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Image via Matt Wade

From festivals that celebrate ancient mythical folklores to those that thrive on centuries of history or honour, pride and love, June is an exciting month for honeymooners. So say your vows and immediately hit a festival or two to celebrate your marriage in new and exciting locations. It’s bound to be a holiday you’re not likely to forget.

 

Image via Sumit Surai

Lajkonik Festival

One of Poland’s most bizarre festivals sees an exotic figure dressed in colourful robes make a five hour treck through the city of Krakow, occasionally making stops to accept gifts of free food and liquor handouts. He carries a mace with which he hits revellers (something you should count yourself lucky not to be included in) all the while promising luck, wealth and bountiful crops. As far back as 1818, this festival has been an official way for the city to celebrate history and embrace seemingly odd beginnings.

Image via Kezka Dantza Taldea Eibar

For someplace close to stay during the festivities have a look at the tranquil and charming Topolowa Residence. The hotel offers gorgeous modern rooms that are warm, inviting and beyond comfortable. It’s going to be very hard to drag yourself away from the hotel for the festival itself. And much like that hotel, the Hotel Wentzl is charming and full of character unique to the history of Krakow. The hotel is also in a convenient location, closeby to restaurants and all the fun of the festival!

Image via Topolowa Residence

The festival is said to be a celebration of the success over the Tartar invasion in which a man entered an enemy camp and returned to town with unknown riches. To honour this, the town becomes a colourful explosion of music, storytelling and celebration. With this new type of energy throughout the city, a feeling that fits right in anywhere throughout Poland, you and your significant other can expect a unique kind of celebration of love.

Image via Kezka Dantza Taldea Eibar

Pride Week – New York

Police raids in a well-known gay community had become a staple of New York City life in 1969 until one night in June when community members stood and fought back in what became known as The Stonewall Riots. If you don’t know the story behind the annual Pride Week it might be best to research it before joining; the overwhelming sense of pride and wonder for the community is that much more intense. But above that is the colour and the beauty that comes with Pride Week in incredible NYC.

Image via Sasha Kargaltsev

There are so many incredible places across the city where you can stay that it’s almost impossible to really narrow down the choices. For something classic, modern, and close consider the glamorous Sofitel New York Hotel. For something a little more artsy, have a look at the Homewood Suites. Then there’s also the incredible Bryant Park Hotel for a mix of both.

Image via Sofitel New York Hotel

To celebrate a diverse, inspirational and creative community that values equality, consider spending your honeymoon in exciting New York City and join the crowds and crowds of people on the streets. Enjoy the overwhelming feelings of love and acceptance during a festival that values them above anything else.

Image via Daniel Case

Dragon Boat Festival

China comes alive on the fifth day of the fifth lunar month every year to celebrate 2,000 years of culture and tradition. In this instance, it’s a commemoration of the ancient poet, Qu Yuan, who chose to sacrifice himself rather than see his country invaded. To honour him and his sacrifice, the country comes alive with traditions and customs from eating particular foods to the major Dragon Boat Racing events. It’s an incredible experience, and although nations around the world have also come to celebrate this festival in their own way, there’s nothing quite like being in the centre of China as history comes alive.

Image via Caiguanhao

The festival takes place across the entire country and depending on regions, each place will have their own way of celebrating the festival. So it’s not a matter of picking based on location – it’s about what suits you and your significant other the best. We can’t go past the lovely New World Beijing Hotel and the incredible panoramic views. And then there’s the W Hong Kong that’s just as incredible as you would expect it to be.

Image via New World Beijing Hotel

During the festival take the opportunity to explore China. With your new partner, watch the Dragon Boat Races on the shores of some of their most incredible rivers, eat new and exciting cuisines specific to this festival and embrace a different history. It’s an exciting way to embrace an unfamiliar culture and celebrate your new marriage.

Image via Atmhk          

Ms Chinoiserie Says: Wow – so much ‘colour pop’ in June; New York is my choice for festival honeymoon fun!

Polka Dot Honeymoons Directory Mid Banner

We caught up with Megan, a full time travel blogger and owner of Mapping Megan. Mapping Megan is a travel resource for self-confessed travel addicts which shares travel tips, photography and inspiring stories from all around the world. Megan says she and husband Mike are aiming to inspire people to travel and seek adventure. Megan shared with us some of her top picks for your honeymoon.

What is your favourite region?
Iceland. Iceland by far is one of our favourite places in the world and I would love to live there if I could. It is one of the last untouched destinations left on earth. It’s exotic, so naturally beautiful and largely untouched by tourism which we absolutely love.

The scenery takes your breath away. Waterfalls, glaciers, dramatic fjords – there is inspiring scenery at every turn. Majestic glaciers grind their way through cracked lava fields, gushing geysers explode with a powerful force, glittering ice caps pierce the sky and vibrant green fjords rise from the mist of geothermal lagoons.

Iceland is a country defined by its outdoors and there is so much opportunity here for adventure. Outdoor adventure is what we live for, so what better reason to pick up and move!

Top resort recommendation?
InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa is our pick! Protected by a spanning coral reef, the InterContinental on Viti Levu is worth splashing out for. This five-star resort has everything you could want in a resort. I’m not a golfer but the 18-hole championship golf course offers great views as well as perfectly primed fairways for a romantic stroll (we have a habit of sneaking onto golf courses after hours for a walk!) There is a small handful of excellent dining options and of course, a gorgeous spa. I always choose rooms on the beachfront because there’s nothing like waking up to the sound and sight of the ocean.

Image via InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa

Suggestions for great honeymoon activities?
Honestly, and this is going to sound clichéd and cheesy, but anything can be a great honeymoon activity as long as you’re spending time together.

That said, I’m a big advocate for adventure travel and I believe trying something which pushes you out of your comfort zone will allow you to bond and bring you close together. Something thrilling like skydiving, or a couple’s bungee jump – which sends your adrenaline racing and heart pumping faster than it was on your wedding day! Or try an activity which is a first for both of you – another great way to bond and create memories which include each other.

The ideal location for a proposal
While this will vary depending on the couple and their interests, for adventurous couples like myself and Mike, I recommend Jordan. If you want to feel like you’ve walked directly on to the set of an Indiana Jones film, visit the stone city of Petra. You can walk there on the Trek to Petra, following Bedouin migration paths and remote hunter’s routes through the wilds of Jordan before you reach your destination.

This ancient pink-tinged city, built in the 6th century BC, is carved into a remote stone canyon in Jordan’s southern desert. If that’s not a dramatic enough backdrop for a proposal, Jordan’s also home to numerous Roman ruins in Amman and Jerash. Destination engagement proposals!

Why not follow in the footsteps of Lawrence of Arabia and ride camels through the Wadi Rum, stopping in a lush oasis to pop the question!

Best kept secret honeymoon location
With eight UNESCO World Heritage sites, Sri Lanka is a destination that’s a bit off the beaten path yet provides no shortage of culture and adventure.

Go whale watching, stay in a tea plantation, track leopards in the jungle, or view the unparalleled sight of the annual elephant migration which takes place in Sri Lanka’s Minneriya National Park. After your honeymoon you’ll be itching to plan your anniversaries here year after year!

Images, unless otherwise noted, by Megan from Mapping Megan

Ms Chinoiserie Says: I’m inspired to go to Iceland now – its natural beauty is breathtaking!

Image by Nico Alary

If you’ve chosen your dream honeymoon destination, and that destination is Paris (lucky you!), there is no doubt the thought of French food will be already tantalising you from afar! So what do you choose to tempt your taste buds? Although this list is short and not exhaustive – by any means! – read on to find out some recommendations on what to indulge in whilst wandering around the city of love!

Baguettes/Croissants

The first tempting treat that comes to mind, and likely the easiest to find no matter where in France you end up, is the humble baguette. Look for a boulangerie, rather than a bakery, and keep an eye out for that crunchy pointed tip. This should ensure the bread has been baked on the premises and hand-made.

Become a regular at your local bakery, ordering several warm pain au chocolat for breakfast, a simple fromage baguette for lunch and some delectable pastries for afternoon tea. You may need to get in early if your mouth waters for a fresh-out-of-the-oven croissant – and even baguettes can sell quickly! Indulgence is the name of the game in Paris, and bread is an excellent place to begin!

Image by elieyobeid

Crepes/Creme brulee

If you’re out and about and needing an afternoon snack, or a sweet treat to keep those legs going after all the walking you’ve been doing, find yourself a crepe stand and a seat with a view. Although it may not be high-class Parisian fare, a warm and gooey Nutella crepe is just the ticket for a picnic in one of the many stunning gardens you’ll find, or even whilst overlooking the Seine!

If your palate runs to the savoury side, there are plenty of options for you too. Just be sure the crepes are made fresh while you wait, and if you choose the Nutella flavour, be prepared to make a (delicious)mess.

Whilst we’re on the subject of sweet treats, if you do find yourself booking into a restaurant for an evening meal, and you discover the food to be wonderfully authentic, be sure to order the creme brulee for dessert. After a delicious meal you may want to share, but don’t be shy to claim rights over cracking the sugar glaze! There is almost nothing better!

Image by Sarah Ratner 

Cheese

There is almost no greater pairing than bread and cheese, especially when the quality of both are high. Once you’ve found yourself a boulangerie and a favourite baguette, it’s time to look for some cheese!

Each region in France has a speciality, so if you’re planning a tour around the countryside and are a raving cheese fan, it might be worth doing some cheese-specific research. However, most of these different varieties can be found in popular stores in Paris. Top cheese honours have gone to Fromagerie Laurent Dubois with Androuet boasting one of the largest collections in town, although these well-known stores also tend to boast long queues. If you’re brave, ask for a recommendation and seasonal advice, then grab your purchases and head for the park! You’ve got the best picnic in town.

Image by Ed Anderson

Sweets (macarons)

Although macarons are readily available just about anywhere these days, there is still something quite special about lining up in the gorgeous Laduree store to select your flavours, watching as they are packed away into a beautiful box. However, don’t feel as though you must only visit Laduree! There are loads of other incredibly delicious macarons to be tasted – you might even be given a quiet recommendation from a local!

Image by Nico Alary

One more thing – don’t leave Paris without sampling the chocolate on offer. Head for Saint-Germain-des-Pres and you’ll find an overload of cocoa based options! If you’re looking to add to your picnic, grab some bon bon de chocolate, the beautiful bite sized creations you’ll find in most chocolate shops. While high quality artisan chocolate may be pricey, it’s definitely worth a taste! You’ll likely find caramels in these stores too, and if you haven’t completely overindulged by this point (which I suspect is unlikely, but you are in Paris after all!), grab a few of these too. You won’t regret it!

 

Ms Chinoiserie Says: I’m in treat heaven! The Nutella crepes are definitely my favourite – but it’s hard to stop at one!

About Ms Honeycomb  – Hi, I’m Nicola, the florist and crafter behind rubyandjoy. I’m a gardening, fabric loving, mint tea drinking, brownie baking, book obsessed maker! I love a good adventure having just moved back from five years in Scotland (with my lovely Scottish husband).