The winter honeymoon brings a classic image to mind: your spouse and you just eloped, having said your vows and shared couples wedding rings, and now you’re off to relax and adventure in paradise. Paradise for winter honeymoons usually involves somewhere tropical, such as Hawaii, the Bahamas, Turks and Caicos, Southern Thailand, and many more locations with beaches and ocean as far as the eye can see.
But what if you and your spouse aren’t the beach-going types? Maybe you two love winter, whether that means tearing up the slopes while skiing or cuddling up next to a large fire inside of a warm, cozy cabin. The two of you should embrace winter if you fit into this category. Rather than flying off for a beach with the fresh margaritas and the bluest water, honeymoon at these cozy winter destinations.
1. Banff, Canada
Almost every outdoorsy person knows Banff as a skier’s dream. Consistently blanketed with snow and with a direct view of the Canadian Rockies, Banff is a winter wonderland. But, best of all, there is so much to do in Banff, whether you’re seeking mountain views, dog sledding adventures, swimming in heated outdoor pools, touring the area by helicopter, or ice skating out at Lake Louise. Honestly, there is so much to see and do that you and your new spouse have many options ahead of you. Looking for a great place to stay? Consider booking a suite at the incredible Fairmont Banff Springs—which has, even more, to do as a couple.
Montana is an often-overlooked state in the U.S., along with most other states in the center of the country. While Montana has more than enough to explore during the spring, summer, and fall, it becomes an outdoor playground in the winter. Skiers get their fill with various mountains to explore, with all their fresh powder to kick up along the way, while mountain resorts across the state will provide offerings like couple spa treatments and more. Some of the best resorts include:
- The Ranch at Rock Creek, which has private hot soaking tubs and offers snowy horseback riding and snow yoga.
- The Resort at Paws Up, which lets couples adventure together through snow tubing, dog sledding, sleigh rides, and more.
- Big Sky Montana, which provides a great mountain village experience alongside stellar skiing and snowboarding.
New Englanders are known for escaping the region for warmer climates in the winter, but it’s worth venturing if you don’t live there year-round. One of the first places on your list should be Vermont. Whether it’s skiing or taking in the winter weather in passing, there is more than enough to be done and enjoyed throughout the state. For resorts, start by looking at Twin Farms: It’s a small estate that will feel like your home away from home—one you’ll never want to leave once settling in. The architecture, food, wine, environmental setting, art, and experiences make it a must-see whether for your honeymoon or in the years to come.
Looking to tug at your spouse’s heartstrings while enjoying some nostalgia? Schedule your honeymoon at the Trapp Family Lodge, the lodge of the famous von Trapp family of The Sound of Music. Along with nearby trails, European architecture, an on-site spa, and carriage rides, the two of you can also take an in-depth tour of the estate, learning of the von Trapp history along the way.
Like Vermont, Maine might not be your first choice for a winter getaway—people (Bostonians and New Yorkers) usually think of Maine as a summer destination to enjoy fresh seafood. But forget what they think! Maine is a beautiful state that has so much to offer in the winter months, whether you’re heading to the mountains, relaxing on the seacoast, or wandering around Portland, south in Kittery, or north in Bar Harbor. Here are just two resorts to keep on your radar:
- Inn by the Sea – This famous inn offers incredible views of the Atlantic Ocean during any time of year, but it makes for an exceptionally cozy getaway in the winter. Best of all, you’re a short drive away from Portland, ME, which is a fantastic city to stroll around in winter, whether between various stores or bakeries or bar-hopping from restaurant to bar to restaurant.
- Camden Harbour Inn – Want those incredible Maine oceanfront views while still being able to ski? This is just the place, located next to the Camden Ski Bowl, where you can freely ski while gazing out at the Atlantic. Saunas, steam, and rain showers, and large fireplaces make it extremely comfortable when transitioning in out of the cold and back into the warmth of your room.
Let’s begin looking abroad. Ready to see the Northern Lights with your new partner? Want to feel as if you’re exploring a different country every single day, traveling from glaciers to hot springs to lava fields to black sand beaches?
Look no further than Iceland. Growing as a tourist destination in recent years, we can see why. The country has so much to offer in terms of exploration, whether in the summer or winter.
If you want to soak up the most of the experience, start at The Retreat at Blue Lagoon, whose famed hot springs are sure to stun you each morning. And all of the suites are embedded in a solid lava flow, giving the resort that prehistoric look that makes Iceland so unique.
If you’re thinking about hoofing it in between the two-day resort layovers, think about taking a road trip around the country. Iceland is suited for it, and it’s an easy way for you and your spouse to truly experience the entire country. Consider it a honeymoon you’ll rave about forever.
The Lapland region is one of the most traveled-to places for honeymooners. Located in Northern Finland and stretching into both Sweden and Norway, this part of the country is nothing but stunning. Think of it as Santa Claus’ vacation home: the closest you can get to feeling as if you’re at the North Pole with slightly less frigid temperatures.
There’s just so much to do here that you can hardly experience elsewhere: igloo hotels, cocktail bars made of ice, husky-led tours, reindeer sleigh rides, and much, much more. The Northern Lights are visible almost every clear night between September and March, too. The Northern Lights Village is one of the most sought-after resorts in the region, as it offers an “immersive arctic” experience, per its own words. But do remember, similar to Northern Alaska, the region experiences polar nights between December and January—meaning it is mostly dark that entire time. If you’re looking for a truly unique experience, you’re sure to find it here.