10 Affordable Honeymoon Destinations

10 Affordable Honeymoon Destinations

blown your life savings on wildflowers and a humanist
celebrant, leaving you with little left over for your first getaway
as a married couple. We actually think that’s no bad thing – two
weeks spent in a luxe-y overwater villa in the
is so last decade. These alternative
honeymoon destinations
are for modern newlyweds on modest
budgets. We’ve tried to cap hotels at a maximum of £150 a night –
if you do splurge on accommodation, rest assured your expenditure
beyond the hotel will be minimal.

Your wallet-friendly ticket to happily ever after

Andaman Islands


With buttercream-coloured sands, fuchsia-pink sunrises and
kaleidoscopic coral reefs that stretch from the Bay of Bengal to
Burma, the Andaman Islands are India’s answer to the Maldives – without the price
tag, commercialisation or crowds. These 572 islands are a mystery
to most (cue choruses of “you’re going where?”) and only a handful
of them are open to visitors, with the others home to indigenous
tribes and biodiverse rainforests. Settle on Havelock Island – one
of the most developed but no less heavenly – at Jalakara hotel. This eco-conscious
abode overlooks dense rainforest, hosts morning yoga sessions
(ideal for limbering up for extracurricular activities), a glossy
infinity pool and no WiFi, meaning few distractions and more
intimate moments when it comes to that dreamy, beachside

TO STAY: Munjah Ocean Resort



Not far from the Gothic spires of Girona and easily accessible from
budget-flight-friendly Barcelona, Cadaqués is a tiny
coastal town glittering in the east of Catalonia. Spain’s
surrealist set was among the first to be drawn to the village for
its ethereal soft light in the 30s – today it’s popular with
creatives and the chichi French crowd. Nevertheless, the
surrealists’ influence can be seen in the art galleries hidden in
the whitewashed lanes, the electrical panels painted with images of
the bay’s bobbing boats and the bronze sculpture of Salvador Dalí
occupying pride-of-place in the town centre. Dalí is hailed as
Cadaqués adopted son – you can visit his eccentric holiday
home-cum-museum filled with his trademark eggs and lip-shaped
sofas. Stroll hand-in-hand through the steep streets buried in
bougainvillea, stopping by S’espardenya de Cadaqués for a pair of candy-coloured
espadrilles and Es Fornet bakery for burilles, a sweet local
delicacy flavoured with aniseed and nuts.

TO STAY: Horta d’en Rahola



Leave other newlyweds in Napa Valley and head to the
hills of Ojai, a popular weekend break for in-the-know Angelenos
lured by its laid-back vibes and spiritual history. Ojai
(pronounced oh-hi) has recently become a magnet for young
entrepreneurs eager to experience rural living. A string of
independent art boutiques, farm-to-fork restaurants wine bars
dotted with fairy lights have quickly opened as a result. Pick up
bicycles from The Mob Shop to explore the main drag, pausing
at Farmer and The Cook for picnic supplies – it’s part
grocery store, part performance space, so watch local bands play on
hay sacks while sampling pixies – a locally grown variety of
tangerine. Cycle through the olive groves to reach Topa Mountain Winery to pick up some organic plonk
before peddling to Meditation Mount to share s’mores under the

TO STAY: Caravan Outpost

Nusa Penida


The whole world and his (newlywed) wife have been to Bali, so
much so that Seminyak’s streets are perfumed by the scent of rose
petals strewn across sheets and overrun with towel-shaped swans.
Venture off the well-trodden path to the Nusa Islands, a trio of
islands drifting off of the east coast. Catch a 30-minute speedboat
from Sanur to the largest of the group, Nusa Penida, where
rock-hewn stairs lead to mirror-clear tide pools and deserted
castaway bays are home to squadrons of manta rays – Crystal Bay is
best positioned for enjoying the sunset with a side of just-fallen
coconuts. Thatched, bamboo-clad bungalows, al fresco showers and
views across the wedding-cake-white cliffs at Penida Bambu Green Villas err on
the right side of rustic (and the honeymoon financial

TO STAY: The Mesare Resort



Humming with infectious energy, Cartagena is as romantic as
Paris and as body-rocking as its
Caribbean neighbours. Its
cobbled streets filled with painted houses the colour of a fruit
bowl, lively food sellers peddling empanadas and domed churches
sporting elaborate arcades and balconies are achingly beautiful –
the walled town certainly woos. Whisk your significant other to the
iconic Café Havana, where wood-panelled walls, Cuban musicians and
eye-wincingly strong mojitos will have you salsa dancing into the
early hours. The next morning, nurse hangovers on the shores of La
Boquilla, a fishing village on the outskirts of the city.
Aesthetically it’s not the most pleasing but the vibes are good as
locals flock there with bottles of pilsner to watch sunset and
gorge on arroz con coco (rice with coconut).

TO STAY: Boutique Hotel Casa del



Guadalajara, Mexico Forget tacos, tequilas
and sombreros; Guadalajara is more than just a Mexican cliché and
shouldn’t be overlooked. Despite being the birthplace of tequila
and having strong ties to the history of sombreros – thanks to the
notorious charros (horsemen) of Guadalajara – this second city is a
far cry from Cancun’s garish shores. Instead you’ll find a strong
artistic core, exemplified by the intoxicating mix of old and new
that likens the city to a village. Stone archways conceal folk-art
boutiques and the Chapultepec neighbourhood is home to more
roasted-in-house coffee shops than hipster meccas such as Berlin or
Lisbon can claim. Bed down at Casa Pedro Loza, where
vine-smothered columns, candle-lit hanging lanterns and a pretty
courtyard are so perfect that they’re an exact replica of your
wedding-inspo Pinterest board.

TO STAY: Casa Habita



Seeking a harmonious Cycladic escape without needing to sell
your soul to Hades for a stay in Santorini? Scoot across to its
sleepy sister island Sifnos, whose whitewashed streets topped with
blue-domed churches and rocky coves are equally as handsome but,
refreshingly, half the price. Popular with in-the-know epicureans,
Sifnos carries the Cyclades culinary crown thanks to the high
number of celebrity chefs that have come from the hills. Sample
sizzling plates of just-caught calamari and chickpea soup cooked
overnight in clay pots, one of islands famous exports. Buy your own
set as a belated wedding present from the oldest pottery shop on
the island, Atsonis. Cosy up at Verina Astra for its
swoon-worthy views from the concrete-clad infinity pool that spills
over into the Aegean or strip off at Poulati, a rocky cove ideal
for a spot of moonlight skinny-dipping.

TO STAY: Verina Suites



Once a haven for hippies, Goa has slowly succumbed to the
pressures of mass tourism and the lucrativity of hosting trippy
trance parties on its palm-fringed beaches. Leave the wave-seeking
stoners and package holiday posse behind, and scurry further along
India’s southwest coast to reach a hidden, sun-soaked haven. Made
up of a string of five blemish-free beaches sporting nothing but
beach shacks, Gokarna is a hippie hangout akin to Goa in the 70s.
It’s a popular place for pilgrims, so can expect to find sacred
temples on almost every corner – visit Mahabaleshwar for its
striking Dravidian architecture – cows grazing in shop fronts and
community yoga sessions on Om Beach. Push past the tangle of palm
forests to reach Nirvana Beach, where you’ll find lively
phytoplankton putting on an electric nightly display.

TO STAY: Kahani Paradise

The Highlands,

Scotland, United Kingdom

Save your pennies and the planet by opting for an UK staycation. No longer seen as
a so-so-honeymoon choice, the Highland’s wild landscapes offer a
lungful of outdoor adventure and hikes designed for scoffing tins
of shortbread. Base yourself at Scotland‘s design-darling of the
decade, The Fife Arms, whose interiors
can be likened to the velvet pomp of Soho House, if it had been
designed on several cans of Irn-Bru. The art experts and power
couple behind Hauser & Wirth have taken twee tartan, tore it at
the seams and patched it back together with zeitgeisty fabrics,
Picasso prints and one-of-kind watercolours by Queen Victoria.
There’s nowhere punchier than the cocktail bar inspired by Elsa
Schiaparelli (once a regular visitor to the town) to debate the
existence of the Loch Ness monsters, dram in hand.

TO STAY: Pool House


Sri Lanka

After the devastating events in April 2019, Sri Lanka is slowly
getting back on its feet. Help the Teardrop Island fully bounce
back as tourism provides a much-needed boost to not only the
economy, but also morale – locals with infectious grins are eager
to welcome visitors again. Hotels such as the sleek, all-suite
Aarunya Nature Resort & Spa,
hidden in Kandy’s steamy rainforest, have slashed prices in the
hope of enticing guests and are no longer reserved for the jet-set
elite. Aside from lazing in your plunge pool and visits to the spa,
alternate between tea plantation tours and trips to temples – the
Temples of the Sacred Tooth Relic is considered one of the holiest
in Sri Lanka.

TO STAY: The Kandy House