Top South America Honeymoon Destinations
By ~ Eric-Sheets
The reward for a well-planned wedding ceremony and reception is the honeymoon! It’s when you get to wave goodbye to everyone who celebrated the event with you. South America is a preferred choice for honeymooners. This is happening for a variety of reasons; not the least of which is the couple’s desire to get started with a new combined travel bucket list! What we like about planning South America honeymoon travel for clients is the wide variety of choices we can present. Some newlyweds want physical activities, while others are looking for more passive pursuits. Some honeymooners want to stay in one place, while others want to combine a few destinations. Here are the top 5 South America honeymoon destinations our clients have had us plan for them the past few years to help you get your own planning underway.
Visiting the Galapagos is a once-in-a-lifetime experience! So, why not make it how you start your life together? It’s a little tough to get to, but that is one of the reasons it is so rewarding for a destination. With good planning, it can be a magical journey, and it is the #1 honeymoon destination we book!
A land-based Galapagos honeymoon can be ideal. The centrally located island of Santa Cruz is the best choice. It is the hub for many activities, including sandy beaches and the approachable wildlife. There are few places in the world where beaches come alive with nature as happens here. With our decades of experience in the archipelago, we have developed a great relationship with three wonderful places to stay on the island. One of the most unique lodging experiences we have found in the world is the Safari Camp Hotel. If you are looking for more of a traditional luxury property, the Pikaia Lodge will provide a very enjoyable honeymoon base. If waterfront accommodations are what you are looking for, the Finch Bay Eco Hotel will fill that need and much more! Each one of these properties has a plethora of activities, tours, and boats to help you explore.
If a cruise around the Galapagos islands is more to your liking, we personally know the small ships that cater well to honeymooners. MV Origin is a newly launched ship that accommodates just 10 passengers on two different 8-day itineraries. The classic MV Grace was once the personal yacht of Princess Grace of Monaco. It underwent extensive refurbishment recently and accommodates 18 guests in 9 cabins for 8-day cruises. Both of these small ships offer a luxurious and intimate experience.
If you dream of tropical beaches off the beaten path, the Bahia region of Brazil can’t be beaten. Our top pick is the authentic UXUA experience in the UNESCO preserved beach town of Trancoso. It features one-of-a-kind accommodations, spa, and fine dining. If we could only pick one beach destination for our honeymoon it would be this! We also have some very unique villas here if you are looking for the ultimate private beach honeymoon!
But you could also split your time between the peaceful quiet of UXUA and the vibrant city of Rio de Janeiro as well. Create a custom journey that includes both of these destinations for a full dose of relaxation and culture. Go one step further and combine Trancoso, with Iguazu falls – Florianopolis, and Rio for an ideal Brazil itinerary between nature, relaxation, and intensely colorful culture.
Want to see and do even more? It’s important to tell your travel planner what you both like to do on vacation. That way, the itinerary can be created exactly with those experiences!
Do you both like history and coffee? A honeymoon that includes Cartagena and Colombia’s coffee country will fill that bill and so much more! Start or end in Cartagena. It was an important port for Spain in the 1500s. In 1984, Cartagena’s colonial walled city was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The mix of Spanish and Caribbean influences is romantically intoxicating! What’s more, you won’t have a long flight from the USA, and the time zone will be familiar, which means no jet lag! There are many choices for accommodations in the city, but we choose Casa San Agustin Hotel for its location in the old city and the services provided there. It was recently named the #1 hotel in Columbia by TripAdvisor too. It’s a small boutique hotel but has the services of a much larger luxury property with in-house spa and dining. You can choose as much or as little structure to your Cartagena visit, including English-speaking, private walking tours, and activities like sailing, cooking lessons, or art workshops.
After the city, it’s time to visit the coffee country, which we fly you to. We have chosen the Hacienda Bambusa for your accommodations and unique farm-to-table experience. After a tour of the coffee plantation, you will find many diverse types of experiences to enjoy, like zip lining, hot air balloon rides, horseback riding, birding, and more.
If you want more Colombia on this trip, we can whisk you off to Bogota, high up in the Andes mountains too. Or, maybe you want to save that for a return trip in the future? Either way, your honeymoon trip to Colombia or any of our destinations will include airport meet and greets, transfers from the airports to the hotels, and really, anything you can think of that will make your travel that much more special to you.
If you are seeking pampas, wine, and style, few places can offer such an amazing mix as Uruguay. This is a destination best visited in our winter season. Don’t stay in Punta del Este unless nightlife is the principal reason for your visit. The good restaurants, shops, marina, and golf course are easily reached from the other nearby beach spots should the need arise. The airport that is the gateway to the Uruguay coast is here.
Instead, we suggest the smaller and more romantic Jose Ignacio, up the road a bit. There you can stay at Playa or Estancia Vik Jose Ignacio. The Viks are ideal for travelers, and our favorites would be Playa or Bahia for honeymooners. The hotel features a spa and a wide variety of activities like riding horses and wine tasting. That’s just the start, you will never want to leave!
The village of Garzon is a short drive from the fashionable beach village of Jose Ignacio, yet the village itself is set in rolling hills and Tuscan-like countryside, and it is away from the party scene. It’s here that South America’s best-known chef, Francis Mallmann, has chosen to locate his latest restaurant venture as part of a charming 5 bedroom country hotels which has been wildly praised from all corners. It is also home to one of Uruguay’s top wineries, which is a must-visit.
If your heart pounds for the outdoors, designing a trip with the Atacama desert will be a true bucket-list highlight for a honeymoon.
This region is known for some of the most dramatic scenery in the entire world. The Atacama air is the driest on the planet, which gives it perfect transparency. Experiences such as floating effortlessly on the lagoons will be a life-long memory. A famous one is called “ojos de salar” which appears almost out of nowhere in the flat of a barren desert plain.
Experience a geothermal field located in the Andes Mountain range. The fumaroles of these geysers, the highest on the planet, are produced by the high temperatures of their water. We will begin our excursion very early to arrive by dawn at the heights of the Andes that allows to observe great steam fumaroles and burning mud craters originating from the deep depths of the Earth.
Other expeditions can be Desert dune’s horseback riding through the big valley of Quebrada de Kari, and arrive by surprise to the Moon Valley. We then return to San Pedro by a big open plain in front of the Andes Mountains and by the main oasis of San Pedro to conclude this adventure of a lifetime.
Endowed with one of the clearest skies in the world, Atacama offers a spectacular view of the stars. The high altitude and dryness create a privileged setting to see the constellations, stars, planets, and galaxies in this dark sky location.
Spend 3 or 4 days at Awasi Atacama located just outside of San Pedro near a pre-Inca fortress. Enjoy daily shared excursions as well as use of the spa, jacuzzi, sauna, pool, sun deck, bicycles, and transportation between the lodge and the nearby village.
We suggest combining a visit to the Atacama of Chile with either Patagonias’ Torres del Paine or the Iguazu waterfall region that separates Brazil and Argentina. These three destinations in combination, will satiate even the most adventurous couple!