Paris, the City of Love: window-shopping along the Avenue des Champs-Élysées, strolling arm-in-arm by the Seine, taking an evening ride on a Bâteau Mouche to the mesmeric Eiffel Tower – the city speaks of romance. For your honeymoon in Paris consider staying near the Boulevard St Germain in the heart of the Rive Gauche (Left Bank), where the shopping is great, cafes are alive and the Parisians très stylish. Be sure to book ahead to indulge in one of Paris’s iconic nightclubs, the Moulin Rouge, where for 124 years dancers have been wooing audiences with the world-famous can-can. And as you sip champagne and enjoy the show, you will indeed think: C’est la vie.
Dubbed the Paris of the East, Budapest really could be the Paris of the 1920s – even down to its wide Haussmann-style boulevards, chic boutiques and cafés full of bonhomie. Surely the most beautiful city in Central Europe – and the most romantic – the Hungarian capital has all the hallmarks of other great European honeymoon destinations, but without the crowds. Experience its beautiful blend of medieval and Secessionist architecture, an elaborate Opera House and intimate restaurants with lively gypsy music. Having been freed from Communist rule only 24 years ago, it has grown enormously to become a sophisticated and classy city while maintaining its rich culture and innate hospitality.
Portugal’s cultured capital, Lisbon, often flies under the tourist radar yet it is as historic, vibrant and gastronomically exciting – it's the ideal honeymoon destination. Being on the Atlantic Coast, it is not strictly Mediterranean but enjoys a similarly idyllic climate and lifestyle to Spain and boasts fabulous seafood that forms the basis of its cuisine. This immensely walkable city of half a million lisboêtas spreads, like Rome, over seven gentle hills. Take in the elevated and upmarket shopping bairro (neighbourhood) of Chiado and the buzzy flat precincts along the water’s edge around Praça do Comércio.