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All that planning, entertaining, and air-kissing long-lost aunts can be exhausting. If you want to recharge in the sun and sand, choose one of these beach honeymoon destinations—each stunning shoreline and relaxing resort is vacation-worthy in its own way. Choose the locale that best suits you and your groom, and enjoy a blissful start to your marriage with a honeymoon on the beach.
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Ko'a Kea Hotel & Resort
Perfect for: Catching some waves
Poipu Beach, on Kauai, is a renowned surf spot, but you don't have to be Laird Hamilton to hang ten. The resident surf instructor at the oceanfront Ko'a Kea Hotel & Resort will get beginners up on their feet after just one lesson. Plus, the snorkeling, scuba diving, and paddle-boarding are also top-notch (from $369).
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Perfect for: Hiding away
While the British Virgin Islands have many worthy strips of sand, the aptly named Honeymoon Beach, on über-chic Peter Island Resort & Spa, is the standout. One lucky couple at a time can reserve the idyll for a picnic lunch or tropical cocktails, or for just hanging out far from civilization (from $430).
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Perfect for: Going barefoot
Matemwe Beach, on the eastern shore of Zanzibar, is so soft and powdery, you'll be tempted to take endless hand-in-hand strolls. But make time to kayak or dive off the famed Mnemba Atoll coral reefs, accessible from the quietly luxurious Matemwe Lodge (from $360).
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Lake Placid Lodge
Perfect for: Sailing into the past
If you're more lake lovers than ocean buffs, find a home away from home at Lake Placid Lodge, in upstate New York. Built as a summer house, it was transformed into one of the Adirondacks' most beloved hotels in 1946 and exudes the glamour of a bygone era. Dress up for supper in the Arts and Crafts dining room (from $499).
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The St. Regis Bora Bora
Perfect for: Floating in place
There are overwater bungalows—and then there are those at The St. Regis Bora Bora, in French Polynesia. The spacious one-bedroom villas are set right in a bright turquoise lagoon, and some come with whirlpools. Even indoors, the water is never far from sight, with walls of windows and glass panels in the floor (from $1,248).
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Perfect for: Booking a room with a view
Spread along 2,700 acres on an isthmus perched between Lake Nicaragua and the Pacific Ocean, Nicaragua's new The Inn at Rancho Santana has two miles of shoreline and five beaches—not to mention its own art gallery, café, and organic garden. Each of its 17 light and airy rooms grants the bride and groom a Pacific Ocean vista (from $249).
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Ponta dos Ganchos
Perfect for: Hiking to the shore
Tucked away on a private peninsula in southern Brazil is the serene, romantic Ponta dos Ganchos resort. Even more special than the compound's secluded beaches are the guided treks through its surrounding lush, wild rain forest (from $470).
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Perfect for: Grabbing your snorkel
With calm waves, soft sand, and bathtub-warm water, Arashi Beach, on Aruba, is the ultimate place for a dip—but it's even better for spotting sea life. (And it's just a five-minute taxi ride from The Ritz-Carlton, Aruba; from $399.) Come prepared: There are no facilities, just a few huts, so pack your snorkel, towels, water, and snacks.
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Gansevoort Dominican Republic
Perfect for: Joining the (beach) party
If your idea of a good time is staying up until sunrise, look no further than the new Gansevoort Dominican Republic, in the DR's thriving Puerto Plata region. At the super-social resort on Playa Imbert, you can bring your evening cocktails to the beach or the adults-only pool. After-hours action can be found at La Cantina Wine + Cigar Cellar and the Baia Lounge + Restaurant (from $485).
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Perfect for: Kayaking into the wild
Just over an hour by van and speedboat from Thailand's Krabi International Airport lies laid-back Koh Lanta, part of a 52-island archipelago protected by the Mu Koh Lanta National Park. Here, you can paddle through limestone caves, go hiking, and sunbathe on Ba Kantiang Beach (which is backed by a tropical forest). As for where to stay: Pimalai Resort & Spa is one of the area's few high-end resorts (from $187).