Exotic Southeast Asia makes a fantastic region to start a life together as newlyweds, offering an endless choice of stunningly beautiful, relaxing, and romantic destinations, along with sultry climes, welcoming locals, and paradise-within-a-paradise luxury resorts. A Southeast Asia honeymoon isn’t just relaxing on palm-fringed, white sand beaches – some of the finest on the planet – but also enjoying a plethora of other natural attractions, intriguing heritage sites, and dreamy waterways, should one (or both of you) want to mix things up a bit. Here are our top picks for blissful Southeast Asia honeymoon destinations.
What could possibly be more romantic than cruising together through the fairy-tale-like seascape of Halong Bay and its southern neighbor, Lan Ha Bay – some of Asia’s most magnificent natural splendors? In this spectacular, legend-strewn ‘Bay of the Descending Dragons’ and World Heritage Site, glide past a never-ending backdrop of limestone karsts and islets that jut out of the Gulf of Tonkin’s emerald-green waters.
Heaven sent for honeymooners, this two or three-day incredible voyage can be experienced in the height of luxury and comfort, aboard a boutique cruise vessel, including traditional junk-style boats. Sumptuous cabin suites provide private balconies, some, even Jacuzzi bathtubs, to admire the passing ethereal scenery. Dining al fresco under the stars and sunset watching sipping cocktails on deck are just some of your romance-filled experiences.
No honeymoon list is complete without the Indonesian island of Bali, one of the planet’s top holiday destinations and long-established honeymoon favorite. Blessed with tropical natural beauty, omnipresent Balinese Hindu traditions, spirituality and culture and a relaxed beach life vibe, this captivating Island of the Gods is an impossibly romantic getaway, boasting some of the world’s finest luxury resorts; similar to Thailand, many have super-private villa hideaways and world-class spas.
Balinese resorts are also experienced masters at arranging in-house weddings and honeymoon packages, indulging newly-weds with surprises like frangipani-filled bathtubs. Honeymoon favorites include award-winning AYANA Resort & Spa sprawled across a tropical estate and Jimbaran Bay’s clifftops, with heaps of facilities and ultra-private villas to withdraw to. Within the upscale, gated resort enclave of Nusa Dua, St. Regis Bali Resort, and The Ritz-Carlton Bali, also make perfect honeymoon retreats. And Viceroy Bali is on a list of our favorite hotels in SE Asia!
Lombok invariably gets overlooked and overshadowed by its mega-watt sister island to the west, Bali – a 40-minute flight away. Yet that’s precisely part of its charm: Lombok is less developed with an untamed natural beauty that rivals Bali – its endless pristine coastline and blindingly white sand beaches are mainly deserted – and a noticeably more low-key vibe.
Precisely why Lombok is increasingly evolving as a honeymoon destination with a growing number of international five-star resorts. Nestled in the northwest’s tranquil Medana Bay, fronting a white coral sand beach, The Oberoi, Lombok, is refined tropical luxury personified and one of Asia’s favorite honeymoon bolt-holes.
Their opulent ocean pool villas set on a hill offer ultimate privacy, with the dining sala perfect for watching the sun sink behind Mount Agung. Nearby, its boho-chic neighbor, Hotel Tugu Lombok offers bespoke honeymoon packages. Both stellar resorts are a short boat ride to the idyllic Gili islands, where you’ll encounter turtles navigating the transparent blue waters.
Thailand is one of the top tourist destinations on earth and one of Asia’s most popular honeymoon hotspots, combining natural beauty and legendary Thai hospitality with well-developed tourism infrastructure and world-class resorts and spas. Naturally, one of Thailand’s biggest drawcards is its dazzling array of beaches and islands, mostly in the southern Gulf of Thailand.
Here, a short flight from the mainland, coconut-tree-strewn Koh Samui, Thailand’s second-largest island, has been a couple’s favorite for decades, magically balancing nightlife with tranquillity and offering luxuriant beachfront resorts geared to romance: think sunset cruises and candlelit dinners with toes in the sand.
Nestled in lush jungle on beautiful Lamai Beach, Banyan Tree Samui, provides the classic tropical honeymoon hideaway and spa sanctuary pool villas inclusive of unlimited spa treatments. Other favorites cover the playful W Koh Samui, supplying a bespoke ‘honeymoon concierge.’
One of Southeast Asia’s most underrated tourist destinations, Cambodia probably isn’t the first country that springs to mind for honeymoon destinations. Yet with its sugar-white beaches, protected reefs, pristine jungle-shrouded hills, and endemic flora and fauna, the lesser-known yet idyllic islands off the southwest coast are nothing short of paradise – perfect for a newly-married start! Slowly developing for tourism with some surprising world-class resorts, this southwest region remains relatively unspoiled, far from the crowds.
For your ultimate castaway honeymoon, head to Song Saa Private Island, within the breathtaking Koh Rong Archipelago. Spread over two discreet islands, locally known as Song Saa – Khmer for ‘The Sweethearts’ – this award-winning, eco-retreat meets five-star resort is as romantic as the name implies and offers uncompromising luxury and unparalleled privacy only accessible by private speedboat or helicopter from mainland Sihanoukville.
Book the sanctuary-like overwater pool villas, special honeymoon packages, and ‘magical romantic experiences.’ More eco-friendly luxury escapism can be enjoyed at Six Senses Krabey Island set on a back-to-nature private island.
If you seek a honeymoon more on the wild side, literally, immersed in nature of a different sort, head to Thailand’s uppermost northern regions and Golden Triangle. This spectacular and remote region is steeped in legends, with pristine tropical rainforests, encircled by mist-shrouded mountains, where two rivers and three countries – Thailand, Myanmar, and Laos – all converge. Deep amid the Golden Triangle, beyond Chiang Rai, two rustic-luxe boutique tented camps offer a more adventurous, explorer’s-style honeymoon along with modern-day creature comforts.
Both the Four Seasons and Anantara are embedded in bamboo forests, with on-site elephant camps and distractions that cover outdoor jungle spas lulled by birdsong and treks to spot rainforest wildlife. The Golden Triangle is also the starting point for equally romantic, multi-day boat cruises down the Upper Mekong River, passing the wilds of northern Laos.
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