Honeymooners: Hannah and Simon
Type: International travel
Budget: Midrange ($1000-$5000)
Where did you go? We went to Bali, Indonesia. We chose to go somewhere affordable, but family-friendly. We didn't think we could afford to go on a honeymoon, let alone schedule it in. A week before the wedding a really great deal on flights came up that was in Simon's week off uni, and only 10 days after our actual wedding day, so we just jumped on it.
What did you do? We are a bit of a travel-savvy family, and we have been internationally with my eldest daughter a few times now. This was the first time as a family of four though, so we assumed it would be a lot more challenging. It really wasn't! We had a such a ball. We usually try and set up base somewhere and then travel on day trips from that point, but this time we threw all of our preconceived ideas out of the window and just did what we wanted.
In the end we spent around three nights in four completely separate parts of the island. It was so much fun rocking up in a new location every few days. We started down low by the beach of Sanur, with the busy streets and street markets everywhere.
After that we went up the mountain, to Ubud. The kids were crazy for the monkey forest, and we found the most amazing little homestay-style bungalows for like $30 a night. We just walked into a place we liked the look of, with the kids in tow and asked if they had any rooms. It was fun feeling like we were these young, free, backpacker types, when at home we often feel so far from it.
Next we moved on to a quieter part of the island, the black sand beaches of Lovina. This is the first place we really got a feel for why Indonesia has such a family friendly reputation. Everywhere we went people were keen to greet our kids, and chat with them. We had waiters insisting on sitting with us so that they could help feed my picky eater toddler. It was so lovely to feel like not only were they welcome, but they were wanted. Far different to the restaurant culture of home. It was here we went to the amazing natural hot springs, too.
The three days we decided to dish out on some cushy accommodation. (up until that point we hadn't paid over $40 a night). We found this amazing place in Seminyak. It was nestled in away from the busy street front, so we felt like we were in our own little oasis. This is when we really took some chill out time as a family. Ordered yummy take-ins, bought a few family flicks to watch and gorged ourselves on room service. It was heavenly. The bed was ginormous. It was well and trully big enough to fit all four of us, plus wiggle room. It was so much fun just snuggling up with my family as we drank in the final hours of our familymoon.
What would you have done differently? I can't really think of anything. Sunscreen is comically expensive over there, maybe I would've packed more of that!
What's your best travel advice for other offbeat honeymooners? We are so glad we largely threw tradition off our radar with this wedding, particularly when it came to involving our gorgeous daughters. There is a real cultural stigma around involving kids in important events, like somehow their presence will negatively impact on the conspicuous day. I don't mean to overly romanticizing the issue, I am a mother, I have experienced tears and tantrums. But I have also experienced all of the love and laughter that comes in that chaotic bundle. And we wanted that, them, with us. It's kind of how we roll. 😉
That, and: Tripadvisor! It was a savior for us.
Enough chat! Let's see some more gorgeous Bali family-moon photos: