Do you love the idea of an easy, stress-free wedding? How does spending a few days with the people you love most in a beautiful locale sound? If so, you should consider hosting a fabulous destination wedding! One of the biggest joys of a destination wedding is getting married in a place that has special meaning to you and your fiancée, or is somewhere that you’ve both always wanted to visit. This is one of the most important days of your lives, so you’ll want the setting to be on point and reflect who you are as a couple!
Another benefit of getting married away from home? You and your significant other will be sharing the experience with a select group of your family and friends. AND you will actually have the opportunity to spend quality time with your guests. Instead of a typical wedding where you are basically darting from person to person trying to say hello to everyone, at your destination wedding you’ll be spending at least a couple days with your nearest and dearest. Plenty of time for real conversations, and wonderful memories.
Any destination wedding is asking a lot of your guests, even if it’s not overseas, so it’s nice to pick a location that will make for a fantastic vacay for them. Basically, if you’re asking people to fly to your wedding and shell out for their rooms, you want to make it well worth their while! The options are absolutely endless but we’ve hand selected three awesome locations for your consideration that will ensure that everyone has the time of their lives:
1. Half Moon Bay, California
Half Moon Bay doesn’t get quite as much attention as some of the other areas on the Pacific Coast, but it’s a mystery as to why. South of San Francisco and right on the beach, it’s a small town that has just about everything you could want in a coastal California experience. As for weddings, we should probably mention that The Knot wrote it up as one of the best mainland U.S. wedding locales in general. So even before you start considering what kind of fun your guests can get up to, it’s worth thinking about getting hitched here. There are vineyards and resorts alike that make for great spots for the actual wedding, and in the time before and after the big day there are all kinds of activities for guests: surfing, touring wineries, visiting the elephant seal reserve (seriously) and enjoying world class golf courses.
2. Paradise Island, Bahamas
This is perhaps a more traditional option, and certainly a busier destination than the other two we’ll mention here. But Paradise Island isn’t just a tropical paradise in the Bahamas. It’s also home to one of the biggest resorts in the region, which gives your guests all kinds of things to do before and after the wedding. The Atlantis Resort has a cluster of water parks the size of a small village, its own beach space, and access to scuba, snorkel, and boating trips. For those who are into it, it’s also renowned for its casino, having been listed in one article as one of the world’s best destinations for poker players. Sure it’s a little commercial for a tropical getaway but for big crowd it’s perfect, and it’s the kind of place that ought to be experienced at least once.
3. Bar Harbor, Maine
Bar Harbor is a little bit like the East Coast version of Half Moon Bay, in that it’s a gorgeous place for a wedding that happens to offer a lot of fun, mostly outdoor activities for your guests. Mind you, you aren’t getting a traditional beach area here – rather a rocky coastline more typical of New England. But it’s beautiful nonetheless, and particularly in the warmer months there are lots of great places to say “I do!” As for activities, your guests might enjoy kayaking (or swimming if it’s warm enough), whale watching, and most of all exploring the incredible Acadia National Park. In particular, there are 120 miles of trails to select from throughout the park, most of them offering stunning views. That makes this a great choice for a more active group (and gives your guests a way of working off some of the calories from the reception!)