Couples looking to rekindle their flame amidst exotic locations should look east to Africa and the Middle East. Here, the flame is fanned while viewing the Big 5, exploring cities steeped in history and walking in the footsteps of early explorers.
Thrills in South Africa & Beyond
Game drives, wine tasting in the Winelands, shark diving, hot air balloon rides, and spa treatments…. Who wouldn’t swoon over experiences like that? Great Safaris packages it all together in its 13-day South Africa and Victoria Falls itinerary (starting at $4,395). The adventure begins in Cape Town with a great white shark cage dive and after the adrenaline rush has subsided, couples head to the Winelands for a private tour and gourmet tastings complete with wines, chocolates and cheese. There’s also lots of loving going on when couples have the opportunity to hug a cheetah at the Cheetah Outreach Center. In Victoria Falls, guests take a walking tour through the forest under a canopy of chattering monkeys; go on an elephant back safari; enjoy breakfast in the bush; and take a romantic sunset cruise on the Zambezi River. Optional add-ons include a helicopter ride over the falls, or for the thrill-seeking couple, bungee jumping over the water-filled gorge. While in Kruger National Park, guests venture out on an open safari vehicle for a guided game drive where they can set their eyes on the Big 5 in the Kapama Game Reserve. And, when the sun begins to make its way into the early morning sky, a hot air balloon ride across the wilderness sets the tone for another romantic day.
Pampered Safari in Zambia
On “a luxury safari in Zambia,” says Bill Roberson, INCA’s president, “you’ll be surrounded in luxury accommodations with impeccable service and plenty of privacy, all the while enjoying nature at its absolute-most abundance.” INCA’s 13-day Zambezi Walking Safari (rates starting at $8,995) has guests walking in the footsteps of explorers such as David Livingstone as they look out for the Big 5.
Guests spend three days in Livingstone and Victoria Falls, three days in the Lower Zambezi Valley, and six days in the South Luangwa Valley, all while staying at intimate lodges and tent camps.
Roberson notes that, “Zambia offers breathtaking scenery, spectacular wildlife and a chance to get away from the hustle and bustle of the modern world. You’re stepping back in time to the days of early explorers. Coupled with luxury accommodations, there is an atmosphere of sophistication and romance that comes with candlelit dinners on the banks of an African river.”
He points out that couples can opt for romantic perks such as a candlelit dinner, or a private guide (for an additional cost) so the couple can spend quality time alone on safari.
Accommodations include the River Cottages at Tongabezi Lodge, where guests have their own valet and indulge in the luxury of four-poster beds draped with netting, clawfoot tubs, and expansive wooden verandahs. At the Chongwe River Camp, clients can opt for the Cassia Suite, a tented suite with a plunge pool and a fire pit, or the River House, featuring four large suites at the edge of the river bank. And at Chinzombo Camp, there are six luxurious villas featuring private plunge pools on viewing platforms.
Jerusalem: Steeped in History
Offering views of the walls, minarets and domes of Jerusalem’s Old City from its elevated location, The King David Hotel Jerusalem, a Dan Hotels property, exudes romance simply with its idyllic location. Known as a major landmark in the city, this property features regal suites; the romantic, fine dining restaurant La Regence; and a peaceful private garden oasis with a pool—the essential ingredients for a romantic rendezvous in the city.
The King David Hotel is located approximately a 15-minute stroll away from the Old City, giving guests easy access to many historic sites, including the Tower of David, the Jerusalem Botanical Garden, the Tunnels of Time, and the Holocaust History Museum, among other historic sights. Rates start at $398 January to February; the property is offering a 7-night package, GOLDAN7, that’s valid through Feb. 28, 2017, and includes an Israeli breakfast when staying seven consecutive nights in this hotel or any combination of this hotel with any other Dan Hotel for a minimum of seven nights.
Great Safaris: greatsafaris.com
King David Hotel Jerusalem: danhotels.com/JerusalemHotels/KingDavidJerusalemHotel