Stephan and I have been a lot of places, and 98% of the times we managed to see a lot and still stay on a budget. You really don’t have to be rich to travel, and once you learn that, it changes your life. We have a few favorite places to share and a few tips on how to go to these places without spending a huge amount of money.
Certainly one of our favorite countries, Thailand is an amazing place. You can either make yourself exhausted each day with things to do, or you can simply relax on beautiful beaches. We kind of alternated in between those two options! We spent most of our time there getting scuba diving certified in this island called Koh Tao, and you really can’t find a cheaper place in the world to do that. With plenty of affordable hotels and delicious local restaurants everywhere, we had the most amazing 12 days in that little island. We had a 3 star hotel, super clean, walking distance to the beach and restaurants, and it only costed us about $20 a night. Not joking. We ate at local restaurants everyday and spent about $3 or $4 on our meals, which were either different types of Curry or Pad Thai and no, we did not get sick of eating the same thing all the time!
With culture exploding in every corner and so many things to do, I wouldn’t say Vietnam is a good option if all you want to do is relax. If you want to explore and get to know a new place and experience somewhere completely outside of your comfort zone... go for it! We had a total of two weeks in the country and we wish we had more time! We managed to go to Hanoi, Halong Bay, Hoi An and Ho Chi Minn City and had a blast. Even more inexpensive than Thailand, you get to stay in really nice hotels and experience the local cuisine all the time for hardly any money.
If you’re feeling that Europe is a better choice for your honeymoon destination but you’re worried about the cost, head over to the Eastern side of Europe! We spent 3 and half weeks backpacking through Croatia, Bosnia, Montenegro, Albania and Cyprus and couldn’t have been happier with our choice. We managed to fit all of those countries in our schedule, but if we could only pick one I would have picked Croatia! There was so much to do and, again, you can alternate in between sightseeing through the streets of Dubrovink or relaxing on beautiful islands and beaches. We stayed in apartments (booked through booking.com), had amazing hosts, and I swear we didn’t spend more than 50 euros a night!
4. New Zealand
Okay. This one isn’t so much on budget when you compared to the other ones. But is so worth it! If you go during the winter, June till August, all the prices are way lower because that’s their off season. Get yourself a nice camper van (we recommend Britz) and just drive around. We spent 10 days driving through the South Island and again, we didn’t wanna leave. There’s beauty absolutely everywhere, it’s like being in a movie. We cooked all of our meals, either inside our van or in the campsite kitchens (they were amazing), so that saved us a lot of money that we could have spent eating out!
Fun fact: we got married November 2018 and have not done a honeymoon yet. But we will. And we’re planning to explore Central America! It’s hard to pick a place when your husband has been to 71 countries and we want to see somewhere new! But both of us haven’t been to Honduras, Costa Rica or Belize, and they are all on the top of our list!
PS. I’m aware that for most of our travels we were already working in the continent or even in the country, so we never really had to factor the flight cost. But if you make sure to fly from a major city to another major city and check everyday for good deals, you can find round trip flights from LA to Bangkok for example for like $480. Let’s be honest, you can barely go anywhere inside the United States for that price, so.. choose wisely ;)