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Top 10 Tips and Trips to Keep Romance Alive

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When is the last time you and your mate felt true romance? It can be tough to keep romance alive when kids, work, bills, and other real-life stressors intrude.

That doesn't mean you should allow romance to fall by the wayside — or the effort to recreate it is unworthy of your time. Quite the contrary! Couples who make time to spend alone with each other in wonderful surroundings are the happiest couples of all.

This year, vow to keep romance alive — or rekindle the passion if the fire has gone out. Below are tips and trips that can put a smile back on every lover's face.

1. Celebrate Your Anniversary

This is the big one: If you only do one romantic thing a year, it should be commemorating your anniversary. Holidays are for children, birthdays are for individuals, Valentine's Day is for everyone with a sweetheart — but an anniversary is your special day as a couple. Whether it's your first or fiftieth anniversary approaching, honor it.

While some couples like to celebrate with a traditional anniversary gift, I encourage you to turn that tradition on its ear and take an anniversary trip instead.

2. Avoid "Family Friendly" Destinations

Kids are to romance what kryptonite is to Superman. So if you have children, arrange to leave them home with someone you trust. If you don't have them, the last thing you want is to have your romantic moments broken by someone else's squalling baby, sulky tot, or provocative pre-teen. Solution: Choose a resort that specializes in catering to adults.

Many all-inclusive resorts, especially in the Caribbean and Mexico, restrict guests to age 16 or 18 or older. Away from prying young eyes, you may start to feel a lot less inhibited, a sure lead-up to romance.

3. Hit the High Seas

Cruising has a lot to offer couples in search of lost romance: Intimate cabins, decks for moonlight strolls, on-board activities and entertainment, all kinds of food, interesting ports of call, and offshore excursions that bring out the adventurers in you.

I recommend that you choose a cruise line that caters more to couples than families: Celebrity, Holland America, Oceania, and Regent all come to mind. All ships tend to fill up with families during summers and school vacations, though, so watch the calendar. We've found the most romantic time to cruise is the week before school lets out for Thanksgiving.

4. Get Away From It All. Far Away.

Is there an exotic place that you've always wanted to visit? Whether it's thoughts of Tahiti, fantasies of Fiji, or daydreams of Africa that beguile you, investigate what it will take to get you there. Even if you can't afford a big trip this year, you can still have the fun of planning it, imagining what you'd do there, and working together toward the goal of getting there.

Find inspiration on great places to travel together by subscribing to this free newsletter.

5. Pursue Your Passion

What is it you loved to do most when you were single? Did you look forward to playing golf or tennis? Get a charge out of taking your dog on vacation with you? Enjoy the action of a casino? Savor the intimacy of a long car trip? Whatever you did before and enjoyed, do it again — and introduce your significant other to the joy of losing yourselves in an activity you adore.

6. Go to Your Happy Place

Conjuring a vision of a peaceful, placid setting is a technique that many people use to de-stress. Where is your happy place, and what does it look like? An endless beach? A cabin in the woods? A luxury hotel with a spa room for two? A tall mountaintop? Wherever it is, share the description of your "happy place" with your partner — and commit to getting there together this year.

Some couples find that spending their vacation in a retreat for couples is the kind of happy place they need to restart romance.

7. Present a Love Coupon — or a Pile of Them!

Love coupons are free, don't expire, and are redeemable at any time the two of you are so inclined. You can find a selection of love coupons to use by clicking the link above. Or use a blank love coupon to inscribe what you have to offer in the way of romance.

8. Remember to Celebrate Valentine's Day

This is another big one. If you can get away, turn Valentine's into a special weekend and take advantage of a Valentine's Day Package designed just for lovers. The resort sets the stage, and it's up to you to do the rest.

9. Give a Travel Gift Certificate

Can't get away on Valentine's Day or your anniversary? Then give the one you love a gift certificate for travel, and make a date to get away and rekindle romance as soon as possible.

10. Say "I Love You"

Not just on a trip or a special occasion. But every day. No matter how busy you are, there's always time to send an email or pick up a phone to say "I love you" if you're not in one another's presence. If you are fortunate enough to be together, stop what you're doing once in a while, look your lover in the eye, smile, and tell him or her what's in your heart. It doesn't cost a thing, yet it's the best way I know to keep romance alive.
Related Video
How to Keep Romance Alive in Your Marriage
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