Okay, okay the Maldives might have sun and clear azure waters and Thailand fresh coconuts and soft white beaches, but think of it this way – for many couples all around the world, Ireland is a dream honeymoon destination.
From rugged coastal lighthouses, to medieval castles, to swanky spa hotels overlooking the Atlantic, it’s all here on our doorstep, no flight required.
So whether it’s a luxurious staycation, or a ‘mini-moon’ as a prelude to a bigger honeymoon abroad, you won’t go too far wrong this these amazing Irish locations.
1. Inchydoney Island Lodge & Spa
If your idea of a romantic honeymoon is looking out at the Atlantic Ocean while eating mussels and drinking champagne in your in-room hot tub, then get thee to Inchydoney, in the West Cork town of Clonakilty.
With it's glorious spa, incredible panoramic views of the sea and delish dining, this four-star hotel is as close to heaven on this earth as you will get.
Plus you can pick up a few packs of the town's famous pudding on the drive home – and while it's up to you if you pass the time singing 'It's a Nice Day for a White Pudding', we highly recommend it.
2. Crookhaven Lighthouse
This amazing lighthouse rental feels like it's at the end of the world – and with a jaw-dropping location at the tip of Cork's Mizen Head, Ireland's most South Westerly point, we reckon it's close enough.
Attached to the diminutive lighthouse is a beautifully-decorated, light-filled cottage, perfect for cosy meals and drinking champagne while looking out onto the Atlantic Ocean.
A definite once-in-a-lifetime experience – and sure look, isn't that what honeymoons are all about?
3. Lusty Beg Island
Lusty Beg Island, set in the Fermanagh Lakelands, is a 75-acre haven that will make you feel like you're abroad. We love the Americana feel from the self-catering chalets and lodges.
With wall-to-wall wood, large windows and views out onto the lake, you'd swear you were in the likes of Colorado or Montana, not up the the road in Fermanagh.
There's also a spa, opportunities for water sports and a rustic bar and restaurant.
4. The Cliff House Hotel
This Ardmore, Waterford gem is pure luxury – a brilliant choice for a pampering five-star staycation.
Modern and minimalist, the hotel's sea views, unreal spa and top notch grub will restore the pair of you after the madness of the wedding.
We recommend eating brunch on the terrace every day; with views like this it would be downright rude not to.
5. Smithstown Castle
How deadly is this? A royal castle rental in beautiful Kilshanny, Co Clare, just for the two of you.
We're talking four-poster beds, a regal drawing room full of period furniture and a surrounding private demesne for you to rule over, or, you know, go for romantic strolls in – whatever, it's up to you.
Bora Bora, stick that in your pipe and smoke it.
6. The Strand Inn
The iconic Strand Inn overlooks the beach in the gorgeous seaside village of Dunmore East – and as a Waterford gal you have my word that it’s the perfect destination for a romantic mini-moon.
From chic sea view rooms, to the nautical-themed bar, to the beautiful downstairs restaurant serving a smorgasbord of locally caught fish and seafood, you won’t need to leave.
But if you do fancy venturing out, there are cliff walks, hidden beaches and boat trips leaving from the picturesque working harbour.
7. Turin Castle
Escape to the Mayo countryside to recharge your batteries in this absolute beaut of a castle.
With the nearest town eight miles away, you will literally be in your own little world, just what you'll want after the wedding.
Tramp around in the surrounding fields, plonk yourselves in front of the castle's roaring fire and just chill the feck out.