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25 year wedding anniversary vacation ideas???

  • CaptainMusky
    Participant
    Posts: 9822
    #2162085

    My wife and I will be celebrating our 25th Anniversary next May. We never even had a honeymoon because we were just poor college grads just starting careers. We haven’t been on a vacation just the two of us in years and those were mostly tied to trips for my work that we extended out.
    With growing kids and their demands we just havent really had much time to get away. Now the kids are older, youngest is 13 so we are in a good spot. When we got married we wanted to have our honeymoon in Hawaii but that wasnt in the cards.
    My wife just sent me an email about a Mexican timeshare, but I am not sure I am real keen on Mexico. Never been there, but it just doesnt seem too appealing, but its probably the cheapest option from a warm destination.
    What are some places you folks have gone to that were enjoyable? I have always wanted to go to Europe, but I think that would have to be a 2 week endeavor to really do it justice.
    Thoughts fellow IDO’ers?

    Dan
    Participant
    Southeast MN
    Posts: 2558
    #2162092

    Congrats! Sounds like you two deserve this. I’m sure you’ll get a lot of good recommendations. My wife and I have been to several Carribean countries and also Hawaii…I’d recommend you follow up on your 25-years-old plan for Hawaii.

    My wife always wants to be adventurous, see how locals do things in their countries, eat their foods…that’s all nice, but in Hawaii you get a warm vacation with beaches, mountains, sights, all that stuff…and you’re still in the U.S. That’s the kicker for me. Still using U.S. currency, U.S. healthcare if you needed it, cell phones will work no problem, and you’ll find businesses you recognize for groceries or other items.

    It’s not cheap, and it’s a long flight(s). We had a direct flight once from Minneapolis to Honolulu that was over 9 hours, but that’s not a deal-breaker to me. I believe Hawaii is 4 hours behind here and that can work to your advantage. We wanted to go to Pearl Harbor and beat the crowds and we both woke up at 4am (8am back in MN) and couldn’t sleep anymore so we casually made our way and had plenty of time.

    gimruis
    Participant
    Plymouth, MN
    Posts: 7885
    #2162109

    X2 on Hawaii for all the reasons that Dan stated above. Somewhere along the Florida coast would be second for me. I stayed for a week at St Pete Beach in 2015 and it was fantastic. Tradewinds Island Resort was the name of it. Parasailing, inshore saltwater fishing, snorkling, etc. And a lot of seafood for meals.

    tswoboda
    Participant
    Posts: 3684
    #2162117

    What do you want to do? More importantly what does your wife want to do smash

    Tons of options in Mexico and it’s generally cheap and easy, great for relaxation but not much for an “experience”.

    Was in Hawaii for the first time this fall and can’t recommend it enough. I’m partial to Kauai but it’s the only island I’ve been to.

    CaptainMusky
    Participant
    Posts: 9822
    #2162118

    I think Hawaii makes sense for a lot of reasons since that is where we have always wanted to go and my aunt and uncle had a timeshare there for decades so they would have a lot of pointers on what to do and where to go. They were on Maui. Heck if they still have it we might get off cheap LOL

    BigWerm
    Participant
    SW Metro
    Posts: 6978
    #2162132

    Couple questions to help narrow it down, how long do you want to go for? And do you prefer R&R like at an all-inclusive, or do you prefer to doing things and experiencing the location more and finding your own food and beverage places? I’ve done Mexico, Carribean and Florida spots and by far my favorite among them was Puerto Rico. If you can take a longer vacation, go to New Zealand, we went for 2 weeks and barely scratched the surface of things to see and do, so I’d only recommend that if you can do at least a 2 week vacation.

    tswoboda
    Participant
    Posts: 3684
    #2162134

    If you can take a longer vacation, go to New Zealand

    Just a reminder that May is late fall/early winter in NZ

    CaptainMusky
    Participant
    Posts: 9822
    #2162136

    BigWerm, New Zealand sounds amazing but the thought of that flight scares the begeesus out of me. You are right you would need to do that for an extended stay for sure.
    We are not the most adventurous people, so just staying at a beach or near one would be fine. We would do some sightseeing etc and possibly (if we went to Hawaii) a helicopter tour would be fun.
    We are not the biggest into like club scenes at this stage either so we would just like to have access to good restaurants, etc which I think you can find just about anywhere.
    All-inclusive sounds nice, but I just dont think we would get the value out of it since I eat like a parakeet now.

    Gitchi Gummi
    Participant
    Posts: 1226
    #2162137

    Alaska in the summer is pretty incredible, even without doing any fishing. There’s a pile of national parks there that each could warrant their own vacation. More of an adventure style vacation than a beach and flip flops vacation.

    CaptainMusky
    Participant
    Posts: 9822
    #2162138

    We are also open to timing since we dont necessarily have to do this over our actual anniversary. My wife told me to take Feb 10 – 14 off and dont ask questions and here it was something she found in Mexico she was going to book, but she has taken a beating on EMachines and blew all that money LOL

    TheFamousGrouse
    Participant
    St. Paul, MN
    Posts: 9541
    #2162140

    Congratulations on 25 years, first off. It certainly is something to celebrate.

    As Werm mentions, need more info to focus things a little more.

    – What type of vacation? Beach? Sightseeing? Cultural? Sport/fishing/golf/etc?

    – Budget?

    Of the options you mention:

    – Mexico – I wouldn’t dismiss it if the goal is someplace hot/sunny to lie on the beach, drink cocktails, and eat. Two things Mexico has going for it are a) Value – you can go to a very high-end resort for much less than you’d pay elsewhere and b) it’s easy to get to from MN and in the same time zone.

    – Europe – You don’t necessarily NEED more than a week in Europe (of course more is always more) as long as you focus on one city or region.

    – Barcelona is a fantastic city and has it all, sights, culture, food, and ambiance. May is the perfect time to go. The same could be said for many other mid-sized cities in Spain/Portugal.

    – Tuscany. Drinking from a cultural firehose here, but again this region has it all and in spades. IMO to get the most out of Tuscany, you need to rent a car and drive so you can explore more freely. As with Spain, Italy is loaded with good options, like drinking from a cultural and culinary firehose.

    There are a lot of other options in Europe, but May is too early in the year for alpine and some northern destinations here. June would be ideal.

    KP
    Participant
    Hudson, WI
    Posts: 884
    #2162142

    I’d agree with everyone on Hawaii! Long flight and kinda spendy but just worth it! Great scenery and if your a history person Pearl Harbor is a must see! I’d like to get back there and explore some of the other Islands like Maui or Kauai. When I went we just stayed at Oahu but we did rent a car to explore the Island. The North Shore of Oahu is really cool and they have some great food trucks there.

    Alex Fox
    Participant
    Posts: 160
    #2162144

    Biggest issue now would be how much are you willing to spend. My wife and I got married in Antigua, we want to return in a few years and bring our boys, but the cost of our VRBO and ones like it has about tripled. I think we rented a 5 bedroom, with pool, within walking distance to the beach, restaurants, grocery for $1400 for 7 days. Now that bill is over $3000. Getting there is an issue too, from MSP, you can’t get there in the same day. Have to stay over in Newark or Miami. If that doesn’t bother you and can afford it, it was an amazing place.

    I’ve been to Maui, and if you’re worried about flying to New Zealand, flying to Hawaii isn’t much better. I’m assuming you’re freaked out by the thought of the plane being about 2000 miles from anything? It’s the same going to Hawaii. That’s a big ocean over there. If you can do it, Maui is a sweet place.

    Alaska is an amazing place, you’re never that far over an ocean if at all, and if you’re on IDO I’m guessing you’d enjoy everything outdoors that you can do. Problem is the weather, even in summer it can be snowing on you depending on where you’re at.

    Europe would be a 10 day minimum trip in my opinion but full of history and cool places to see.

    fishthumper
    Participant
    Sartell, MN.
    Posts: 6866
    #2162145

    All-inclusive sounds nice, but I just dont think we would get the value out of it since I eat like a parakeet now.

    But do you drink like a Fish ???? rotflol

    If so then I’ll say Mexico is a great option. If laying around on a beach in Great weather, eating good food, and doing a lot of drinking is your thing. Mexico is the place for you. There are also a fair amount of other fun things to do while there. Sailing to different islands, snorkling, swimming in and climbing waterfalls, swimming with dolphins, ect. all for about 1/3 the cost of a cheap Hawaii Trip. Not that Hawaii isn’t a fun trip as well. Mexico is really much safer place than a lot of people think. As long as you stay within the resort or only go places in groups with others to events planned by the resort. I have been to mexico 4 times now and loved every trip.

    BigWerm
    Participant
    SW Metro
    Posts: 6978
    #2162146

    We are not the most adventurous people, so just staying at a beach or near one would be fine. We would do some sightseeing etc and possibly (if we went to Hawaii) a helicopter tour would be fun.
    We are not the biggest into like club scenes at this stage either so we would just like to have access to good restaurants, etc which I think you can find just about anywhere.
    All-inclusive sounds nice, but I just dont think we would get the value out of it since I eat like a parakeet now.

    The value at an all-inclusive isn’t really in the quantity you consume, it’s in the fact you won’t have to pull your wallet out at every turn (although tipping can enhance your experience) and you also don’t have to figure out where to go find food/drink. You just pick one of the options and go. My one piece on all-inclusive’s though is to do your research, there’s a huge variance and nothing worse than a place with terrible or limited food options and crap/watered down booze. Also, there are some GREAT deals to be had at top-end resorts right now.

    Non-all inclusive means finding your own restaurants and bars, or the ones in your hotel, or going DIY and booking an AirBnB. We did an AirBnB on Condado Beach in Puerto Rico and it was awesome, Matt Moen was down the beach at a nice hotel. Nice beach, awesome restaurants from fine dining to authentic Puerto Rican food within walking distance. Old San Juan is very cool if you are into history and architecture, and El Yunique National Park is a short drive and worth the trip imo. Still in the US as well and a short flight. Very good Tarpon fishing as well.

    Dan
    Participant
    Southeast MN
    Posts: 2558
    #2162153

    Since international trips have been brought up….do you have a passport? If not I’d recommend getting on that, and they’re not bad to have anyway. We’ve had ours for almost 10 years and need to renew, so I couldn’t tell you what the wait time is, but I’ve known people who have been awful nervous that theirs wouldn’t be ready in time for a trip. Even if you end up going to Hawaii, you’ll have it if you do go somewhere else out of the country. Plus, with Real ID things getting tossed around, from what I understand a passport is always golden for airport ID purposes.

    AK Guy
    Participant
    Posts: 521
    #2162159

    Alaska in the summer is pretty incredible, even without doing any fishing. There’s a pile of national parks there that each could warrant their own vacation. More of an adventure style vacation than a beach and flip flops vacation.

    If you’re thinking about going to AK in May, you’ll find a lot of bargains. From cruise ships, motor homes, to staying at lodges, May is the off season. It’s a great time to travel if your sole focus is not fishing.

    big_g
    Participant
    Isle, MN
    Posts: 19890
    #2162174

    We went to Hawaii for our 25th in 2018. We spent 3 days on Oahu and did Pearl Harbor and a Luau. (Pearl Harbor is surreal) We then spent 7 days on Kauai and redid our vows on the beach. We had a Hawaiian ceremony and it was pretty cool.

    Flash forward 6 months and we moved to Maui for a year ! Moved back for a year, then back to Maui for another year ! If you want to get some ideas on things to do on Maui.. I can give you a bunch ! Have fun and congrats on 25 !!! That is no small feat ! peace chased

    munchy
    Participant
    NULL
    Posts: 4629
    #2162193

    We Honeymooned in Hawaii, did 2 days on Oahu, saw Pearl Harbor, went up to the north and watched the huge waves and surfers, don’t need to go back to Oahu again.

    Then hopped to Kauai and spent 5 days there, the most amazing place either of us have ever been to. Did a bunch of hiking and kayaking. Tried to get to the Napali Coast but the roads were closed from some washouts and the wind was too high for the boats to go. Definitely on our list to go again.

    Then hopped to Maui for 4 days and did the normal touristy stuff (road to Hana, Sunrise on Mt Haleakala, etc).

    For us we could move to Kauai and never regret a second. Maui was just too touristy for us, it was cool and great for someone who wants to golf and sit on the beach just not for us.

    Oahu was just dirty and felt like Minneapolis on an island.

    We are saving our pennies for another trip eventually, but you know….kids….

    bzzsaw
    Participant
    Hudson, Wi
    Posts: 3156
    #2162194

    Congrats Captain. It is our 25th anniversary this year also. We got married on Maui and have been able to go back 5 – 6 times since. We spent time on Maui ever trip but also spent time on Kaui and Oahu on a couple of the trips. My favorite by far was Maui. 1 day on Oahu would be plenty for me to see Pearl Harbor. I would want to go a minimum of 10 days if going to Hawaii. You will spend 2 complete days traveling. That only leave 5 days to relax and see some sites.

    We’ve been on Carribean cruises as well as St Maartin on more recent trips. St Maartin was a close second to Maui on my list. Mexico is also less expensive and there are nice options there as well (Playa Del Carmen, Ixtapa, etc) but the airfare for Mexico during Feb – April looks ridiculous. I just checked for flights to Cancun for spring break and they are pushing 1000.00 per ticket. The Mexico flights are in the ball park of what it will take to get to Hawaii or St Maartin. Everything else in Mexico will be cheaper.

    I got to go to Europe for several work trips. My wife and daughters would rank EU way higher than I would.

    Good luck in whatever you choose and Congrats again.

    Hard Water Fan
    Participant
    Shieldsville
    Posts: 172
    #2162205

    My bride and I celebrated our 25th last fall. We went to the exotic locale of … Ely!

    We stayed at the Grand Ely Lodge and visited

      Sudan Underground Mine
      North American Bear Center
      Bear Head Lake State Park
      International Wolf Center
      Root Beer Lady Museum
      Vermilion State Park

      We enjoyed the long weekend immensely.

      Perhaps my bride, and me, are exceptions but we love all that Minnesota has to offer.

    lindyrig79
    Participant
    Forest Lake / Lake Mille Lacs
    Posts: 3243
    #2162206

    Maui is awesome. I do want to try Kauai. I agree with Buzz on 10 day minimum.

    I also love the Florida Keys. Largely because it’s a fishing paradise. But also because it’s much closer, great weather, neat island vibe.

    Mexico is great too. The Yucatán has world class beaches. Pretty easy to fly into Cancun and follow the signage to your resort. Or take a shuttle down to Playa del Carmen.

    Brad Dimond
    Participant
    Posts: 916
    #2162225

    Our son honeymooned in Italy and Croatia last August. They loved it all, wished they had more time in Tuscany.

    Today is our 35th anniversary. My wife has COVID, puts a damper on the festivities. We are discussing a warm weather trip to celebrate. St. Croix and St. Johns are top of mind. We spent ten days in the British Virgin Islands, Virgin Gorda is amazing.

    buckybadger
    Participant
    Upper Midwest
    Posts: 4153
    #2162253

    Our most recent “big” trip was 4 years ago to Barbados. As dozens of others have said, it really depends what you’re looking for with regards to recommendations.

    My wife has traveled more than most and has been to most places in the Caribbean, Hawaii a couple times, and Mexico and Central America multiple times. Now that we’ve got kids and whatnot, we are into the all inclusive thing. Sandals is tough to beat if going that route, especially finding a Sandals next to the Sandals Royal resorts giving you free access to both. There are still opportunities to get out of the resorts and experience more authentic things too. At Barbados we swam with sea turtles, went to the local fresh fish market on a Friday night which was memorable, did some deep sea fishing, and then still did most of the resort stuff that we wanted.

    MX1825
    Participant
    Posts: 1116
    #2162267

    Take her to Vegas, she gambled on you 25 years ago. whistling

    Congrats 25 years is a great accomplishment. applause

    suzuki
    Participant
    Woodbury, Mn
    Posts: 16556
    #2162306

    Dont forget to get her something Silver.

    CaptainMusky
    Participant
    Posts: 9822
    #2162308

    Since international trips have been brought up….do you have a passport? If not I’d recommend getting on that, and they’re not bad to have anyway.

    Yes, we both have passports, but I am sure hers is expired. Mine isnt. Good thing you brought that up! Would have completely overlooked that and I am sure its a pain to get these back quickly.

    CaptainMusky
    Participant
    Posts: 9822
    #2162312

    Some wonderful recommendations and some things I would have never even thought of so thank you all so much. Something rolled into my head last night since I am such a MN Wild fan and follow Russo like a disciple he and Lapanta do an annual trip to Europe each year and they have quite the list of planned things. I think it would be awesome, but they havent announced anything for next year yet. I mentioned that to her last night and she seemed very interested. Last year they spent time in Austria and the year before it was Italy.

    KP
    Participant
    Hudson, WI
    Posts: 884
    #2162360

    That trip they did looked really cool! Both I think are foodies as well so you know would go to some great restaurants.

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