When you begin to build your life with another person, there are all sorts of decisions to make: who will take out the trash, who will fold the whites. Where you’ll live, how much you want to budget and save, when you’ll buy a house to grow roots, and of course, if children are in your future. Even if creating a family together is a must on you and your spouse’s shared vision for your lives, there’s no doubt that kids turn your whole life upside down. And while some parents are super-comfortable globe trotting with their little one onboard, some destinations are far less sexy and accessible with a tot.
That’s why when considering your vacation bucket list, it might be wise to knock out a few of these lusted-after getaways before you welcome your first child. And hey, if you figure out your babe is a nomad right from the start, who says you can’t go back?
Though even from Europe, a trip to Kenya is lengthy, once you’re nestled on the sidelines of a safari, you and your number one will be in total awe every moment of your getaway. Travel experts recommend taking at least a week to sightsee the various parts of Africa, but if you’re short on time, you might only have time for one stop before heading back to your office. That’s why booking your stay at an all-inclusive, luxury safari lodge like Angama Mara is a great child-free option. Located in the infamous Maasai Mara, you can book a tent-for-two that’s on the edge of the most desirable sections of the land - the Oloololo Escarpment.
From here, your view into wildlife, sunsets and the hundreds of hot air balloons they release each morning at sunrise will have you pinching yourself. Bonus? The tented suites offer 30-foot floor-to-ceiling tents that overlook the Great Rift Valley, private decks and daily access to tours. If you book at the right time of year, you may even witness the ‘Great Migration’ where millions of zebras and wildebeest come into the area, seeking grass.
When you scroll through your Instagram feed, giving that double-tap to luxury hotel rooms with breathtaking views, chances are pretty high you’ve liked a picture from the infamous destination of Bora Bora. This South Pacific island located in the northwest of Tahiti in the French Polynesia may be tiny in size, but it’s high-end romantic offerings are plenty. Here, you can stay at the InterContinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasson Spa, where you can step out of your suite door, right into those picturesque, clear blue waters.
The location is what sets apart this specific resort, since it’s located in ‘Motu Piti Aau’ - which when translated, means the ‘islet of two hearts’ - where you’ll have the blue lagoon on one side and the South Pacific on another. Since it’s a narrow strip of land, only a handful of resorts are located here, giving you plenty of privacy with you and your number one. While you might not want to bring a baby to your over-the-water oasis, where it’ll feel just like you, your love and the bright-blue sea, there’s nothing wrong with say, making a Bora Bora baby.
You might argue that your love for vino will only strengthen after you have a child (mama needs to simmer down, too, kiddo!), but if you’re touring one of the greatest wine countries on Earth, you’ll enjoy the experience more if you’re not trying to get pregnant, breastfeeding or having a babe asking you when you’ll head back to the hotel room to catch cartoons. Consider a long trip to Italy, where you can visit romantic Venice, cultural Rome, picture-perfect Pisa and relaxing, glowing Tuscany. With countless tours across many vineyards, you and your leading man can pass time sippin’ grape varieties from all around the region.
For a place to say, consider the private and top-tier Renaissance Tuscany Il Ciocco Resort & Spa, which sets upon 1,700 acres of Instagram-worthy grounds, right in the heart of the treasured Serchio Valley. Each room offers sweeping views of nearby vineyards, thanks to its perch atop a hill, and their on-site spa is ideal for a couple who needs to zen out, ASAP. Just don’t forget that ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign when the wine has you feeling fine.
While you may have salivated over many photos of Greek adventures, there’s nothing quite like seeing a sunset in the over-the-top romantic island of Santorini. The largest of all the islands, you’ll feel like you’ve escaped to a warm, private oasis, just for two, even though the crowded streets of town will argue otherwise. While a grand tour of Athens and many of the other islands would be an ideal adventure once your children are older, to truly soak up the magic of Santorini, take the trip as partner before you take it as parents.
While you’re there, splurge and stay in the infamous Oia, known for it’s colorful and bright sunsets overlooking the Aegean Sea. Though you can stay in the heart of small downtown, for a more private experience - ahem, where tourists can’t look onto your terrace - stay at Santo Maris Oia. Though you can access the sweeping sites of Oia via a private 5-minute walk, you might feel so zen on the property that you never leave. Each suite features gorgeous views and private jacuzzis, with some even overlooking the sea itself.
With room service all evening, that bottle of Santorini wine as a nightcap is just a dial away.
Part of the thrill of being in a relationship with someone whose values you share is the joint thirst for adventures. If there’s a mountain you’ve always wanted to hike, a sailboat you’ve always wanted to learn how to navigate or a passport stamp you’re drooling over, your partner is likely onboard to take on the challenge with you, whatever it may be. You will one day share those same joys with your children, but in the meantime, figure out one standout must-see that you want to conquer before you take on the duty of parenthood.
One idea is hiking Machu Picchu, one of the seven wonders of the world, just outside of Lima Peru. After training for a few months for the trek (and stopping up on that altitude medicine), make the journey together, where you’ll share more than just a photo you’ll post on Facebook. For a more luxe place to stay, book your hotel at Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel. This location gives an intimate, cultural glimpse into Peruvian life, offering waterfalls, terraced hills, stone pathways and individual casitas, all set on 12 acres.
This resort is a member of the National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World and for good reason: it has the world’s largest native orchid collection and features 214 species of birds, among other natural beauties. It’s an ideal way to celebrate the journey you just completed together, while getting excited for the next one on your to-do list: becoming mom and dad.