Bucket hats and bucket lists: the summer of love

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By Will Holmes, Travel Digital Editor

The first in a series of three articles with unique travel activities for you to tick off, we list the top romantic destinations for this year’s summer holiday.

Flight and accommodation booked, hand luggage full to the brim, factor 50 SPF and sun hat at the ready. Sound familiar? You must be one of 72.8 million outbound passengers, according to this year's tourism statistics from the House of Commons, holidaying abroad from the UK.

With getting away from the UK becoming more and more popular, there are indeed more and more quirky and adventurous activities to add to your growing holiday bucket list. This series will offer three different travel bucket-lists, and this week we consider the ultimate romantic destinations that allow you to court your significant other (and maybe even impress the in-laws).

Romance awaits…

VERONA, Italy

Woo your partner from the backdrop of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.

The Casa di Giulietta in Verona claims to be the house that belonged to the Capulets and the site’s link to the Shakespearean romantic tragedy attracts thousands every year. Feel free to stand on the balcony where once Clare Danes was wooed by Leonardo di Caprio and tell your significant other how you really feel by leaving them a note on the courtyard walls. Unlucky in love? Have no fear! Groping the right breast of the bronze statue of Juliette in the courtyard is supposed to bring good luck.

There aren't many things more romantic than a hilltop view | Epigram / Periclis Antoniou

SONKARIJÄVI, Finland

Wife/partner carrying competition

Fancy putting those new gym ‘gains’ to the test in order to impress your significant other? Look no further than Finland’s annual wife carrying competition. The course involves being straddled by your partner as you undertake a 250 metre course that includes one water and two dry obstacles. The rules laid down by the International Wife Carrying Competition Rules Committee state that said wife must weigh at least 49 kg, otherwise she must wear a weighted rucksack as a handicap. The winner receives their partner’s weight in beer as a prize.

The only thing better than a Welsh 'spoon' is the Welsh countryside | Epigram / Lily Donnelly

WALES

Big or little spoon?

Are you more of an artsy pair? Then a trip to Wales for the traditional offering of lovespoons might be the place for you. It is Welsh tradition that a suitor impresses his beloved with a skilfully ornate spoon. If your partner accepts, then they will have to wear the specially decorated spoon for several days around their neck, but it has to be returned if the amorous advance is rejected. This quirky tradition certainly gives a whole new meaning to spooning!

Beware of jaws near the shore | Epigram Lily Donnelly

FIJI

Offer your in-laws a shark’s tooth.

Yes, that’s right, fighting a shark is necessary to prove your worth to your future in-laws in Fiji. Traditionally, when asking for your significant other’s hand in marriage, you present their parents with a shark’s tooth (known as a tabua in Fiji). What greater assurance could any parent want that their child will be eternally protected by their future partner?

Plitvice Lake, just outside of Zagreb | Epigram / Emma Loubser

ZAGREB, Croatia

The Museum of Broken Relationships

If love has been going your way recently, and you need a holiday that allows you to let go of your past relationships, maybe the Museum of Broken Relationships in Croatia could provide one such cathartic experience. The museum consists of a vast range of paraphernalia that was left in the aftermath of a breakup, donated by those who have had their hearts broken from all over the world.

Featured image: Epigram / Periclis Antoniou


What's your top romantic travel activity? Let us know!

AUTHOR

Will Holmes

Digital Travel Editor | Former editor of SPA award-winning publication La Civetta | Contributor for LittleLaw

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