10 Emerging Destination Wedding Locations
Whether your idea of the perfect destination wedding is blue waters, white sand beaches or eco-friendly surroundings, we've scouted out some of the most alluring locations where the dollar still goes far - and amazing locations are still in reach.
Riviera Maya, Mexico
The Riviera Maya, also known as the Mayan Riviera is a long stretch of land which parallels the Caribbean coastline of Quintana Roo, Mexico. Laden with some of the world's most beautiful white beaches and turquoise waters this area of Mexico while largely developed still surprises with a few quaint towns that remain relatively untouched, such as Puerto Morelos, Akumal, and Tulum.
Destination wedding couples can expect to find a plethora of lodging options from large scale all-inclusive resorts to smaller boutique hotels. The people of this tourist district are incredibly friendly, the activities are endless, and the backdrop for "I-do's" are unparalleled.
With no shortage of culture and a long and ancient history Morocco is a unique choice for a destination wedding. With so many Moroccan towns to choose from, one not to be missed is the town of Larache. Larache has much of what is found in other parts of Morocco, whitewashed houses, blue doors, close connection to the sea, and long beaches. But there is just a bit more trace of the Spanish past than in other Moroccan cities. The atmosphere in Larache is relaxed, the people charming, and the sunsets stunning. With so much culture and beaches to boot, Larache is without question a location to be considered.
Curacao, Netherlands Antilles
Rich history, distinct architecture, colorful carnivals, and a diver's paradise make Curacao a dream destination wedding location. A beach lovers' paradise, the island of Curacao is home to more than 35 beaches with remarkable variety. Whether you are a sun-loving couple or a adventure bound duo, you can choose between intimate rocky coves surrounded by massive cliffs or long sandy beaches, either secluded by nature or bustling with activities. The one thing they all share is crystal clear turquoise water and picture-perfect weather. Curacao remains relatively untouched by the destination wedding set which has kept the cost of marriage here low.
A quick three hour flight from the east coast, Belize remains a relatively hidden gem among the destination wedding set. Couples seeking a wedding filled with outdoor adventures, sun-filled days and eco-friendly activities have found their perfect match in Belize. Perhaps because it is as easy on the wallet as it is on the eyes--as well as the fact that this Caribbean destination offers a diverse landscape full of lush rainforests and crystal blue waters--Belize will not remain a secret for long. Couples looking for the perfect beachside venue will want to check out the islands of Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker.
Nicknamed the "Pearl of the Pacific," and located on Mexico's Gold Coast, Mazatlan offers everything from full-service all-inclusive resorts to spectacular villas and boutique hotels. With 10 miles of stunning Pacific beachfront, picturesque churches and rich history, you'll certainly find just the right spot to start life as newlyweds. Couples can enjoy activities such as golf, sport-fishing, and snorkeling, as well as savor the culture of Old Town, the 282 acres that is currently experiencing a renaissance and putting Mazatlan back on the map.
The tropical island of Bimini offers a luxurious unspoiled Caribbean experience. Of the over 700 islands and cays of the Bahamas chain, Bimini is the closest to South Florida (just a 25 minute flight or less than 2 hours by sea). Bimini is made up of two major islands that are rich with history and natural resources - North and South Bimini. Most of the islands' popul ation lives in Bailey Town, while the main tourist center is in Alice Town, both in North Bimini. Wedding guests are sure to love the relative ease of travel and of course the gorgeous surroundings.
This tropical location is no newcomer to the travel game but seems to be less of a hot-spot when it comes to drawing destination-bound wedding couples.
Lush rain forests, breathtaking mountain views, and beaches for miles all seem to feel rather untouched by the outside, despite the nation drawing over a million tourists a year. Friends and family can enjoy lovely tropical beaches, the grandest adventures, the wonders of nature, and scintillating culture, all the necessary components of an ideal destination wedding.
Quickly gaining notice among travelers, this 60km island located near one of the largest barrier reefs in the Caribbean is the ideal backdrop for couples who seek undisturbed beauty. English is spoken as the primary language in Roatan, making it easy to communicate with this remote destination while planning from afar. Couples with smaller wedding parties might consider renting a beachside bungalow, while those with a larger guest list will have no trouble finding full-service hotels with all the regular creature comforts.
The Azores, Portugal
It has been said that the Azores are not just a destination but a magical journey--and we happen to agree. Comprised of nine islands, the Azores offer a unique landscape that is possibly the most charming you will ever have the pleasure of experiencing. There is something truly dreamy in the flowers-laden fields, blue and green lagoons, and quaint cottages that scatter the multiple islands. The Azores are nature in its original splendor.
While not considered to be a hot spot by most, we think that is exactly why Pranburi is a perfect pick. Thirty kilometers south of Hua Hin, Pranburi offers a peaceful environment infused with a sense of privacy and affordable exclusivity.