Your honeymoon marks you and your spouse’s new life together. No other vacation will be your honeymoon, so it’s worth making it special. If you experienced a lot of stress planning your wedding, your honeymoon is also a chance to relax, recharge and reflect on your marriage. Most importantly, psychologists believe your honeymoon helps you create a positive mindset to start your marriage off on the right foot.
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If you’re thinking about traveling for your honeymoon, a cruise can help you accomplish everything you dream of doing on your romantic getaway and even go beyond your expectations. In this post, we’ll show you how to plan an unforgettable honeymoon cruise and provide tips along the way.
Why Take a Cruise for Your Honeymoon?
Imagine waking up next to your spouse in a plush bed with the glittering sea outside your window. You then enjoy a satisfying breakfast in the privacy of your stateroom before exploring a port like Venice or Dubrovnik. After wandering around an ancient city, you spend your evening enjoying live music, sipping champagne and recollecting your day’s events with your spouse. The next day, you’ll be somewhere completely different and equally fascinating. This is what a honeymoon cruise looks like.
A cruise offers unique advantages that set it apart from other vacations, such as:
- Zero stress: Getting married typically involves a range of emotions, including stress. You and your fiancé will likely appreciate a breather after your wedding, and a cruise is a perfect way to unwind. While you’re on board, there’s zero pressure to do or be anything. You can spend entire days relaxing by the pool if you want. Or, if adventure relieves stress for you, you’ll have plenty of exciting activities to choose from. You can spend your time together however you want when you cruise.
- Less planning: If you’re in the middle of shopping for bridal attire, sending out invitations and establishing your wedding-day menu, the last thing you probably want to do is plan a vacation. Taking a cruise requires very little planning compared to other types of journeys. You won’t have to figure out what you’ll eat, where you’ll stay or how you’ll get from one city to the next. Instead, you can save your energy for enjoying your getaway with your new spouse.
- Multiple destinations: Are your and your soon-to-be struggling to decide between a beach vacation or a trip to a romantic city? If you take a cruise, you can enjoy a range of destinations in a single journey, including pristine beaches and scenic towns. For example, on a cruise of Italy, you might spend one day soaking up the sun in Sorrento and the next day sipping lemon spritz in Amalfi. Depending on your itinerary and the length of your journey, you might visit seven or eight different destinations on your cruise. And you only have to pack once.
- Amazing food: If wedding-day stress stifled your appetite, you might want to indulge a little after the big event.One of the best parts of cruising is having easy access to world-class cuisine every single day. With Windstar Cruises, for example, you can expect dishes prepared with fresh, local ingredients, allowing you to taste the region’s flavors. You can also pick any restaurant onboard, whether that be dining in the refreshing, salty air or inside a stylish venue.
- Unique excursions: No matter where you go on your cruise, you’ll have opportunities to partake in unique, culturally immersive excursions. Your onshore experiences will help you create new memories and strengthen the bond you share with your significant other.
- Outstanding service 24/7: The moment you and your spouse step aboard your cruise ship, you can expect exceptional service. Cruise ship staff will go out of their way to make you feel pampered, and you can enjoy this level of service 24 hours a day during your journey.
- Easy payment: Cruising allows you to pay for most of your expenses upfront so that you can leave money worries behind as you cruise. Cruises typically include your room, meals, entertainment and most non-alcoholic beverages. Therefore, you’ll mostly need to plan how you’ll spend money at each port, such as on souvenirs or snacks.
- Effortless romance: Cruises are timelessly romantic. As you sail, you’ll be surrounded by breathtaking scenery and opportunities to connect with your partner. For example, you can watch the sunset from your balcony as you share a bottle of wine or have an elegant meal under the stars. If you want to celebrate your love and marriage, a cruise makes it easy.
5 Steps to Planning a Honeymoon Cruise
Overall, planning a honeymoon cruise is pretty simple. It mostly entails figuring out where you want to go and for how long. Still, it’s worth carefully choosing your itinerary with your partner. The more you plan before your cruise, the easier it will be to relax completely when you set sail.
Not in the mood for planning? You can still take an unforgettable honeymoon cruise. At Windstar Cruises, our Vacation Planners are ready to map out every detail for you. To get started, all you have to do is call.
If you’re excited to explore your options, here are steps and tips for planning a honeymoon cruise:
1. Pick Your Destination
Choosing your destination is a big part of the excitement. Sit down with your loved one and ask yourselves where you would most like to go in the world. Where have you always dreamed of going? You might use your honeymoon to visit destinations that have been sitting at the top of your bucket list for too long.
If you both feel torn between Tahitian bungalows and Venetian gondolas, consider these factors to aid your decision:
- The month and weather: First, think about the time of year you plan to take your honeymoon, and then consider what the weather will be like in different destinations. For example, if you’re getting married in the summer and plan to take your honeymoon shortly after the wedding, think about destinations that are ideal for visiting in the summer, like Alaska. If you are honeymooning during the winter, the Caribbean can warm your toes and hearts.
- The departure port: Depending on your budget and time constraints, you might let the departure port influence your decision. For example, if you want to depart from the United States, you can cruise to Mexico, Panama and Costa Rica from Miami. On the other hand, if you’re going to make your departure city part of your honeymoon, you may be excited to spend some time in Barcelona before you board your Mediterranean cruise.
- Your interests and goals: What do you and your fiancé want most out of your honeymoon? For example, do you want the experience to be relaxing above all else? If so, consider a laid-back destination, like Tahiti. If you’re craving adventure, a cruise to Alaska will create lifelong memories. Also, consider what interests you both. If you both love history, cruising to various European ports will leave your hearts content. If you and your partner can’t wait to get lost in natural beauty, you might prefer a cruise to Iceland or Australia for your honeymoon. Lastly, If you consider yourselves foodies, think about visiting Asia on your cruise.
Overall, choosing your honeymoon destination depends on what’s most important to you as a couple and how you’d like to spend time together.
2. Choose the Date
If you wish to take your honeymoon cruise immediately after you get married, your wedding date will help you set your cruise date. Some couples prefer to wait a few days, weeks or even months to take their honeymoon. Either way, here are a few things to think about before you select a date for your honeymoon cruise:
- Off-season or peak season: Do you and your sweetheart prefer to avoid crowds when you travel? If so, consider cruising during the off-season or shoulder season. Off-season generally occurs during the winter months, except for in the Caribbean, and shoulder season occurs in the spring and fall. You can expect fewer tourists outside of the summer months, which means you’ll have more room for romance. However, if longer days and sunny weather are most important to you, it may be worth traveling during the summer. Off-season and peak season vary depending on where you’re going, so it’s worth researching your destination a little before you book.
- Duration: How much time can you and your partner spend on your honeymoon? Cruises might range from six days to over a month, so you’ll have plenty of options regarding duration. Make sure you have enough time to take off from work or break away from obligations, so you and your spouse can enjoy yourselves and not feel rushed.
- Departure port: If you’re flying to the departure city, try to arrive a day early so you won’t have to hurry to get on board. You might even make the departure port part of your honeymoon. At Windstar Cruises, we make it easy to plan your pre- or post-cruise experience by selecting premium hotels and figuring out all the transportation details for you.
3. Select Your Accommodations
Before you take a cruise, you get to select the type of accommodation you want. As you decide, consider the room’s size, its amenities, the location and your budget. Most cruise ships have regular staterooms, which are usually the smallest cabins available and may or may not have a window, porthole or balcony. Suites, which are the largest cabins available, typically have windows or a balcony.
At Windstar Cruises, every stateroom has an ocean view and elegant details to enhance the romance, such as fresh fruit and flowers. However, our suites offer more space and natural light, which can make your honeymoon feel extra-special.
If you’re looking for an area to splurge on your honeymoon cruise, consider booking a spacious suite with a breathtaking view. It’s also worth choosing a room with a balcony, so you and your other half can revel in the spectacular scenery — comfortably and privately.
4. Book Shore Excursions
Shore excursions are activities you can enjoy at each port. Your cruise line curates and organizes shore excursions for you, and all you have to do is browse what’s available and reserve your spot. Shore excursions are not typically included in your cruise fare, so you’ll also need to pay for them separately.
Shore excursions are an excellent way to immerse yourself in the local culture and experience your destination’s natural beauty. They vary greatly depending on where you go and might include everything from winery tours to snorkeling with stingrays. Here are a few tips to help you choose the right excursions for your honeymoon cruise:
- Consider what’s most important to you both: Are you and your partner both history buffs? If so, it probably makes more sense to book a tour of ancient ruins when you’re in Greece rather than spend the day sunbathing on the deck. However, if you and your other half seek out nature wherever you go, you might skip the history tour so you can hike with a local guide. Consider what experiences are most important to you both so you can choose your excursions wisely.
- Carefully read the descriptions: Take your time reading the description of each excursion and consider how much time each part of the tour takes, what it involves and if you can handle the activity comfortably.
- Ask for assistance: If you have any questions about shore excursions, don’t be afraid to reach out to the cruise line and ask before you book. Your cruise’s travel advisors can give you more details about an excursion and help you decide if it’s worth your time.
Most travelers recommend avoiding overbooking excursions and leaving some days open to explore freely. This will give you and your spouse time to relax and savor your honeymoon, which might be just what you need. Aim to find the right balance between excursion days and relaxation days, so you can return from your honeymoon feeling refreshed.
5. Add Extras
Some extras are worth adding to your honeymoon cruise. After all, it’s your honeymoon — you both deserve to treat yourselves. One item to consider is an exclusive beverage package. With an exclusive beverage package, you and your spouse can celebrate carefreely and not have to worry about beverage costs adding up. This means you won’t have to think twice about wine pairings at dinner or drinking champagne as you gaze at the stars. Other extras can make your cruise ultra-relaxing, such as:
- Spa time: If you want to start your honeymoon right, plan to head to the spa first. A couple’s massage in the ship’s spa will help you transition from wedding-day stress to marital bliss and make all of your tension melt away.
- Gift packages: Treat yourselves to an indulgent gift package to set a romantic tone. For example, if you sail with Windstar Cruises, you might choose our Honeymooners Romantic Bon Voyage package, which includes champagne, chocolate-dipped strawberries and breakfast in bed. Our Pure Pampering package is another excellent option for newlyweds and comes with roses, champagne, chocolate-dipped strawberries, two aromatherapy massages and other romantic touches.
- Laundry service: Chances are that you won’t want to think about doing laundry during your honeymoon. If you want to pack as light as possible and reduce traveling stress even more, consider adding laundry services to your cruise. At Windstar Cruises, you can select our Personal Laundry Service Package or our All-In Package. Our All-In package combines laundry service with our Captain’s Exclusive Beverage Package plus other perks for one price per day.
Taking a cruise for your honeymoon is a way to have new experiences and create special memories with minimal travel-related stress. After months of planning your wedding, you and your soon-to-be spouse will likely appreciate a chance to decompress as you sail to breathtaking destinations. At Windstar Cruises, we’ll ensure you both feel pampered throughout your entire honeymoon aboard our ship.
Windstar Cruises is the ideal cruise line for couples who want a stress-free, intimate honeymoon. We strike the right balance between relaxation and adventure, taking our guests to must-see destinations around the globe. Our small, uncrowded ships hold roughly 300 guests, so you and your loved one can savor the tranquility of being at sea. To start planning your honeymoon cruise, browse our itineraries or contact a Vacation Planner today.