The best way to settle into wedded bliss is a restful and romantic honeymoon. A gorgeous getaway is the perfect start to years of happy marriage and will provide some wonderful memories. But lovely as they may be, perhaps you want to do something a bit different from candlelit dinners in Paris streets or sipping cocktails on a white sand beach. There's a whole world out there, with a million opportunities for romance without resorting to cliché...
Picture this – a day spent on the slopes, skiing through snow. Bright sun and blue skies amidst rugged mountains make a picture perfect afternoon. You come out of the cold to a warm fire and a relaxing cup of hot chocolate, and when you've settled you soak in a pool with the mountains jagged on the horizon. Swizerland is a country with class, and Adelboden is its sunniest resort. The Cambrian is an excellent hotel and offers everything you want in a romantic mountain retreat.
Sometimes luxury is subjective; we travel to escape and what we are trying to escape comes along with us. What we really need in our lives is not always another stamp on the passport but true peace of mind. You don't have to travel to Tibet or Nepal to start releasing the stresses of everyday life. Dzogchen Beara is a Tibetan Buddhist retreat in West Cork. The scenery is outstanding and inspiring, but what is most inspiring is the teachings of Sogyal Rinpoche, writer of the Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, an update of the spiritual book the Tibetan Book of the Dead. Rinpoche teaches his pupils to tackle the central problems of existence, and to begin to truly let go, laying the foundations for true happiness.
If that sounds a bit worthy maybe an arty honeymoon is more up your stencilled street. Berlin is a vibrant and creative city and a capital of culture. With many galleries and boutique hotels you can spend your days ambling and emotively documenting the urban environment and spend your evenings in one of the myriad excellent restaurants. Berlin is a European city with a difference and a unique place for lovers.
Marakesh in Morocco is a bustling city full of colour and life. If you enjoy exploring souks and haggling with the locals you and your partner could have a great time in Marakesh. Visit the Bahi Palace and the Saadian tombs, and stay in majestic Moroccan surroundings at the Riad Noir d'Ivoire, but be prepared to improvise, Morocco is about controlled chaos and you can't put an itenerie on your stay easily. There's a lot to see and flanerie is the way to get around (a map just makes sure you get back!) Taking photographs of the alleys is a breadcrumb trail to finding your hotel again.
If you like sand and sun but want to experience a different culture at the same time Mexico could be a dream location. There's great fishing at Puerto Escondido, and Brad's Split Coconut restaurants runs a brilliant barbecue. The Quinta Lili is a superb hotel close to the beach and you could learn to surf or simply read in the sun. A boat tour through Chacahua national park reveals some astounding nature and is a romantic way to get in touch with the outdoors. Hopefully for honeymooners, some of these appeal, or maybe trigger an idea of your own. Either way, you'll be in for a truly memorable time, and one that will be with you both forever.