12 Best Cheap Honeymoon Destinations

Written by Lavanya Sunkara
Mar 25, 2020

A vacation with your new spouse doesn't have to be expensive to be memorable. After all, nothing else matters as long as you are together. Luxurious accommodations at exclusive resorts and first-class flights to exotic places seem appealing, but when you've blown your savings on an elaborate wedding, or want to enjoy the simple things in life, you can choose from a number of cheap honeymoon destinations that can still give you an unforgettable trip.

Whether you are seeking sun, sand, and over-the-water hammocks or an adrenaline-filled vacation spent in the jungle or underwater, we've got the right destination for you.

Get more for less in South Asian countries like Thailand and Indonesia, take a short flight to the beautiful beaches of Puerto Rico or Belize, cruise to Mexico's famed Riviera Maya, get your heart pumping on ziplines in Costa Rica and the San Juan Islands, road trip through Portugal, or indulge in a castle stay in Europe.

For affordable honeymoon ideas that won't break the bank, check out our list of the best cheap honeymoon destinations.

1. Puerto Rico, United States

Isla Verde resort in San Juan, Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico is appealing for many reasons. It's easily accessible from major North American cities, U.S. citizens don't need a passport to visit, and you can drive on the right side of the road. This Caribbean gem with lovely resorts, beautiful beaches, jungles, offshore islands, and a walkable main city, provides all-around fun for honeymooners.

Properties like Hotel El Convento and Sheraton Puerto Rico Hotel can be booked for reasonable prices, you can get around on Uber for a fraction of the price in the States, and islands like Vieques (known for the Mosquito bioluminescent Bay) and Culebra provide more relaxing alternatives.

Accommodation: Best Beach Resorts in Puerto Rico

2. Florida Keys, United States

Palm trees and kayaks on the beach in Key West

If you don't want to fly to the Caribbean, but still want silky-sand beaches and endless sunshine, head to the Florida Keys. Budget-conscious travelers will love the string of islands at the tip of Florida, where the year-round dress code seems to be shorts, t-shirts, and flip flops.

The enchanting islands stretch out into the Gulf of Mexico from Key Largo to Key West, connected by the Overseas Highway. Beachside accommodations and water activities are aplenty on these islands, the fun never seems to end on Key West's Duval Street, and the key lime pie is unlike anything you've ever tasted.

Swim with dolphins, enjoy sunset sailings, and walk off into the sunset on a picture-perfect beach.

Accommodation: Best Resorts on the Beach in the Florida Keys

3. Riviera Maya, Mexico

Maya ruins at Tulum on the Riviera Maya

The sought-after Caribbean coastline on Yucatán Peninsula that makes up Riviera Maya is rife with white-sand beaches, seaside resorts, and inviting turquoise-colored waters. Located just south of the crowded city of Cancun, the region starts with the town of Puerto Morelos and ends with Punta Allen, with main cities along the way being Playa del Carmen and Tulum.

If you decided to cruise, Cozumel, located a ferry ride from Playa del Carmen, is one of the most popular ports in Mexico, and you'll find a lot of inexpensive deals anytime of the year. Avoid spring break if you are looking for some peace and quiet.

Visitors to this region can choose from all-inclusive resorts in Playa del Carmen (some even have adults-only pools) with deep discounts, or opt for small, eco-friendly beachside hotels in laid-back places like Tulum and Akumal (best for turtle watching).

Some of these accommodations are so rustic that you may not have power at certain times, but who needs air-conditioning when you can jump into the refreshing waters? For unspoiled beaches and an adventure you won't soon forget, head to the UNESCO site of the Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reserve.

Accommodation: Top-Rated Resorts in Playa del Carmen

4. Thailand

Couple enjoying their honeymoon on a beautiful beach in Thailand

Surely, a flight to Thailand isn't cheap, but your trip will cost exponentially less once you are here. And if your wedding happens to take place in the winter in the Western Hemisphere, the months between November and April are an ideal time to visit Thailand, when the weather is cool and dry.

Mouth-watering food, top-notch accommodations, and air transportation in this friendly country are relatively cheap. And the country offers everything from jungle hikes to sun-kissed beaches.

Room rates at hotels in Bangkok, the main launching point, are fairly reasonable. Spend a few days here savoring delectable food from street vendors (one even has a Michelin star) and night markets, visit its shimmering temples, and shop for colorful beachwear before heading to the islands.

Popular islands like Phuket and Koh Samui are just a quick plane ride away. You can indulge in romantic dinners with your feet in the sand, have massages, or pass the evening watching beachside fire dancers under the full moon.

5. Costa Rica

Manzanillo Beach in Costa Rica

Choose from a number of eco-friendly lodging options in the Central American jewel of Costa Rica. This small country is geologically diverse and boasts everything from volcanoes, cloud forests, and wildlife-rich national parks to amazing beaches, thermal hot springs, and other rewarding places to visit.

Zipline through the mystical forests of Monteverde Reserve, spot sloths and capuchin monkeys in Manuel Antonio National Park, hit the waves in Tamarindo, see resident dolphins and migrating whales in Osa Peninsula's Golfo Dulce, or delight at the sight of sea turtles at Playa Tortuguero.

Some Spanish speaking is needed in remote areas, but you can get by with your Google translator and a desire to learn. Although there are expensive resorts you can splurge on, there are plenty of beachside and jungle lodging available near Costa Rica's natural attractions.

Accommodation: Top-Rated Beach Resorts in Costa Rica

6. Las Vegas, United States

Las Vegas Strip

Las Vegas can serve as a great spot for eloping and honeymooning. With luxurious hotels like the Wynn Las Vegas and ARIA Resort offering great deals, endless buffets, and top-notch entertainment, you can have a grand time in this shining oasis in the desert.

Take a romantic gondola ride along the man-made canals of the Venetian, catch a Cirque du Soleil Show, marvel at the dancing fountains at the Bellagio Las Vegas, walk the Strip hand-in-hand, and dance the night away with your special someone.

You can combine your Vegas trip with an outing to the Grand Canyon (four hours by car) or go for a scenic drive or hikes around Red Rock Canyon, a lot closer.

If you are staying overnight around the Grand Canyon, book your lodging at places like Yavapai Lodge ahead of time to find the best deals.

Accommodation: Where to Stay in Las Vegas: Best Areas and Hotels

7. Belize

Idyllic Belize beach scene

For a small country, Belize packs a lot of adventure and gives visitors a good mix of spectacular beaches, jungles, and Mayan sites. This is the only English-speaking Central American country and offers the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Belize Barrier Reef system, the second largest reef system in the world, along with other incredible natural wonders.

Start off your honeymoon on the western side ziplining and discovering waterfalls in the Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve, and visiting Mayan sites in Cayo District.

Head to south central Belize for a memorable guided hike to see jaguars and other wildcats in Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary before heading to the Caribbean coast for the country's gleaming cayes (islands) and water adventures.

Snorkel to see an array of marine life and swim with nurse sharks at Hol Chan Marine Reserve. If you have a scuba license, head to the Great Blue Hole submarine cave for an unforgettable underwater adventure.

Base your stay in the rustic town of San Pedro on Ambergris Caye at an all-inclusive resort with complementary activities, or relax at more budget-friendly accommodations at Caye Caulker.

Accommodation: Top-Rated Beach Resorts in Belize

8. Jamaica

Raft trip in Jamaica

Sandals resorts are not the only all-inclusive resorts in Jamaica, the island that boasts the first overwater bungalows in the Caribbean. A lot of budget-friendly, all-inclusive resorts with romance packages have cropped up around the island, offering good food, drinks, activities, and additional free nights. Budget airlines like JetBlue fly to Montego Bay from major U.S. cities, making travel to this Caribbean jewel a breeze.

English is the official language, and shops and restaurants accept the US dollar, making travel to Jamaica a lot easier. In the birthplace of reggae music, there's never a dull moment. You can hike to waterfalls, soak up the sun on its sugary-white beaches, go snorkeling, and spend your evenings dancing barefoot in the sand. The best time to visit is December to March, although the shoulder season of April to May sees more deals and fewer tourists.

Accommodation: Best Resorts in Jamaica

9. Portugal

Porto, Portugal

Portugal is less expensive than its neighboring country of Spain, and other European destinations, and still holds onto its old-world charm. With urban neighborhoods, medieval castles, endless olive groves, and quaint fishing villages among the many places to visit, this small country offers an off-the-beaten-path European getaway.

After spending a day or two exploring Lisbon, head to the National Palace of Pena and explore the sights of Sintra, then make your way up north to the Douro region, the birthplace of port. In Porto, take a short cruise along the Douro River to the city of Vila Nova de Gaia, renowned for its port cellars.

Head south to the region of Algarve for stunning white-sand beaches, turquoise waters, golf courses, and fresh seafood. Car rentals are fairly cheap in Portugal; you can rent a car for as low as $10 per day.

Accommodation: Best Holiday Resorts in Portugal

10. Bali, Indonesia

Couple at the Ulun Datu Bratan Temple in Bali

Spirituality meets serenity on the island of Bali, where couples can spend their days practicing yoga, getting in touch with nature, and swimming or surfing in the island's warm waters. Couples massages, yoga retreats, cooking classes, and romantic dinners are just some of the offerings you'll find all across Bali and its neighboring islands.

Thrill-seekers can trek the jungles in the highlands of Ubud, go in search of exotic bird sightings and the giant banyan tree in the area of Munduk farther north, or head to the southwestern tip of Bukit Peninsula for great surfing in Uluwatu.

One of the best aspects of Bali is that you can book a 5-star resort with infinity pools or a beachside guesthouse for a fraction of the price it would cost in the Western Hemisphere. Get a massage at a luxury spa and dine at a local restaurant for much less than you would expect.

And if seeing all those surfers fills you with inspiration, you can hire a teacher and rent surfboards. Not up for the activity? Hang back and relax on one of Bali's beautiful beaches. Best of all, you'll meet some of the friendliest people.

Accommodation: Best Beach Resorts in Bali

11. Ireland

Lough Eske castle in Donegal County, Ireland

If you've ever dreamed of a fairy-tale wedding followed by a honeymoon in a gorgeous setting, look no further than Ireland. You can have your pick of castle-turned-hotels all across the country. Castle hotels like Kilronan Castle Estate & Spa, Lough Eske Castle, Castlemartyr Resort, Castle Leslie Estate, and Waterford Castle Hotel are among many that offer nightly rates for under $200 and provide excellent amenities like resort spas, golf courses, fine dining, and afternoon tea.

Spend your time hiking in the surrounding woodlands, horseback riding, learning archery, or falconry. Retreat to lavishly decorated rooms with wood-burning fireplaces. Ireland also has a number of cozy bed and breakfast inns throughout the country.

Keep in mind that while Dublin is on the expensive side, it's best to fly directly to Shannon Airport to save both time and money, as Shannon is closer to the United States. After all, the countryside of the Emerald Isle, with its windswept scenery and quaint villages, is what makes this country so appealing.

Accommodation: Where to Stay in Dublin: Best Areas & Hotels

12. San Juan Islands, Washington

Killer Whale breaching in the San Juan Islands

If you are looking for an adventure-filled honeymoon in the United States, the San Juan Islands make a great choice. Located just north of Seattle, the lively seaside town of Friday Harbor on San Juan Island can be reached by ferry from Anacortes. With farm-to-table restaurants, antique stores, boutiques, bookstores, and museums, Friday Harbor has a peaceful Pacific Northwest vibe.

Among the islands in the archipelago is Orcas Island, where you can hike Moran State Park's old-growth forest and Mt. Constitution. If you are visiting May through October, you will see plenty of killer whales in the waters surrounding the islands on whale watching tours. You are also likely to see harbor seals, porpoises, and bald eagles.

For watching orcas from land, head to the Lime Kiln State Park, also known as "Whale Watch Park." Choose from either a charming bed and breakfast inn on San Juan Island, or opt for a romantic cabin near the beach on Orcas Island.

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