It’s Monday, and today’s the first day for a blog post since becoming a married man. After weddings, it’s typical to go on a honeymoon. It’s a perfect time for a relaxing trip with your new spouse. Popular destinations include beach resorts in the Caribbean, the islands of Hawaii, or somewhere else tropical. Maybe it’s because we’re in the Midwest which makes those destinations so popular – we don’t exactly have miles of tropical coastline anywhere nearby.
When Kristin and I sat down to talk about what we wanted to do for our honeymoon, we had a ton of ideas. Too many, actually; it was difficult to narrow down specifically what we wanted to do and where we wanted to go. We had loved the idea of doing a relaxing beach vacation.
We had gone to Hawaii last year immediately after getting engaged (and all her friends thought I’d ask her in Hawaii – HAH!) before moving back to the Midwest and loved it. Good friends of ours took their honeymoon in Turks and Caicos and strongly recommended it. Other good friends went to Jamaica and go back nearly every year because they had such a good time.
As we thought about these destinations, none of them really called out to us as the trip we wanted to take right after our wedding.
Bye Bye Honeymoon: The Rise of the Minimoon
After going back and forth on what to do, we settled on the idea of doing what we’re calling a Minimoon: a short trip after the wedding so that we can spend some time together and celebrate our marriage, but not the full-fledged honeymoon experience. The reasons for this were pretty simple.
The more we thought about what exactly we wanted to do, the more we realized that doing the honeymoon thing right away wasn’t really something we wanted. In addition to the cost to do what we wanted (and keeping in mind that we were also saving money for a house), it was the “Off Season” for most of the destinations we wanted, and it’d be beautiful in other places of the country as well. It just didn’t make sense for us to take another week off from work to go on a vacation somewhere tropical in the middle of summer.
While the “Off Season” can be a great time to travel to save some money (typically flights are less expensive, and you can find better deals on your lodging as well), we agreed that doing something less expensive now was the route we wanted to take. Besides, it’d all even itself out and we could enjoy better weather conditions on both our Minimoon and regular Honeymoon by going this route.
How We Planned
Tropical destinations were pretty much off the list. We now had everywhere else in the world to consider. There are a ton of destinations Kristin and I want to travel to throughout our lives including Europe (I studied abroad for a semester and haven’t been back since, unfortunately), Asia (Kristin traveled to Asia when she was younger and loved it), the Pacific Islands, and South America. The problem with those for this trip, again, was the cost. In addition to our wedding this year, we’re also buying a house, which will make 2017 the most expensive year of our lives so far.
Then we started thinking about how we met and what it was like when we first started dating. One of the first trips we took together as a couple was a pretty spur-of-the-moment long weekend up to Portland, Oregon. We both have a fair amount of inner-hipster in us, and Portland was a great spot to let that shine. Don’t judge.
We both have extremely fond memories of Portland. As our first trip together, it was the first time anybody really knew we were dating. We enjoyed bumming around the city and going to Powell’s Books, the largest independent book store in the world. The food was amazing, the entire trip was relaxing and yet up-beat, and it was a great time to really make sure our relationship was going to last; we both knew that if we couldn’t travel with each other, the relationship would be over.
Thankfully it worked out great – and what better way to celebrate our marriage than to visit the Pacific Northwest again. We aren’t going to be in Portland this time, but instead heading to Seattle. Neither of us have been, so it’ll be a new experience for both of us!
We’re looking forward to a relaxing few days of coffee, a bit of hiking, and generally just enjoying ourselves.
What’s your ideal honeymoon (whether you’re married or not) or just vacation in general?