Sometimes what a couple needs to really create those everlasting bonds is a get-away to a moonlit rustic town, a sunset on a secluded beach or just a bottle of wine shared on a cobbled town square. Here are five romantic destinations that will make any couples’ heart skip a beat.
No nation does romance quite like Italy. There’s a reason why William Shakespeare chose fair Verona as the setting for Romeo and Juliet. Nowadays there’s even a guided tour of the town based on The Bard’s masterwork. Keeping the artistic theme going, why not take in an opera under the stars at open-air Arena di Verona? The following day you can lose yourselves in the ornate, immaculate maze at Giardino Giusti before losing yourselves in each other’s eyes. A romantic getaway is nothing without food and drink, and you’re spoilt for choice anywhere in Italy, but Verona is particularly good for traditional wine bars and bottegas. Does your partner prefer nature over the city? Lake Como in the north, not far from Milan, is known for its beautiful mountainous views and quaint lakeside architecture. For a more Mediterranean feel the scenic islands of Sicily and Sardinia boast attractive beaches where a couple might observe a dazzling sunset or two.
Check out our suggested romantic trip template for Italy here
When it comes to Greece it’s the islands that provide that romantic sense of seclusion. Santorini makes up part of the rim of a sunken underwater crater, or “caldera”. A Rugged, volcanic island peppered with white-washed, ramshackle houses, charming lanes and stairways, and blue-domed churches Santorini truly represents that Mediterranean ideal. Choose a taverna and gaze out over the tranquil Cycladic seas. Then there’s Corfu with its fortresses, royal palaces and gardens, and intricate networks of alleys and hideaways. Such is its beauty the entire old town is an UNESCO heritage site. The island’s plenty large enough though to escape the towns and find that unique, private cove, beach or cliff-top where a couple might spend an hour or two with a sunset backdrop. Santorini and Corfu are of course just two of the numerous Greek islands scattered across the Ionian and Aegean. Not forgetting capital city Athens of course, where every picturesque side-street, alley, façade and quaint little taverna has an ancient story to tell. The world-famous Acropolis of course, and the temple of Poseidon a few miles out of town, carry their own unique sense of ancient history.
Check out our suggested romantic trip template for Greece here
Does Paris need any introduction? The City of Love is synonymous with couples, courtship, passion, and romance. Gaze up at the majesty of the Eiffel Tower, cruise along the river Seine, stroll hand-in-hand through Parc de Buttes Chaumont and the scenic suburb of Montmartre, then make that ultimate commitment to each other and throw the key to a padlock secured on the Pont Des Arts into the Seine. Then leave the bustle of the city and head south to the French Riviera, the sun-drenched stretch of Mediterranean coast known for good living and glamour. Nice feels particularly representative of the Mediterranean appreciation for architectural beauty, stunning scenery, and outstanding cuisine. Walk together on the famous promenade or sit on a rickety table on the cobbled streets of the old town and enjoy a coffee and a croissant. Not far away of course is the chic opulence of Monaco, with its famous marina and general reputation for luxury. West of Nice there’re the famous sandy beaches of Cannes. Further West still and you hit the cities of Marseille and Montpellier, two towns steeped in culture and the joie de vivre of Mediterranean France.
Check out our suggested romantic trip template for France here
Be it honeymoons or anniversaries there’s nothing quite like a stay in a tropical paradise to reforge those romantic bonds. Thailand is just that destination. The Phuket regions perhaps represents best Thailand’s status as the ultimate tropical beach getaway. Karon is a particular highlight, with its long sandy beach perfect for sunset strolls and it’s mystical Buddhist temple complex. Not far south is Kata beach – more white sands, turquoise waters, and swaying palm trees. Off the east coast of the country try Ko Samui for a slice of luxury pampering alongside paradisical beaches, dense rainforest, and coconut groves. The marine life that inhabits the waters around its countless beaches make it ideal for scuba-diving and snorkelling. Taratou National Park, meanwhile, off Thailand’s southwestern coast, consists of a total of 51 separate islands of various size and is a haven for couples looking for nature themed and marine-life orientated retreats. Thailand’s biggest marine park is phenomenal for diving and snorkelling, and the exquisite beaches and forests are an ideal setting for a romantic walk.
Check out our suggested romantic trip template for Thailand here
Tanzania and the island of Zanzibar; the wildlife and nature of the former and the tropical beauty of the latter hold their own special kind of romantic majesty. In Tanzania nothing can bring a couple closer than the shared experience of witnessing lions, zebra, giraffes, birds of paradise and wildebeest on a specially designed couples safari through one of the country’s national parks. Then head to the Indian Ocean, Zanzibar, and it’s stunning miles of coastline. Spend the day snorkelling among pristine coral riffs and sandbars, then sip a drink while you take a sunset cruise on a dhow sailing boat. There are a number of hotels of differing quality available, but for the greatest sense of seclusion head to one of the smaller islands that surround Zanzibar itself and drink in the sense of romantic isolation. For a bit more civilisation and bustle head to the historical Stone Town with its rustic charms and private boutiques selling locally made artisan jewellery and clothing. Later, head to a rooftop restaurant or bar and gaze over the glistening bay as the sun sets over the Indian ocean.
Check out our suggested romantic trip template for Tanzania here
Whether you’re just starting out on your journey together or rekindling those deep feelings that may have waned over the years, these five destinations are sure to ignite that romantic glow.
More ROMANTIC travel articles
Best of Spring and Summer in Europe
Making the most of your travel budget
The best times to travel based on the 6 global climate zones