Good morning and happy Wednesday! Following the weekend’s tease of a scorching summer which quickly disappeared – cheers England – I have a much more sunnier guest post chatting all things exotic and adventure.
Last week, I met with Helen, one of the founders of Faraway, a London-based travel company that specialises in adventurous and extended honeymoons. Together with her husband Al, she has built Faraway to give busy people – especially newlyweds – bespoke and unforgettable escapes.
As a recently married couple in their thirties who love to travel, they understand how important your honeymoon is and want to help you have an experience you’ll never forget. As a lover of travel myself and someone who believes we have to see as much of this world as we can, what better opportunity than your honeymoon to explore off the beaten track with a personally curated adventure. I’m also delighted to be partnering with Faraway to give you guys a special offer if you quote ‘Blonde Army‘ – more details at the end of the post…
So for now…over to you Helen…
Hello! I’m Helen. My husband Al and I are the co-founders of Faraway, a young travel company specialising in unforgettable honeymoons with an adventurous twist.
Before starting Faraway, Al and I were both in corporate jobs in London, spending as much time as our jobs would allow travelling. Our trips got longer and longer, until eventually we decided to take six months out from work to go on a proper adventure together. It was a big leap – but we’d both been working for a decade, and wanted to take some time away from our hectic London lives to immerse ourselves in a very different kind of experience together.
Long story short, that trip led us to building Faraway together around the belief that life is short, and precious, and worth living as fully as you can. You can read more about our ethos on our website.
Most of the couples we plan honeymoons for are keen travellers too, and would usually relish the experience of poring over a map and planning an escape together. But, they’re keen to do something extra special for their honeymoon and don’t have the time to do all the research and legwork required to make it the extraordinary adventure they dream of (especially alongside work, wedding plans and any sign of a social life!).
If that sounds like you, firstly, congratulations! Here are a few of our top tips for making the most of one of the most exciting trips of your life, your first as a married couple:
- Design your honeymoon around you
Whilst in recent years, newlyweds have typically headed off to a luxurious resort to recuperate after the Big Day, more and more couples are now opting for a unique honeymoon experience that’s a little more “them”. So, before diving into honeymoon research and opening up twenty tabs on your laptop, make time to talk through your own ideas of the perfect escape (ideally over a glass of bubbles). Is there somewhere you’ve always dreamed about visiting together? Or an experience that’s high up on both of your bucket-lists? This is your chance to make it happen!
Faraway honeymoons are personally-crafted from scratch by us around the things our couples love. We’ve designed everything from a month-long honeymoon combining Colombia’s cool cities, jungle and coastline with Panama’s islands and coffee farms; to a six-week road trip down the west coast of the United States, and into Mexico; and a fortnight of stylish luxury and safari in Botswana and South Africa. Every couple is different, and so is every honeymoon.
Extra tip – if you have an adventurous escape in mind, you might like to go on a restorative mini-moon immediately after the wedding and save the honeymoon for a few months later. That way, you’ll be refreshed enough to make the most of it, and have something to look forward to.
2. Factor in some experiences you’ll never forget
Have you ever looked back on a relaxing holiday and noticed that, as enjoyable as it was, you can’t really remember what you did? Your honeymoon marks a special occasion in your lives, and so we always recommend that couples factor in some immersive experiences you’ll never forget (alongside a few long lazy days that blur into one another, of course).
We love helping our couples discover something they hadn’t considered, and more often than not it ends up being the highlight of the honeymoon. Depending on what you’re into, it could be taking a helicopter ride together, island-hopping on your own private boat, sleeping out under the stars, hiking to a beautiful viewpoint or seeing animals in the wild on safari.
Not only will you be left with memories to treasure, we also find immersing yourself in an experience together can really help you to switch off, forget about life back at home and embrace your downtime together.
3. Mix things up to make the most of your budget
Let’s face it, getting married can be expensive! So, whilst we’d all love to imagine money is no object when it comes to planning a once-in-a-lifetime honeymoon, budget is often a consideration.
To make the most of your budget and have a truly memorable travel experience, first prioritise the areas you’re keen to splurge on – perhaps a luxury eco-lodge you’ve had your eye on, or an extra special experience to round off the trip on a high. Then, depending on the money that’s left, you can incorporate a mix of luxury, boutique and more rustic accommodation elsewhere.
At Faraway, we tend to specialise in longer, adventurous honeymoons; our average is 3.5 weeks. Most of our couples explore a few different destinations, and we often recommend factoring in some smaller, locally-run lodges and experiences as a great way to see a destination properly and spread your tourism spend without breaking the bank.
Side note – if costs are becoming a worry, we’d suggest kicking off your travel plans earlier rather than later, or delaying your escape until six months or so after the wedding. Not only does this allow enough time to really research and plan the honeymoon of your dreams, it enables you to spread out the cost if you need to. At Faraway, we also offer a monthly direct debit option at no extra charge, and have teamed up with the brilliant Patchwork (based down the road from us in Brockley!) to offer a wedding gift list service, so you can ask your guests for contributions towards your honeymoon.
Want to know more? We offer all couples a free call, so you can get to know us before deciding whether you’d like to trust us with your dream honeymoon. We also offer a special discount for Blonde Army couples – so don’t forget to mention Blonde Army when we speak!
Images provided by Faraway