If the world were my honeymoon oyster…
My boyfriend Henry asked me where I’d choose to go for my honeymoon yesterday.
Obviously I gave the question absolutely no thought at all and just got overly excited about the prospect of being asked to marry him. I hummed ‘Here comes the bride’ to myself all day and chose to skip instead of walk when moving from place to place.
But eventually when I had finished imagining myself in a white dress I did give the honeymoon some thought. It’s strange that it’s never occurred to me to plan this most important holiday before. I’ve been obsessed with my own wedding day since I first agreed to marry Tom Johnson (he was 9, I was 8) in the mid-1980s. And as you know I’m somewhat addicted to travel. But for reasons I can’t fathom I’ve never combined the two in my head.
However, once I managed to expel Melissa the bride from my mind for five minutes I started thinking. My first choice didn’t take long to settle on. Malaysia.
It has everything I want from the holiday that is genuinely (hopefully!) once in a lifetime. While I do love the idea of a stunning beach for 2 weeks with my new husband in reality it’s too long to do nothing. So I would take the triple-centre route and thankfully Malaysia can do that in its sleep.
The city is calmer than Bangkok but grittier than Singapore. It’s been developed carefully but in a hurry and is unrecognisable from the KL of 30 years ago.
I’d take Henry to Jalan Alor, the hawkers’ street, and try to feed him the local delicacy of frog-porridge that I made the mistake of eating when I last went.
Where to stay: Lanson Place Bukit Ceylon Serviced Residences
Then on to Tengat Tong Shin for the quaint restaurants and bars so that he can eat a whole meal to add to his one mouthful of frog.
As is the way in most cities it’s important to stand somewhere high up and look at it. KL has the perfect place thanks to the viewing platform at the Petronas Twin Towers.
And Henry is a Formula 1 lover so we’d have to go for a look at the circuit which is a few miles out of town (I know, so dull). In fact it’s on the way back to the airport which is where we need to go for part 2 of the honeymoon adventure.
Where to stay: The Club Saujana Resort Kuala Lumpur
Borneo is the third largest island in the world and it’s also just about the most diverse spot on the planet in terms of wildlife and plants. A section of the island belongs to Malaysia and as you probably know it is most famous for the orang-utans.
I’ve locked eyes with some apes in my time but the ones I met at the Sepilok rehabilitation centre are the closest to humankind as I think it’s possible to find. And the babies are far cuter than human babies. It takes a couple of hours from KL to Kota Kinabalu and if we plan it right we could arrive on Sunday morning when the Gaya Street Fair is in full swing. This will be the active part of the honeymoon with white water rafting, climbing Mount Kinabalu (one of the highest mountains in South East Asia) and snorkelling all on the agenda.
Where to stay: Gaya Island Resort
Pretty much every island with a beach likes to call itself a ‘paradise island’. Few deserve the title but Pangkor Laut Island very much does. Here we will lay still. Very still. There’s a lot to this island but we’ll be taking advantage of very little of it. The beach and the sea are all we’ll need.
Where to stay: Pangkor Laut Resort
Oh and a do not disturb sign for the bedroom door.