Five types of Muslim-friendly romantic destinations

Travel
Photo: Lombok, Indonesia. May 30, 2012. Photo by Graham Crumb/Imagicity.com via Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0

After the gloom of January, the month of romance is once again upon us. Couples around the world will be hitting the old, familiar haunts of Rome and Paris. We selected some destinations for every type of romantic getaway, and all of them are Muslim-friendly. So what kind are you looking for?

1. CULTURAL: SARAJEVO, BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA

Photo: Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. September 7, 2017. Photo by Damir Bosnjak on Unsplash

If your beloved enjoys nothing more than wandering through ancient Islamic towns soaked in history, the former Ottoman city of Sarajevo is the ideal destination. More than 550 years of Islamic heritage are waiting to be explored in the stunning ancient mosques, churches, synagogues, madrasas and museums of the so-called Jerusalem of Europe. You can even spend a historical penny in one of Europe’s oldest public toilets when you wander through Sarajevo’s old town, a place that seems unchanged since the days of grand viziers and Ottoman sultans. When you’ve done all that, head for one of Sarajevo’s many delightful cafes that serve thick, sweet Bosnian coffee. If you plan well, you can sit with your beloved and watch the sun dip behind a hundred minarets to the melodic sound of the maghreb adhan.

2. CITY: SEVILLE, SPAIN

Spain Seville_Plaza de Espana_Spain Square_23 February 2006Photo: SEVILLE, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 23, 2006: Plaza de Espana, Seville / Federica Chioni via Flickr / CC BY 2.0

This is Lonely Planet’s top city recommendation for 2018, and it is easy to see why. Steeped in five centuries of Muslim history, Andalusia’s fiesta town still has a sizeable Muslim population. Spend your days wandering through the town’s stunning picture-postcard medieval streets, taking as many couple’s shots as you can. Spend your evenings seated al fresco in cafes and restaurants and breathe in air filled with the scent of Seville’s famous orange blossom. Seville is quintessential Spain. Go ahead and find out why.

3. SHOPPING: MARRAKECH, MOROCCO

Photo: Jamaa el Fna in the evening, looking toward Cafe Argana and the covered souq. Marrakech, Morocco. October 19, 2013. Photo by Boris Macek - Own work via Wikimedia Commons /CC BY-SA 3.0

This former capital of at least two North African Muslim dynasties is renowned for its stupendous bazaar. But it isn’t just about shopping. The bustling alleys, lined with stalls laden with great food, tourist fare and local artefacts are also a stage for theatre; bartering is a social pass time, as is sitting and sipping sweet mint tea whilst the street entertainers make you smile for hours on end. Marrakech is all about immersing yourselves in the sheer energy of the place. And if it gets too much, you can always take your loved one by the hand and retire to one of the many cool, open-air terraces and watch the Marrakech madness from on high.

4. FOODIE: BEIRUT, LEBANON

Photo: People walk past empty restaurants in downtown Beirut November 20, 2012. REUTERS/Mohamed Azakir

With a ridiculously diverse number of cultures melting in this huge cooking pot, Beirut has become the ultimate Middle Eastern foodie city. Whether you are looking to share light mezzes, Palestinian-inspired knefeh, or the local perfumed sorbet with your loved one, Beirut has the established aroma of a culinary capital and all the trappings of a Middle Eastern city: good food, a warm welcome and a great climate.

5. TROPICAL: LOMBOK, INDONESIA

Photo: Lombok, Indonesia. May 30, 2012. Photo by Graham Crumb/Imagicity.com via Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0

Voted the best halal honeymoon destination of 2015 at the World Halal Travel Summit, Lombok in Indonesia is fast developing a reputation as the halal tropical getaway for lovestruck Muslim couples. Golden beaches and Muslim-friendly villas await. For the more adventurous, there are jungles to trek through and reefs to explore. Lombok has been dubbed the Island of a Thousand Mosques, which means that there are plenty of halal services and prayer facilities in this tropical paradise. This is the best place for amorous Muslim couples to lie back on sun-loungers, hand in hand, and watch the sun slowly dip into that aqua-blue sea.

(This article is written by Tharik Hussain. Tharik is a freelance British Muslim travel writer, journalist, broadcaster and photographer specialising in the Muslim stories of Europe. Hussain’s first ever radio documentary, America’s Mosques; A Story of Integration, has been declared one of the world’s best radio documentaries for 2016. All his work can be viewed at www.tharikhussain.co.uk)

© MySalaam.com 2018 All rights reserved

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