Top 10 Resorts in Central and South America

As part of the 2014 Brides Best Honeymoon awards, we're counting down the best places for newlyweds to stay in Central and South America. From rustic retreats nestled into the mountains near Machu Picchu to stunning hotels on the ocean, you're guaranteed a luxurious stay no matter which resort you choose

Updated 05/01/14

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What we love about honeymooning in Central and South America is that the regions offer just as much nightlife, culture, and adventure as they do stunning beaches. So if your spouse wants an active post-wedding getaway but you want a relaxing one, Central or South America is the perfect middle ground. (Oh, compromise, what a beautiful way to begin a union.) And the beauty spills over into the hotels as well. Some of the world's most romantic resorts are located in Central and South America, from the eco-luxe bungalows of Belize's Blancaneaux Lodge to the curvy adobe casitas of Cavas Wine Lodge in Argentina. Now you just have to choose whether you want to wake up to views of a rainforest, an ancient city, a vineyard, or the deep blue sea, and you're on your way to a honeymoon that you and your husband both will love.

Maggie Parker

How did we choose the Brides Best Honeymoons? A survey was conducted in conjunction with Virtuoso, a network of nearly 9,000 top luxury travel advisors. For more information, contact 855-570-3829.

01 of 10

Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo

Courtesy of Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo

This posh Pacific resort is the place to adventure in style. Spend days volcano hiking and nights sipping bubbly on the terrace of a canopy suite, a grown-up treehouse; Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo.

02 of 10

Blancaneaux Lodge, Belize

Courtesy of Blancaneaux Lodge

You know you're somewhere wild when one of the excursions on offer is a moonlight jaguar hike. Owned by Francis Ford Coppola, this 20-hut rainforest lodge is located in Belize's Mountain Pine Ridge Reserve on a hillside overlooking Privassion Creek. Book the honeymoon cabana, with a private deck overlooking a waterfall, or splurge on a deluxe cabana and spend your mornings canoodling in your private plunge pool or walled-off outdoor shower; Blancaneaux Lodge.

03 of 10

Hotel Punta Islita, Costa Rica

Courtesy of Hotel Punta Islita

Spilling down a jungly hillside toward Guanacaste's Islita Beach, this rustic gem sits on 300 acres, which means you don't even have to leave the grounds to get your soft-adventure on: howler monkey tours, zip lining, and horseback rides on the beach all happen right here; Hotel Punta Islita.

04 of 10

Cayo Espanto, Belize

Courtesy of Cayo Espanto

Surrounded by the diamond-clear waters of the Caribbean, this seven-villa private island is just a short boat ride from Ambergris Cay. Do some bonefishing, hop in a kayak or, if you're staying in the overwater villa, commune with the underwater world through the glass window on your bedroom floor; Cayo Espanto.

05 of 10

Mukul Beach, Golf & Spa, Nicaragua

Courtesy of Mukul Beach, Golf & Spa

The first superluxe property in Nicaragua, this 37-room gem on the Emerald Coast presides over the white sands of Playa Manzanillo. The chic villas and bohios (cabanas) are outfitted with local hand-crafted furniture, and all have wooden decks that offer mind-blowing views of the Pacific. Coolest item on the activities list: a chance to go ash boarding—a sport that involves riding a board down the slope of an active volcano; Mukul Beach, Golf & Spa.

06 of 10

Estancia Vik Jose Ignacio, Uruguay

Courtesy of Estancia Vik Jose Ignacio

How many newlyweds get to say they took polo lessons on their honeymoon? That's just one of the you-can't-do-that-anywhere-else experiences that you'll have at this artsy 12-suite ranch resort near the buzzy seaside town of Jose Ignacio. Each room features work from a different Uraguayan artist—even the barbecue room is strategically splattered with paint. Speaking of which, though you'll want to spend plenty of time on the beach (it's about a mile away), don't miss the traditional afternoon asado (barbecue). Bonus: It's summer in February here, making it a great pick for winter honeymooners; Estancia Vik Jose Ignacio.

07 of 10

Cavas Wine Lodge, Mendoza, Argentina

Courtesy of Cavas Wine Lodge

With a vineyard of its own and a locavore menu that changes with the seasons, Cavas Wine Lodge is the perfect home base to explore the Mendoza wine region. Between forays to nearby wineries, you'll stay in an adobe casita with a plunge pool, wood-burning fireplace, and awesome views of the snow-capped Andes. Don't leave without trying one of the spa's grape-centric treatments—crushed Malbec scrub, anyone?; Cavas Wine Lodge.

08 of 10

Turtle Inn, Placencia, Belize

Courtesy of Turtle Inn

Think Bali meets the Caribbean: Nestled between beach and jungle, the cottages at Francis Ford Coppola's barefoot retreat feature Balinese doorways, Japanese baths, and private gardens with outdoor showers. After you get home from diving with stingrays near the world's second-largest coral reef, fuel up with fresh-caught fish and veggies from the organic garden. Or do Italian—the restaurant has a wood-burning pizza oven; Turtle Inn.

09 of 10

Belmond Sanctuary Lodge Machu Picchu, Peru

Courtesy of Machu Picchu Sanctuary Lodge

You won't find better access to Machu Picchu than this. Sanctuary is the only resort located within steps of the Lost City, so you'll be able to explore the sacred site long before (or after) the midday tourist rush. At night, drink in the southern constellations through a telescope or drink up at the bar. The specialty? Pisco sours—Peru's signature drink—of course; Belmond Sanctuary Lodge Machu Picchu.

10 of 10

Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel, Peru

Courtesy of Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel

Even if Machu Picchu weren't a quick bus ride away, you'd still have plenty to do at this 12-acre, 85-cottage escape perched in a cloud forest. Hike an orchid trail, check out an organic tea plantation, or make a trek to see the endangered spectacled bear. (The resort is helping to conserve them.) Cap off your day in the Andean eucalyptus sauna before cozying up under alpaca blankets in front of a wood-burning fireplace—every casita has one; Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel.

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