I’m excited to share our first real honeymoon of 2015! There are several more in the pipeline, so make sure to come back to the blog in the next few weeks to read those as well. This week’s real honeymooners Gaya and Tim recently got back from an exciting honeymoon in Vietnam and Sri Lanka where they spent time with friends and family who live there. Read all about their trip and check out the gorgeous photos below:
When and where did you honeymoon?
Our honeymoon started on Dec 15th – Dec 22nd  in Vietnam, then Dec 22nd  – Jan 2nd  in Sri Lanka.
Here’s the breakdown:
- 3 nights in Ho Chi Minh City (stayed with friends)
- 1 night in the Mekong Delta (at a homestay)
- 2 nights in Hoi An (at a homestay)
- 3 nights in Jaffna (stayed with family)
- 2 nights in Trincomalee
- 1 night (but recommend 2) in Kandy
- 1 night Nuwara Eliya (recommend staying here or here)
- 1 night (but recommend 2) in Bentota
- 3 nights in Colombo
How long was your trip?
Our trip was approximately 3 weeks.
How did you decide on your honeymoon destination(s)?
Tim and I are both Sri Lankan, but he has never visited and I haven’t been since I left, which was close to 25 years ago. We knew that Sri Lanka would always be our honeymoon destination. Vietnam was nice as well. We have some friends that live there and we thought this would be a good opportunity to go and visit them.
The best part about our honeymoon was…
This is such a hard question to answer; there were sssoooo many great parts of our honeymoon. Vietnam is such a magical country, rich with culture and a heighten sense of movement. Sri Lanka is just absolutely beautiful, only 25,332 sq miles in total area, and every area, every mini city is so different from the last. We also were fortunate enough to travel with some friends for portions of our trip. But if I had to pick just one part, it would have been the history that I was able to discover in Sri Lanka.
If I knew then what I know now, I’d change…
If I knew then what I know now, I would have spent more time in Sri Lanka and made a 2 day trip to the Maldives.
How much planning did you do in advance?
We didn’t do that much planning, mostly made sure that we had high points covered and secured a driver. Everything else we did while we were there and just ran with it.
What was your biggest honeymoon splurge?
The biggest honeymoon splurge was shopping we did. We got custom suits, dresses and shoes made in Vietnam. It was really nice to pick out the style and fabric and to have something custom.
Where do you want to go on your next big trip?
Now that we definitely have the traveling bug, we are thinking either Tanzania or Cuba ;)
Additional tips from Gaya:
- Outside of Ho Chi Minh City, do a tour of the Mekong Delta, and visit the Cu Chi Tunnels and Cao Dai Temple.
- Hoi An: get some clothes made at Tailor Shop #52 Anh. As for food, try cao lau (the local dish), and visit STREETS International*, Riverside Garden Restaurant, and Madam Khanh’s banh mi stand. Check out the Nam Hai resort as well.
- When staying in Jaffna, travel around Point Pedro, Vavuniya, and Jaffna Town.
- In Colombo (the main city in Sri Lanka), visit Nilaveli Beach, the Hindu Temple, and the hot springs.
- In Kandy, have a meal at Heritance Kandalama Hotel. Also visit the Golden Temple of Dambulla and Sigiriya.
- Nuwara Eliya: visit Mackwoods tea plantation and the Pinnawela elephant orphanage.
- Bentota: head down to Galle for a day on the beach.
* STREETS is one of those social enterprise type restaurants that hires underprivileged kids, and their food is decent enough, but some of their dishes taste too Americanized so be strategic about what you order.