Written By: Maggie Grace Rohweder Cover Photo: Hai Linh Truong
If you’re looking for a unique honeymoon destination, Australia and New Zealand may just be the place for you. Exotic, adventurous, and one of the loveliest places on earth, the Land Down Under can be a romantic and exciting honeymoon spot for any newlyweds!
I spent a month in Australia and New Zealand a few years ago, and it was one of the most magical places I’ve ever visited. From the geothermal parks of New Zealand to the Great Barrier Reef to the local indigenous cultures and the incredible wildlife, no other place in the world can compare. It’s not a place that’s easy for most Americans to get to, so a honeymoon trip might be the perfect excuse to travel halfway across the globe for an adventure of a lifetime!
For the Adventurers
Photo: Nick Hewson
Whether it’s touring the Outback, hiking through rainforests, getting up close to waterfalls on a jet-boat ride, or even scaling the Sydney Bridge, there are plenty of opportunities for those who want a more upbeat honeymoon experience. Australia and New Zealand offer a number of thrilling experiences for the explorer in you. Both countries offers kayaking, parasailing, zip-lining, hiking, and boating for tourists. Some of the highlights include snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef (visit www.cairnsvisitorcentre.com for tours), the Bridge Climb (www.bridgeclimb.com), and the Backwater Rafting, Zip-lining, and Glow Worms Tour (www.fun-nz.com). Since the weather is always warm and sunny, people in Australia and New Zealand tend to live very active, outdoorsy lives. Because of this, the opportunities are pretty endless. When it comes to finding adventure in the Land Down Under, your only limit is your imagination.
For the Nature Lovers
Photo by: Subhash Chandra
Kangaroos, koalas, platypus, oh my! This region of the globe offers unique wildlife you won’t find anywhere else. You can visit the Australia Zoo, the home of Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin and which continues to be run by the Irwin family (www.australiazoo.com.au). It’s in Beerwah, which is just north of Brisbane. If you’re looking for a more natural experience, you can visit the Australia Walkabout Wildlife Park in Calga (www.walkaboutpark.com.au) or Kuranda Koala Gardens (www.koalagardens.com) where, if you’re lucky, you might get to hold a cuddly Koala! Of course, the Great Barrier Reef is full of beautiful aquatic life. Bird lovers should also check out Tiritiri Matangi Islands in New Zealand to see some of the most exotic birds in the world in their natural habitat.
For the Fantasy Fans
Photo by: Tara Hunt
Who doesn’t love Hobbits? If you and your honey consider yourself Tolkien enthusiasts, New Zealand might be the perfect destination for you. Rotorua, on the northern island of New Zealand, is a geothermal wonderland. It also happens to be the location of a lot of the filming for the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Visit mineral springs, mud pools, and geysers while imaging yourselves in Middle Earth. Next you can visit Matamata, where a real-life Shire lies in wait for you to explore. You can also hike along the Tongariro Crossing, which might look a little bit like Mordor, or Lake Pukaki, the sight of Lake-town in the Hobbit movies. If you want a honeymoon with a little bit of fantasy flair, check out www.newzeeland.com for touring opportunities.
For the Beach Bums
Photo By: African Budget Safaris
Surfing, sun tanning, and drinks on the beach. The perfect honeymoon, right? Australia is home to many small, colorful islands that host some of the world’s greatest beaches. Possibly the best is Whitehaven Beach on the Whitsunday Islands, just off the Northeast coast. This uninhabited island is dedicated to beachgoers, so take a day or two to relax on the pure white sands. If you like the mainland feel more, check out Cable Beach in Broome, Noosa Main Beach in Noosa, or Shelly Beach just outside of Sydney. These cities are host to a sparkling nightlife and numerous hotel accommodations to make your trip care-free and fun. Be sure to check out www.coastalwatch.com for your daily surf forecast, too!
For the Cultural Junkies
Australia and New Zealand provide unique cultural experiences for those who are interested. If you’re interested in Aboriginal and Maori culture, the Waitangi Treaty Grounds, Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park, and Mataatua House are must-sees. There are also numerous art and cultural festivals: some highlights include the Boomerang Festival in Byron Bay, the Cairns Indigenous Art Fair, and the Laura Aboriginal Dance Festival. Cities like Auckland, Sydney, and Brisbane are also home to many art and history museums for those who want to learn a little history along the way. The most notable are the Australian Museum in Sydney, the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney, and the National Gallery in Canberra.
For the Romantics
Photo By: Simon Sees
How would you like to spend your honeymoon away from it all, just the two of you in your own private jungle? There are innumerable islands that are just waiting for you! Some of the most popular among honeymooners are Rarotonga and the Cook Islands, both of which provide luxury options for your special trip together. For something more remote, visit Tonga or Fiji for that intimate island experience. The Pacific Islands provide everything from huts without walls to luxury suites and condos. Whatever you’re looking for you can find here!
The opportunities are endless. Travel to and around Australia and New Zealand is accessible and easy to use, the people are warm and friendly and always willing to share a round, and there are lots of things to do! And things tend to be a bit less expensive than a vacation in Europe. Peak travel time is during the Aussie’s summer, which is winter in the Northern Hemisphere, so you might want to postpone your travel date if big crowds aren’t your thing. But both Australia and New Zealand are well-established tourist destinations, so even if you do go during peak time they’ll be prepared for you! The water is warm, the sun is always shining, and the memories are just waiting to be made.
For more information, please visit these websites. Good luck planning!
Maggie loves traveling more than she loves chocolate, which is really saying something. She enjoyed living vicariously through her research for this post and has already started planning a world-tour honeymoon. She is currently taking applications for anyone who’s interested in joining her.
photos are used from creative commons websites and in no way mean the photographers endorse our product.
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