When it comes to planning your honeymoon, it can be hard to see past the overwater bungalows of Bora Bora and Spain’s ginormous G&Ts. However, more and more newlyweds are choosing to forgo visas, visors and vaccinations, by booking themselves on a phrase-book free honeymoon in Aotearoa.
And we say – why wouldn’t they? New Zealand truly has it all. No matter what time of year you’re planning on mooning with your honey, there’s an abundance of beauty just waiting to be explored. From the tip of the North to the tail of the South, our country is bursting at the seams with breath-taking scenery, boutique accommodations, bespoke experiences, and - for those who want to get the heart well and truly pumping – a multitude of adrenaline-fuelled activities. After all, what is a honeymoon if not a chance to do fun new things with your favourite person? (Come on, not like that).
And, as an added bonus, so much of what’s on offer can be purchased by friends and family as an engagement present or world-class wedding gift. An incredible gift to enjoy once you’ve done all your planning, ticked off your checklists and thrown your seating charts into the fire.
So, put down your passports, pop open the L&P and get ready for the following vendors to add a whole lot of local spice to your honeymoon mix.
Minaret Station Alpine Lodge is something truly special – a private, tranquil haven made from mountains, memories and pure magic. Set in a remote glacial valley within the Southern Alps (surrounded by untouched landscapes and dramatic, towering peaks), Minaret Lodge oozes luxury and prestige. Open year round (and just a hop, skip and flight from Wanaka or Queenstown) the luxury lodge grants its guests access to some of New Zealand’s most unique and memorable outdoor experiences, including heli-skiing, backcountry fishing and guided alpine hikes.
Spend your days exploring, relaxing and cosying up to your private fire, and fill your nights with open skies, never-ending stars, and lavish meals prepared by world-class chefs. And with access to the lodge only possible via chopper, this really is the James-Bond-meets-nature honeymoon you and your partner so deserve.
As one of New Zealand’s most-loved island getaways, Waiheke Island is home to some of the best food and wine offerings in the world. And, if a post wedding-hysteria wind down is what you’re after, then the beautiful Oyster Inn (located in the heart of beachy Oneroa – just 35 minutes from Auckland city centre) may be the perfect place for you. The food is incredible, the suites are a minimalist’s dream, the sunsets put Picasso to shame AND the hosts personally collect you from the ferry terminal upon arrival. Feeling calmer already? We thought so.
If it’s adventure, nature and a close proximity to your partner at all times that you’re after – look no further. Trekker Adventures offer an at-home-honeymoon unlike anything else we’ve seen. The rental Land Rovers, Land Cruisers (and other 4WDs) come fully-equipped with everything you’ll need for your cross-country escapades – including the where to go, the how to get there, the what you’ll need and the where you’ll sleep (we’ll give you a hint – it’s in a tent on the roof of the truck). With bases in Auckland, Christchurch and Queenstown, there’s nothing stopping you and your partner from grabbing a Rover, saying goodbye to civilisation and heading off on the romantic, immersive adventure of a lifetime.
Nestled on the wild west coast of the South Island (about 30 minutes North of Greymouth), surrounded by views of the proud Paparoa mountains, this stunning farm stay escape is about as tranquil as they come. With three luxurious bedrooms all stylishly fitted out with our dream décor (who doesn’t love a bit of clean, country chic?), this boutique accommodation offers couples a slice of country paradise. A rural retreat perfect for either pre-wedding prep or romantic honeymoon bliss. Say goodbye to the hustle and bustle, grab your gummies and head west for a unique, relaxing, good-for-the-soul escape.
You and your partner + open starry skies + comfort, warmth and a gentle, crackling fire…have you booked already? We thought so. Introducing Canopy Camping; a thoughtful, beautiful way to escape the rat race and really get off the grid. Showcasing some of the most secluded camping spots in the country, Canopy campsites come with everything you need, including a luxury canvas tent (set up and waiting for you), hot water, deliciously comfortable beds, toilet facilities, nature, warmth and a whole lot of honeymoon romance.
A private peninsula for two? We thought you’d never ask. From the moment you pop open that bottle of ‘holy mother of God, we made it’ champagne, to the time you spend in your exquisite outdoor shower, gazing at the 180-degree panorama, dipping your toes in the natural rock pool and/or smooching by the open fire – we guarantee you’ll be thanking your lucky stars for the Glasshouse. Stocked with every home comfort you could possibly want and surrounded by breath-taking natural beauty, this luxury accommodation offers the intimate and totally memorable experience of your dreams.
Nestled in the grapevines of sunny Hawke’s Bay, these luxury accommodations are a honeymooner’s heaven. With a selection of seventeen (seventeen!) unique properties on offer, we guarantee you’ll find a love-nest to your liking. Each property has been selected for its prime location, unique character and classy, original style, and has been fitted out with the best of the very best. From their eight-bedroom luxury retreat (go on – treat yo’selves) to their two-bedroom turn-of-the-century cottage in the vines, each Black Barn haven has a lot of love to give.
Thumbnail photograph: Birds Eye View Lodge - Rich Mitchell Photography