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The 20 most romantic places in the world

From Montreal and the Maldives to Las Vegas and Lake Malawi, these are the most romantic places in the world according to us

Written by
John Bills

You can never have enough love in your life, especially when the world around us seems more chaotic than ever. Luckily for lovers worldwide, the planet is packed with romantic places that will simultaneously take your breath away and steal your heart, filling the lungs with love and excitement in equal measure. We live in an incredible corner of the universe, that cannot be denied.

From idyllic island paradises to charming cities and vibrant villages, we’ve scoured the globe in search of the most romantic places in the world. The final selection covers the classics while introducing a couple of places you might not be aware of: secret spots for you and yours to plan the rest of eternity together.

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The most romantic places in the world

Swoon. There’s something about magical Montreal that really sets it apart from other cities in North America, something that screams ‘romance’ and promises to never let go. It could be the curious combination of Canadian confidence and European elegance, or it could be the tangible history that sparkles from every corner of the city’s historic heart. In truth, it doesn’t matter what it is, as long as whatever ‘it’ is keeps on shining. Seek out one of the many rooftop bars in the Old Town and soak it all in.

📍Discover the best things to do in Montreal

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2. Herzegovina

With the heart in its name and wine flowing from every corner, Herzegovina remains one of Europe’s final hidden treasures. The use of the word ‘hidden’ isn’t entirely accurate, of course, as any summertime visitor to Mostar, Kravice Waterfalls or Medjugorje will attest, but the passionate southern portion of Bosnia and Herzegovina is a beautiful region filled with romance-friendly adventures for lovers of all shapes and sizes. From exploring wild rivers by kayak to the shimmering allure of the Tekija in Blagaj, Herzegovina is a destination defined by the heart. If the sight of Počitelj doesn’t make you fall head over heels in love, you might want to check your pulse. 


Where else to begin? No city on the planet encapsulates the idyllic concept of romance quite like Venice. There is beauty around every corner here, from sunrise to sunset and beyond, with narrow canals and Renaissance architecture transporting visitors to a rose-tinted wonderland. The romantic restaurants don’t hurt, while the many bridges of Venice seem tailor-made for proclamations of passion. All this without mentioning the inherent romance of a gondola ride? Venice is a city for lovers, old and young.

📍Discover the best things to do in Venice

With the colours, the smells, the sounds and the sights, Marrakech is the sort of place that reawakens the senses with a cacophony of excitement. Somehow it manages to be forthright and wistful all at the same time, a dizzying destination that is perfect for the passionate, making it a thrilling destination for romantic visitors of all types. It also happens to be known as the City of Luxury, with all the ornate palaces and life-giving spa and wellness options anyone could need. 

📍Discover the best things to do in Marrakech


Tokyo gets all the noise, but Kyoto is where it’s at. The historic and cultural capital of this most fascinating nation, Kyoto is a picture-postcard city of classical Buddhist temples, Shinto shrines, traditional wooden houses and imperial gardens. The food is incredible, the people are magnificent, the atmosphere is spellbinding. Kyoto is Japan at its most romantic, with bamboo forests offering a breathtaking backdrop for a starry-eyed stroll. The city has become something of a hotspot for proposals, and it isn’t hard to understand why.

📍Discover the best things to do in Kyoto

The City of a Hundred Spires seems to have been built with love in mind. That can be the only takeaway from a moment spent looking over the Czech capital from the viewpoint at Letna Hill, a beer in one hand and beloved in the other. Prague is a postcard city of stories, a famous old wonder that has inspired generations of authors for centuries and will continue to do so as the years fly by. The Old Town gets most of the attention, but don’t be afraid to explore further afield either; each district has its own unique feel, from the modern stylings of Karlin to the grandeur of Vinohrady and beyond.

📍Discover the best things to do in Marrakech

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7. Zanzibar

Zanzibar’s dazzling beaches have long made it a popular honeymoon destination, but there is more to the island than the natural beauty of where sand meets sea meets sun. Traditions are important here, and that makes for a more sedate pace of life in the very best way. Zanzibar is a place where couples can step back and fall in love with what they have all over again, complete with shimmering coral reefs and all the spices the palate can handle. 

Niagara Falls, Canada/USA
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8. Niagara Falls, Canada/USA

The Honeymoon Capital of the World? That’ll be Niagara Falls. The world’s most famous waterfall is a take-your-breath-away sight if ever there was one, and isn’t that one of the great experiences of love? The thrilling moments of realisation that this person is the one, the sort of experience that always hits different when backed by 3,160 tons of water rushing by every single second. It might not be the most original of honeymoon spots, but who cares about originality when it’s the heart we’re talking about?

📍Read our ultimate guide to Niagara Falls


Hoi An’s famous lantern-lined streets are an idyllic spot for twilight walks and candid conversations, backed by well-preserved historic Vietnamese architecture that tells plenty of stories. The town’s lantern boat rides are the thing of romantic dreams – a tremendous combination of natural delicacy and impressive confidence – while Hoi An also has one of the best cocktail scenes in the country.

📍Discover the best things to do in Hoi An

Iceland can feel like another world, a world filled with all the best bits of nature from thrilling geysers to moon-like craters and more. There’s nowhere quite like it, and it’s that unique atmosphere that brings lovers here in search of something special. It doesn’t get more special than the staggering light show of the Aurora Borealis, an achingly gorgeous experience that everyone should seek out at least once in their lives. The eccentric side of capital Reykjavik is plenty romantic in its own right.

📍Discover the best things to do in Iceland

Lake Malawi
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11. Lake Malawi

Tanzania calls it Lake Nyasa and Mozambique refers to it as Lago Niassa, but the body of water known commonly as Lake Malawi is an absolute stunner no matter what you call it. One of Africa’s Great Lakes, the shores of the water are lined with gorgeous lodges that make the perfect romantic getaway. The paradise-like Nkwichi Lodge stands out; it’s a secluded slice of serenity in a quite incredible part of the world. 

Is it possible to put together a selection of the world’s most romantic cities without mentioning Paris? Is it even legal? We’re not taking any chances, and the City of Love remains as alluring today as it has been at every stage of its history. That nickname isn’t for marketing purposes, by the way; the French capital buzzes with romantic confidence that might convince you that love was first discovered here.

📍Discover the best things to do in Paris


Much like a few other places on this list, the key to understanding why the Maldives is so romantic involves nothing more than looking at it. Is there a more gorgeous spot on the planet? That comes down to preference, beauty being in the eye of the beholder and whatnot, but it’s difficult to argue against the crisp white sands and cerulean seas, especially when you find yourself snorkelling in the latter and watching blood-orange sunsets from the former.

📍Discover the best things to do in the Maldives

Okay, the tongue is firmly in the cheek here, but there must be something about Vegas that convinces couples to get married on a whim, right? It might be the excitement, it might be the devil-may-care attitude of the place, but it could also be that the bright lights bring out the naive romance in even the most hardened of hearts. The City of Lights turns into a dream once the sun goes down, and there is more for couples to do here than while a night away on slot machines and cards. If getting married seems like a good idea while in Vegas, so be it. You can deal with the consequences in the morning.

📍Discover the best things to do in Las Vegas

Ljubljana, Slovenia
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15. Ljubljana, Slovenia

Slovenia has built an entire tourist industry off being the only country with ‘love’ in its name, so it stands to reason that its picture-perfect capital has a name that loosely translates as ‘beloved’. Ljubljana is an alluring collection of narrow streets and grand architecture made for strolling hand in hand, while the splendour of nearby Lake Bled almost speaks for itself. Ljubljana also does a fine line in romantic restaurants, from the skyscraper views of Nebotičnik to the old fashioned charm of Marley and Me.

📍Discover four Slovenian getaways that are good for the planet

The place where tropical dreams come true. Hawaii has long been seen as a utopia among travellers, and they aren’t a million miles away from the truth. After all, the Aloha State is often used as a byword for paradise, and visitors will find endless sandy stretches accentuated by some of the most verdant scenery imaginable. The whole thing is brimming with potential romantic adventures, from watching the sun rise in Haleakela to seeing it set on Kauai.

📍Discover the best things to do in Hawaii

Photograph: Shutterstock

17. Greenland

Like Iceland, but green. Wait, no, like Iceland but icy? Yes, Greenland was so named as to attract people to go and settle there, so you can only imagine the would-be settlers’ shock at the icy tundra they arrived in. If that doesn’t sound too romantic, get ready to have your expectations blown out of the (frozen) water. Greenland is one of the most sparsely populated places on the planet and as such carries an inherent air of authenticity, the sort of atmosphere that brings feelings to the surface and puts life into perspective. It is shatteringly beautiful, constantly surprising and occasionally difficult. A lot like love, really.

Bora Bora Island
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18. Bora Bora Island

Several of our choices have focused on the serenity and tranquillity offered up by beaches. And, well, it doesn’t get any better than this. Bora Bora is as close to paradise as you’re going to find; it’s a stunningly isolated island in French Polynesia that will make couples feel as though the entire world has stopped – maybe even because of their love. It hasn’t, obviously, but the seclusion and beauty offered by Bora Bora make it a romantic favourite all year round.


Rajasthan’s Udaipur is often singled out as the most romantic place in India. Royal grace seems to shine from every corner, and the combination of shimmering lakes and incredible food make it a magnet for couples looking for something special. After all, what is more special than love? With palaces, lakes, views and sunsets, Udaipur has everything you could want for a most marvellous romantic getaway. Devigarh is a 45-minute drive to the north, and that place is an absolute stunner as well

📍Discover the best things to do in Udaipur

Where better to end a romantic rollercoaster than in one of Europe's most magnificent destinations? Lovely Lisbon is a real something-for-everyone destination and has become increasingly popular with couples over the years, with more and more lovers looking to envelop themselves in the city’s glittering array of restaurants and attractions. Lisbon is for lovers, and lovers will find themselves wide-eyed in wonder at the gorgeous mixture of history and culture that informs the city streets. Lisbon might not be as classically gorgeous as Vienna or Amsterdam, but it’s the blemishes that make it beautiful. Every love is unique, right?

📍Discover the best things to do in Lisbon

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