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Polka Dot Travel Lounge With Lina And David From Divergent Travelers

We were so excited when Lina and David, founders of one of the top adventure travel blogs, Divergent Travelers, shared some of their favourite destinations with us. Lina and David started the blog in 2013 when they decided that they wanted to sell all their stuff, pack up shop and travel around the world for a couple of years.

They didn’t know it would happen at the time, but their website has turned into a business and they now travel the world full-time. On top of that Lina is also a professional photographer and spends a lot of time working with destinations and companies to showcase them through content creation.  The talented couple share a love for exploring new destinations and adventuring in the outdoors. They have a dedicated following of over 46,000 Instagram followers who fall for their wanderlust inducing photography and like us are counting down until their next trip. Follow on below to find out the Divergent Travelers top recommendations.

What is your favourite region?

This is a real tough one to answer because we are able to find the good in every place that we visit. When you love travel unconditionally, it is hard to break them down to compare. But based on frequency of visiting, we will say South East Asia (while cringing about the others we have left out!)

When we got married in 2010, we took a three week backpacking trip around Thailand and Cambodia. This trip would ultimately ignite our lust for wanting to backpack the world, so you could say our current lifestyle was born from the very trip. Since then, we’ve visited every country in South East Asia except Brunei. It’s a beautiful place to travel with exotic cultures, epic jungles and some of the best beaches in the world. You can see more on a video we recently created from our trip to the Philippines.

Top resort recommendation?

While we have stayed in plenty of resorts during our travels, they aren’t our first choice for accommodation. That said though, we love staying at resorts when we need a break after some intense adventures. In 2015 we spent four months over-landing through Africa from Cape Town to Cairo.

We spent those 119 days camping and by the time we reached Cairo we were ready for some luxury. We hopped on a bus and none hours later arrived in the tiny resort town of Dahab on the Red Sea. We spent eight days at an all-inclusive resort with a private beach, large pools and some amazing scuba diving sites right off the beach. It had everything we needed to relax and recover from our four month adventure through Africa. For us, it’s about comfort when we choose to stay in places that are more upscale.

Suggestions for great honeymoon activities?

If you really want to bond with your significant other, tackle an adventure that will get the adrenaline going. Maybe even choose something that scares you both a little. Being able to overcome that, experience it and celebrate the fear together on the other side of it is something you can’t replace in your relationship. Some of our favourite things to do together are scuba diving, white-water rafting, camping trips, multi-day hikes in extreme areas and skydiving.

The ideal location for a proposal

We think the ideal proposal location has less to do with being somewhere exotic than it does with being somewhere that is special to both of you. In our minds, there is no “one size fits all” location.

Best kept secret honeymoon location

We have two of these. While there are plenty of people traveling to both, the countries of the Philippines and Indonesia are both island nations with some of the most pristine, unspoiled paradises on the planet. The Philippines has over 7,000 islands whilst Indonesia has over 17,000 islands, making it easy to find yourself in total seclusion surrounded by natural wonders. We’ve explored both for long periods of time, eight weeks each respectively, and have only scratched the surface. If you’re a couple that is looking for a bit of adventure in paradise, these locations will certainly deliver.

All images via Lina and David at Divergent Travelers

Ms Chinoiserie Says: Such beautiful images – a honeymoon at any of your favourite island getaways sounds like heaven!

Polka Dot Honeymoons Directory Mid Banner

Image via Tom Patterson (The National Gallery)

As London is simply overflowing with places to see and things to do, it can be overwhelming to pick and choose which ones to include when you are visiting for a few days. There are red bus tours, the Thames to wander along and the London Eye to queue for. There are West End shows to see and hatted restaurants to visit, and amidst the bustle and busyness there are also galleries and museums to see! If you only have a short time in London, here are three gorgeous classic galleries worth the visit!

National Portrait Gallery
Being one of London’s few free tourist spots is just one of the many perks of visiting The Portrait Gallery in London’s St Martin Place. If you are a history buff, or are merely interested in different characters throughout history (British, in particular), this is the place for you. With clear information and stunning canvasses, the gallery offers the world’s largest collection of portraits – so you may be there for some time! The gallery is open late on a Thursday and Friday, and there is a well stocked book store and gift shop. Pop into the highly recommended cafe to rest your feet and sip a cup of tea, before carrying on exploring fascinating people throughout time.

Image via Sarah Woo

The Tate Britain
Hosting the largest collection of Turner works as a free exhibition is a huge draw card for this Gallery which first opened in 1897. Also hosting popular exhibitions including contemporary art, of which you may need to book a ticket (they can sell out, so be quick!), The Tate Britain is known for its British art, spanning hundreds of years. With a lovely cafe to revive flagging muscles and a gift shop to perk up those who enjoy the shopping side of galleries, enjoy as long as you can spare here. And if you love Tennyson, hunt down The Lady of Shalott by John William Waterhouse, she is poetry personified!

Image via Britta Jaschinski (Time Out)

The National Gallery
Standing proudly in Trafalgar Square, you can not miss this stunning gallery! Another free entry, The National Gallery boasts an astounding wealth of artwork, assuring you will find something you absolutely love. With ever changing exhibitions, do some research ahead of time to find out if there’s something that really takes your fancy. Give yourself as much time as you can to wander through the varied and well known canvasses, all well laid out and with clear information on hand. The gallery is open late on a Friday, hosts several options for delicious food, and a gift shop for those looking for some keepsakes.

Image via Astrid Athen (The National Gallery)

There are many more galleries in London which hold hidden gems just waiting to be discovered! However, these three classic galleries are guaranteed to fill you with a wealth of knowledge of art, inspire you with their varying exhibitions, and perhaps even cement a new favourite artist or artwork!

Ms Chinoiserie Says: The National Portrait Gallery is one of my favourites – you could literally spend days immersing yourself in history and art!

About Ms Honeycomb  – Hi, I’m Nicola, the florist and crafter behind rubyandjoy. I’m a gardening, fabric loving, mint tea drinking, brownie baking, book obsessed maker! I love a good adventure having just moved back from five years in Scotland (with my lovely Scottish husband).

Honeymoons in Paradise - Where To Go In April - Polka Dot Bride

Image via Panache Tours

April is one of the best months for honeymoons. The days are getting longer in the northern hemisphere, with birdsong and greenery make a perfect backdrop for a romantic getaway.

1. Paris, France
Who doesn’t love Paris in springtime? As Audrey Hepburn once said, “Paris is always a good idea.”

Where to Stay
Enjoy spectacular view of Parisian rooftops at Hotel Daniel and watch the sun set over the tip of the Eiffel Tower from the ‘Daniel Suite’. Indulge in all things French too at the Saint James Paris Hotel. The two-level suite overlooks the grand entrance and the grounds. The suite is outfitted with whimsical details such as ‘parquet’ carpet and a tweed armchair with elbow patches as armrests.

Image via Saint James Paris Hotel

Image via Hotel Daniel

What to do
Stroll along the Seine hand-in-hand with the love of your life or take a glimpse of the famous Mona Lisa at the Louvre – the choices are endless. Invent your own scent as an olfactory memento of the romantic trip at Number 68 on the Champs-Elysees, the glittering home of Maison Guerlain. When night falls, settle into a booth at legendary Le Crazy Horse theatre and be thrilled by a modern-day Moulin Rouge.

2. Cyprus
Cyprus is an excellent destination for a beach holiday or for a walking adventure. This ruggedly beautiful and interesting island in the southernmost of the Mediterranean is wonderful in springtime.

Where to Stay
Cradled by hills and fronted by the ocean, Anassa Hotel is a regular nominee for the world’s best spa. The impeccably groomed hotel is the definition of Greek chic with fantastic views and private balconies. Set on Paphos’ sea-facing promenade, Almyra Hotel in Cyprus is decorated in simple, cool hues with minimal extras. The ‘Kyma Suites’ have private terraces that lead to a shared lawn overlooking the sea.

Image via Anassa Hotel

What to Do
April is the perfect beach weather at the coast – warm enough to swim in the sea, and not yet too hot. For nature lovers, April is the greenest month of the year, and the hillsides are bursting with wonderful light and colour. The mountains of Troodos are dotted with wineries and painted churches, many of them rated as UNESCO Heritage Sites. Admire the spectacular and vivid paints of saints in Agios Nikolaos tis Stegis, one of the most spectacular of the painted churches.

Image via Visit Cyprus

3. Tokyo, Japan
April is cherry-blossom time in Tokyo and undoubtedly one of the most beautiful times to visit the city. Parks across the city are filled with thousands of cherry trees. However, it is also peak tourist season, which means more crowds and peak season prices.

Where to Stay
Luxury hotel Aman Tokyo takes a nod to the traditional with its decor – the lobby mirrors the layout of a traditional home, complete with a meditation garden. Enjoy the spectacular Tokyo cityscape from Mandarin Oriental Hotel’s Sky Lobby on the 38th floor, then ease away a day of walking and sight-seeing at The Spa.

Image via Mandarin Oriental Tokyo

What to Do
Rent a boat and surround yourself in shades of soft pink and falling cherry blossom petals at the Kitanomaru Park. Hundreds of cherry trees decorate the moats of the former Edo Castle, creating one of the most outstanding cherry blossom sights. Tokyo is a foodie heaven with many hole-in-the-wall eateries, so take a stroll along the backstreets at night and indulge in the sweet and savoury treats that Japan has to offer.

Image via Japan Travel

4. Barossa Valley, South Australia
For wine-loving Australian couples looking for a short-haul getaway, Barossa Valley combines Mediterranean-style climate in April and some of the best wines in the world. The Autumn months are a reprieve from the scorching summer weather making sight-seeing a more comfortable affair.

Where to Stay
The Louise Hotel is an exquisite, contemporary dwelling featuring 15 architecturally inspired suites on a vine-lined hillside. Immerse yourself in a piece of history at the Kingsford Homestead Hotel. The country retreat was the centrepiece of long-running TV drama ‘McLeod’s Daughters’.

Image via Kingsford Homestead Hotel

What to Do
For those looking to combine taking in the Barossa’s scenery with a dose of added exercise, take the opportunity to pop on a helmet and hop on a bike for a cycling adventure. The close proximity of a number of the region’s best wineries to one another, coupled with the scenic landscape, makes Barossa one of Australia’s most enjoyable leisurely rides. Whisper sweet-nothings to each other from over 100 metres apart at the Whispering Wall Road. The abandoned dam’s curved shape leads to voices being carried from one side of its arch to the other.

Image via Barossa House Wine Tours

5. Riobamba, Ecuador
Tucked away in the Andes, Ecuador’s colonial town of Riobamba charms visitors with its cobblestone streets, Spanish-style architecture and large arcaded plazas.

Where to Stay
A new boutique hotel in Riobamba, Mansion Santa Isabella offers 11 stylishly-appointed rooms surrounding a gorgeously appointed central courtyard with its own singing fountain. Set in a country-style house with elegant Colonial decor, Abraspungo also features chic rooms with garden views and private balconies.

Image via Mansion Santa Isabella

What to Do
Rimbomba is a favourite base for trekkers and climbers due to its proximity to many of the country’s best hikes and tallest mountains. Known as the ‘valley of the volcano’ the region features jagged landscapes that are sure to blow you away. Whether you’re celebrating Independence Day with the locals at lively concerts and colourful parades or strolling through the weekly market on Saturdays, Rimbomba is a fantastic honeymoon destination for April.

 

Ms Chinoiserie Says: The Barossa in April is just stunning with its Autumn colours; for an adventure overseas, Cyprus looks so beautifully romantic too.