Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget

20 Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget

Last Updated on April 21, 2024

Looking for a tropical romantic getaway that won’t break the bank? Discover some of the best tropical vacation spots for couples on a budget across the world. Featuring budget-friendly resorts and hotels, cheap activities, and overall, lower costs of travel and life, these tropical destinations have everything to offer to budget travelers!

Whether you want to climb to the top of volcanoes, hike through the jungle looking for wildlife, discover a new culture, snorkel colorful coral reefs, or simply relax at paradise-like beaches, these inexpensive tropical getaways are sure to provide you and your partner with experiences you won’t forget.

Keep on reading to find some of the most affordable romantic tropical destinations for couples, from the pristine beaches of the Caribbean to the vibrant cultures of Southeast Asia to the lush rainforests of Central America.

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20 Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget

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20 Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget

HOTEL DEALS

20 Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget

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20 Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget

TRAVEL INSURANCE

20 Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget

ACTIVITIES

20 Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget

VACATION RENTALS

HELPFUL WEBSITES TO HELP YOU PLAN YOUR TRIP

20 Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget

FLIGHT DEALS

20 Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget

HOTEL DEALS

20 Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget

CAR RENTAL

20 Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget

TRAVEL INSURANCE

20 Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget

ACTIVITIES

20 Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget

VACATION RENTALS

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Bonaire

By Sabrina from Shades of Summr

Bonaire is an amazing tropical destination for couples – especially when traveling on a budget.

The beautiful, small Caribbean island is located right off the coast of Venezuela and forms together with Aruba and Curacao the ABC-island chain. It is also the cheapest one to visit from these three islands. 

Despite being a very small island, Bonaire has a lot to offer. The marine life around Bonaire’s coast is pristine. Snorkeling is therefore an amazing, budget-friendly activity when visiting Bonaire. 

The Washington Slagbaai National Park is another great place to visit in Bonaire on a budget. The entrance fee is only a few dollars, and it is totally worth it.  The national park has three beautiful beaches, Boca Cocolishi, Boca Slagbaai, and Playa Funchi. Boca Cocolishi is especially popular among tourists because it has a black sand beach with lava-formed pools.

The capital city of Kralendijk is another great place to visit. The houses there are colorful and the atmosphere is upbeat. Kaya Grandi is the main shopping street in Kralendijk, there are restaurants, shops, and cafes. 

Bonaire is a great destination to visit year-round. The weather is pretty stable and it is located outside the hurricane belt. Try to avoid going during Dutch school holidays, the island will be very crowded then. It is also a lot cheaper to go outside these times. 

The Ocean View Villas in Bonaire is a great place to stay for couples on a budget. The hotel is located right by the famous Bachelor’s beach and has everything to offer vacationers might need. 

Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Puerto Vallarta at dusk

By Erin from Pina Travels

Puerto Vallarta is a budget-friendly resort town on Mexico’s Pacific coast. This small city is known for its beaches, water sports, restaurant, and nightlife scene.

Puerto Vallarta has its own airport, making it easy to reach by plane. There are also bus connections to Puerto Vallarta from other parts of Mexico. 

In Puerto Vallarta, there’s a range of accommodation styles and prices. Couples can check into affordable hotels like Hotel Rosita. There, you have access to great amenities, and you’re in a good location for exploring the city.

For the best rates, travel to Puerto Vallarta in the low season, which runs from July through September.

While it’s known for being a beach destination, Puerto Vallarta is also the perfect city to explore on foot. You’ll come across beautiful architecture, little museums, parks, markets, and art galleries.

There are plenty of affordable things to do in Puerto Vallarta for couples, from lounging on the beach to eating local dishes in taquerias like Taqueria De Birria El Banquito

To get out of the city and see some of Jalisco’s coastline, go on a day trip hike from Boca de Tomatlan to Las Animas. This trail near Puerto Vallarta takes you from the small fishing village Boca de Tomatlan, along the coast, to a beautiful beach called Playa Las Animas. Along the way, you’ll get to enjoy secluded beaches and swimming. Aside from taking a taxi to and from Boca de Tomatlan, this day trip is totally free!

Dominican Republic

By Monica from This Rare Earth

If you are looking for a romantic tropical getaway in the Caribbean on a budget, look no further than the Dominican Republic. From exploring the capital city of Santo Domingo to soaking up some sun on the plentiful white sand beaches, to enjoying the lush tropical landscape, this Caribbean nation has it all.  

Weather-wise, the Dominican Republic is generally hot and humid year-round. Expect temperatures hovering in the 80s throughout most of the year, and sun shining year round. Be sure to include light and breezy clothing as well as beach and hiking attire on your Dominican Republic packing list.  

The best time to travel here to get the best deal budget-wise is during the low season. This runs from May to November. Traveling during these months means you’ll get cheaper vacation packages and better deals on accommodations, so it’s definitely worth considering! 

When it comes to activities, the Dominican Republic has plenty of affordable or free things to do. If you’re looking for a romantic activity, start with a sunset stroll on the beach. This is an option almost anywhere you choose to stay.

Or if you want something a little more culture-rich, you can explore the Colonial zone in Santo Domingo, where ruins of the first city in the Americas can be found. A top budget-friendly hotel in Santo Domingo is Casa Sánchez by The Oxo House. It has clean rooms, a superb pool, and is in the perfect location for walking. 

Alternately, snorkeling and kayaking off-shore can be done completely free as many accommodations have this gear on-site and available for visitors.

Overall, with its beautiful scenery, warm weather, and diverse range of activities, the Dominican Republic is an ideal destination for a budget-friendly couple’s trip. Whether you’re looking for romance or adventure, there’s something to suit every taste – all at an affordable price.

So why not pack your bags and get ready to explore this Caribbean paradise? You won’t regret it! 

Nicaragua

By Roshni from The Wanderlust Within

One of the best budget choices for a romantic tropical vacation has to be the Central American gem of Nicaragua. 

Famous for its amazing surf spots, explosive volcanoes, and incredibly colorful cities, it is one of the best places for couples to enjoy an adventure together. There are plenty of beautiful beaches in Nicaragua, on both the Pacific and Caribbean coasts of the country, with the most popular being San Juan del Sur. It is also one of the best surf spots, and home to Dreamsea Surf, an affordable and beautiful place to stay on the coast.

Nicaragua is also a great place for well-priced adventure activities especially compared to its more popular neighbor, Costa Rica. You can visit the colonial city of Granada, which is surrounded by unique islets (small islands) that can be explored by kayak or stand-up paddle board.

Or you can explore the city of Leon and try your hand at volcano boarding. This unique activity only takes place here, and nowhere else in the world, but first, you do need to hike to the top of Cerro Negro volcano with a board!

Another option is to visit Masaya Volcano, which is one of the few places in the world where you can safely see an active lava lake bubbling away.

Huatulco, Oaxaca, Mexico

Playa Violin, Huatulco, Mexico

By Julien from Oaxaca Travel Tips

Known for more than 30 tropical beaches tucked inside its 9 bays that sweep along the rugged coast, Huatulco, Mexico is a top tropical vacation spot for couples on a budget. 

Bordered by Huatulco National Park, this small town has a low-key resort vibe with secluded beaches. In fact, if you’re looking for a quiet, unspoiled stretch of coast, you’ll find the best beaches in Huatulco inside the park.

To explore the beaches when you first arrive, take a boat and snorkeling tour of the bays of Huatulco. In the following days, you’ll be able to return to your favorite beaches or explore new ones together.

Once you’ve had enough time in the sun and sand, plan to visit the nearby mountains for an adventure to the Copalita waterfalls or a coffee farm in Pluma Hidalgo. All of these affordable tours are a great way to explore the area and enjoy time together. 

While planning your trip to Huatulco in winter will save you from the oppressive heat and humidity of summer, it’s also the high season and prices increase accordingly.

You’ll be able to save money on your accommodation by visiting during the shoulder seasons around November and March. Keep in mind, hotel prices in Huatulco also increase during the Christmas holidays and Easter when national tourists flock to the coast of Oaxaca.

For a modern hotel with ocean views at a great rate, book a King room at Camino Real Zaashila Huatulco. If you prefer to stay in the center of town, Hotel Maria Mixteca is a classic hotel for a more modest budget. 

The easiest way to get to Huatulco is to fly into the Huatulco International Airport which has incoming flights from Dallas, Toronto, Mexico City, Monterrey, and Oaxaca City.

Tulum, Mexico

Playa Paraiso in Tulum

By Mal of Raw Mal Roams

One of the best tropical vacation spots for couples in Mexico, Tulum has so much to offer, from its stunning beaches and unique cenotes to its incredible Maya ruins and rich cultural heritage. And the best part is that Tulum can totally be done on a budget!

If you’re looking for affordable things to do in Tulum, start off by exploring the local Maya ruins such as Tulum Ruins, Coba, and the more off-the-beaten-track, Muyil Ruins. This is a great way to experience the area’s rich cultural heritage, and the tickets are normally only a few dollars.

Tulum has tones of incredible cenotes, many of which can be visited on a bicycle! Check out Cenote Cristal and Cenote Escondido, where you can bring your own picnic and spend an incredible day swimming, snorkeling, and jumping into the refreshing crystal-clear water.

Finally, make sure you enjoy the stunning Tulum beaches, which boast azure water and picture-perfect white powdery sand. Playa Paraiso is one of the most beautiful public beaches.

If you’re looking for affordable resorts in Tulum for couples, forget about staying by the beach. Instead, check out hotels in Aldea Zama or downtown Tulum, which offer much better value for money, such as Villas Geminis Boutique Condohotel.

Staying in the center will also give you a wider selection of places to eat, and there is no lack of excellent vegan and vegetarian restaurants such as Raw Love, El Bajon Vegan Tacos, or Vegan Tulum.

Tulum is located 118 km south of Cancun International Airport, and the best way to get there is to take an ADO bus from the airport.

The best time to visit Tulum to avoid the crowds and cheaper rates are the shoulder months of November and May.

Drake Bay, Costa Rica

Drake Bay, Costa Rica

By Lori from Travlinmad

For many couples, a tropical getaway usually means a cruise, a pricey luxury resort, or an even pricier “all-inclusive” vacation. For couples wanting a romantic destination that is kinder to their budget but still offers lush tropical surroundings, the perfect destination is Drake Bay, Costa Rica.

Drake Bay is located in the northwest corner of the remote Osa Peninsula. Getting there isn’t hard but does require some advance planning. Most visitors fly into Juan Santamaria Airport and then take a commuter flight to Drake Bay Airport. Most ecolodges will arrange transportation from the airport to your accommodations.

There is much to do in Drake Bay for couples. As part of the Osa, this area is a rustic natural wonderland. Hiking, snorkeling or diving in the pristine clear ocean, birding, and watching monkeys and coatimundis forage are popular pastimes.

Secluded beaches that, except for the scarlet macaws, you will have all to yourself are a perfect complement for any romantic afternoon. Your hotel or lodge can even provide you with a light lunch to have a private picnic on the beach.

The best time to visit Drake Bay is during the dry season, from December through April. Costa Rica is in the tropics which means it gets a lot of rain during the rest of the year.

There are a number of excellent ecolodges at Drake Bay, but for couples on a budget wanting a romantic destination, Las Caletas Lodge is very popular.

Drake Bay in Costa Rica is a perfect and secluded romantic tropical destination for couples on a budget. Pura Vida!

Panama

By Pamela from The Directionally Challenged Traveler

One of the most overlooked, budget-friendly tropical destinations in the world is Panama. At the bottom of Central America, this country offers visitors a wide array of experiences at a fraction of the cost of other tropical destinations.

Start your journey in Panama City, the capital city that is constantly buzzing with action. From the skyscraper buildings to the food trucks on the ground, you’ll be in awe at all this city has to offer.

Take a day trip to the Panama Canal and enjoy the impressive engineering. You may even get to see wild monkeys or the hundreds of species of birds that call this area home.

In the city, you’ll find plenty of things to do in Casco Viejo, the old Panama City. From exploring ruins to shopping at Plaza Francia, you’ll learn a lot about the history of Panama. Check out the well-rated Hotel Marbella for an easy place to explore the city – for under $50/night.

If you’ve always wanted to stay in an over-the-sea bungalow, then head to the San Blas Islands. A bungalow here costs around $200 a night instead of thousands like other tropical destinations (there are also other bungalows for cheaper).

Not only will you be able to enjoy pristine white beaches and coral reefs, but you can also learn about the indigenous Kuna culture. If you can’t stay on the island, some hotels will coordinate a day trip for you. 

Panama’s variety of activities makes it one of the best budget tropical destinations for couples.

Northern Colombia

Tayrona National Park Colombia

By Claire from Tales of a Backpacker

Colombia is a unique destination for couples on a budget. The country as a whole is very affordable, but the Caribbean Coast and Northern Colombia are one of the most romantic places to visit and have plenty to keep you busy without breaking the bank

Don’t miss visiting Tayrona National Park, one of the highlights of the region with incredible beaches and an option to hike through the forest to visit an indigenous settlement and spot howler monkeys and endangered cotton-top tamarins in the trees. 

Choose one of the beachfront hotels in Tayrona park for a perfect romantic hideaway, such as the Ecolodge Playa Brava Teyumakke, or rent a hammock for a night.

Adventurous couples might choose to do the Lost City hike, a 4-day trek through the jungle to reach the ruins of a city built by the Teyuna people around 800 AD, then abandoned after the Spanish Conquest and lost to outsiders until the 1970s. 

End your romantic trip with a stay in Cartagena. Cartagena is more expensive due to its popularity with cruise ship passengers, but there are still great value accommodation options here such as Casa India Catalina

There are plenty of cheap and free activities in Cartagena too, including exploring the historic old town and spotting street art in the colorful Getsemaní neighborhood, as well as visiting the Gold Museum, and taking in a spectacular sunset from a bar on the Old Town walls.

To get here, take a flight to Cartagena or Santa Marta before traveling to Tayrona, tours to the Lost City depart from Santa Marta. Cartagena is well connected with flights and cruise ships stopping here.

Placencia, Belize

Placencia Beach, Belize

By Nikki from She Saves She Travels

If you’re looking for a budget-friendly romantic tropical vacation, then consider Placencia, Belize. Located in the southern part of Belize right along the Caribbean Sea, this charming little town has so much going for it!

This little beach town hasn’t yet become one of the hot spots in Belize. It’s not nearly as popular as Caye Caulker or San Pedro, so it’s under the radar for most tourists, keeping the prices low. For less than $100 USD a night, couples can rent a basic bungalow literally right on the beach!

There are plenty of things to do in Placencia and nearby tours you could take to explore the area and learn about the culture, too.

Take a chocolate-making class, go snorkeling at Laughing Bird Caye, or go hiking to a waterfall at Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary. Of course, one of the best ways for couples to keep their vacation budget-friendly is spending time on the beautiful beaches, which are free!

To get to Placencia, you can fly into Belize City and take a public bus or rent a car. Renting a car will provide the best flexibility, and a US driver’s license is valid in Belize.

The best time to visit is April-May or November to avoid the rainy season and take advantage of the best pricing. 

Goa, India

Goa, India

By Paul D’Souza from Paulmarina

Goa is a small special state in India, known for its diverse culture, lovely people, wonderful beaches, vivid nightlife, and exceptional food. It’s one of the best tropical vacation spots for couples on a budget!

The beaches in northern Goa and the south are known to be visitor-friendly, and they are most definitely a fun place to be. The beach shacks invite one to hang out day and night and some also organize special live music events and electronic music parties.

Couples can either join in the fun or work on themselves with a free yoga or meditation session at the beach while the waves create a relaxing atmosphere.

Food lovers will appreciate healthier and often very budget-friendly meals such as the Goan coconut curry with locally grown rice and spiced vegetable stir-fries.

Couples can explore the churches of old Goa or the ancient Hindu temple of Mahadev Tambdi Surla, to learn about the rich history of this state and its Portuguese influences.

Goa has now two international airports, so getting into this lovely sunny state has never been easier. Travelers can take a direct flight into Goa or travel from Delhi or Mumbai and then take a train or another flight to Goa. It is advised to book a government-approved taxi at the airport to get to your guesthouse.

Peak season starts in November and ends beginning March. The cheapest time to visit is perhaps in the very hot summer months or in the monsoon from April to November. Summers are very humid and hot but tropical fruits are plentiful in this season. The monsoon season, on the other hand, is very wet, and occasionally, it rains buckets for days, so this has to be considered when booking cheaper tickets and rooms.

Look out for rooms away from the beach because those tend to be more budget-friendly. Homestay rooms at Airbnb, such as The Three Rooms in Anjuna, are well-located and include all the basic amenities such as solar-powered hot water, power backup, and high-speed internet.

For a well-rated and affordable accommodation option right next to the beach, check out the 21IN Guest House.

El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

By David & Intan from The World Travel Guy

The tropical island of El Nido Palawan in the Philippines has been rated as one of the most beautiful islands in the world, and for good reasons. It’s famous for its stunning scenery, with bright turquoise water and jagged limestone mountains. This province also includes the scenic island of Coron, which is known for scuba diving and beaches.

In spite of its status as a bucket list location, El Nido is surprisingly budget-friendly. Joining a boat tour with a group can be relatively inexpensive, and the beaches in mainland Palawan are free to visit. All you need to do is rent a motorbike or hire a taxi to take you there.

You can get to El Nido Palawan by flying to Manila international airport, and then taking a short domestic flight to the small airport in El Nido. The other option is to fly to Puerto Princesa and take a van to El Nido. This takes longer, but it’s a bit cheaper than flying directly.

For couples wanting romance, you can go on a private boat tour or enjoy the sunset at Las Cabanas or Corong Corong Beach.

A great hotel option for couples is South Anchorage Inn, which is located near everything you need.

The weather in El Nido is always warm, but generally, the best time to visit is during the dry season, which runs from January to April. It’s almost always very sunny and nice in these months!

Koh Rong, Cambodia

Koh Rong, Cambodia

By Alex and Leah from Alex And Leah On Tour

One of the most inexpensive tropical destinations for couples is Koh Rong in Cambodia. 

Situated in Cambodia’s south, Koh Rong is one of the most picturesque islands you’ll ever visit. Complete with turquoise water and white sandy beaches, this is a perfect destination for couples looking to enjoy the island life. Whether it’s scuba diving or swimming in the bioluminescent plankton, there are tons you can do here as a couple! 

The best way of getting here is by taking a shuttle bus from Siem Reap or Phnom Penh directly to Sihanoukville Port. From here, there are loads of ferry companies that’ll take you directly to Long Set Beach pier on Koh Rong. 

Top tip: Do not spend any time in Sihanoukville. Whilst it once was a great place to explore, it’s now a ghost time thanks to Chinese companies buying up swaths of land and turning the city into a construction site. 

The weather here is absolutely fantastic! Whilst you will experience some torrential showers, this is likely to only occur at night and last for short periods. The rest of the time, however,  it’ll be hard to spot a single cloud in the sky, it’s that good! 

The peak season for visitors on Koh Rong and Cambodia is between December and February when it’s not the rainy season but it also hasn’t reached the ridiculous summer temperatures that come in April. 

The best way to save money is by booking accommodation early and eating traditional food at local restaurants. 

When visiting Koh Rong, the only place you should stay is at Nest Beach Club. This is the only hostel on the island and due to its location on the beachfront, it’s extremely popular. With its own restaurant and private bungalows on the beach, Nest hosts its own “Nestival” every Saturday which includes games, a BBQ, and a lot of fun!

Koh Lanta, Thailand

Nui Bay, Koh Lanta, Thailand

By Lena from Not Another Backpacker

Secluded white beaches, turquoise-blue water, and spectacular sunsets. Doesn’t that sound like the perfect destination for a tropical romantic getaway?

Koh Lanta in Southern Thailand offers just that! Although the island is one of the largest in the area, it’s still not as crowded as other vacation spots in the country. Instead of loud parties and obnoxious tourist crowds, you’ll find a quiet island that is mostly visited by families and young couples.

You can spend days on Koh Lanta just relaxing in hammocks while sipping fresh coconut water, swimming in the warm water, exploring the island on a scooter, or watching the sunset from the beach.

In the northern part of Koh Lanta, you can also chill out in laid-back beach bars and along the entire West Coast, you’ll find great ocean-view restaurants offering fruity cocktails and amazing Thai curries with local vegetables.

When booking accommodation, it’s recommended to choose a place in the center or south of Koh Lanta. While the northern part of the island is busier, the south is home to more beautiful and also more secluded beaches.

If you want the best of both worlds, stay in Tum Mai Kaew Resort, which is one of the best and cheapest hotels in Koh Lanta! It’s located near Klong Nin Beach in the center of Koh Lanta, which is a good starting point to explore the island. Not to mention that the resort offers spacious, cozy rooms and an outdoor pool for an amazingly low price!

If you’re traveling on a tight budget, you can also save plenty of money by avoiding the peak season from Christmas to March and traveling during the shoulder season instead, when accommodation prices are lower. Other than that, Koh Lanta is already a very affordable island to visit.

So, if you’re wondering where to go for a budget-friendly and romantic vacation, start packing your bags. Koh Lanta may be just what you’re looking for!

Bali, Indonesia

Bali, Indonesia, Tegallalang Rice Terrace

By Jackie and Justin from Life Of Doing

Bali is an ideal destination for couples who are on a budget and want to travel to a dreamy tropical place

Whether you want to relax on the beach, explore temples, wander through waterfalls, or see gorgeous landscape views, there are many budget-friendly activities that are suitable for couples. Many attractions require a small admission fee (up to $5 USD per person), so choose the places you want to visit. 

If you’re already hanging out at the beach, stay to watch the sunset, especially in the Seminyak area. Bali’s sunsets are gorgeous with pink and purple skies. 

Bali doesn’t have a shortage of waterfalls, so choose one or two to visit on your visit. Sekumpul Waterfall is one of the most beautiful waterfalls with large cascades. 

If you’re seeking beautiful landscape views to take photos of, head to popular spots such as Tegallalang Rice Terraces, Lempuyang Temple, or the top of Mount Batur. 

The weather is warm and humid all year, so it’s a nice place to visit at any time. The rainy season is from November to March but don’t let that deter you. With the occasional rain, it’s a good excuse to hang out at a cafe and relax until the rain stops. 

Bali has many areas to stay depending on your interest. Seminyak is a trendy area with beach clubs, shopping, and cute cafes. Canggu is a popular area to go cafe hopping. Ubud is a peaceful area surrounded by luscious jungles and rice terraces. 

If you’re staying in Ubud, Omank Agus Homestay is a recommended place to stay. It’s a small homestay located within a 5 to 10-minute walk to cafes and tons of restaurants. A hearty breakfast is also served in front of your room.

Krabi, Thailand

Railay Bay, Krabi, Thailand

By Jürgen from Places Of Juma

One of the most romantic and affordable tropical places to visit as a couple is definitely Krabi in Thailand. Especially for first-time visitors to Thailand, this magical Thai destination will be your favorite. Located in southern Thailand, more precisely on the Andaman Sea, this beautiful region is easily accessible by plane from Bangkok.

It is famous for its wildly romantic landscapes with captivating rugged limestone cliffs, dense green jungle, snow-white sandy beaches, turquoise sea, and stunning islands! For a wonderful couple’s getaway, the resorts of Ao Nang and picturesque Klong Muang are especially recommended.

During a visit to Krabi, there are many sights to see. Railay Beach and Phra Nang Beach are both world-renowned and popular with couples. There you will also find the Princess Cave, a fertility shrine with numerous phallic symbols.

From there, you can also take a cheap boat trip to the outlying islands of Koh Hong, Koh Poda, and Chicken Island. The latter is home to the Chicken Head Rock.

But that’s not all! Sporty couples can also go kayaking, explore the mangrove forests, hike to viewpoints, swim in the Emerald Pool, or climb the countless steps of the high Tiger Cave Temple.

The best time to visit Krabi is from December to April. During this period you can expect a lot of sun and little rain.

Krabi’s many beautiful hotels are excellent value for money. The Bhu Nga Thani Resort & Spa is highly recommended with its pool and great location on the beach.

Sri Lanka

By Cecilie from Worldwide Walkers

One of the best budget-friendly vacation spots for couples who want to travel to Asia is without a doubt Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka is known for its extraordinary nature, diverse wildlife, and tropical beaches – most of which you can experience for free or at a very small price.

Some of the best things to do are hiking to the top of Pidurangala Rock to watch the sun sets over the jungle, immersing yourself in the incredible landscapes of tea plants at Nuwara Eliya, and swimming in the Indian Ocean of the tropical beaches in the South Coast.

All the while you’re traveling through Sri Lanka, you can be sure to experience some incredible wildlife encounters such as seeing wild monkeys, peacocks, lizards, and many other animals that roam the island freely – so make sure to bring binoculars on this trip.

There are honestly so many reasons why you should visit Sri Lanka, but one of the biggest is that it’s a budget-friendly destination. The local food is very affordable, taking the public transportation costs next to nothing, and it’s easy to find cheap accommodation across the island.

One of the most affordable and romantic places you can stay at as a couple is Paradise Inn in Sigiriya. Here you can wake up for sunrise with your special someone and hear the jungle wake up all the while you have incredible views over the rice fields and UNESCO site Sigiriya Rock Fortress. It doesn’t get better than that.

Zanzibar, Tanzania

Beach in Zanzibar

By Joanna from The World In My Pocket

Zanzibar is one of the most romantic destinations in Africa. Located off the coast of Tanzania, Zanzibar has been for a long time a honeymoon destination, especially for couples who can’t afford the Maldives or French Polynesia.

For a more budget-friendly option, choose to stay in the east of the island. The north of the island is where all the big resorts are, which are also very expensive. The east is as beautiful as the north, but the prices are much lower. Check out the beautiful and affordable Promised Land Lodge with its pool, private beach area, and ocean view rooms.

A great thing to do in Zanzibar is to go snorkeling. There are many different options for this activity. One of the more affordable options includes going on a dhow – a traditional boat without an engine used for fishing, but also for taking tourists on snorkeling excursions.

One of the most affordable romantic things to do in Zanzibar is going on a spice tour. Zanzibar is also known as the spice island because of the high number of different spices that grow here. Don’t be shy about stocking up on some black pepper, nutmeg, and cloves.

Watching the sunrise and the sunset from your resort are among the free things you can do in Zanzibar. Grab a glass of champagne or a cocktail from the bar and enjoy a serene moment alongside your loved one.

Mauritius

By Megan from Megan Starr

Mauritius is an exciting island to explore that isn’t on most people’s radar. Enjoy gorgeous beaches, hiking, and exploring the towns, during a romantic vacation that won’t break the bank.

You can get a true taste of Port Louis, the island nation’s capital, by visiting the Port Louis Central Market, where you’ll find fresh fruits, vegetables, spices, souvenirs, crafts, and food stalls. Take a stroll through Chinatown and enjoy the colorful murals that now adorn many of the walls of the district. 

There are also quite a few free-entrance historic buildings to visit in Port Louis, including Aapravasi Ghat, the old immigration port now inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage Site list, or Fort Adelaide, which gives you beautiful views over the city, port, and mountains.

Mauritius also has fantastic wilderness areas to explore, one of its jewels being the Black River Gorge National Park. This park (located in the southern part of the island and has free entrance) is full of lush landscapes, waterfalls, native animals, and hiking trails, and visiting it is one of the best things to do in Mauritius

Of course, you can’t go to Mauritius without spending time at its jaw-dropping tropical beaches, with stunning crystal clear waters and soft sand. Some of the most beloved beaches include Flic En Flac, Grand Baie, and the Ile aux Cerfs.

Many tour companies offer day tours to Ile aux Cerfs that include lunch, but to save some money, you could pack a picnic and take the public ferry to the island instead of booking a tour.

Mauritius also has the advantage of amazing accommodations at affordable prices. There are wonderful guest houses you can get a room at if you’re looking for something on a small budget, but there are also some quite affordable all-inclusive options as well! If you’re looking for something on the affordable side of all-inclusive, check out the Sunrise Attitude hotel in Belle Mare.

Madeira, Portugal

Madeira Coast Line

By Jasmine from The Life of a Social Butterfly

If you’re looking for exotic destinations for a romantic getaway, look no further than Madeira. Madeira is often referred to as a European Hawaii due to its sub-tropical climate, which makes it ideal for couples seeking a budget-friendly tropical destination

It’s cheaper to visit Madeira between November – March (excluding the Christmas holidays), though this is also when you are most likely to encounter more rainfall. 

A week in Madeira is ideal to see the best of this Portuguese archipelago, and a break here can be as exciting or as relaxing as you would like it to be. Savoy Signature Hotels are a popular choice on the island for a luxury stay with numerous pools to choose from, with Hotel Next an ideal choice for younger couples. It is one of the most affordable options and has a rooftop pool overlooking Funchal Harbour. 

Funchal, Madeira’s capital is a great place to drink poncha (Madeira’s fruit-flavored rum), admire the plethora of painted doors located in the Old Town, and take a cable car to Monte Palace botanical gardens. On the way back down, you have the option to take Madeira’s famous wooden sled ride, where you can also purchase a photo souvenir. 

Madeira is a paradise for nature lovers with many natural pools, black sand beaches, and levada walks leading to Madeira’s array of waterfalls. Why not enjoy a sunrise jeep tour to Pico de Ariero, which has stunning views of the sunrise above the clouds and will give you memories to cherish for years to come.

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Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget
Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget
Best Tropical Vacation Spots for Couples on a Budget