoussa. The castle-inspired hotel offers their own tours in addition to the luxury and comfort you find within – not to mention the pool and the gorgeous panoramic views! For something a little different, but just as beautiful, have a look at the nearby Kasbah Agoulzi.

Image via Kasbah Aitmoussa

Just as the Valley becomes the home for the celebration, so too do the streets of Morocco’s El Kelaa M’Gouna as stalls are set up selling everything from jewellery to local foods. The festival celebrates the annual harvest with extravagant displays of Berber singing, dancing, sword-fighting and a coronation of the Rose Queen who will reign over the harvest of the fragrance. It’s an incredible festival made that is made that much more amazing by the pure beauty of the flowers – the perfect opportunity to celebrate love!

Image via moroccopedia

White Nights Festival
St Petersburg’s world-acclaimed White Nights Festival brings together poetic and literary beauty with the romantic atmosphere of spending the day with your significant other exploring the city’s charming rivers and canals.

The ‘Stars of the White Nights’ features over 190 performers at the world-famous Mariinsky Ballet and Opera Theatre and takes place around St Peterburg’s brightest period – a phenomenon exclusive to the northern city that sees the sun dipping low enough in the sky to create a beautiful lighting effect, but not becoming completely dark. It’s as extraordinary as it is beautiful.

Image via Mariinsky Theatre

With so many wonderful accommodation options in the centre of St Petersburg you won’t have any trouble staying close to the best of the festival. The always gorgeous Alexander House is a series of charming suites, amazing dining options and breathtaking views. Also located in the heart of the city is the high-end, luxurious Hotel Akyan. With its endless comfort and style, you won’t want to leave!

Image via Akyan Hotel

Although there are the incredibly beautiful performances by St Petersburg’s best ballet dancers to keep you busy during your honeymoon, make sure to also soak up the music in the city centre under the bright, white air that takes over the city. Wander the city hand in hand and experience everything Russia’s gorgeous city has to offer, with the added benefit of an atmosphere that comes around once a year.

Image via Saint-Petersburg.com

Jerez Horse Fair
Spain’s beautiful city of Andalucía is always a vibrant and exciting location for honeymooners seeking history and culture but throw in a festival like the Jerez Horse Fair and suddenly you have a much livelier experience!

The horse fair, known locally as the Feria del Caballo, takes place at the Gonzalo Hontoria Fairgrounds and showcases everything from dressage, riding competitions, polo and carriage driving. On top of that are bullfights, flamenco displays and over 200 stalls offering everything from Spanish cuisine to sherry. The fair also takes over the streets as revellers watch vibrant parades and celebrate well into the night.

Image by Dominic Alves via Spanish Fiestas

Andalucía is a lovely collection of historic buildings created by centuries of love and care, all of which have been modernised to suit the new generation of visitors. When you stay in Andalucía, do so in something as incredible as the Hotel Palacio De Santa Paula or the charming La Alumnia del Valle. Both of these hotels are as charming as they are luxurious and offer their own slice of heaven in the middle of Spain.

Image via La Alumnia del Valle

The horse fair is a celebration that brings together everything that is so special about Andalucía. While you’re celebrating your new marriage, take in the sights of the beautiful town, watch the Spanish-style carriages parade through the cobblestone streets and indulge in local food and wine!

This festival has been part of the town’s history since 1264 so the culture and tradition involved is beyond incredible. If you’re looking to celebrate in Spain, make sure you do it during the first week of May so you can experience the atmosphere that has been a part of the town for centuries.

Image via andalucia.com

Festivals in May offer honeymooners everything from the beauty of a gorgeous valley covered in the various shades of Morocco’s pink roses, horse fairs that transform Spain’s beautiful city of Andalucía through to the celebration of St Petersburg’s White Nights phenomenon. It’s a month that celebrates love in so many different ways with the added bonus of an atmosphere and adventure that rivals all others.

Ms Chinoiserie Says: St Petersburg and the White Nights Festival have always fascinated me; now I know the best time to visit!!! What a beautiful honeymoon memory!!!