Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Our Honeymoon: Around the World!

Most little girls dream about their weddings when they're young (or so I'm told), but the main thing I remember dreaming about is my honeymoon. Specifically, I remember being on the bus in seventh grade talking to my friend Sandra about all the possibilities - travel through Europe, rent a villa in Italy, etc. I always knew I wanted it to be something fun, exciting, and romantic.

Jeff and I love to travel, and we've been lucky enough to have taken a lot of really exciting trips together already - we backpacked around Europe; we've traveled in Ecuador and Peru; we've been to Korea, and lots more. Most trips have to be a week or less to fit into our work schedule, but we figured our honeymoon would be one of the few chances in our life that we could really take a significant amount of time and have an adventure.

So we're taking the month of June, and traveling around the world.

After the wedding, we'll have Monday and most of Tuesday to relax and get our things together. Then, on Tuesday, May 31st, in the evening, we'll get on a plane and head to Iceland. In Iceland we found an amazing deal on a really beautiful Hilton Hotel (50% off!), which seems like a great place to start out. We have two days in Iceland, and we're thinking we'll explore the city a bit and take a tour of the Golden Triangle (which covers some of Iceland's beautiful scenery).

On June 3rd, we'll fly to Copenhagen. We'll get there in the evening. We'll have most of the next day to wander around the city, and then at 7pm, we'll board our cruise ship - the Costa Luminosa.

The cruise starts on June 4th in the evening. Our first day will be at sea, and then we'll have daily stops in cities around the Baltic Sea: Tallinn, Estonia, St. Petersburg, Russia, Helsinki, Finland, Stockholm, Sweden. Then another day at sea, and we'll be back in Copenhagen. We're both excited for this trip, because we both really like cruises (so relaxing!) and all of the ports are cities neither one of us has ever visited (adventure!).

After returning to Copenhagen around 8am, we'll probably go almost directly to the train station and take a scenic train trip down to Freiburg, Germany, where my friend Christoph is getting married. We'll arrive in Freiburg at night on June 11th, and the next day is Christoph's wedding. We'll celebrate with him, and then on the 13th, we'll hop on a short flight to Istanbul.

We get into Istanbul on the evening of June 13th, and we're there for four nights - leaving on June 17th. We're thinking we'll explore Istanbul, have lots and lots of good Turkish food, and maybe go on a day trip somewhere nearby (we're open to suggestions!).

On the 17th, we fly out in the afternoon on a long flight to Bangkok, Thailand. In Bangkok we found another amazing deal - a hotel that's supposed to be one of the best in the world, but is having a deal so we could get a room for $150 a night. We won't be able to afford to eat at the restaurant there ($100+ per person, yikes!), but it should be a fun experience. Besides, I think Jeff's most excited to eat from the street carts in Thailand, where the food is supposed to be incredible. We're in Bangkok for two full days, though we may use one of those to take the train to Ayutthaya for the day.

On June 20th, early in the morning, we fly to Phuket - this is the lounging on a tropical beach portion of the honeymoon - something I definitely wanted to incorporate. Phuket is supposed to be beautiful, so I can't wait to see it! 

We're there until the evening of June 23rd, and then we have a bit of a tricky night. We get into the Bangkok airport at about 10pm, and fly out again the next morning at 5:30am. Rather than getting a hotel for only a couple of hours (we'd need to be back at the airport by 3:30am at the latest, plus travel time), I think we're going to just stay at the airport in between. At least we'll be able to sleep on our next flight.

At 5:30am on June 24th, we'll leave Bangkok and head for San Francisco. And, due to the magic of the international date line, we'll actually arrive in San Francisco on June 24th at 9:30am.

The main event in San Francisco is Janet's (one of my best friends and bridesmaids) wedding. Jeff and I will rent a car and head up to the mountains, where her wedding is going to be. Hopefully we'll get a good night's rest and adjust to the time change, and on Saturday, we'll celebrate her wedding.

We haven't booked anything after that, but the tentative plan is to head back to San Francisco and stay in a relaxing hotel in wine country for a few days to relax and enjoy the last few days of honeymoon.

Then, probably on Thursday, June 30th, we'll fly back to DC and be home again! That will give us a few days to get things together at home before celebrating the 4th of July weekend, and then starting back up at work!

Sooooo exciting!

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