If you’re planning a romantic getaway with your special someone chances are you want to go to the most romantic place in the history of ever. But believe it or not, Paris isn’t the only romantic city in the world, just ask British Airways! The airline recently revealed its top five romantic travel destinations and while Paris is on the list there are some other surprising destinations on the list too!
The challenge in a big, happening city is to find a bit of peace and quiet. For all of its busy tourist attractions London has surprisingly many of these. What could be more romantic than renting a rowboat and sharing an afternoon the swans on the Serpentine before taking a stroll through Hyde Park? If you really want to impress, you can pick up all the ingredients at Fortnum and Mason for a luxury picnic on Hampstead Heath. To add an element of unexpected fun, take along a kite, or just enjoy watching others fly theirs. There are plenty of great walks in London, but one of the most romantic must be along the houseboat-lined Grand Canal, a quiet stroll just off the busy Edgware Road.
The Eiffel Tower offers exceptional views of Paris, but the insider’s hint is that Montmartre, a hill in the northern part of the city, is a wonderful place to take in the City of Light. After you’ve seen the sights you can wander through the narrow streets and perhaps stop at one of the many small cafés. The Pont Des Arts is another must-do. The pedestrian bridge spans the Seine and provides picture-postcard views of the Île de la Cité, one of the two remaining natural islands on the river. Street musicians add to the atmosphere. Take a stroll through the gardens of the Luxembourg Palace and you’ll be in good company. Napoleon and Josephine as well as Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir frequented the gardens, which are still popular with courting couples.
The problem with a romantic getaway to the Big Apple is that there’s so much to do. Walks in Central Park, carriage rides, ice skating at the Rockefeller Center – the choices are myriad. Here are some that you may not have thought about and which won’t cost you an arm and a leg (so you have more to spend on the ring). Go stargazing at the Lincoln Center. The high-powered telescopes will give you an exceptional view of the constellations and perhaps a perspective on your places in the universe. Take a trip on the bright red aerial tram to Roosevelt Island. All it takes is a swipe of your MetroCard and the two of you will be hundreds of feet in the air waving goodbye to the East Side skyscrapers and looking forward to an afternoon of kite flying in the Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms Park. What better way to escape the hustle and bustle and see the city than by kayaking on the Hudson? Get a double kayak so you can take turns to take the pictures while your partner paddles.
The Trevi Fountain has featured in so many Hollywood romances that it simply has to be the first place you visit. Legend has it the throwing a coin into the fountain will ensure a return visit to Rome. When you’ve posed for your selfies, take a walk along the three tiny streets (the tre vie) from which it takes its name. If the Trevi is the Rome of Hollywood, the Trastevere prides itself on being the real thing. Take a passeggiata (leisurely stroll) through its narrow streets taking in the roof gardens and spacious piazzas. During the day it is a quiet neighbourhood, but comes to life in the evening and is one of the best places to experience authentic Roman dining. Take a walk up the Via Giacinto Carini and you’ll be rewarded with wonderful views of the Albian Hills and the Villa Lante al Gianicolo is one of the best vantage points from which to see the Eternal City.
With its white-water rafting and bungee jump, Victoria Falls is often only considered an adventure-sport destination and if that’s your thing you’ll be spoilt for choice. On the other hand, if you do want to add a few romantic moments to an adrenaline-filled holiday there are some options. Perhaps, after having thrown yourself off the bridge, you may want to consider a quiet cruise down the Zambezi so you can compare war stories over sundowners. Or take a day off from adventuring for a stroll through the Victoria Falls Rainforest followed by High Tea on the Stanley Terrace at the iconic Victoria Falls Hotel. If you do want to combine a little adventure with a lot of romance take the Flight of Angels, a helicopter flight giving you a bird’s eye view of the Falls.