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Help me narrow down a November honeymoon destination: Japan, Thailand, New Zealand, or South Africa?

My partner and I are honeymoon planning, viewing this as our last big trip before trying for a baby. We’d like to keep our budget around $10-12k USD (although could comfortably go up to $15k if needed). We’ll be flying from a major city in the continental USA. We’re aiming for a 12-15 day trip, but could take up to 18 days. This will be in November.

We’re trying to decide between:

(1) Japan, possibly with a 2-3 day layover in Hawaii on the way there;

(2) Thailand, possibly with a trip to Cambodia to see Angkor Wat;

(3) South Africa; or

(4) New Zealand.

We recently went to the UK together and loved it, but think it’ll be easy enough to do European trips in the future even when we have kids – we want something bigger for our honeymoon (and we’re worried about the weather in Europe in November). Neither of us has been to Asia or Africa. I have been to Australia, which is why it’s not on the list but NZ is, and I’ve been to the Caribbean several times, and just went with my partner as well. We want a mix of relaxation, outdoor activities, and cultural activities — we can only spend 2-3 days on the beach before we get bored of it. At the same time, we aren’t so active that a 2 week hiking/camping trip sounds fun either – we want hotels and comfort! My partner would pick Japan as his first choice, whereas my dream vacation is a safari (I know South Africa isn’t the best safari, but I think with our budget it makes more sense, and it’ll be easier to combine it with other activities in the country, like beaches and wineries).

If you’ve been to any of these countries, what did you like (or dislike) about them? Any recommendations for places to visit within the country? If you were traveling in November (so thinking of that weather) with a budget of $10-15k USD, for approximately 2 weeks, which of these places would you go? Or is there somewhere I’m not thinking about and should?

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Source: reditt

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