Guest Post By: Brandon, co-founder of Traveler’s Joy
Like a chain of pearls, the Florida Keys stretch 150 miles southwest from extreme southern Florida, separating the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean. Comprised of more than 400 islands, the Keys have attracted visitors for many decades, most notably writers, artists, fishermen, and free-spirited folks searching for perennial sunshine and peaceful waters.
Honeymooners are also taking notice of this beautiful and diverse region. With numerous outdoor activities (distinguished by a vibrant underwater ecosystem), a variety of resort offerings, and exciting sights and attractions, all in a tropical setting, newlyweds can experience the honeymoon of their dreams without ever leaving the country.
From Carnivals to Craft Beer in Key West
With its party atmosphere, laid-back vibe, and seemingly endless attractions, Key West is often the feature destination for newlyweds when visiting the Keys.
First, get your shopping fix along Duval and Greene Streets before making your way north towards Mallory Square. The popular waterfront area is one of the city’s main focal points and a top spot for people watching. Be sure to go a few hours before sunset (however, beware when cruise ships are in port) and take in the carnival-like atmosphere, complete with street performers, live music, local crafts, and fresh food.
Guest Post By: Brandon, co-founder of Traveler’s Joy
It’s no surprise to find that many newlyweds opt to experience the soft sands of a Caribbean beach or indulge in the old world charm of Europe for their honeymoon. However, there are plenty of options for those couples looking to stay stateside but still covet the experience of a lifetime. No matter if relaxation or adventure is in the cards, check out these three top destinations in the Continental United States and discover how your ultimate honeymoon can actually be found in your own backyard.
Jackson Hole, Wyoming
Situated in the Northwest corner of Wyoming, the Jackson Hole region is considered the gateway to Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone National Park. With unparalleled mountain vistas around every corner, a wide range of accommodations, and an endless list of activities, it’s the perfect destination for newlyweds seeking that perfect balance of relaxation, exploration and adventure.
Grand Teton National Park (Photo Credit: http://americanthings.wordpress.com)
After days of experiencing wonders such as Old Faithful Geyser and the Grand Canyon of Yellowstone, couples can go whitewater rafting on the Snake River, biking, kayaking, hiking, hot air ballooning, horseback riding, or sign up for wildlife and ranch tours. Meanwhile, the town of Jackson offers hundreds of restaurant, shopping and nightlife options for every type of budget.
Consider visiting around the Fourth of July and booking with one of Jackson’s many luxury properties like Amangani or Hotel Terra. Head into town for dinner and an evening at the Jackson Hole Rodeo before watching fireworks light up the sky over Snow King Mountain.
Pacific Northwest – Washington to California
Big Sur, California
Visit three beautiful, diverse cities and spend time enjoying the great outdoors in between as you spend your honeymoon experiencing the Pacific Northwest. This often overlooked but spectacular region is home to picturesque beaches backed by towering mountains, sunbaked vineyards, historic lighthouses, and charming towns.
Consider a drive from Seattle to Portland to San Francisco. You’ll be able to take in the unique big city sites before exploring majestic places like Olympic National Park in Washington, Crater Lake National Park in Oregon, and Redwood National Park in California.
Book a suite at The Stephanie Inn in Cannon Beach, a romantic property overlooking the rugged shoreline and world renowned Haystack Rock. The inn also features Jacuzzi Air Baths, flat-screen televisions, wet bars, and an excellent restaurant on site.
U.S. Southeast – Charleston and Savannah
Savannah exudes southern charm with its tree-lined streets, historic homes, and wide array of shopping, dining, and arts destinations. Hold hands while walking through beautiful Forsyth Park and the Savannah Historic District before heading over to the waterfront area to browse through the fine collection of boutiques and galleries. This lovely destination also features several historic forts, a restored central market, plus 22 distinct public squares complete with fountains and monuments.
Meanwhile, Charleston ranks as one of America’s top destinations for romance thanks to its vibrant streets, historic sites, and overall diversity. As South Carolina’s oldest city, Charleston contains miles of cobblestone streets, stunning harborfront views, well-manicured gardens, and beautifully restored homes that go back more than 340 years. The city – one of the country’s finest spots for a horse-drawn carriage tour – is also home to many must-see museums, unforgettable historical sites, and a flourishing restaurant scene.
Consider making your home base at the gorgeous Sanctuary Hotel on Kiawah Island, a top-ranked beachfront property noted for its tremendous golf courses, superb kayaking options, excellent dining, and award-winning spa.
Brandon | co-founder of Traveler’s Joy
Brandon often found himself purchasing generic wedding gifts for friends and family who shared his passion for travel and preferred a once in a lifetime honeymoon experience. In 2004 he co-founded Traveler’s Joy honeymoon registry to help couples take the honeymoon of their dreams. After having his own honeymoon in northern Wisconsin and Zanzibar, he and his colleagues live vicariously through the couples that use Traveler’s Joy to have an unbelievable honeymoon. When Brandon isn’t researching new honeymoon spots, cycling, gardening, or working, you’ll likely find him on the back porch with family and friends cooking BBQ or playing with his daughter. Brandon spends his time in Wilmington, Delaware and Durham, North Carolina.