11 Idyllic Destinations for Your Proposal

Some of our favorite lesser-known locations that are perfect for popping the question.

We’ve rounded up 11 of our favorite engagement destinations around the world to inspire the romantic in everyone.

wedding location and venue portrait on mountain top santa monica california malibu vineyard rocky
Photo: Michael Segal Photography

Proposals have evolved exponentially in the last few decades. What was once essentially a contract negotiation years and years ago has become much more. Some spend quite a bit of extra time and money to plan a grand gesture for their beloved, while others organize intimate and sentimental experiences. Either way, the care and thought that goes into popping the question in this day and age is considerable. While we at Inside Weddings adore the idea of getting on bended knee in the comfort of your own home – what a lovely, private way to demonstrate your love – we also understand and encourage the urge to propose during a fun vacation or adventure. In that regard, we’ve rounded up 11 of our favorite engagement destinations around the world to inspire the romantic in everyone.

-   Mendenhall Glacier (Juneau, Alaska). A far departure for the popular warm-weather proposals, this location would be perfect for the adventurous couple looking to bundle up and embark on a breathtaking hike, ending with a ring that shines like the ice.

-   Table Mountain (Cape Town, South Africa). Hop on a cable car in gorgeous and culturally rich South Africa that will take you both to the top of an incredible mountain with a vista of two oceans and the entire city of Cape Town below you. 

-   Great Barrier Reef (Off the coast of Queensland, Australia). For the pair who really wants to immerse themselves directly into nature, an underwater proposal – or, if that idea is a bit too tricky, a boat proposal – in this iconic stretch of reef, the largest living thing on earth, would be perfect. While there, learn how to join in on conservation efforts as well!

-   Iao Valley State Monument (Wailuku, Hawaii). If you’re looking for a tropical location, but don’t want to go the beach route, take a trip to this gorgeous rainforest on the island of Maui filled with indigenous plants and wildlife, as well as natural waterfalls. It’s also just a short drive from town, so you can go out to a celebratory meal afterward.

-   Parliament Buildings (Victoria, British Columbia). The perfectly manicured garden outside the Parliament Buildings in sweet, secluded Victoria provides a lovely combination of city and nature as the backdrop of your engagement, and it’s only a short ferry ride away from metropolitan Vancouver – you’re truly getting a lovely balance between old and new world.

-   Marin Headlands (Marin County, California). Leave the hustle and bustle of San Francisco and travel over the Golden Gate Bridge to these towers bluffs overlooking the entire city, plus the surrounding bay and the Pacific Ocean. The views are unmatched, and it will surely be a moment that you and your sweetie won’t soon forget.

-   Christmas Cove (Great Saint James Island, US Virgin Islands). Take a trip off the beaten path of Caribbean vacations and visit this small island off the coast of bigger St. Thomas for your big question. Christmas Cove will provide an intimate, yet stunning, spot to bring out the ring in paradise.

-   Ha Long Bay (Quang Ninh Province, Vietnam). While there are so many beautiful locations in Asia, Vietnam is home to Ha Long Bay: a quiet and calming body of blue-green water dotted with miniature, verdant islands. Take a boat out to see for yourself – your sweetheart will be overjoyed.

-   Two Lights State Park (Cape Elizabeth, Maine). The East Coast in the late springtime can, in and of itself, be a lovely place for a proposal, but this state park is a favorite of ours due to its mixture of rocky coastline with New England sea life and foliage – there are so many spots with different natural features to choose from.

-   Essoyes Village (Champagne, France). Far away from the lights and fast-paced city life that makes up Paris, this small village in the Champagne region of Northern France is the picture of small-town Europe and quaint, countryside life that your history-buff partner will swoon over – even before they see you down on one knee!

-   Plaza de Armas (Havana, Cuba). Americans have the opportunity to explore Cuba after various travel restrictions to the country were lifted in late 2014, and if you and your beloved want to take advantage of this, we recommend Havana’s oldest square, featuring a garden atmosphere surrounded by swaying palm trees as the setting for your engagement.

Find out what you need to know about taking a cruise for your honeymoon, discover a story from a real couple on their Ireland getaway, and find out what to expect from a romantic trip to a luxury resort in Bali.