Make Your Next Trip Extraordinary

Romantic Travel Ideas—For You, Or To Give As A Gift

by Wendy Perrin | February 10, 2020

I’ve been married almost 20 years, so for me Valentine’s Day is just another day in February when the kids need to be driven home from after-school sports practice. But if you’re still lovey-dovey enough to celebrate it, or you need to scrounge up a Valentine’s Day gift pronto, then get inspired by these romantic trips that your fellow WOW List travelers have recently returned from. They remind me of my own starry-eyed trips way back when—such as my first date with my husband, which happened to be at the Cape of Good Hope, or the time he surprised me with a ski trip to Andorra, which was our first trip alone together after our babies were born. Get more dreamy trip ideas from the traveler reviews here—and don’t forget about WOW Moments: They’re my way of thanking you for your trip reviews that remind us how passion-filled travel can be, and they can upgrade any trip’s romance quotient.

“We thought we would be having a simple picnic lunch…”

Peru's Sacred Valley mountains and rivers

Peru’s Sacred Valley. Photo: Aracari

“Our favorite experience in Peru was on the afternoon of our 10th wedding anniversary. We thought we would be having a simple picnic lunch, but when we arrived at our picnic, we were amazed to see a canopy tent popped up in a field that overlooked the Andes. The table was tastefully decorated with linens, lace, fresh flowers, and local decor pieces. Wow! A three-man cooking team prepared a lovely four-course meal in a separate tent while we sipped wine. There was even a portable toilet in a third small tent! Nothing was overlooked. In fact, during our ten-day trip arranged by Marisol, no detail was left unturned, from our beautiful accommodations to our awesome local guide to the snacks in our vehicle. We had an incredible trip.” —Erica Stanforth

“We wanted luxury lodges and unique experiences…”

rustic beach bungalow overwater suite at Haggerstone Island resort at the Great Barrier Reef in Australia

The remote Haggerstone Island resort at the Great Barrier Reef. Photo: Haggerstone Island

Stuart planned the perfect trip for our 30th wedding anniversary: We spent three weeks in Australia, taking multiple in-country flights and visiting Melbourne, Tasmania, Kangaroo Island, Uluru, the Daintree Rainforest, and Sydney. We wanted luxury lodges and unique experiences, and our expectations were exceeded. Stuart must have told everyone that we were celebrating an anniversary because, at each location, we received not only cards and good wishes but sometimes cakes or champagne or chocolates. But this is what blew us away: In Tasmania, at Saffire Freciynet, we tasted several excellent local gins one evening and commented to the staff on how much we liked them, and when we reached Sydney at the end of the trip, there was a gift of three bottles of gin and a lovely note from Stuart. That is one of the above-and-beyond gestures that made this trip extraordinary.” —Robin and Josh Madden

“Everyone knew it was our anniversary!”

Happily Ever After fireworks at Disney World. Photo: Disney

“While we take fairly involved adventure vacations (safaris, a dog-sledding expedition, and scuba diving, rafting and trekking trips), none have involved the degree of planning that our recent Disney trip did! Disney World can be overwhelming: To maximize your time there, you need to carefully plan out your schedule for each day and manage restaurant reservations, show times, and Fast Passes. Michelle’s advice was invaluable in this regard. She took into consideration that this was an adults-only vacation and made great suggestions such as visiting a practically empty and childless Magic Kingdom with an After Dark ticket. She managed to fit in a coveted reservation for Be Our Guest, and her recommendations for the Epcot Food & Wine Festival helped us navigate that fun event. Michelle’s hard work enabled us to have a wonderful anniversary trip—and everyone knew it was our anniversary because Michelle told them!” —Barbara Sheridan

“A celebration trip for my son and his wife for their 2nd wedding anniversary…”

Beach and colorful houses of San Sebastian, Spain

San Sebastian, Spain. Photo: Shutterstock

“I used Pablo to arrange a celebration trip to Spain—Barcelona, San Sebastian, and Madrid—for my son and his wife for their 2nd wedding anniversary. One of their interests was to try different exclusive restaurants and wineries, and Pablo was able to secure reservations at three Michelin-star restaurants. He arranged tours of boutique-style wineries, including a special wine-tour bike ride in Barcelona. Since my son is a guitar enthusiast, Pablo arranged for a Spanish guitar lesson and also got him into a special Flamenco show. Pablo had the ability to secure unique, private, and culturally enriching activities, allowing my son and daughter-in-law to experience Spanish cuisine and culture in a way that I am sure would not have been possible otherwise.” —Jeffrey Bernfield

“I would surprise my wife with a ring in a renewal proposal aboard a private yacht…”

Pont Alexandre III (Alexander the third bridge) over river Seine in Paris, France. Architecture and landmarks of Paris.

Pont Alexandre III bridge over river Seine in Paris, France. Photo: Shutterstock

“I wanted to make the most of a short trip to Paris to celebrate my wife’s birthday and to present her with the diamond ring she never got when we first got together 10 years ago. Jennifer made a variety of suggestions, and we decided I would surprise my wife with the ring in a renewal proposal aboard a private yacht. I had originally requested a Venetian boat, but at the last minute it had mechanical problems, rendering it unavailable. Jennifer quickly replaced it with Sophia Loren’s private yacht and assured me that the furnishings and seating would be altered to make it more intimate and romantic. The result was spot-on, resulting in the highlight of our trip.” —William Harwayne

“Our favorite day of the trip, and arguably in our lives, was…”

Positano on the Amalfi Coast, Italy

Positano on the Amalfi Coast, Italy. Photo: Shutterstock

“My husband and I rarely use a travel agent because we love to do the research and plan every detail of our vacations. However, this trip to Capri and the Amalfi Coast was for our 10-year wedding anniversary, so we wanted the ultimate luxury experience without having to worry about anything. Andrea really listened to what we wanted and tailored the trip accordingly. And there wasn’t a minute of it that went by that my husband and I didn’t think, ‘This was worth every penny and more.’ From the knowledgeable drivers to awesome tour guides and boat captains, it was beyond perfect. Our favorite day of the trip, and arguably in our lives, was when our boat captain picked us up in Capri, toured us around the island, let us swim in the grottos, and eventually dropped us off for the rest of our stay in Positano. The views were stunning, but the captain really made our experience so special. Andrea has the connections with all of the right people, which makes the entire experience unlike any other.” —Meredith Still

“We had our 50th anniversary dinner in the two-Michelin-star restaurant…”

Leafy town square with fountain in a picturesque village in Provence, France

Saignon, Provence, France. Photo: Shutterstock

“My husband and I asked Philip to help us plan a week in Provence to celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary. We stayed in the countryside in beautiful old hotels and especially loved the Baumanière in Les Baux. I originally thought it would be too fancy for us, but Philip persuaded me that it would be perfect, and it was. We had our 50th anniversary dinner in the two-Michelin-star restaurant there, complete with a chocolate anniversary ‘card.’ We particularly loved our canoe trip to the Pont du Gard and the private tour of the top level of the aqueduct—a perk not available to the general public. One whole day was devoted to a tour of the Luberon, including the towns of Lacoste, Menerbes, Gordes and Roussillon. It was a wonderful trip, perfectly planned and executed, and a memorable celebration for us.” —Barbara Rabin

“Bali was perfect for celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary…”

Pura Ulun Danu Bratan, Hindu temple on Bratan lake landscape, one of famous tourist attraction in Bali, Indonesia - Image

Pura Ulun Danu Bratan, Hindu temple on Bratan Lake, Bali. Photo: Shutterstock

“Our trip to Bali was perfect for celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary. Diane lined up affordable luxury with a fascinating itinerary. We took in many diverse sites in the Ubud area from our base at the Komaneka Resort at Bisma, and the Nusa Dua Beach Hotel & Spa upgraded us to a lagoon-access suite, which was very relaxing. Diane lined up the perfect English-speaking private guide and driver, and she also introduced us to Nadya, a clothing designer whose home we got to visit. Our trip was a great balance of guided travel and looking around on our own. We felt truly fortunate that we could make use of Diane’s excellent insight. She is a gem. Thank you!” —Charles Barber and Carolyn Roth

“For our WOW Moment, Lindsey’s team arranged for us to enjoy…”

Pelican Hill resort in California, an aerial photo of the resort with the ocean in the distance

The Resort at Pelican Hill Newport Beach, California. Courtesy of Pelican Hill

“For our 40th anniversary celebration, Lindsey found us just the right place. She recommended The Resort at Pelican Hill, in southern California, and arranged for an oceanview room with a wonderful outdoor seating area that we enjoyed in the early mornings and most afternoons, watching the sun sparkle off the ocean, dotted with sailboats and with Catalina Island in the distance. For our WOW Moment, Lindsey’s team arranged for us to enjoy a Duffy Electric Boat in Newport Beach Harbor. The boat was stocked with an incredible antipasto tray and bottles of vodka, gin, and our favorite martini ingredients, with all the compliments. For two hours we cruised around the harbor. It was so much fun. The antipasto tray was so generous that we took it back to our room and enjoyed it with martinis for dinner that evening on our patio while watching the sunset. It was so perfect.” —John Arndt

“It was a great trip packed with hiking, a sunrise visit to the top of Mt. Haleakalā and…”

Four Seasons Hualalai pool Hawaii

Four Seasons Hualalai, Hawaii. Photo Four Seasons

“We used Dani’s help to put together our trip to Maui and the Big Island of Hawaii. It was a great trip packed with hiking, a sunrise visit to the top of Mt. Haleakalā and a subsequent bike ride down, surfing lessons in Lahaina, and a helicopter tour of the Big Island, including the active volcano. Dani was in constant contact with us throughout, which was greatly appreciated, as we had questions about various things while we were there. We had mentioned this trip was a celebration of our wedding anniversary, and at both of our hotels there was chilled champagne and sweet treats, courtesy of Dani. She even managed to snag us an upgrade to a suite at the Four Seasons Hualalai, which was a pleasant surprise.” —Joseph McBrine

“We were a family of 10 traveling for my parents’ 60th wedding anniversary…”

Idyllic tropical beach with white sand, turquoise ocean water and blue sky at Antigua island in Caribbean

Antigua. Photo: Shutterstock

“We were a family of 10 traveling for my parents’ 60th wedding anniversary. We had first-time cruisers and seasoned cruisers, and we wanted an itinerary that would enable us to spend time together as well as enjoy personal time. For our specific needs, Tom suggested Celebrity Cruises, and we selected an itinerary in the ‘ABC islands’ with several days at sea. Everyone was very happy. Both the sea days and the days in port offered everyone enough sightseeing, shopping, and relaxation options to keep as busy (or not) as we wanted. Some of us went to the beach, while others went to town and sightseeing. We all met for cocktails in the Martini Bar before our family dinner each night. It was a fun and successful cruise for everyone, and my parents especially appreciated the special touches that Tom provided—including champagne, flowers, and a delicious chocolate cake in their cabin.” —Lorraine Victor

Be a smarter traveler: Read real travelers’ reviews of Wendy’s WOW List and use it to plan your next trip. You can also follow her on Facebook, Twitter @wendyperrin, and Instagram @wendyperrin, and sign up for her weekly newsletter to stay in the know.

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