You know us at Patchwork – we love supporting women who are uprooting the status quo. Laura from Devine Bride is doing exactly that with her pioneering pick ‘n’ mix wedding planning, which allows you to get exactly the help you need for your wedding with no unnecessary extras or frills. As well as being a woman of exceptional planning savvy, Laura is a woman of impeccable style – so we had to ask her about her honeymoon! Here’s her top Bora Bora honeymoon tips, with a little bit of Disneyland thrown in for good measure…
So whereabouts exactly did you go on honeymoon?
We did island hopping in French Polynesia, and stopped off at LA on the way back. We spent about 5 days each on 3 French Polynesian islands, then about the same in LA on the way back. We planned pretty meticulously so that we could just relax when we were there, and take advantage of the holiday of a lifetime. We planned the trip around visiting Bora Bora, as we didn’t know when else we would get an excuse (or the funds!) to do a trip like that!
We weighed up travelling time vs costs and value for money on each French Polynesian island and planned from there. We flew to Mo’orea via LA first. Mo’orea is Bora Bora’s (slightly) lesser known little sister, so your money goes further there – we managed to book an overwater bungalow on Mo’orea for nearly half the price of a beach bungalow on Bora Bora. Then a few days later we did a hop, skip, a short plane, and a water taxi to our beach bungalow on Bora Bora, where we had our own private beach. Then we flew back to Tahiti, which is the largest of the islands and where international flights go from. From there, we flew to LA and spent some time exploring Santa Monica, Hollywood, and also did Universal and Disney!
What was it that you wanted from your honeymoon. Were you looking for adventure or relaxation?
Both! After the manic year saving and planning for our wedding, we mostly wanted to chill out. But we are avid travellers and wanted to make it the trip of a lifetime – your honeymoon is a great excuse to do that! So we mixed water and beach bungalows with island hopping and experiences (activities and wildlife trips), and then explored LA on the way back (our flight transfers were via LA, so we thought we may as well make the most of it).
How did you go about planning your epic trip?
The deal was… I planned the wedding and my husband planned the honeymoon. He took a year out to travel the world when he was in his twenties, so it’s kind of his bag. We were planning the honeymoon as long as we were planning the wedding – it was just as important to us, and we wanted to make our money go the furthest it could. We booked our French Polynesian leg through a local travel operator in French Polynesia, which literally save us about a thousand pounds – although we did have a hairy moment when our $1k deposit went missing over the internet for a few days, but turns out our bank had just stopped it temporarily as a security measure! We booked our flights independently through BA and Air France during their summer sales the year before, and booked the entire LA leg by doing our own research and booking everything online separately.
What were your honeymoon highlights?
Finally arriving in French Polynesia after travelling for about 2 days from London – the view from the plane when we were flying in was just magical, it was like a movie! I just felt so lucky. The island of Mo’orea is shaped like a heart from the sky, too! Other highlights inside: bottles of fizz waiting for us on arrival at every place we stayed in French Polynesia, quad biking through pineapple plantations, swimming with dolphins, paddle boarding, and just generally all the amazing tropical wildlife on these islands that I’d never seen before. When we got to Bora Bora, the realisation (after a fair bit of jetlag) that this was not in fact a dream really hit me. I also really enjoyed Disneyland in LA, even though my husband had to really persuade me to go! We went on our 1 month anniversary of being married, and it was just the most fun – I cried at the midnight parade!
Top 5 places to visit
Bora Bora – French Polynesia
Mo’orea – French Polynesia
Rio de Janeiro – Brazil
San Sebastian – Spain
Thank you Laura for sharing your gorgeous Bora Bora honeymoon tips – if you’re looking for an expert London wedding planner, head to Laura’s website; and if you’re looking to plan a Bora Bora honeymoon, why not check out our California & Bora Bora honeymoon template?