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5 bespoke romantic destinations to celebrate your love

Have some cash to splurge? These luxe destinations are great for a romantic getaway

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By IOL | February 15, 2023 | Travel Leisure

With February being the month of love and Valentine’s Day being around the corner, celebrating love with your loved one has never been more important.

Choose to make Valentine’s Day 2023 memorable by taking advantage of the revenge travel trend and booking a romantic getaway for you and your partner. Whether you are new lovers or veterans in the love game, cupid put you together for a reason.

Here are five bespoke romantic destinations to jet-set to and celebrate your love this year.

andBeyond Benguerra Island, Mozambique

If you’re looking for a romantic island getaway, consider the private beaches of andBeyond Benguerra Island. This resort off the coast of Mozambique is perfect for honeymoons and for lovers seeking ‘privacy’.

Benguerra Island is a luxury beach holiday destination and an exquisite paradise boasting warm waters on the Indian Ocean. It is within the protected marine reserve of the Bazaruto Archipelago National Park, so this island hideaway is blessed with marine life, idyllic beaches, inland freshwater lakes and towering sand dunes. Lovers can disappear for a secluded afternoon romantic castaway picnic, a sunset dhow cruise where you can toast to your love, swimming on horseback or scuba diving at Two Mile Reef.

Lion Sands Game Reserve, Sabi Sand, South Africa

Imagine saying: “Love, pack your bags, we’re going to Kruger National Park”. For the safari-lovers , Lion Sands Game Reserve is set on the banks of the Sabi River, and this luxurious resort comprises four lodges and two villas.

The reserve has three unique treehouses, Chalkley, Kingstone and Tinyeleti, which are lit by lanterns, candles, the stars and the moon, providing the perfect bush experience for lovers.

After viewing elephants and lions on an open jeep drive, enjoy traditional Boma dining, then settle in for the night, surrounded by the distant sounds of hippos, hyenas, leopards and lions. You can also enjoy a bush breakfast, dinner or riverbed dinner.

If relaxation is your thing, enjoy bush walks, yoga and spa treatments at the lodges.

Aman Kyoto, Japan

Aman Kyoto is steeped in Japanese culture and history and a perfect getaway for the couple seeking a nature escape within a city setting.

According to Conde Nast Traveller, there’s no shortage of things to see and do in historic Kyoto, including Buddhist temples, Shinto shrines, and the cherry blossoms gardens that burst to life each spring. The Aman, set in the city’s northern suburbs, is surrounded by hilly woodland and criss-crossed by coursing streams and moss-covered paths and feels worlds away from everyday stresses.

You can enjoy the resort’s sublimely quiet, peaceful feel, exploring the forested slopes it shares with the nearby Kinkaku-ji Temple, or Temple of the Golden Pavilion, a protected Unesco site, and strolling the property’s lush garden, where camellias bloom in winter and azaleas arrive in summer.

Book meditation sessions with a zen Buddhist monk and the chance to dip into the mineral hot springs in the resort’s onsen bathing pools, and you’ll find a thoughtful, almost unexpectedly romantic trip that allows you both the chance to relax and regroup on your own terms.

Ion Luxury Adventure Hotel, Selfoss, Iceland

Although it’s less than an hour east of Reykjavík, Ion's isolation makes it a popular first stop for international travellers doing bigger cross-country drives as well as for Reykjavíkers who want a peaceful, but action-filled weekend getaway.

It’s perfect for the adventure or thrill-seeking couple who likes activities such as fissure-diving and snorkelling at Silfra in Thingvellir National Park, where North American and Eurasian tectonic plates meet, or a glacier trek at Sólheimajökull.

La Residence, Franschhoek, South Africa

La Residence is the perfect place for oenophiles looking to discover the flavours of South African wine. Set in the charming and picturesque town of Franschhoek in the Cape Winelands, La Residence 30-acre wine estate is the perfect place to unwind with its swimming pools, spa restaurant, vineyards, and many private corners.

The farm produces its own wines named affectionately after members of the Biden family. You can try out the Nicole Charlotte Cabernet Sauvignon, the Alexandra Frances Shiraz, and the Rosemary Jane Rosé.

Guests can also enjoy the many wine estates in and around Franschhoek with fabulous tasting rooms and restaurants or take the wine estates specially curated wine-tasting excursions and find yourself choosing between a wine tour by helicopter, by road, on horseback, by bike, or on foot.

Written by ZamaNdosi Cele

This article originally appeared on IOL