By choosing a destination wedding, you’re making your nontraditional voice heard. And I get it...I am anything but traditional myself. But with destination weddings becoming more popular, it is getting harder to make your special day stand out. There are countless blogs that feature the Mexico’s, Jamaica’s and Punta Cana’s which is why I want to skip over them for the moment. No shade, I chose Mexico as my dream destination wedding location; however, I want to give other brides some inspo.
If you are adventurous, won't really be hurt if loved ones attend and looking for the thrill of far-off lands, then these five destination wedding locations are sure to inspire a sense of wanderlust and have you ready to jet set to a truly unique locale.
The many islands of the Philippines have exploded in popularity in recent years and it’s no wonder with their crystal clear, turquoise waters and unspoilt surrounds. As they are a relatively new hotspot on the tourist trail, they are still largely tranquil and make for the perfect destination wedding location.
Do a quick online search for Boracay, a tiny island in the central area of the Philippines chain, and you’ll be met with images of what can only be described as paradise on Earth. With new resorts popping up all over, it’s the ideal destination for you and your wedding guests to enjoy a much-needed holiday amongst the palms, sipping on island cocktails. Why not tie the knot on the exceptional White Beach with a twilight reception to follow, surrounded by your nearest and dearest?
Maasai Mara, Kenya
Are you and your other half adventurous spirits who don’t always play by the rules when it comes to life’s conventions? If so, then an African wedding is an exciting option for you and your guests, and will make for a once-in-a-lifetime vacation.
Head to Maasai Mara in Kenya, a destination wedding location where more and more engaged couples are flocking to. The expansive, 590 sq. mile National Reserve has been preserved with native animals like lions, cheetahs, elephants, zebras and hippos roaming free in their natural habitat. The savannahs of the region are green and breath-taking, and nearby villages have grown to accommodate visitors. The reserve itself is in fact dotted with luxury camps equipped for making your wedding day something special. Imagine waking up on the morning of your big day to roaming wildlife outside your door and vast, incredible pastures as far as the eye can see. An unmissable destination wedding idea!
The most romantic day of your life requires a backdrop famed for romance, and Florence is renowned for it. In fact, Italy is synonymous with love, but there is something about the ancient city of Florence, situated in the heart of Tuscany, that really conveys it.
If you dream of getting married right in the city, the quaint cobblestone streets walked by many famous artists and thinkers are ideal. But note, they can get super-busy, especially during the hot summer months. Wedding photographs taken on the famous Ponte Vecchio are a must.
Keen to get away from the bustling city limits for the day? Hire a bus for your lucky guests, and have them driven to your big day at a Tuscan town of your choosing. The medieval towns of Lucca and Siena are surrounded by the rolling green hills of Tuscany, and make for a sheer fairytale day for the loved-up couple and their destination wedding guests.
KOH SAMUI THAILAND
Thailand is an eternal favorite for couples to tie the knot, and there’s very little question why. With world-renowned Thai hospitality and low prices that will ensure you have the day you’ve always dreamed of, a destination wedding in the Thai tropics could be just the ticket.
Keep the vibe low-key and relaxed by jetting down to Koh Samui, the second largest island in Thailand, lying off the south-eastern coast of the country. Whether you and your guests wish to spend free time snorkeling, sun tanning, shopping, taking in temples or enjoying delicious Thai dishes - the options are endless on Koh Samui. For the big day, avoid the hustle and bustle of tourist-packed central district Chaweng Beach, and opt instead for a quieter affair on one of the island’s many other pristine beaches. Bophut Beach is a stunning area that offers the best of both worlds - quieter beaches to say, “I do” on, and nearby nightlife to kick off your shoes afterwards!
Anyone planning a destination wedding who has seen the film version of Mamma Mia! has probably considered holding their nuptials on one of the many Greek islands. They really are as stunning as the film makes them appear, but which island to choose?
Santorini is widely-regarded as one of the most romantic locations in the world and has been labeled the ‘most beautiful balcony in the world’ due to its famous white buildings steeped on the island’s cliffs. To top it off, Santorini holds a mystical element that draws lovers from all over. Many attribute it to the black sands of the beaches, created by centuries of ash from the ancient volcano adjacent to the island. Locals say the black sands have many powers, and many fall in love on the island. It also makes for an unforgettable backdrop for your wedding photos!
Why not take your love and your closest friends and family and say your vows barefoot on the black sands? Then, finish up the ceremony enjoying traditional Greek fare at a twilight reception at an open-air cliffside restaurant, overlooking the turquoise waters of the Aegean Sea.
Shoot, after writing this I’m dreaming of a romantic getaway...getting close to the 5-year mark, maybe a good time for a vow renewal! I hope you’ve also been inspired reading about these destination wedding ideas off the beaten path. It is an exciting time for you and your soon-to-be spouse; I love planning destination events and would love to help you plan a unique and amazing big day. With a world full of magical locations, the options are truly endless. Just make sure wherever you choose, you do it for YOU and no one else!
Eat, Drink & Get Married Far Away (wink wink)