One of our favourite things in this world to do is travel, which is why choosing our babymoon was so important. I think this is because for the first few years of our relationship we were so restricted with where we could go.
Ian is South African and at the time had not been nationalised and so didn’t yet have the ‘golden ticket to the world’ as he likes to call it… not sure that’s going to be the case for much longer #awkward. So, if we wanted to travel anywhere it meant a lot of faff with getting visas and all the fun stuff that goes along with that. We were really young at the time and barely had the money to go abroad let alone ‘waste’ money on visa’s.
We spent the first 5 years of our relationship travelling around the UK which, looking back made us travel to some beautiful cities. I don’t think we would have prioritised places like Bath, Cheltenham and Tunbridge Wells if we could have just hopped on a plane and flown away.
When we had been together almost 4 years we discovered Ian didn’t need a visa to travel to Turkey so our first few holidays we travelled there. Nothing says romance like a 5* (which is really a 2* in reality) all inclusive with watered down cocktails and itchy bed linen. However for us at the time it was perfect and just a way to be abroad together.
Now every oppurtunity we get we will go away, we are a big fan of the city break and prioritise travel over a lot of other things because to us it is one of the most important elements of our lives. Nothing makes me happier than exploring twisted streets that hold new and interesting shops and smells.
When planning our last baby free holiday, I was convinced our lives were going to change and that travel would be off the books forever. (If you are pregnant and reading this, it doesn’t, you can still travel, I promise).
We wanted this trip to be special and we scoured the internet for the most magical place we could find that was a reasonable flight time and wouldn’t be too hot in June, because well hello… 23 weeks preggo.
I found our dream hotel, we still talk and dream about this holiday almost two years later because it is hands down the best holiday ever, in terms of service, design, food… you name it!
We chose Casa Cook Rhodes which is Thomas Cooks own brand but oh my days, the design of the hotel is just incredible. As an interiors obsessive, it made me physically salivate!!
Everything was pure luxury from start to finish and as our final ‘hurrah’ before little man arrived it was exactly what we needed, genuinely the perfect babymoon, everything we expected and more. When we arrived they took our luggage sat us down with this amazing mocktail that was so refreshing after a 4 hour plane journey.
We went for a long weekend from Thursday flying home Monday and for adult only, half board (breakfast and a three course dinner, not buffet) with a semi-private swim up pool we paid around £1000 which sounds like a lot but when you break it down we stayed 5 nights with this view… you could easily pay £200 a night in the UK for something a lot less. Then throw in the breakfast of dreams and a semi a la carte dinner menu we felt like it was worth every penny.
I’ll be honest we spent our days doing sweet f*** all because we assumed we wouldn’t really get the chance to do that when bubs arrived, we lazed in the pool and sunbathed. I ate my body weight in olives and hummus and read as many books as I could. Thank god I did because honestly I still don’t think I’ve read a full book since Henry arrived!
They had daily classes which included yoga and pilates and I promise I had every intention of going… but I hold my hands up, the comfort of the hammock was too much.
The food was amazing, it was traditional Greek food which I a) love and b) enjoyed experiencing at an ‘all inclusive’, because all too often we are just served beige freezer food. Ian is a proper coffee snob (I absolutely love my coffee but if you follow my Instagram you know I am more of a mocha person; to which true coffee snobs think is coffee sacralidge) and I remember him being obsessed with the coffee. Me I was more obsessed with the Broste mugs that it came in so much so that I bought 4 to come home with me. If you follow me on @thewhitethistle you will notice them sat proudly on my open shelves in the kitchen.
One of the most special memories I have of being there though was getting the results of my degree. When I was 21, I started my Law degree through the Open University and I knew that whilst we were out there was around the time the results would be announced. I remember sitting in the pool refreshing my emails every 30 seconds.
It took me 5 years of studying part time whist working full time in the city but I passed with a 2:1 and Ian (who was super strict with me whilst pregnant, remind me to tell you our pregnant whilst renovating story!) let me have a glass of bubbles to celebrate. I remember feeling the weight of the world lift off my shoulders. I could now relax and enjoy my baby when he finally got here without revision or resits looming over my head.
A friend of mine recently asked where we went on our baby moon because she remembers the photos I shared at the time and I told her she needed to book immediately because every one needs that luxury especially at the point you start feeling vaguely whale like… little do you know how much worse it will get before due date.
We are looking to book this year as they opened a family friendly hotel in Chania, Crete and we were desperate to book our summer holiday there! I seriously cannot wait.
Here are just a few of the swoon worthy images that I will leave here for you.