Top Caribbean Honeymoon Destinations: Grenada
Today, this remote Caribbean island is known as the Spice Isle thanks to its robust production of nutmeg, saffron and allspice. But Grenada has a revolutionary past that includes defending itself against piracy, thereby boasting a handful of stone fortifications. Tour the verdant island’s forts on a cultural excursion with Island Routes. Fort Matthew — the largest — is still equipped with ancient bathrooms and kitchens used during times of turmoil. It also flaunts some of the island’s best views of the St. George harbor. Another don’t miss is Grenada’s Underwater Sculpture Park, a collection of sunken statues that are home to colorful fish and underwater fauna.
Where to Stay: Sandals LaSource, the newest member of the all-inclusive, couples-centric resort group, sits on the sands of Pink Gin Beach. The poshly designed property has nine eateries (the breezy Neptunes is a favorite, and the New York-style Butch’s Chop House is a must-try), a pampering spa, two pools and endless watersports. Book into a Skypool Suite for a private plunge pool and an oversize bathroom a with tub-for-two.
Top Caribbean Honeymoon Destinations: Jamaica
One of the richest pirate histories belongs to Jamaica and the lost city of Port Royal, which served as the buccaneer headquarters for much of the region. The city was known for its wealth, high crime and prostitution, the combo of which led to Port Royal being dubbed the “most wicked and sinful city in the world.” In addition to pirates, the infamous settlement was also home to many privateers including Captain Henry Morgan, the namesake of the popular rum brand. But it all changed in 1692 when much of the city, which was located on Kingston Harbour, was devastated by an earthquake. The “Sodom of the New World” also suffered a series of hurricanes and a great fire. Today, much of the pirate-popular port remains intact under the water. To explore it you’ll need a special license. And it’s recommended to dive with local guides, who have the most up-to-date information on the status of exploring the Port Royal ruins. Other non-pirate island attractions include the nearby Bob Marley Museum in Kingston.
Where to stay: Tucked into the mist-covered Blue Mountains, about an hour from Port Royal, Strawberry Hill is the perfect antidote to the raucous pirate history. In addition to the awesome local coffee and cuisine, the intimate mountain retreat offers mindful activities including hiking, yoga and unforgettable spa treatments.
Top Caribbean Honeymoon Destinations: Bermuda
Known as “The Isle of Devils” due to its strategic location, this Mid-Atlantic island of pink sand beaches was home to many plunderers of the past thanks to the fact that for some time, piracy was legal. A most notable resident was Blackbeard, who became a bold-faced name of yore for capturing merchant ships that made the mistake of sailing into Bermuda’s waters. Follow in his footsteps on the Pirate Adventure Night Cruise, which sails to Pirates Point, a spot that was notorious for looting ships. Enjoy rum swizzles while you listen to legendary tales from your captain and wonder just how far you may venture into the notorious Bermuda Triangle. The boat is equipped with sub-sea lights for night-viewing reefs, fish and shipwrecks from the deck. Back on land head to the Royal Navy Dockyard, which served as a fortification spot, and is now home to some of Bermuda’s most picturesque vistas. In addition to housing the National Museum of Bermuda, the Dockyard also has an indoor market.
Where to Stay: Sitting on nearly 100 acres, the Fairmont Southampton is lauded for its golf and spa amenities. Many of the 593 guest rooms offer Atlantic Ocean views; all have large bathrooms and sumptuous bedding. Stay in the Fairmont Gold level for specialized concierge service and more goodies.
Top Caribbean Honeymoon Destinations: Barbados
Barbados was a haven for pirates, such as the mischievous Sam Lord who ruled the island’s southeast coast from his enormous estate. Rather than sailing the seas, this enterprising buccaneer hung lanterns in the coconut trees on the beach to attract ships. Captains at sea mistook the illuminated foliage for lights of the city, which caused them to wreck their ships on the reefs, allowing Lord to seize the wreckage. Board the pirate schooner, Jolly Roger from Bridgetown, the capital city located on the southwest coast, and enjoy a history cruise around the island. During the excursion you can walk the plank, swim with turtles and imbibe from the barrels of pirate rum punch. Another top spot on Barbados is Hunte’s Gardens. Created by legendary horticulturist Anthony Hunte, this tropical garden is located in the center of a rainforest featuring rare plants and birds.
Where to Stay: The House is an intimate, adults-only beachside resort with just 34 suites and loads of romance. Whiling away time strolling the sands is popular as is taking part in the activity menu, which includes horseback riding, biking tours, deep-sea fishing and shopping tours of Bridgetown.
Top Caribbean Honeymoon Destinations: The Bahamas
It was said that when a pirate slept he didn’t dream of going to heaven, but instead he dreamt of Nassau. Since the 1690s, the Bahamian capital island of Nassau and its port were a central pirate hangout. Surrounded by waters too shallow for larger ships, but deep enough for faster vessels favored by the outlaws of the sea, the port city served as the base of operations for many. The Pirates of Nassau Museum is an interactive experience that explores the Golden Age of Piracy. Also on the menu is partaking in the sunny Bahamian beaches.
Actor Johnny Depp, star of the Pirates of the Caribbean movie franchise, owns a private island in the bahamas. Fowl Cay Resort, set on an out island of the Exumas chain, offers a similar swept-away experience in an all-inclusive collection of six private villas.
Where to Stay: Graycliff Hotel was built in 1740 by Captain John Howard Graysmith, a famed swashbuckler of the Caribbean. The celebrated hotel boasts award-winning cuisine and encompasses both a chocolate and a cigar factory. Another (in)famous fun fact: The resort was once owned by the Duke and Duchess of Windsor.
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I called on the advice of my sister, after my then-fiancee told me I wasn't allowed to plan by myself. I thought I had saved thousands on our last vacation, but it turns out I had just booked a really crappy resort and as a result, the worst vacation ever. Needless to say, that vacation didn't hold a candle to what our honeymoon travel agent recommended. We had an amazing time and couldn't have done it without her.Ben
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From the very beginning, our honeymoon travel agent was nothing but personable and professional. She helped me to lock down our honeymoon location after asking a couple of questions. During our travels we ran into a couple of hiccups with delays – she reached out to us (she had been monitoring our flight times from home!) to see if there was anything she could do. After missing our first day of our trip due to flight delays, at our request she booked us an extra night and changed our flights. Sara is more than just a honeymoon travel agent. She took the time to really get to know us and stayed in touch every step of the way. I highly recommend working with Sara on your honeymoon travel details!Carol