If you’ve ever hit that "book" button and packed your bags to travel with a bestie, then you know how telling taking a trip with someone can be. Do you both function on the same schedule? Have similar budgets? Like to do the same balance of touristy excursions and local immersions? As you explore your new destination, you’ll answer all of these questions, quickly figuring out if you’re a happy hour pair or traveling buddies.
The same test applies to your new partner, especially as your relationship progresses. No matter how much you appreciate the same foods, laugh at the same moments in movies and how much fun you have under the sheets, enjoying vacations and adventurous trips together is an important part of a love affair that can ~go the distance~.
But while a 10-day trip to Thailand sounds exotic and incredible, for your first getaway just-the-two-of-you, you might want to opt for something a bit more casual that doesn’t put quite as much pressure on your passports. Here, the best trip idea for new couples:
1. Charleston, South Carolina
Quaint and charming, with cobblestone streets and idealistic 70-something weather in the Spring and Fall, Charleston, South Carolina is about as sweet as the South can get. While touring around the city, eating as much lowcountry seafood as you both can handle, you’ll entranced by the laid back vibe that pairs well with a little romance.
Consider staying in the Historic District, where you’re right in the middle of tree-lined streets, lantern lights, plantations and mansions. Stay at The Spectator Hotel, where the team will help you coordinate reservations, activities and more. And, included in the nightly rate of $375, is a complimentary artisanal breakfast-in-bed if you need extra time to snuggle. (And psst: if you want to get away from the 'city' — venture to nearby Isle of Palm, a must-see Southern beach town. Need a place to stay? Try the infamous — and luxe — Wild Dunes Resort.)
2. Riviera Beach, Singer Island, Florida
One of the perks of being in a new-ish relationship? You have full permission to spam your friends on Facebook and Insta with couple-y images that scream ‘Finally!’ While you might want to overdo it (cue your friends' eye rolling), I bet vacation photos are a bit more understandable than say, the ones of two of you watching TV.
To get away from the chaos of your daily lives, escape to a secluded Palm Beach, Florida destination on Singer Island. At the Palm Beach Marriott Singer Island Beach Resort & Spa, you can book the ‘Capture the Moment’ package which comes with a GoPro Hero4 Waterproof Camera that’s yours to take home. Also included is the option to take part in a slew of activities off the resort’s secluded beach, which is close to the world’s third largest barrier reef. After snorkeling and snapping away, grab cocktails by their beach fire pit as you stargaze.
3. St. Lucia
There’s nothing that quite compares to a Caribbean beach. And even if you’ve lounged shoreside with your best friends before, it’s a different experience when you’re part of a twosome. For an affordable option, consider St. Lucia in the Eastern Caribbean, known for reef-diving sites, volcanic beaches, fishing villages and rainforests.
You can stay at the Anse Chastanet, set in a 600-acre setting with two beaches. Rates start at $390 for two, and the resort comes with restaurants, bars, a spa and nearby hiking or snorkeling adventures. And hey, if you want to have one of those picturesque beach-side dining experiences? They’ll set it up for you, no prob.
4. Palm Springs, California
Are you still in that stage of your couplehood where you spend more time in bed, um, exploring one another, than say, walking around your city. Good for you — and great for your upcoming trip together. For that sexual honeymoon stage (that you hope will extend far beyond your first year together), consider staying at the hotel that the New York Times named the ‘sexiest hotel in America. Just over 100 miles east of Los Angeles in Palm Springs is Korakia Pensione, a resort that’ll make you feel like you’re in Morocco, complete with bungalows and villas. They don’t allow kiddos on this property, so you won’t have to worry about a screaming baby interrupting your we-just-got-here-and-have-to-christen-the-room challenge.
Rates start at $229, but for an extra $79, you can upgrade to the ‘Romantic Welcome’ that includes a bottle of champagnes and flower petals in your suite.
5. Portland, Oregon
If you’re less of a beach couple and more into adventures, skip the sand and sand and head to a small city, tucked away in the mountains. With craft breweries, urban wineries, outdoor hiking adventures, culinary festivals and immersions and more, Portland is a fun getaway from your office jobs and quick happy hour drinks post-work.
When you’re there, you can stay at a cabin-inspired hotel for $212 a night at The Sentinel Hotel, a trendy lodging option. Make sure to make time to breeze by the Pine Street Market, the first-ever food hall in Portland and snap some quick Insta shots at the International Rose Test Garden to get a little nature between boozing and canoodling.
6. Scottsdale, Arizona
If the reason you swiped ‘hell yes!’ to your now-boyfriend or girlfriend is their epic adventure photos, then you probably want to seek out a mountain for your inaugural trip together. A great location to consider is Scottsdale, Arizona, where the terrain is rocky and the adventures are plenty. Consider staying at the Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa, where you can upgrade to the ‘Thrill Seekers’ package, which includes daily breakfast, a hot air balloon ride, guided bike and hike on Camelback Mountain and two cocktails. And no matter which room you guys book, you can be guaranteed you’ll find a killer view to write home about, especially since the resort is perched above the Sonoran Desert. After all that exploring? Unwind at their super-luxe and relaxing on-site spa.
7. Miami Beach, Florida
There’s a little bit of everything in Miami — so if you’re not quite sure what you want out of your first vacation together, heading to the tip of the United States is a great place to start. From white beaches and idealistic weather to graffiti tours, fresh seafood and a party scene if that’s your thing, you’ll definitely stay busy together. Though a lot of folks will book their trip at a super-luxe hotel on Collins Avenue, if you want something a bit more boutique inspired, stay at Circa 39 Hotel in Miami Beach. You can add the ‘Baecation’ package which includes a mimosa brunch for two at Jules Kitchen, a kayaking excursion in the ocean and finally, tiki cocktails to begin your nightcap. Nights start at $127, so probably won’t have to worry too much about breaking your budget.
Moral of the story? Getting away together for the first time should be low-key and truly focused on the purpose of the trip: enjoy your new love and connect on a new level.