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Weddings A UNESCO Honeymoon

A UNESCO Honeymoon

A UNESCO Honeymoon
By Vanessa Tai
December 23, 2015

Beyond the Taj Mahal or Machu Picchu, there are plenty of lesser known but equally beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Sites worth visiting on your honeymoon. Vanessa Tai susses out top five picks.

Beyond the Taj Mahal or Machu Picchu, there are plenty of lesser known but equally beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Sites worth visiting on your honeymoon. Vanessa Tai susses out top five picks.


Easter Island, Chile

This is one of those most isolated places on Earth, but is definitely worth visiting at least once in your life. Easter Island was once home to ancient Polynesians, the Rapa Nui, who inhabited this tiny speck of land from A.D 300. Between the 10th to 16th centuries, these ancient people carved and erected a more than 900 moai dotted across the island. These deeply mysterious stone statues hold thrall with their impressive size—each stone block averages a height of four metres and weighs about 14 tons. Nobody really knows what is the significance behind the moai, but scholars believe they could be monuments created to honour ancestors, tribal chiefs, or other important persons. There are plenty of other activities available on Easter Island. Hop on a bike or horseback, or simply explore the island on foot. Aquatic activities such as, diving, snorkeling, and surfing are also available.

Where To Stay: Explora Rapa Nui 

This five-star resort offers you the best of both worlds—the thrills and spills of guided adventure tours plus the creature comforts of a modern hotel. The 30 rooms of the the Explora Rapa Nui have been designed to tap on the silence, privacy, and spaciousness of the surrounding landscape, ensuring you get rest after a long day of exploration. At the resort’s in-house restaurant, enjoy a wide selection of local dishes paired with premium Chilean wines. Feel like you need to unwind after a high-octane day of thrill-seeking adventures? Book an appointment at the resort’s well-appointed spa, which includes a swimming pool, jacuzzi, and sauna.


The Pantanal, Brazil

When you think of Brazil, you probably automatically associate it with the Amazon. However, there is another incredible natural wonder well worth your attention—the Pantanal. It is the world’s largest tropical wetland and is located mostly within the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso do Sul, but also spills into Mato Grosso and parts of Bolivia and Paraguay. 

Pantanal’s fantastic biodiversity includes 698 species of birds, 80 mammals, 177 reptiles, 40 amphibians, and over 250 fish species. Some of the more exotic or endangered animal species include the jaguar, the South American tapir, and the giant anteater. During the dry season from April to October each year, you’ll be able to access the region by road. During the wet season, about 80 per cent of the wetlands are submerged, which mean visitors can only enter via aeroplane. The wet season is also when the diversity of species includes aquatic ones. 

Where To Stay: Araras Pantanal Eco-Lodge 

The folks at Araras Pantanal Eco Lodge have a deep understanding of the importance of the Pantanal’s intricate ecosystem and see themselves as “keepers of this paradise.” The private reserve spreads across almost 3,000 hectares—with 21km of trails, three observation towers, and an amazing variety of rivers, streams, fauna and flora, the opportunities to explore are endless. 

Whether you choose to ride with the Pantaneiro horses, hike the surrounding plains and forests or gently manoeuvre a canoe downstream, you can be sure you’ll be creating memories that last a lifetime. At the Lodge, guided tours are usually confined to small groups of eight to 10 people.

For an extra romantic touch, cosy up for a night of stargazing and explore the nocturnal thrum of the animals that emerge at night. The lodge itself offers 19 air-conditioned rooms, a swimming pool, and large outdoor verandas with hammocks, among other facilities. Here, you and your sweetheart can dine on a delectable selection of regional cuisine; the dishes here are prepared using the meat, fish, and produce of the Pantanal.


Ilulissat Icefjord, Greenland 

Using adjectives like “spectacular” or “jaw-dropping” to describe the Ilulissat Icefjord doesn’t do justice to this magnificent glacier. You’ll need to see it with your own eyes to understand its majesty. Of course, the experience is extra magical when you have the love of your life beside you. Spread across 40,240 hectares, the Ilulissat Icefjord has been studied for over 250 years to better understand climate change and icecap glaciology.

There are many different ways to admire the Ilulissat Icefjord; try them all. First, you’ll want to get a bird’s eye view of the glacier by hiring a helicopter or fixed-wing plane. After the overview, hop onto a midnight cruise to admire the glacier up close. As you start sailing between the skyscraper icebergs, you start to have a better appreciation of its grandeur.

In the evenings, ice takes on an other-worldly resplendence. When struck by the midnight sun, the icebergs change from white and blue to vivid hues of red and orange. Finally, it’s time to truly get up close and personal with the glacier. Go on a hike along the Sermermiut or the marked Blue Route trail. Stand still and take in the sounds of the Ilulissat Icefjord—popping air as it escapes from the ice, icebergs colliding on their way out to sea, and waves crashing against the rocky coastline.

Where To Stay: Hotel Arctic


Located right on the edge of the Ilulissat Icefjord, this is the world’s most northerly 4-star hotel. The hotel offers a variety of rooms and suites, but you’ll definitely want to book a night in an igloo.From May to October, you can book a stay in a unique two-person igloo cabin, which gives you front-row access to beautiful views of the surrounding cliffs, icebergs, and the Disko Bay.

Don’t worry about freezing your tails off though. While the igloo cabins are designed to look like traditional igloos, they are made of an aluminium frame instead of ice. Step inside and you’ll be greeted by comfortable and contemporary furniture that you can snuggle on with your dearest.


Škocjan Caves, Slovenia

Bled is one of those ridiculously picturesque places. A medieval castle perched atop a rocky cliff, the serene Lake Bled, and breathtaking views of the Julian Alps and the Karavanke all conspire to create the picture-perfect resort town of Bled. And of course, there are the Škocjan Caves, which are as beautiful as they are mysterious. Archaeological research has shown that human beings have lived in the caves and the surrounding region for more than 5,000 years. 

You and your love can book a guided tour, which takes you through a man-made passageway in the Globocak Collapse Doline before continuing on to the Silent Cave (Tiha jama), a fossil passage filled with various dripstone formations. From there, hold on tight to your dear one’s hand as you cross the Cerkvenik Bridge, suspended nearly 50 metres above the Reka riverbed. Finally, return to the surface via the Tominc Cave and the waterfall under the natural bridge in the Big Collapse Doline.

Where To Stay: Grand Hotel Toplice 


As an enclave for honeymooners, you can’t get any more romantic than the Grand Hotel Toplice. The hotel sits on the lakeshore overlooking the small island of Otok, with scenic views of Bled Castle and the Julian Alps in the background. Each of the rooms and suites has its own unique design elements, but all are tastefully decorated with elegant parquet floors and a well-curated selection of beautiful paintings. Take a stroll with your beloved along the waters of Lake Bled and enjoy a drink at the Jezero Bar terrace under the chestnut trees. Or, simply bask in the glow of each other’s company on the hotel’s private beach. 


Trang An, Vietnam

Located near the southern borders of the Red River Delta, the Trang An Landscape Complex is an extravagantly beautiful landscape of limestone karst peaks interspersed with padi fields and a mysterious labyrinth of caves. Unlike most mountain ranges where the slopes connect to each other in a long continuous stretch, most of these limestone peaks stand alone, creating an arrestingly dramatic appearance. Archaeological explorations of the caves surrounding the area have revealed traces of human activity dating back more than 30,000 years.

While you may cycle, drive, or even walk around the mountains, one of the best ways to explore Trang An is by boat. This allows you to travel through some of the most scenic parts of the region. As your boat glides through the magical waterscapes, it’s hard not to feel like you’re being ensconced in your very own bubble of love. 

Where To Stay: Emeralda Resort Ninh Binh

Located just 18km away from Trang An is the five-star Emeralda Resort Ninh Binh. Honeymooners are especially welcome here, with the resort’s recent introduction of the Emeralda Resort Ninh Binh Honeymoon Package. From candlelit dinners by the pool to a rousing couple massage in your own private suite and a luxurious rose petal bath, plenty of effort has gone into ensuring you and your beloved revels in the glow of romance. For a truly pampering experience, book a stay at the gorgeous Deluxe Room where you get to enjoy a bubbly breakfast at the room terrace.   


 

Tags

Weddings luxury travel luxury travel Grand Hotel Toplice Easter Island Araras Pantanal Eco-Lodge Emeralda Resort Ninh Bin Explora Rapa Nui Ilulissat Icefjord honeymoon destinations The Pantanal Hotel Arctic UNESCO honeymoon destinations

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