The Engagementmoon Is Officially a Thing: How to Plan a Perfect Pre-Wedding Getaway

The “engagementmoon” is officially a thing—and we love it.

Updated 10/23/18
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Photo by Nicole Franzen

Try to sneak away for a few days because life is about to get real, real intense with all the planning you’ll have to do. No matter where you live in the U.S.—and whether you have a weekend or a little more time. Here are eight fun, super relaxing engagementmoon ideas.

If You Live in the Northeast

Head to the Berkshires for a weekend. For double-duty culture and nature, it’s hard to top the Berkshires, with MassMoCA and The Clark, plus skiing and hiking. Make the Tourists Hotel in North Adams home base (get a room overlooking the Hoosic River), where you’re an easy trip to the trails on Mount Greylock and the Bright Ideas craft brewery.

Or Montreal for a longer trip. Montreal has the charm, romance, and flaky croissants of France—sans the jet lag. Check into the centrally located Monville Hotel, wander around Notre-Dame and Mount Royal Park, and go for a cozy dinner at Joe Beef in the Little Burgundy neighborhood.

If You Live in the Midwest

Head to San Antonio for the weekend. Austin gets a lot of love, but these days, we’re just as into San Antonio, with its excellent weather and great regional food (guys, the “puffy taco” was born here!). Check into Hotel Emma in the scenery Pearl District, where you’re an easy bike ride to downtown’s River Walk and the Alamo.

Photo by Nicole Franzen

Or Banff for a longer trip. The Midwest has plenty of snow, but for world-class skiing, head to Banff National Park in Alberta. There are direct flights from Chicago to Calgary, which is about an hour’s drive to the slopes. If you’re all about the hygge—and want amazing slope access—renting one of the park’s many backcountry cabins is the only way to go. If you’re willing to splurge, stay at the Fairmont Chateau on Lake Louise. (Be sure to ’gram the bejesus out of the hotel’s legit ice castle!)

Photo by Vincent Brillant

If You Live on the West Coast

Head to Laguna for a weekend. Laguna Beach is such an idyllic beach town, it’s hard to believe it’s just an hour south of L.A. Check in to the new, cheerfully hip Hotel Joaquin and soak up the laid-back vibes by the pool, get an Ayurvedic massage at the wellness center, then walk the two minutes to the beach to catch the sunset.

Teri B Photography

Or Hawaii for a longer trip. Nope, lava from Kilauea hasn’t covered the entire island of Hawaii. The wide, sandy beaches on the Kohala Coast are just fine and easy to reach via flights into Kona. Stay at the perfectly-caught-in-time Mauna Kea Beach Hotel and take a helicopter tour of the island’s spectacularly green valleys and thundering waterfalls.

If You Live in the South

Head to Savannah for a weekend. With its grand mansions and Spanish moss, this city has always had a genteel appeal, but much like Charleston, it’s getting younger and cooler by the day. Book a room at Perry Lane or the Alida, shop the Design District, go for barbecue at Sandfly and dig into locally sourced everything at Husk, then toast yourselves with champagne at Artillery.

Photo by Andrew Cebulka

Or Puerto Vallarta for a longer trip. This seemingly always sunny port—a painless nonstop flight from Atlanta or Dallas—is losing its rep for sunburned tourists on cruise ships (hello, The Love Boat reruns). Stay at the Hotel Amapa (pink decor accents, balconies with hammocks) in Old Town, with its cobblestone streets and abundance of bougainvillea, just a block from a great swimming beach.

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