The dress has been revealed, the cake has been cut, and 1.9 billion people watched as Harry and Meghan tied the knot on the 19th May. Amongst other unconventional choices from the couple is their announcement that they intend to defer the all-important and anticipated honeymoon, instead preferring to return to work directly after the wedding.
Although some claim to already know where the couple will honeymoon, nothing has been announced yet. That gives the rest of us the chance for some healthy speculation on where in the world the couple might choose for a truly 21st century royal escape. One thing’s for sure: this thoroughly modern royal pairing could choose anywhere in the world – so Odyssey Travels has compiled a honeymoon countdown of six of the world’s most exotic destinations, from Antarctica to Africa, and why they might suit Harry and Meghan down to the ground.
At Six… The Wild Card: ANTARCTICA
While it may not be your typical romantic honeymoon spot, Harry and Meghan could surprise us all and decide to take their first holiday as a married couple in the eerily beautiful atmosphere of Antarctica. The frozen continent has long attracted the great explorers but, with modern luxury ships now cruising the area, you no longer need to be a Shackleton to experience the wonder of this remote part of the world. Not only is its frozen beauty and ice-adapted wildlife extraordinary, Antarctica is a great choice for a couple so in the public eye as Meghan and Harry– given that it’s one of the few destinations in the world where the press is unlikely to be able to follow!
Antarctica’s Honeymoon Hotspots
A ship built with Arctic conditions in mind and the highest ice strengthened hull available would be perfect for the royal newlyweds’ security and peace of mind. The ship can also reach parts of the region much earlier than other vessels, allowing its passengers to get an exclusive look at some of the most stunning icy landscapes and, of course, the indigenous wildlife that makes its home there – from seals to penguins and even orcas. It’s part luxury cruise – complete with sauna, pool and spacious cabins – and part traditional expedition, with specialist guides on hand to bring the frozen landscape to life.
At Five…The Intrepid Adventure: BRAZIL
Harry’s first solo tour in 2012 took him to Brazil, and Meghan wrote on her now-retired blog that she was keen to visit. While Africa is still the hot favourite destination according to the press, Brazil offers a completely different flavour – ideal for a young royal couple that wants the African safari experience but would also like to try something a little different.
Brazil’s Honeymoon Hotspots
Buried deep in the immense tropical wetlands called the Pantanal, this former cattle ranch is the definition of seclusion as guests very rarely see each other, which would of course suit the newlyweds need for privacy. The lodge offers a variety of excursions, including jeep safari, canoeing, hiking and birdwatching. It is also part of the Onçafari programme which promotes jaguar conservation in the Pantanal, which is bound to appeal to Harry and Meghan’s keen passion for conservation.
For many travellers, a trip to Brazil isn’t complete without seeing the Amazon River, and this lodge, located in the Alta Floresta rainforest, is a particularly good choice for bird lovers. However, with more than 580 recorded species roaming this vast property, there’s something for any wildlife fan. The lodge runs small, daily excursions to explore the rich, local habitat, where the royal couple might also choose to travel the rivers in search of friendly pink river dolphins.
At Four…The Gastronome’s Paradise: PERU
Peru’s capital of Lima is fast earning itself a reputation as the ultimate destination for foodies, with the ceviche a particular attraction. Of course, as a vegan Meghan would probably steer clear of this zesty, local seafood dish. But, in a country that’s becoming known as a gastronomic innovator, there is something on offer for every traveller’s culinary habits. Perhaps the pair might even take in a cookery class, or throw themselves into local activities like treks, watersports and ancient history tours.
Peru’s Honeymoon Hotspots
This elegant hotel is located in Lima’s creative heart, in the quieter district of Barranco. As well as being a great base from which to explore local art galleries and a stroll along the promenade overlooking the stunning Pacific Ocean, the couple would be treated to culinary excellence as the hotel’s acclaimed chef Oscar Velarde and his team serve up mouth-watering Peruvian inspired meals.
Should Meghan and Harry want to escape the city and soak up some of Peru’s remarkable history, then this hotel, located just two kilometres from Urubamba in the Sacred Valley of the Incas, is an ideal location. It’s close enough to explore the area’s history and scenery while being just off the main tourist drag, giving the couple the all-important peace and privacy they’ll no doubt be craving.
At three…The Nostalgia Trip: ZAMBIA
Harry and Meghan are no strangers to Zambia having visited on their trip to Africa in 2017, where they had the chance to see the stunning Victoria Falls. Rumour was rife that Harry was planning to propose on this trip, although we now know he eventually waited until they were back in London to pop the question over a somewhat less exotic roast chicken. As beautiful as the Falls are, there is so much more to see in this country, as the royal couple know only too well. Zambia is famous for having some of Africa’s finest walking safaris, which would suit any couple who like to get up close and personal with their surroundings.
Zambia’s Honeymoon Hotspots
If Meghan and Harry choose a safari holiday in Zambia, they might cap it off with a stay at this beautiful camp, located on Lake Malawi. Despite being a freshwater lake, the surrounding beaches are as beautiful as any you’d find by the coast and the exceptional service at Kaya Mawa makes any guest feel like royalty.
Located in Kafue National Park, this area is off the tourist track and safaris are highly exclusive, although that is hardly an issue for these newlyweds. And if they’re looking to enjoy big game such as lions, elephants, buffalo and rhinoceros in a natural environment, then this is the camp to head for. The Busanga Plains are famed for their large concentrations of predator species, and Shumba is located right at their heart. Alternatively, if Meghan and Harry were looking for a more romantic and private safari experience, the camp offers hot air balloon rides and night drives as a more personal way of appreciating the beautiful surrounding scenery.
At Two… The Humanitarian Choice: RWANDA
As both Meghan and Harry are known for their humanitarian work, a visit to Rwanda would be a great way for them to indulge in their passion of helping others, whilst also enjoying some relaxing downtime. Meghan has visited the country before as a World Vision global ambassador and described the experience as ‘incredible’ and it’s easy to see why, with its unrivalled gorilla safaris and pristine landscape. Rwanda remains off the beaten tourist track enough for a high-profile couple like this one, but is a magnificent experience, making it one of the most hotly tipped destinations for the royal honeymoon.
Rwanda’s Honeymoon Hotspots
Opened in June 2017, this camp is located inside an eroded volcanic cone next to the renowned Volcanoes National Park. It’s owned by the Wilderness Safaris group, who have taken great pains to create a lodge that blends with both its surroundings and indigenous Rwandan traditions – bound to appeal to Harry and Meghan’s people loving nature.
Another wonderful lodge with stunning views of two sparkling volcanic lakes and the volcanoes themselves, Virunga Lodge offers exciting gorilla treks, and the couple could even pay homage to Diane Fossey at her grave. Plus, there are complimentary massages provided to ease aching muscles after a long trek.
At One…The Hot Tip: NAMIBIA
Thought to be the most likely choice for the royal couple, Namibia is unlike anywhere else in Africa, or the rest of the world, making it a unique yet life-changing location for honeymooners. The oldest desert on Earth and the world’s largest sand dunes are located here, meaning the royal couple would be able to seek out desert elephants and desert rhinos, both uniquely adapted to this inhospitable environment. Namibia’s light is said to be magical, making it extremely popular with wildlife photographers. This may attract Harry who, like his sister-in-law the Duchess of Cambridge, is known to enjoy being behind the lens. At four times the size of England yet just 1.2 million people, it’s also the perfect choice for a couple looking for seclusion, as the royal newlyweds are bound to be.
Namibia’s Honeymoon Hotspots
One of the most remote camps in all of Africa, Serra Cafema nestles on the banks of the Kunene River, with views of Angola across the water. It’s small, secluded and personal, making it a perfect choice for the royal newlyweds. The camp is often visited by the native Ovahimba families who live nearby, which gives guests the opportunity to learn about their lifestyle and traditions – perfect for the royal pair.
Hoanib is something of a dream lodge for anyone looking to escape normal life, as it is only accessible via light aircraft. What makes it particularly special is that it offers a combination of stunning scenery, with the renowned Skeleton Coast just a short flight away, as well as unmissable wildlife, as the indigenous desert elephant is in abundance around the camp. This is something that no other Namibian camp offers, fast making it an extremely popular destination despite it being relatively new.