Has wedding planning turned you into a ball of stress and nerves, not to mention serious knots? It’s understandable, and totally fixable as soon as you’ve made it official—cried, laughed, and danced your way to wedded bliss. The best cure for an exhausted bride and groom is a honeymoon that embraces wellness in all ways—and no, that doesn’t mean a boot camp with no booze. (Those who wish for a deep dive, however, should check out Intrepid Travel’s customizable India itineraries, which involve Ayurveda training and yoga practice with local gurus.) We’ve rounded up a dozen places where you can treat yourself—and we mean really get pampered—as well as take some mental, physical and spiritual measures to ensure you’re in the perfect headspace and shape to tackle your new life.
Civana and L’Auberge de Sedona, a Destination Hotel, Arizona
The place says it all—Civana, a new holistic wellness resort, is in Carefree, Arizona, and it’s a place to let go and truly relax (the price point is approachable too!). Wellness honeymoons are fully customizable and can include bespoke spa journeys to immersive and complimentary programming like sound bath healing, floating meditation, hiking, cycling, farmers market tours, vision board–making, and sessions on finding your inner spirit animal (rawr). At the scenic L’Auberge de Sedona, the L’Apothecary Spa offers customized yoga, vinyasa vortex, and signature treehouse sessions, in which couples learn an enhanced sense of presence, get moved by a sound bath, and then set intentions for the future.
Hidden in St. Lucia, this beauty resort has revamped its wellness program to include mindfulness classes and fresh spa treatments that offer an ultimate option for honeymooners: a couples massage followed by a chocolate mud wrap painted on your bodies to nourish your skin. Newlyweds can also learn the art of couples massage in a class designed to give you secrets to practice at home, enhancing not only your physical bond but your emotional one too.
Those who feel nature and wellness go hand in hand should consider the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise inside gorgeous Banff National Park, where the spectacular setting is perfect for all-inclusive wellness retreats that encourage self-care and self-discovery. A slew of complimentary fitness and wellness classes are always on offer, as well as incredible trails, sleigh rides, and ice skating on the lake—before a couple’s massage, of course.
Beyond the restorative beauty of being in the Swiss Alps, Grand Resort Bad Ragaz is good for the body and mind in part because of its natural local thermal waters from the Tamina Gorge, which have healing properties and amazing minerals. Then there’s the private spa, with a whirlpool, steam bath, sauna, home cinema, and private dining and treatment areas for things like haki-rituals, utilizing the “art of touch” to relieve daily emotional pressures. The property also boasts a Michelin-starred dining experience comprising 30 sharing dishes with curated wine pairings—because good food is also a part of being well.
Two hours from New York City is a sprawling countryside estate with a 20,000-square-foot spa, where honeymooners can decompress after meeting with a personal wellness adviser to assess goals and recommend therapies. There are both modern scientific and ancient practices in play here, so you might opt for couple-specific connectedness meditation, forest bathing, a traditional hammam (Turkish bath) treatment, or rites of purification, which all aim to reset both inside and out, and increase well-being.
Secret Bay and Jungle Bay Eco-Resort, Dominica
Dominica, the “nature island” of the Caribbean, is home to diving, snorkeling, sulfur hot springs, bubbly mud baths, and the longest hiking trail in the region, so it’s ideal for adventurous types. At the five-star Secret Bay, the Waitukubuli Wellness package includes consultations to gauge body health, energy and chakras; plus Reiki, reflexology, yoga, and massages. Meanwhile, Jungle Bay Eco-Resort—opening in June 2019 after severe hurricane damage—offers a wellness adventure package including plenty of those outdoor pursuits, as well as organic food and juices and a massive spa for all the treatments your heart desires.
Cal-a-Vie Health Spa and Casa Madrona Hotel & Spa, California
Active couples will thrive at Cal-a-Vie just north of San Diego, where there’s a five-to-one staff-to-guest ratio (and just 32 private villas), and more than 150 fitness classes, beach volleyball, golf, pools, and 10 miles of trails that include prime sunset spots. Spa and mind-body sessions are also plentiful, and even couples candlelit yoga in a 400-year-old chapel. Casa Madrona Hotel & Spa’s recent renovation unveiled a newly high-tech wellness experience, featuring eight Sleep Smart beds that track sleep activity and body temperature and provide sleep coaching—perfect if you’re getting in battles over covers or firmness of your mattress. There are also personalized AI trainers, meditation headbands that track brain activity, and Moon Juice adaptogenic blends so you can get on the right track.
Ultraluxe and ultra rejuvenating, Velaa has a new energizing program that focuses on body shape and muscle mass alongside mental health, with HIIT, Spinning, circuit training, and yoga classes. Those who appreciate technology will love their use of Gen Smart DNA testing that produces metabolism details and hereditary history to aid in the journey toward ultimate health and fitness. Of course, there are also water sports, tennis and squash courts, pools, a golf academy, and a comprehensive spa for soothing any muscle aches.
You don’t have to go far to indulge in memorable partner treatments like an energizing massage performed on a crystal quartz bed and a menu of global rituals therapies from European skin-care brand Comfort Zone. There are kombucha facials, salt float baths, infrared saunas, and fitness classes like Rock Wall Boot Camp—and stunning Miami Beach is right there for a classic honeymoon experience.
Pair a beach vacay with a few days tucked away in a lush rain forest near Costa Rica’s Arenal volcano, where Tabacon Thermal Resort & Spa allows honeymooners to pretty much wear plush robes and not much else 24/7. Natural mineral-rich hot spring pools make for lazy days and nights, along with spa treatments in private outdoor bungalows obscured by trees. Toucans, howler monkeys, and other critters provide a soundtrack for your side-by-side Downward-Facing Dogs.
Sunrise Springs Spa Resort and Four Seasons Resort Rancho Encantado, New Mexico
Not surprisingly, Santa Fe is an epic wellness destination—and a romantic one too. At Sunrise Springs you two can get into everything from horticulture and gardening to Body as Brush art classes, simulating creativity and relaxation. There’s also an on-staff spiritual guide to do tarot card readings and spiritual cleanses of newlyweds’ auras for those who are so inclined. Four Seasons Resort Rancho Encantado is home to a unique wellness program called the Equus Experience, a customized offering that engages horses for self-discovery and learning—think problem solving, the art of being present, nonverbal communication, beliefs and intentions, and how to inspire rather than control. The lessons learned through the joyous interactions with each other and the powerful mammals are couldn’t be more appropriate for a couple embarking on the journey of a lifetime.
Nestled in the Berkshires is the renowned luxury spa and wellness resort Canyon Ranch, where newlyweds have endless opportunities to connect and restore themselves post-wedding. Options include a Watsu Duet—a sort of graceful warm water massage that’s super soothing and relaxing—a private photography hike in the mountains, canoeing on the lake, a couple’s coconut melt treatment, heart-based yoga, and personal cooking classes featuring healthy recipes. It’s everything you need before diving into normal life again.