Destination Honeymoon On a Budget: London, England

Image Source: London City World

Image Source: London City World

You may have seen our Honeymoon Hotspot pieces where we share a different location in the continental US each month that would make a great honeymoon location if you’re working with a tight budget. But what if you have your heart set on some international travel but don’t know where to start? What’s possible with your budget? Well, we’re taking our Honeymoon Hotspots international with how to Destination Honeymoon on a Budget! First up, London, England! London is a popular destination for many, but what to do, where to stay, what prices are good? It’s a lot to sort through! So let’s break it down.

Where to Stay

Image Source: Travel Weekly 

Image Source: Travel Weekly 

There are tons of great places to stay in London. Two of our top picks are Stüdyo Paddington by Bridgestreet and Point A Hotel, Kings Cross. Stüdyo Paddington is a new hotel on the scene. They’re actually a hybrid type accommodation that’s a hotel/apartment combo. In addition to your usual hotel amenities, you also get perks like a free washer and dryer facility and guest kitchen. These are great things to have if you’re planning a longer trip. Location is A+, just a few hundred yards from London Paddington Station and for this price and location, you really can’t do much better! Point A Hotel is another great option. While there are reports of smaller sized rooms, you won’t be spending much time in your room awake and location is also a huge plus here. You’re only a 10 minute walk from the Eurostar terminal, which you’re sure to be using quite a bit. If you’re looking for a different option, there are loads of wonderful Airbnbs to choose from as well!


Image Source: @toshigogogooo

Image Source: @toshigogogooo

Where to Eat

We love food! So where do you eat? What’s the best? What can you afford? We’re here to help. A top pick is Da Maria, family-run and super yummy! Pizzas, pastas, and more. Most meals are under 10 euro which is a huge plus. You can’t go to London without having fish and chips! Head to The Golden Hind for your fix. What about your late night snack fix? None other than Brick Lane Beigel Bake for that. Apparently their salt beef bagels are to die for. Yes, please! If you have more of a sweet tooth, head to Bread Ahead for some massive and delicious doughnuts.


Image Source: @ashley0087

Image Source: @ashley0087

What to Do

London is home to many of free attractions. You can experience places like Tate Modern, the National Gallery, the British Museum, the Southbank Centre art complex, Hyde Park and Hampstead Heath without dropping a dime. Central London is set up really well if you’re looking to walk or bike. This will save you a lot of time and money on transportation as well as giving you a real immersive experience. Also consider grabbing The London Pass - which gets you access to top attractions like the Tower of London, Westminster Abbey, London Bridge Experience and the Thames River Cruise. Yes please!!

Honeymoon Hotspot: Nashville, TN

Image Source: Parsimony Inspired

Image Source: Parsimony Inspired

We love a good southern getaway… and Nashville certainly fits the bill! This city is filled  with life and music and definitely has no shortage of things to do. Talk about the holy grail of country music! We put together a travel guide including some of the must-hit activities for your country honeymoon visit.

Places to Stay

Image Source: Daisy Hill Bed and Breakfast

Image Source: Daisy Hill Bed and Breakfast

If you’re looking for a cozy and homey place to stay, the Daisy Hill Bed and Breakfast is perfect! This B&B is quaint and relaxing with it’s gardens and European charm. However, there is only three rooms at this bed and breakfast so make sure to keep that in mind and book in advance!

If you’re looking for something a bit more urban, the 21c Museum Hotel is just the place. This hotel is sleek and also home to a phenomenal contemporary art museum. In addition to the amazing art exhibits, there is also a restaurant and pet friendly rooms!

Things to Do

Image Source: Parsimony Inspired

Image Source: Parsimony Inspired

Nashville, or the “Music City,” is famous for its country music scene. Visiting the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum is the easiest and most entertaining way to learn about the story of country music, in addition to seeing lots of interesting exhibits and even some live performances! The Honkey Tonk Highway is another iconic attraction of Nashville. This strip is packed with different bars, each of them having at least one stage. Not only do you get to enjoy some nice drinks, but all the amazing live music is free!

If you’re looking to do some shopping, there are tons of amazing places to shop til you drop in Nashville! Some of our favorites are Draper James, our girl Reese Witherspoon’s stunning brand, and Uncommon James.

Places to Eat

Image Source: Pancake Pantry

Image Source: Pancake Pantry

There are great places to eat all over Nashville! If you’re looking for a nice breakfast place, look no further than Pancake Pantry. They are famous for their 21 different selection of delicious waffles. If you’re craving some authentic Southern cuisine, some of the most popular places are the Loveless Cafe, Hattie B’s, and Puckett’s.

Decision Time: The Pro's and Con's to a Destination Wedding

Image Source: @custombynicole

Image Source: @custombynicole

Congratulations, you’re engaged! This is such an exciting, and overwhelming, time in your life. Make sure you take some time to soak up the bliss and excitement, but remember that there are lots of decisions to be made. The idea of running off and eloping in a destination wedding can seem very tempting and like a quick way out of all the planning… but is it the right decision for you? Today, we’re going to look over the pro’s and con’s of having a destination wedding or elopement and whether or not it’s a good fit for you and your beau!

Image Source: Town and Country Magazine

Image Source: Town and Country Magazine

Guest List

Have you always pictured having a big wedding? If so, a destination wedding might not be the right fit for you. Chances are, travelling to a destination may not be in the budget for everyone on your list. At a minimum, you’re looking at multiple days of hotel, food, and travel expenses which all add up pretty quickly. If you’re only planning on having a few select guests, it’s still important to make sure they’re willing to spend the money to make the trip. Nothing is more heartbreaking than missing the ones you love most on your big day.

Budget

There’s more of a budget factor here than you may think. Smaller wedding does not necessarily equate to a cheaper wedding, especially if there are travel expenses involved! Some couples opt to combine their honeymoon with their destination wedding, which can be a good option, but be sure you really look at all the costs beforehand. Having a ceremony at a destination resort most likely means selecting from a variety of preset packages, which means there’s less wiggle room in the budget.

Image Source: @hanaa.v

Image Source: @hanaa.v

Traveling

Traveling is so much fun, but travelling for your wedding adds a certain level of stress. There’s not much room for error in your packing! If you’re headed to a remote destination and forget your wedding shoes or earrings at home, you’re most likely going to end up getting married without them. You’re also constrained to certain sized and weighted bags, unless you’re willing to pay some extra fees. Most flights will have a certain amount of space for hanging bags (i.e. your dress/tux) but it’s best to call ahead in an attempt to guarantee the space.

Planning

A lot of the planning is out of your hands with a destination wedding. Most likely, you can’t actually be on site to oversee things or preview the area. If you’re more laid back, then this is totally fine! But if you’re the type of person that likes to oversee and be involved every step of the way, this may not be for you. You’ll also have to potentially deal with not being able to have the exact vendors you would like. As we said, a lot of destination resorts offer you a list of packages to choose from, which means you aren’t selecting your own caterer or florist or sometimes even photographer.

Image Source: @vanessajaimesfloraldesign

Image Source: @vanessajaimesfloraldesign

Destination weddings can be a blast and absolutely beautiful! Just make sure you’re really reviewing all the information with your partner and closest loved ones before making the final leap.

Honeymoon Hotspot: Bar Harbor, ME

Image Source: @VisitBarHarbor

Image Source: @VisitBarHarbor

If you’re looking for an oceanfront retreat for your honeymoon, forget the hustle and bustle that comes with a pricey tropical vacation and check out some more local options instead - they don’t disappoint! Bar Harbor, Maine makes the perfect post-wedding destination because of its fun downtown vibe, miles of national park and oceanfront trails, and incredible food. Not to mention, it’s super romantic - what’s better than winding down seaside together after months of planning a wedding?

Image: Ullikana

Image: Ullikana

 

 

The hotels in Bar Harbor are unlike any you’ll find at fancy resorts and spas, but they’re absolutely charming and gorgeous. For a super cozy and unique stay, check out the Ullikanna Inn, which is made up of adorable dollhouse-like cottages! If you want to be as close to the water as possible, though, book your stay at the most popular place in the area: the Bar Harbor Inn. Make sure to get an oceanfront room to enjoy your coffee on the balcony first thing in the morning! The AirBnB market in Bar Harbor is packed with quaint waterfront cottages for any budget, like this one. For about the same price as an inn, you get the entire place to yourselves and a waterfront campfire to enjoy!

Image Source: @CassieeThompsonn

Image Source: @CassieeThompsonn

Don’t focus too much on where you’re staying, though, because the beauty of a trip to Bar Harbor is how much there is to explore outdoors. Nestled right next to Acadia National Park, the area’s riddled with hiking trails for any skill level. Take an easier beginner’s trail up Dorr Mountain or really challenge yourselves by attempting to hike the Beehive. If the weather’s a little too hot, drive up Park Loop Road instead!

You can’t leave Bar Harbor without watching the sunrise from the top of Cadillac Mountain, and you most definitely can’t miss checking out Thunder Hole. When the tide rolls in, the waves reach up to 40 feet high and sound exactly like thunder - it’s unforgettable!

Image Source: @SenseOfTasteBlog

Image Source: @SenseOfTasteBlog

Most of Bar Harbor is scattered with gorgeous rocky beaches, but if you want to lay in the sun, check out Sand Beach - it’s the only sandy beach in the area, so be prepared for a huge crowd! After spending the morning in the sun, stop by Jordan Pond House for one of their classic popovers.

Make sure to head to downtown, too, and shop all the local storefronts. Parking in the summer is a bit of a hassle, so opt to bike or walk instead! While you’re exploring downtown, stop for some world-famous seafood at Galyn’s; there’s nothing quite like their mouth-watering lobster rolls.

 

Honeymoon Hotspot: Seattle, WA

Image Source: Cotton Stem

Image Source: Cotton Stem

Looking to plan a romantic stay for you and your new hubby, but want to try out something a little different? Most people would write Seattle, Washington off for a honeymoon destination just because of the rain, but if you choose to go between May and October, you’re sure to see some sunny days! Even better? The weather isn’t sweltering hot, so it’s ideal for a downtown stroll or a morning hike to watch the sunrise. Seattle is a growing destination for a romantic getaway, and it’s definitely much more budget friendly than anything international. There are endless amounts of cozy and quaint coffee shops to check out, beautiful views to take in, and places to explore together!

Image Source: James Whelan

Image Source: James Whelan

You can’t visit Seattle without taking in the city views, so pick your hotel accordingly! Pan Pacific Seattle is affordable given its great location downtown, and it offers an incredible and unobstructed view of the Space Needle with floor-to-ceiling windows. You should opt for something central to all the action downtown, because Seattle’s public transportation is lackluster and parking costs can be sky-high. Luckily, everything is in walking distance from Pan Pacific Seattle, which makes it a go-to for tons of travelers! If you’re looking for something that offers more Seattle charm, the Kimpton Hotel Monaco Seattle is a great option, especially for newlyweds. The hotel is gorgeous and offers complimentary wine hours every night, often times with live music, which makes for a romantic (and relatively free!) little date night!

There’s no shortage of places to explore and things to do in Seattle, but the best place to start is its most popular attraction: the Space Needle. If you’re feeling extra fancy and want to splurge a little, take in the view from their revolving restaurant SkyCity. Not everything in Seattle is this pricey, though, which makes it a great honeymoon destination! Check out Pike Place, a world-renowned market that overlooks Elliot Bay. It’s a hub for tasty, top of the line seafood! The Pink Door at Pike Place is one of the more delicious and romantic date spots in town, with its dim lighting and candle-lit patio. It also offers a view of the Puget Sound, which is a memorable day trip that you shouldn’t miss out on! Take the ferry across the sound, whale watch, and enjoy a quick break from the hustle and bustle of downtown.

Image Source: Travels and Treats Blog

Image Source: Travels and Treats Blog

The most important thing to do on a trip to Seattle is to explore all of its quirks and hole in the wall destinations. Chihuly Garden and Glass is an absolutely breathtaking museum and exhibition, and if you’re looking to escape some rain, try out one of the classes they offer! What’s more Seattle than taking a Terrarium Garden Workshop class with your man? And don’t forget to stop at all the sidewalk coffee vendors while you’re out adventuring together, either. Some of the greatest coffee you’ll ever have is from Monorail Espresso, a tiny to-go only coffee bar. It might be tempting to stop by the Starbucks every day, especially since it’s the original location, but take the time to try out new things like a Maple Bacon Latte instead!

Honeymoon Hotspot: Woodstock, VT

Woodstock, Vermont is a quaint, historic town in the heart of New England. Beautiful at any time of the year, it is especially stunning during the fall season. Known for its picturesque foliage, outdoor recreation, and charming downtown, Woodstock is a romantic honeymoon destination where you are guaranteed to fall in love with your sweetheart all over again.

image source: gal meets glam

image source: gal meets glam

Although you can find plenty of chain hotels in the area, we recommend the whimsical inns that embody the New England spirit. In Woodstock you will find the only premier 5 star experience in Vermont at Twin Farms, an all-inclusive inn and resort. Located on 300 acres, this adult only resort provides luxurious cottages, a private art collection, customized meals with farm-to-table dinners, and a plethora of outdoor activities and spa treatments with all natural organic ingredients.  Alternatively, if you and your hubby want the 5 star experience without breaking the bank, then check out Woodstock Inn and Resort or The Village Inn of Woodstock. Both provide spa services and access to Woodstock Country Club, so you can relax with a facial while your husband enjoys a round of golf. If conservation and green energy appeals to you, as it does greatly to the citizens of Vermont, try The Shire, a Green Hotel deemed by the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation and the Vermont Small Business Development Center. It provides stunning views of the Ottauquechee River and Billings Farm and Museum, where you can sample cheeses, pick apples, learn about historic Vermont farming practices, and take candid pictures with their adorable Jersey dairy cows.

 

image source: woodstock inn

image source: woodstock inn

Woodstock is an outstanding destination for couples seeking outdoor adventure on their honeymoon. The Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historical Park is decorated by iconic sugar maples and 400 year-old hemlocks, and boasts a full range of activities such as hiking, kayaking, and cross-country skiing and snowshoeing if winter makes an early appearance. Here, you are guaranteed the most romantic backdrop of colorful mountains for photos of you and your partner.

If you have access to a car, we highly recommend checking out three of Vermont’s covered bridges, all located right in Woodstock! The Lincoln Bridge (1877), Taftsville Bridge (1836), and Middle Bridge (1969) are quaint, historic, and a perfect pitstop on an mid-morning drive. After your drive, head to Sugarbush Cheese and Maple Farm to learn about and sample Vermont’s most important agricultural products-- maple syrup and cheese (yum!). Then walk off your full stomach on the farm’s nature trail through the gorgeous sugar maple woods and reflect on your wedding in their charming chapel.

image source: billings farm

image source: billings farm

Your Woodstock honeymoon would not be complete without a little souvenir shopping. Shop along historic downtown village, which is lined with locally owned antique stores, boutiques, and art galleries. Get lost in Vermont’s oldest independent bookshop, Yankee Bookshop (est. 1935), to find a good read or unique gifts. Then step back in time at F.H. Gillingham and Sons (est. 1886), a family owned general store that exudes tradition and charm.

image source: mapio

image source: mapio

Wind down after a day of adventure at one of Woodstock’s award winning restaurants. The Prince & the Pauper is one of Vermont’s finest restaurants and conveniently located in the downtown village. It offers a prix fixe dinner menu that changes daily, and a dessert menu you must save room for. Located at the Woodstock Inn and Resort is The Red Rooster, a AAA Four Diamond Award winning restaurant. It features fresh, local ingredients and serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, so there are plenty of opportunities to try out their outstanding menus.

image source: sugarbush farm

image source: sugarbush farm

This historic town is the charismatic, private getaway anyone could ask for in a honeymoon. The fall foliage is exquisite and iconic, and the abundance of activitiesare sure to bring you and your love excitement and happiness as you begin your lives together!

image source: abbie matt

image source: abbie matt