I have some exciting news to reveal…we’re honeymooning in Australia and New Zealand!!! The day after our wedding, Mr. Wallaby and I will embark on a 16-day adventure to the land down under!
Australia’s Great Ocean Road / Photo via Victoria Visitors Bureau
My mom was the one who recommended that we head to the Southern Hemisphere for our late November honeymoon. Like many couples, we want to escape to a sunny place where we can lie on the beach and sunbathe. We would have wanted to spend our honeymoon in the Mediterranean (Mr. W has never been to Greece or Italy and I am begging him to go), but it will be drizzly and a little chilly in November. My parents’ next-door neighbors are a really sweet newlywed couple in their sixties, and they spent their honeymoon in New Zealand and had a blast. My mom remembered some of their stories and suggested we follow their lead.
As soon as Mr. W and I started researching places to go and things to do in Australia and New Zealand, we knew it was the perfect honeymoon destination for us. We both love spending time outdoors, and there is endless kayaking, hiking, swimming, etc. in both countries. We also realized that we can accomplish one of our major bucket-list items: scuba diving at the Great Barrier Reef!
Great Barrier Reef diver / Image via the-great-barrier-reef-experience.com
We browsed travel message boards, asked coworkers and friends who have traveled there, and briefly contacted a travel agent to assemble our itinerary. We’ll end up spending a lot of time traveling on planes, but we want to make the most out of our time down there since I’m not sure when we’ll have an opportunity to return!
Here’s what our itinerary looks like:
Day 1: Fly from Houston to Nelson, New Zealand. Hopefully catch some ZZZs on the plane!
Day 2: Travel day.
Day 3: Arrive in Nelson in late evening. Conk out at a hotel near the airport.
Days 4–6: Rent a car and drive to Golden Bay. Relax at our honeymoon cottage on the beach.
Day 7: Fly to Queenstown, New Zealand. Explore the city in the afternoon.
Days 8–9: Do some adventure sports in Queenstown. (Mr. W is excited to go zip-lining and white-water rafting!)
Day 10: Day trip from Queenstown to Milford Sound, New Zealand.
Days 11–13: Fly to Sydney. Do the Sydney Bridge Climb, catch up with old friends, and explore the city.
Days 14–16: Fly to Port Douglas, on the Great Barrier Reef. Go scuba diving. Spend more time being unproductive on the beach. Maybe make a day trip to the Daintree Rainforest to hug some koalas.
Day 17: Fly home.
We booked our flights directly through Qantas Airline, and we booked our hotels through Expedia Australia. We got a lot of great deals on accommodations—I’ll share our experiences after the honeymoon! We will book our rental cars directly through my auto insurance company, since I get a pretty big discount for renting through them. The last item on our honeymoon checklist is to apply for traveler’s visas to enter Australia.
We initially talked to a travel agent about our itinerary, but I plugged some numbers and found that we would save a significant amount of money by booking the trip ourselves. That also allowed us some flexibility to choose all of our accommodations—we had a lot of fun comparing the perks and amenities of lots of hotels before booking each one. If you are too busy to put some time into researching your honeymoon, or if you’re nervous about lining up all of the details, I would recommend hiring a travel agent, especially for trips to Australia and New Zealand. However, if you feel comfortable booking your travel online, go for it!
Where are you traveling for your honeymoon? Did you book the trip yourself or leave the booking up to a travel agent?