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Caribbean honeymoon destinations similar to Isla Mujeres

Isla mujeres has been our go-to spot and I’m tempted to just go with what we know and love. But for our honeymoon, might be nice to do something different. Would love recs, especially if you know Isla and get why we love it so much. Here’s our preference list from most to least important: – hotel with ocean view. Where we stay in Isla is right on the water but it’s rocky so we walk 5 min to the main beach every day. So while it would be nice to stay somewhere where you just walk out to the main beach, it’s not necessarily a priority. As long as we have a view and balcony where I can sit and read my book. Don’t really care about size of resort, could be huge, could be small with 10 or less condos or could just be a great air Bnb(but would want a pool.) we’d much rather have a nice room with a big bed(kitchen and living room not a must) and a balcony with a view than a suite with a swim out pool. – beautiful beach with beach service. Caribbean preferred but open to elsewhere. In Isla, you can get a beach bed for 2 with umbrella on playa Norte and as long as you spend $40 on food/drinks, bed is free. They make amazing food(quesadillas, fresh guac and ceviche) that they bring right to you and great frozen drink options(dirty monkey being a MUST!) Would hate to go somewhere else and not have this as an option since it’s what we do typically 6 out of the 7 days we are there. They also have tents set up right behind where the beach beds are and offer the most amazing massages. I think $35 for an hour🤯 – FOOD. I am not a fan of Caribbean type cuisine so maybe that’s why I didn’t love Jamaica(heard it’s similar in DR.) We are big seafood lovers(oysters, crab, lobster, stuffed fish dishes, etc) and also love that Isla has amazing Italian, steak and Mexican options. For example, we are from the south and I don’t love when a restaurant has a great steak or fish option but only has rice as a side instead of a creamy potato or polenta. Yes, I know that sounds insane. But we like what we like. – I’m not opposed to all inclusive but I’ve always felt like the food is sub-par at these places and obviously that’s important to us. We also love that in Isla, we can walk to all the restaurants from our condo and have lots of quality options. All inclusive would give us that convenience but maybe not the quality/variety. So I guess convenience of walking and quality/variety are 2 pretty important things. Sandals Barbados is probably the only place I’ve found on my search that seems to have both bc you have privileges at the resort next door. But it looks to be 7-10k for 7 nights🥴 a lot of the other sandals are just as expensive but don’t have as many restaurant options. – Dates aren’t locked in but likely 7 nights in May 2024. – Price: we could be flexible depending on the quality and level of service and know it’s gonna be more for an all inclusive if there’s one that has what we are looking for. But ideally under 5k for the week if it’s somewhere we can use our frequent flier miles to pay for the flight. Isla has just been SO cheap bc you book nonstop flight nashville to Cancun with SW points. Around $100 for the shuttle transfer and ferry tickets round trip. $160/night for the most beautiful condo(check out villas San Miguel, 12 units with 4 pools so it basically feels like you have a private pool if you are like us and only use it early morning or late at night.) And we spend less than 1500 for the whole week on food(eat at beach for lunch and go out for dinner every night and we drink quite a bit too. Typically make breakfast at the condo if we eat it at all) and excursions($50 to rent a golf cart for one day to explore south end of island, I think we negotiated $75 each for private 2 hour snorkeling tour that took us to MUSA, Google it if you don’t know.) So our normal 7 day yearly vacation costs on average less than $2500. – Nightlife isn’t the biggest factor bc we aren’t used to it in Isla. But would be nice to have an option for a fun night. Not a deal breaker by any means. – Least important but would still be nice is travel time. I know flying anywhere other than into cancun, we won’t be able get a nonstop. And we are fine with that as it’s actually a little easier to fly out of Huntsville Vs nashville. But more than a 6-7 hour max travel day is not ideal.

Sorry if this ended up being more of a guidebook for how amazing Isla is(I actually typed up a guidebook for anyone who wants it.) And I know most of you are probably thinking “just shut up and go back to Isla” lol. But hoping there may be somewhere similar we haven’t heard of where we could get the same experience and perks, just in a fresh location. Like I said when I mentioned budget, we are willing to pay a little more for a different location if we get all the same experiences/amenities. TIA!

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