The stereotypical honeymoon is one full of sand, surf, and sun. Sure, it’s idyllic, but it’s also cliche and potentially crowded. On your honeymoon you want to maximize your alone time and squeeze in as many unforgettably romantic moments as possible. When you get back, you want a trove of memorable experiences to share.
So what’s an adventurous, scenery-loving, romance-craving, trailblazing couple to do? Simple: take a stunning cold-weather honeymoon cruise.
Not everybody knows this, but travel agents and cruise franchises don’t just send ships to Cancun and the Bahamas. Cruises go all over the world, including to some destinations that are rarely thought of as honeymoon spots—like Alaska, northern Europe, and Antartica (yes, that Antarctica). Some destinations are only open during the “warm” season, warm being a relative term here, but all will require a little bundling up, and a lot of cuddling up.
Still aren’t convinced that a cold-weather cruise is a good idea? Here’s eight reasons you should consider a spectacular cold-weather cruise for your upcoming honeymoon.
Winter Cruises Can Be Cheaper
First of all, there’s the money. Going to less popular cruise destinations, or during the off season, can net you some pretty serious savings. A lot of tourist based businesses (hotels and B&B’s, restaurants, resorts, tour operators, not to mention the cruises themselves) are open year round, so they’ve got operating costs to cover. They need to entice customers to keep revenue flowing to cover their bills, and what’s the go-to tactic for increasing customer traffic? Selling at a discount.
Cold-weather cruises, if done right, can save you money on the cruise itself, the restaurants, the shore excursions, and nearly everything else. Not too bad an exchange for having to pack a winter jacket.
Snow-Based Activities & Winter Woinderland Scenery
It’s easy to forget that there’s as much fun to be had in the snow as there is in the sand. From simple pleasures like sledding and snowball fights, to those that take some skill like skiing and snowboarding, there’s plenty of fun to be had when you make those shore excursions. There’s even exotic activities like aerial tour guides and heli-skiing, ice castles and dogsledding...not to mention stunning sights like towering glaciers and schools of curious and adorable penguins (more on scenery and cute animals later). So put on a warm hat and gloves, and enjoy the winter wonderland! You can even enjoy it from the warmth of the ship's interior, so you never need to shiver.
Avoid the Annoyances of Sand and Surf
Tropical destinations are great. They’re warm, they’re pretty, and you get to see your new spouse wearing very little. That’s not to say it’s perfect, though. There’s things like sunburns to worry about. And sharks. And undertow. And bugs (like mosquitoes). And sand in unmentionable places. And did we mention sharks?
Colder destinations skip out on all of that. No bugs. You’re bundled up, so no need to worry about turning red like a lobster. And you’re not sweating all day. They're as cozy as honeymoons get.
There’s few things as cozy as snuggling up next to someone warm under soft covers on a cold day. The weather may be chilly, but odds are that will only make things warmer in your honeymoon suite. On a cold-weather cruise, you’ll spend a lot more time hand-in-hand, and wrapping your arms around each other, enjoying delicious food, and scoping out scenery that you can only get in a few spots in the world, all from the comfort of indoor viewing. Add in some warm comfort food and some hot cocoa, and you’ve got a romantic recipe the likes of which would make the Hallmark channel jealous.
The Aurora Borealis
There are few sights as stunning as seeing the northern (or southern) lights. It’s a spectacle that few get to see in its full splendor, and taking a cold weather cruise makes it more likely that you’ll get your chance. Your best bet is to actually travel during the winter months, when the lights are most common, and most prominent. You can still occasionally catch them during warmer months, though, so keep an eye to the sky each night as you travel. You won’t want to miss it.
There are some amazing species out there to be seen in colder regions that can’t really be seen anywhere else. Going to destinations like Alaska, Antartica, or other wilderness-filled regions can give you glimpses of everything from orcas and penguins to bald eagles and grizzly bears. Most of these creatures are active primarily during the summer months, so if watching the wildlife is your thing, you might want to go in the middle of the year.
The Natural Wonders
The lights and the critters aren’t all that nature has to offer. Majestic mountains, sparkling and sprawling glaciers, fjords, islands, and more await you on many of these cruises. There’s a reason places like Scandinavia and Alaska are on so many sightseeing bucket lists. There’s a raw beauty that’s unparalleled, an unlike anything you’ll see in the tropics or moderate regions.
Best of all, you’ll get to do much of the sightseeing from the comfort of your cruise ship, complete with all the amenities you’ll find on warm-weather cruises. So enjoy at your leisure, and then seek warmth and comfort whenever you need it.
One of the best perks of cold-weather destinations is that there’s fewer people. First, traveling during the winter months means there’s a dramatic drop in the number of school-age travelers, as they have classes to attend. Second, since many people have kids to watch over, they can’t go on a week-long cruise while school is in session. Third, a good number of travelers assume that cold-weather travel is less fun, or that they’d be bothered by the cooler temperatures, so they just don’t bother with it. There's no loud, obnoxious guy blasting music at the beach or flicking his cigarette butts on a sleek cruiseliner cutting through clear, icy-blue waters.
Unlike a summery resort or crowded beach, you get the run of the place — quality time with the cruise staff and locals on shore, more time to yourselves as a couple, and less competition for activities on and off the ship. It’s as close as you’ll get to having the whole trip to yourselves.
There you have it, folks. Cold-weather destinations are a great option for honeymoons, and cruises are a great way to get there in warmth and luxury, while still enjoying all the amenities and services you want from a vacation. Take a look at your options, and get ready to chase off the chill with your partner!