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For your next romantic getaway, consider one of these top island destinations that feel as if they were made just for romance.
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A haven out in the Indian Ocean, the secluded Maldives are often called the most romantic archipelago in the world. For couples looking for lots of privacy, you’re sure to find it here, with hundreds of picture-perfect sandy islands and countless resorts made for romantic getaways to choose from. Bask on private white beaches with sand as soft as powdered sugar sitting at the edge of perfectly warm waters in a gradient of blues and turquoise, and enjoy taking part in active pursuits together like diving or snorkeling among vibrant coral reefs, sailing, windsurfing and more. Explore local fishing villages and any one of the hundreds of uninhabited islands where you’ll find total seclusion. Most resorts in the Maldives are accessible only by boat, offering an extra special, secretive allure.
St. Lucia is known as one of the most romantic islands in the Caribbean, with the Pitons that soar about the glistening turquoise waters providing the backdrop for countless romantic escapes, including honeymoons and weddings. The island scores big with couples for its jaw-dropping scenery and luxurious resorts. Many of the island’s resorts make the most of the enviable scenery, creating an ideal setting for romance, like Jade Mountain where you can gaze out at the Pitons and the sea from a cliff-top sanctuary as if the island was made just for you two.
Located in the Indian Ocean off the coast of East Africa, Mauritius has an especially romantic atmosphere with inspiring vistas and idyllic beaches like Flic-en- Flac on its west coast, offering the chance to be mesmerized together with perfect sunsets. Just off its northeast coast, Ile D’ambre is a tranquil islet that’s home to a lagoon with a mangrove-forested coastline, ideal for exploring with a two-person kayak, while the neighboring islet of Bernache offers the chance to go snorkeling in relative solitude. To cap off a truly seductive experience, stay at Shangri-La’s Le Touessrok Resort & Spa where you can indulge in haute cuisine at the resort’s gourmet restaurants and pamper yourselves with a massage at the much-lauded spa.
This small, subtropical island in the North Atlantic with gorgeous pink sand beaches that stretch for 21 miles along dazzling turquoise waters, is perfect for romance. Bermuda’s Horseshoe Bay Beach, with its long, curved stretch of pale pink sands, features secluded coves that are ideal for cuddling up and enjoying a little privacy. If you want to get more active, there is no shortage of things to do from great shopping and museums to golf, snorkeling and more. One thing that’s a must-do, is dining at Coconuts, a renowned restaurant that’s been called one of the best places to fall in love. Here you can dine right on the beach, dipping your toes in the sand while sipping wine and enjoying stunning sunsets.
Virgin Gorda offers everything you could ever want in a tropical retreat and then some. Famous for The Baths, a geological wonder on the north shore made up of giant granite boulders that form sheltered sea pools on the beach’s edge, it seems as if it was made for a romantic romp in the water. The protected area also includes Devil’s Bay, ideal for swimming and snorkeling. A series of steps and rope handrails guide visitors along a trail from the beach at The Baths to the sandy expanse of the bay. While you may not have a ton of privacy here, by staying at Rosewood Little Dix Bay, one of the Virgin Islands’ most secluded resorts, you can take advantage of its private beach as well as boat access to seven other private beaches.
You can’t go wrong with any of the beautiful Fiji Islands, but Turtle Island seems to perfectly capture the true romance of the South Pacific with its tranquil beauty, exotic flavors and lux accommodation. There is a reason the island was chosen twice as the location for filming “The Blue Lagoon,” – the ultimate vision of paradise with pristine beaches, brilliantly blue waters and lush greenery along with amenities and an ambiance designed to spark or re-ignite the flame of romance. Couples can enjoy intimate moonlit dinners at the edge of the sea, horseback riding at sunrise and romantic picnics for two. This private, adults-only island also has 14 secluded beaches to walk across – and as you’ll be one of just 14 couples (at maximum) on the island at any one time, your privacy is virtually guaranteed. When it’s time to go indoors, you’ll stay in an ultra-luxurious bure with views of the Blue Lagoon.
The Cook Islands, located in the South Pacific between Hawaii and New Zealand, are scattered across the sea boasting rare beauty and an idyllic climate for the ultimate island paradise. Photos can’t truly capture how striking Aitutaki Island truly is, with its brilliant turquoise lagoon filled with warm waters that are world-famous as one of the best spots for snorkeling in the world. Inside the lagoon is One Foot Island, featuring a beach that’s been voted the best in the entire Pacific Ocean. In July, whales visit the islands to breed, making it easy to spot them offshore, and no matter what time of year you arrive, you can enjoy romantic kayak trips to private beaches and boat rides in the glassy lagoons together.
The island of romance, or “the pearl of the Pacific,” no matter what you call it, Bora Bora is one of the world’s most desirable destinations for lovers. Its azure lagoons and jagged volcanic peaks seem to have a special seductive power – so much so that its often named the top place in the world for romance. This fantasy-like paradise seems to get better and better at every turn. When you’re tired of the perfect beaches, and watching yet another perfect sunset, you can always go see the rays, sharks and turtles at the Lagoonarium in Moorea, visit a vanilla plantation or a black pearl farm. With numerous luxurious five-star resorts and overwater villas, you’ll have your pick of some of the best places to spend the night on the planet too.
Palawan has been called the most beautiful island in the world, with its clear aquamarine waters, limestone cliffs, lagoons and amazing beaches. It’s also home to nature reserves on land and in the sea, as well as one of the longest underground rivers on the planet, Puerto Princesa, which traverse five miles through a subterranean cave system – visitors can explore a section of the waterway where karsts formed by dissolving limestone can be seen in every direction. Look forward to walking hand-in-hand as dolphins dance through the water just offshore and watching the sea turtles that nest on the white sand beaches.
One of Hawaii’s lesser-known islands, Lanai is ideal for romance, perhaps because it also has the smallest population of all of the inhabited Hawaiian isles. While this relatively dry, barren island isn’t a place to go if you hope to spend time hiking to lots of waterfalls, it is a fabulous place to escape the daily grind with the one you love. It also offers a number of intriguing sights, including the red desert rocks of Keahiakawelo, tide pools created from volcanic rock and Shipwreck Beach where you can search for everything from Japanese fishing nets to violet-colored snails that have washed ashore. With very few visitors and just three options of places to stay on Lanai, you’re practically guaranteed plenty of private time together without all the usual sun-seekers and party-goers. For the best view, the Four Seasons Resort Lanai, adjacent to a marine preserve that’s home to spinner dolphins, is a great choice.
Fernando de Noronha is an eco-wonderland in Brazil with its lush green interior, unspoiled beaches and dramatic volcanic peaks is ideal for a quiet romantic getaway without any fear of crowds as just a total of 420 tourists are allowed on the island at any one time. Located about 200 miles off the coast of Pernambuco State, this fantasy island is filled with deserted beaches and surrounded by impossibly blue waters. It’s also home to natural swimming pools, caves, magnificent waterfalls and all sorts of wildlife. In fact, it’s teeming with sea turtles, colorful fish and playful spinner dolphins.
The especially intoxicating Garden Isle is filled with stunning natural wonders that perfectly set the scene for romance. Renowned as an adventurous paradise, not only will you discover countless waterfalls, flower-filled gardens and lush green valleys on Kauai, but the island’s dramatic beauty lends itself to activities for two, like kayaking the only navigable river in Hawaii, taking a secluded dip in a hidden pool, sailing the coasts in a catamaran or simply enjoying an intimate dinner in one of Kauai’s romantic restaurants. For an especially unforgettable adventure, take a helicopter tour over the Na Pali Coast for a bird’s eye view of one of the most breathtaking places on Earth.
Known as “The Nature Island of the Caribbean,” Dominica is a mostly undeveloped island that’s ideal for nature lovers looking for romance. Its stunningly lush landscape includes volcanic hot springs, countless rivers and waterfalls, unspoiled rainforest and incredible natural swimming holes – arrive early and you just might be able to enjoy one all to yourselves. On Black Sand Beach, you can discover a leatherback, hawksbill and green turtle sanctuary together.
This island in the Bahamas seems as if it was made for romance, with the beaches on three-mile-long Harbour Island filled with tiny foraminifera, red-shelled creatures that give the sand its rosy hue. To complement the beautiful beaches, you can always stay at the Pink Sands Resort, with cottage-style accommodation overlooking the Atlantic, each with its own private pathway to the resort’s private pink sand beach. If you’re seeking peace and quiet, you’re sure to find it here as cars have been banned on the island.
The island of Flores is named for its abundance of flowers, particularly hydrangeas, and is renowned for its many magnificent waterfalls and some of the most glorious sunsets. It also hosts the westernmost town in all of Europe, Faja Grande and is noted for tranquil lagoons, cliffs carved by grottoes, hot springs and volcanic remains. Visitors can enjoy touring its quaint villages, hiking to one of seven natural inland lakes and countless waterfalls.
If you aren’t all about lounging around on a beach and soaking up the sunshine, you may want to consider the Lofoten Islands. Renowned for their charming fishing villages set against a backdrop of soaring mountains with jagged peaks that reflect the fiery glow of the midnight sun during the summer months, there are few more spectacular places to visit in Norway. Plus, as the islands are located above the Arctic Circle, a summertime visit means never seeing the sun set over its stark white beaches that border clear emerald waters. The beaches of Lofoten are famous – in fact, Utakleiv beach often tops the list of most romantic beaches in Europe. If you want to impress your guy or girl while you’re here, watch for a pair of white-tailed sea eagles and point them out – the especially romantic creatures are known for forming lifelong bonds.
Cape Breton Island has been called Canada’s most romantic destination. In addition to its gorgeous landscapes, things tend to move slower here, offering the chance to focus on you, your partner and the beautiful scenery. With its uniquely Gaelic origins, lots of fresh-caught lobster to dine on, the soulful sounds of a fiddle to be heard at a lively pub, lush hillsides and beaches speckled with sea glass to explore, Cape Breton is ideal for any kind of romantic escape. Enjoy the peaceful, idyllic surroundings to relax and cuddle up together at a luxurious resort or one of the island’s many cozy B&Bs.
The tropical island of Lombok is Bali’s more peaceful neighbor, renowned for its tranquil white-sand beaches, sea turtle-filled waters ideal for snorkeling and diving, and plenty of idyllic spots for romantic moments. The emerald hue of the mountains, the lush jungle and the crystal clear sea will make you feel as if you’re in a dream. Each morning, wake up and see the ocean transformed into a colorful pattern with local fisherman returning in their boats from their night out fishing, and just before dusk, head to beautiful Setangi beach where you can watch an especially glorious sunset as the sky turns shades of purple and red behind Mount Agung on Bali. Stay at Qunci Villas and you can enjoy romantic dinners with local flowers or even vow renewal.
Santorini is often ranked as one of the most romantic places on Earth, with stunning turquoise sea views and whitewashed cave houses that are backed by blue-domed churches spilling down the rim of an ancient volcanic crater. Eros, the winged god and son of Aphrodite seems to be an inspiring passion among its visitors. You’ll find a host of outstanding restaurants that overlook the sunken caldera, offering the chance for candlelit dinners featuring aromatic Mediterranean flavors, including island-grown ingredients like tangy goat cheese, ripe cherry tomatoes and watermelon – paired with wines from some of the island’s famous vineyard’s, of course. You and your partner can also enjoy tasting bubbly and white Assyrtiko wines at SantoWines in Pyrgos, as well as dessert wines and rosés at Koutsoyannopoulos Winery and Wine Museum.
One of the Caribbean’s most romantic islands, and one of the most romantic in the world, Vieques offers it all and more, with crystal clear warm waters and the magical glow of Mosquito Bay with its bioluminescent light. Discover tranquil, picture-perfect beaches where you can go horseback riding or just stroll hand-in-hand enjoying incredibly scenic views, often without another person in sight. After dark, kayak through Mosquito Bay where under the night’s starry sky the waters light up as the paddles touch them.