The Heat Is On: Five Getaways to Kindle the Romance

Love is in the air, and what better way to celebrate than to take to the skies on a hot air balloon ride or to the sea on a coupled-up cruise? Here an romance expert gives five trip ideas for fanning the flame.
Metate Arch in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah at night
Metate Arch in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah at night  (iStockphoto)

Come February, romance is in the air. And whether you are celebrating Valentine’s Day, planning a honeymoon, or just looking for a fun getaway with your better half, these trip ideas are guaranteed to ignite a spark.

Escape on a Cruise
Put away your smartphone, shun the hassle of cooking, and don’t even think about making the bed. A cruise ship is the perfect place for couples to skirt reality for a while. Pretty much anything you could want is at your disposal, and you hardly have to lift a finger. The top cruise lines have really upped their game in the culinary realm, so try a few different entrees and a few different desserts, and splurge for a drink package. For uber-relaxation, book a couples’ massage. Celebrity Cruise’s AquaSpa, for example, pampers its guests as they literally watch the ocean float by.

Splurge for a Dream Vacation
Hawaii embodies the words dreamy, romantic, and sensual like almost nowhere else. The Big Island of Hawaii was named by as a top ten destination for a honeymoon vacation on a budget. “Hawaii is a great choice for a honeymoon, but many people think they can’t afford it. The trick is to look beyond the name-brand places on the Big Island, like Kona, in favor of a hidden-gem like Kealakekua Bay,” says’s senior editor, Kate Chandler. Hawaii is known for its sandy beaches, but it has so much more to offer, such as snorkeling expeditions, rolling golf courses, interesting cultural and natural history, and plenty of yummy food choices. You can also choose to do nothing at all besides just basking in your love somewhere indescribable.

Take a Hot Air Balloon Ride
What better way to experience the beauty of Napa and Sonoma wine country than with a birds-eye view? Book a sunrise or sunset tour, complete with a mini-picnic and local sparkling wine to set the mood as your drift above the vines and wineries. Very few things can match the serene energy you feel as you watch the first rays of sun begin to paint the morning sky.

Hear a Gig
The saying goes that it takes two to tango. But in Austin, Texas, you might well swap in the two-step instead. Austin is the self-proclaimed “Live Music Capital of the World,” and this music mecca is living up to its reputation. It’s home to more live-music venues per capita than anywhere else in the United States, so any time, day or night, just follow the sounds to find something playing. While you listen, loosen your belt and enjoy the good eats that Austin has to offer. The city is well known for its barbecue and Tex Mex dishes.

Watch the Stars
For those who prefer to experience the outdoors with a touch of luxury, head somewhere like Amangiri in Canyon Point, Utah. This resort rests on 600 acres and was consciously designed to blend into its surroundings; every window has a sweeping view toward Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. One of the best aspects of the American Southwest, whether you’re staying at a ranch or roughing it in a tent, is that you’re never too far from an unobstructed view of the night sky. Grab a blanket or two and snuggle up for some truly romantic stargazing.

Published: 11 Jan 2013 | Last Updated: 28 Jan 2013
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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