Why Turkey Is The Perfect Place For A Last Minute Holiday

If you’ve been scrambling around for a last minute holiday destination, Turkey could be the place to go. Thousands of British holiday goers have been scooping up last minute deals to this Mediterranean retreat. Here’s why…

 

Unbeatable costs

Not only are last minute hotel and flight prices a massive bargain – the prices of activities, food and drink in Turkey are unbelievably cheap meaning that you don’t have to save up a huge amount of spending money. Your average pint of beer costs the equivalent of two pounds. The Turks also love to haggle so when it comes to excursions and shopping, you can generally knock the price down to save money.

 

An excellent exchange rate

Whilst the pound is falling against the Euro, the Turkish lira has remained steady at an average of 4.5 lira to a pound. You can convert money before you go, although there are plenty of places to exchange money there and then. You can even pay in pounds in most tourist areas.

 

Beautiful beaches

Turkey offers an amazing selection of beaches. Alongside popular destinations such as Bodrum and Marmaris, there are notable coasts such as the clustered bay of Alanya and the broad strip of Patara – Turkey’s longest beach. Summers are long in Turkey and the temperature will often reach the thirties. This makes Turkey the ideal place for anyone eager to work on their tan. Beaches will generally have sunbeds available, which come with adjustable umbrellas for those that want to stay in the shade.

 

A range of activities

There’s much more to Turkey than lying on a beach. Most resorts will generally have a wide array of watersports such as parasailing, scuba diving and banana boats. And then there are daytrips such as boat tours and jeep safaris. Depending on where you go, you may also be able to see some of Turkey’s cultural and historical side including Ancient Greek ruins, Ottoman mosques and Byzantine basilicas. There are plenty of natural sights to take in too including mountains, springs and coves. You can take excursions out to see these sights, or rent a hire car and explore for yourself.

 

Fantastic food

You’ll find a cosmopolitan selection of restaurants in every resort including traditional Turkish food, Italian pizzerias and British-style breakfast bars. If you don’t fancy fine dining, Turkey is the best place to buy a tasty and wholesome kebab for a bargain price. You’ll also find many cafes that serve Turkish tea (served in a glass) and coffee, on top of many of the nation’s desserts. Such places to eat could be great if you want a break from the hotel food.

 

Friendly people

 

The Turkish people are very hospitable, and will often try to accommodate for their guests in any way possible. Many hotels and restaurants are family owned and so you can expect a friendly atmosphere and good relations between the staff. The shopkeepers also have a great sense of humour.

 

Posted in Tunisia

5 Free Things To Do In Tenerife

When travelling on a budget, Tenerife is the perfect destination – and not just because the holiday deals there are cheap! If you don’t want to bring too much spending money, Tenerife has plenty of things to see and do that won’t cost you a penny. Here are just a few free activities on the island that could be worth trying during your visit.

 

Climb a volcano

Mount Teide is Spain’s largest peak reaching a staggering 3718 metres above sea level. It’s also a massive volcano (but don’t worry, it’s dormant)! If you’re feeling fit, it’s possible to hike up this massive peak. The surrounding Teide National Park meanwhile is also astonishing, offering expansive obsidian plains and remains of ancient rivers that have encouraged mythology and modern scientific research. The park has appeared in films such as Clash of the Titans, One Million Years BC and sixth instalment of The Fast and the Furious series.

 

See the 1000 year old Drago Tree

Believed to have been sprouted by the blood of dragons, this legendary tree is a popular hotspot for tourists. No-one quite know the age of this mighty tree, some believing it to be (only) 650 years old, whilst many others believe it to be as old as 5000 years. You can find the tree in Icod de los Vinos.

 

Journey to Masca

This tiny settlement is perched in the impressive peaks of the Teno Mountains. You can reach it via a scenic drive of narrow roads that take you along the cliffs surrounded by Jurassic scenery. Masca is particularly beautiful if you can visit it around dusk whilst the sun is setting over the mountainous terrain.

 

Soak up the carnivals and fiestas

Tenerife is not short of festivals, sporting plenty of foody fairs all year round. It also has several prominent events such as ‘the romeria’ – a fiesta held in every town on the island once a year in which the locals all dress up in medieval clothing and parade through the street with ox carts and local produce. There is then the annual carnival, which takes place once a year between February and March in the island’s capital Santa Cruz. This is an all-night street party in which every dresses up in lavish costumes. Carnival can attract up to thirty thousand people.

 

Watch free live music

For those that looking for some live music, there are plenty of free music events across the island all year round. The likes of Robert Cray and Echo and the Bunnymen have played at these free events, although it’s mostly local acts you’ll find. Keep your eyes peeled for posters on events and ask tourist centres for details. Sometimes simply crawling the local bars can cause you to find some gems.

Posted in Tenerife

The Top 5 Holiday Destinations To Visit This September

It’s not too late to cram your summer holiday in this year. Whilst September may be considered autumn by most people, the weather’s often just as hot. There’s also likely to be less crowds and cheaper rates as the kids go back to school (no screaming children could also be a bonus for many!). Here are some of the top places to soak up the sun this September.

 

The Algarve

Portugal’s southernmost region is renowned for its white beaches and scenic fishing villages. You can work up a tan on your sun lounger or take a tour of the local coves by boat. It’s also a hotspot for golfers, offering a multitude of different golf resorts. Temperatures will usually be in their mid-twenties around this time of the year, although it’s not uncommon for the heat to rise into the thirties on some days.

 

Corfu

The Greek island of Corfu has everything from an active nightlife to historical sights. You can relax on Gouvia Beach and catch some rays or take a hike up Mount Pantokrator to the ancient monastery at the top, where you can see as far as Albania. Corfu generally remains hot all the way through to early October. Whilst in summer it can often get uncomfortably hot, the air is cooler during this month making many of the island’s more active pursuits worthwhile.

 

Crete

If you’re looking for a sunny escape with good food and wine on offer, Crete is the place to be. It’s one of the largest producers of olive oil and is also renowned for its coffee and cheeses. There’s also a lot of ancient history to explore, including the remains of Europe’s oldest city Knossos. Of course, if you’re not looking for a cultural trip, the exotic island still has fabulous beaches and bars to escape to. And whilst the air will be cooler (although still hot), the sea is much warmer during this month.

 

Majorca

There’s a reason that Majorca remains a hotspot for UK tourists. Whilst the likes of Magaluf provide the perfect night life for young people, other areas such as Cala Bona have become the perfect peaceful retreat for older tourists. On top of golden beaches, there are castles and cathedrals, hiking and cycling trails up mountains and a huge selection of restaurants. The temperature is unlikely to drop beneath 20 C.

 

Tenerife

Tenerife is part of the Canary Islands and is so southerly that it remains hot pretty much all year round. The volcanic island sports some amazing coastlines and resorts that are perfect for those wanting to work on their tan. For those that want an active holiday, you can take excursions into the island’s mountainous centre, in which you can visit Mount Teide, Spain’s highest peak (it’s also an active volcano). There are also plenty of lively bars and restaurants in Tenerife, as well as food-themed fetes in which you can try the island’s local delicacies.

 

Posted in Holidays

Christmas In The Canaries: Why Visit Lanzarote This Winter

Looking for somewhere abroad to escape to this winter? Lanzarote could be the ideal place. Every year, the Canary Island attracts millions of tourists eager to lounge on its white beaches and explore its volcanic terrain. Here are just a few reasons why visiting out of season in Winter is recommended.

 

It’s cheaper

Flights are always much cheaper out of season. On top of this, hotels and restaurants won’t be as busy and so there are always more deals about to lure in more tourists. This can sometimes mean not having to pay the premium price on luxuries that you would in summer. Prices may not be so low in December due to the amount of Christmas events on, but are likely to be very cheap in January/February. Get away from the January blues and start the year with a bang.

 

There’s still sun

Lanzarote’s temperature rarely dips below nineteen degrees meaning that you can work up a tan all year round. It’s a much more comfortable heat than in the height of summer that won’t have you hiding the shade. Lanzarote is also known to bloom with flowers in Winter – in the summer it’s simply too hot for these plants to come out, but in the winter the mid-twenties heat brings out all the flora.

 

It’s the perfect time for hiking

As the temperatures aren’t too sweltering, Winter is the perfect time for hiking Lanzarote’s rocky landscape. Timanfaya national park is a great hotspot for hikers, containing plains made of volcanic soil and mighty geysers. You can hike up to Timanfaya Volcano and also walk to the hidden El Golfo beach. There’s also the Cesar Manrique cactus garden in the area, which is a must-see.

 

There are less queues

When it comes to water parks, museums and other attractions, the winter is the perfect time to skip the queues. The island isn’t as crammed with tourists and so you can usually get more done by not having to compete with masses of people. This also applies to restaurants and tours, which may get more booked up in summer. Winter is often a great time for taking a more personalised tour, as guides will have more time to speak with you.

 

Stay in February and you have carnival

February could be the time to plan your Lanzarote escape if you like a good fiesta! The island’s annual Puerto Del Carmen carnival generally takes place between February and March in the city of Arrecife. The islanders dress up in flamboyant and colourful costumes and parade through the street accompanied by live music. This is usually followed by an all-night party in which everyone involved also dresses up. There’s lots of food and drink on offer and plenty of other events on as part of the carnival. Hotels in the area can get pretty booked up so bear this in mind when planning  your trip during this season.

 

Posted in Lanzarote

Top Reasons that Costa Adeje is Perfect for Your Family Getaway

If you have never travelled to the Canary Islands before, perhaps this should be the year to change that. As a parent of excitable children, you need to find the right destination to cater to their needs, as well as yours. The Canary Islands could be the perfect solution with the island of Tenerife being a very attractive choice.

 

Around 1.6 million Britons visit the island of Tenerife each year, many of these being families just like yours. With warm temperatures and plenty of activities on offer, it is not hard to understand why this island appeals to so many. Of course, you need to consider more than just which island is right for you, but also which resort. Learning about Tenerife’s own Costa Adeje should help to make things a lot clearer to you, as it is a really great location for a family holiday.

 

Here are a few points that uncover the reasons why you should spend your holidays in the Costa Adeje, just like so many people have already discovered…

 

1) The flight time:

With a flight time of about half of one to Florida, you can quickly begin to see the benefits of Tenerife and the other Canary Islands. It basically means fewer hours spent on a plane trying to persuade your kits to sit quietly – something that is a difficult task at the best of times. Not only that, but it frees up valuable hours of your holiday, so you can spend more quality time as a family rather than travelling to get there.

 

2) The resort facilities:

When you reach the resort of Costa Adeje you will not be disappointed with what is on offer as the needs of the whole family will be taken care of. Your kids will be spoiled with swimming pools and evening entertainment, whilst you will be able to take advantage of many restaurants and beauty spas. There is a large choice of hotels on offer too, so you can pick something that best suits you, whether this is a self-catered apartment or a five star hotel.

 

3) Attractions nearby:

In terms of taking care of your kids’ attention spans on holiday, you will have no problem in Costa Adeje. It would be very hard for your children to be bored here as there is so much on offer. A number one attraction for many families is a brilliant water park that is only a short distance away from the resort centre. Siam Water Park has a range of rides and facilities that cater to those of all ages, so family members young and old can enjoy cooling down in the water. After all, temperatures can reach 29 degrees Celsius on an average summer day.

 

4) Opportunities to learn:

Another great attraction is natural wonder Mount Teide which also provides your family with a chance to learn something new. You can take a cable car to see the sights, and you will have the opportunity to breathe in the fresh mountain air. Mount Teide makes an excellent day out to teach your kids about geography, so you could either hire a car or book a few places on an organised trip if this is something you want

Posted in Destinations, Tenerife

A 2017 Guide to Family Holidays in Turkey

If you have never been to Turkey, you are missing a unique travel experience. It is a great destination with a lot to offer families. Here is an overview of Turkey and some of the most family friendly destinations.

When to visit

Turkey is a hot country with temperatures reaching 36C on the Mediterranean. If you have children, you need to be aware of the heat and prepare for it. Make sure that you take plenty of sunscreen and hats for the kids. Beach suits are also worth considering. Check that your accommodation has air-conditioning and take account of the heat when organising days out.

Where to stay

Inland temperatures are lower, so if you prefer you could holiday there instead. Cave hotels are great because they are cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Kids love them. There are some lovely examples in the Goreme area.

A little inland, there are some fantastic resorts and destinations. The Canada Hotel is set in beautiful citrus groves yet is close to the beach and is a wonderful base for a family to explore Cirali, which offers plenty of family adventures.

Dalyan is a relaxing resort on the banks of the river Cayi. It offers boat taxi rides to the beach, mud baths, and there are plenty of water sports available nearby to keep teenagers happy.

However, the majority of tourist hotels and resorts are on the coast. Patara has probably the best beach in Turkey and it is a very family friendly resort.

Where to take the kids

Most families are content staying on the beach in Turkey. There is a wide range of water sports available.

Go inland slightly and you will find hiking, horse riding and many other activities available. In the summer, most facilities close for a few hours for lunch because it gets very hot. The rest of the year, they stay open all day.

Miniaturk is great for kids. It is a miniature version of Turkey laid out across a 15,000 sq meter site, and is the world’s largest miniature park. There are some great pools and waterways to enjoy across the 60,000 sq meter site. It is located on the Golden Horn in Istanbul.

Older kids enjoy the fact that Turkey is different. They enjoy experiencing a different culture. Turkey has a long and rich history with some impressive tourist sites to enjoy. Amongst the best are the Aspendos Theatre, Bodrum Castle, Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia.

Getting value for money

Booking a family holiday to Turkey is not as expensive as it is to book other holidays. Generally speaking, the cost of Turkish package holidays is low. Once you are there the cost of drinks and eating out is relatively low, so you should be able to enjoy eating out more in Turkey.

As you can see, Turkey has everything that the popular destinations of Spain, Greece and Italy have to offer, and more besides. The Turkish people adore children.

It is a very family orientated culture, so everything is set up for families to enjoy time together. You will not be glared at when you arrive with a buggy in Turkey. In fact, people are likely to lean over and admire your child giving them a friendly pinch of the cheek and a huge smile. It really is a great family destination.

Posted in Holidays, Turkey

What to do on a 2017 Holiday to Ibiza

Main Image Credit “IBIZA” by Binu Nair is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Regardless of the type of holiday, you are after Ibiza is the place to go. It is about more than just parties and clubbing. This relatively small island has it all.

Below are our favourite Ibiza destinations with a little information about each one:

Es Canar

Es Canar is a midsized beach resort on the South East coast of the Island that is part of the municipality of Santa Eulària des Riu. There is plenty of good quality, yet affordable, accommodation available here.

Much of it is located close to the beautiful beach and horseshoe shaped bay. The sand here is light and soft and the depth of the sea is relatively shallow and slopes away gently from the beach.

Image Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/xavestra/

Image Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/xavestra/

Sant Antoni – San Antonio

San Antonio is the second biggest town on Ibiza. It is located on the Western coast.

This town offers something for everyone. Whatever you are looking for you will find it here.

San Antonio is close enough to some of the islands best-known clubs for clubbers to be able to base themselves here, but far enough away to be suitable for families and older holidaymakers. Some parts of the town are becoming popular for stag and hen parties, but these parties are concentrated in a few streets, so again everyone can enjoy themselves in their own way.

There are two beaches within easy walking distance of the town and you can find accommodation that is practically on the beach. If you like natural beaches the cove of the nearby Cala Bassa Beach is for you. The Cala Salada Beach, which is surrounded by pine forests, is another great option.

Santa Eularia

Santa Eularia is a beautiful seafront town that is located in the south east of the island. It is the third largest town on the island.

The town is more traditional than some of the other resorts. Every year special Balls are held to show off traditional dances. Tourists love these colourful displays. The towns two hippy markets are also very popular.

This town has a big marina and harbour as well as a beautiful seafront beach. In Santa Eularia, every kind of accommodation is available including several hotels near the beach.

Cala Llonga

Cala Llonga is located 10kms north of Ibiza Town. Tourism came late to the area, but today it is a popular tourist destination. It is far more peaceful than other parts of the island, but the fact that Ibiza Town is so close means that if you fancy experiencing the famous Ibiza nightlife you can easily do so. This resort is very popular with couples and golfers.

There is a good choice of accommodation available, some of it near the beach. It is all within easy walking distance of the village, which has some nice restaurants and bars.

If you like the sounds of some of these Ibiza resorts you are in the right place. We always have cheap holidays to Ibiza available. You can find out more about all of our Ibiza offers by clicking the link.

 

Posted in Holidays

Four Great Beach Holiday Destinations for Families

Family beach holidays are proving to be as popular as ever in 2017. With the wettest UK winter on record having recently passed, many families are keen to escape the dreariness for the shores of a sunny European destination. For this reason, this year will see many of the popular resorts see an influx of tourists flying in from Britain. So if you haven’t already booked your summer 2017 holiday, now is the perfect time to do so. Here are four of the most popular destinations for families this year.

Costa Brava, Spain

Spain’s Costa Brava has been attracting sun-seeking Brits for years, and it’s not hard to see why when there are so many stretches of stunning coastline on offer. Whilst Costa Brava can be translated into ‘Wild Coast’, those with young children will be pleased to know that there are many smaller coves that are far quieter and calmer. Malgrat de Mar and Belladona Cove at Platja-D-Aro are just a couple of examples of quieter areas that the whole family will be able to enjoy.

 

Playa de las Americas, Tenerife

You are almost guaranteed warm, sunny weather when you come to Tenerife, no matter what time of year it is. Due to its location just off the west coast of Africa, the average temperature in January is only as low as 18 degrees Celsius, whilst the summer months are obviously far hotter! Playa de las Americas remains one of the most popular resorts on the island, with a number of sandy beaches, restaurants, shops and activities on offer – everything that a family on holiday would expect.

 

Algarve, Portugal

Found on the Atlantic coast and actually in the same time-zone as us in the UK, Portugal’s Algarve region remains ever-popular with families due to its range of beautiful beach-based resorts. Albufeira and Praia da Rocha are a couple of the most well-known for families looking for a relaxing break on the beach, and both are in close proximity to the airport at Faro. Small and big kids alike will love some of the attractions on offer too, especially the famous Zoo Marine Conservation Centre, which has live shows with dolphins, sea lions and seals.

Marmaris, Turkey

Marmaris has grown into one of the most popular destinations for those looking for cheap family holidays to Turkey in recent years, and this is little surprise with almost guaranteed sunshine and a wealth of activities including water parks (such as Aquadream) that are bound to keep everyone entertained. The resort, along with its sister town Icmeler, have a number of great affordable restaurants – ideal for those looking to stay on a self-catering basis. The beaches here are also family friendly, with the cool, calm waters lapping onto the shingle shores.

 

Posted in Holidays

The Best of Benidorm Nightlife

Are you thinking about booking a holiday to Benidorm for this summer? There’s so much to do at night in Benidorm that we can literally only give you a few ‘highlights’ in this piece. Rest assured; you will never get bored when you are out on the town in this party capital of the Costa Blanca.

 

Clubbing in Benidorm

Quite rightly, clubbing is all the rage in Benidorm right now. You could compare the Benidorm club scene with that of Ibiza and Benidorm would come out on top; it’s cheaper, better value for money and less pretentious. The world’s top DJs come to Benidorm’s leading clubs every summer and you don’t want to miss them.

Most, but not all of Benidorm’s best clubs are on the Avenida Communitat Valenci, which is just 5 minutes by taxi from most of the hotels. It will cost you around 30 Euros to get into most clubs and that often comes with a free drink. Some popular destinations in Benidorm are the Hippodrome Nightclub, Penelopes, El Divino and the KM Dance Clubs.

 

Karaoke Bars and Sports Bars

If you fancy blasting out your party piece to appropriate backing, or watching the football on satellite, then you will be spoiled for choice in Benidorm. Just a few names from each category are the Daytona Rock Bar, Tiki Beach, Heartbreak Bar, St James Tavern, Beach Rock Café and Shooters. Expect a blasting night out at any of them!

 

Bars and Pubs

Again, the choice here is massive whilst the prices are very reasonable. You can get a pint for a Euro in some places, so look out for special offers. The Old Town can give you a taste of Spain, or if you are looking for a little home from home, head to the British-themed bars of Levante and Rincon. Stop by The Scotsman, the Star and Garter, the Shamrock Bar Zodiac, The Talk of the Coast or Heartbreak, where you can hear live rock music. If you are a fan of the TV series “Benidorm” and have always hankered after a drink in the Neptunes Bar then you can find its real life counterpart in the Morgan Tavern.

Stags and Hens

Benidorm is a great place to spend your last night as a single man or woman! Try some of the men’s only places such as Kinky Karen, or see Sticky Vicky and the Black Chicken. Ladies with a similar fate looming can spend the day by the pool or on the beach and then hit the town, perhaps seeing an act in Rockefellers or Morgan’s Tavern. Ladies not getting married on the morrow might like to end the night at Café B.

English Square

It seems appropriate that the city of Benidorm’s nightlife takes its name from the foreigners who seem to love it best. The English Square features Sinatras, the Café Benidorm (Café B), the Champions Bar, Beachcomber, Bahamas and the Hippodrome.

A week really won’t seem long enough once you start exploring just how much Benidorm has to offer in terms of nightlife. Better yet, by hitting the town, you have the perfect excuse to spend the following day lazing on the beach!

Main Image Credit: Enrique Domingo – Flickr

Posted in Benidorm, Destinations

Where to go on your 2017 Ibiza Summer Holiday

The Mediterranean islands are yet again amongst the most popular summer holiday destinations this year, with the beautiful Ibiza in particular receiving a lot of attention from a range of people looking to escape the gloomy UK over the next few months.

 

Whilst there’s no doubt that Ibiza remains a clubbing mecca, and one of the best places for lovers of the nightlife to visit in Europe, it seems that the island is also finally starting to attract a wider range of people to its sunny shores, including families and couples looking for a quieter, more relaxing beach break. Its reputation as a rowdy place for drunken youngsters has lifted, giving it greater appeal to a cross-section of the holiday-going public.

 

There are areas of Ibiza that appeal to everyone, so it’s well worth considering this gem of the Med if you are thinking about booking your holiday in the next few weeks. Here’s our guide to where you should think about staying:

 

The 18-30 crowd

There’s no doubt where the best place to stay is if you are young and looking to party on your Ibiza holiday. San Antonio is renowned across the world for its amazing nightlife, with clubs like Es Paradis and Eden leading the way. Numerous international DJ’s regularly make appearances here throughout the summer season, so whenever you travel over you’re bound to catch one of your favourites. San Antonio is also on a stunning shoreline, meaning you can relax on the beach all day after a long night partying hard!

 

If you decide San Antonio isn’t for you, you can also find other nightclubs across the island, including Pacha close to the historic Ibiza town, as well as Amnesia and Privilege – both of which are found close to San Rafael in the centre of the island.

 

Families

With the clubbing areas confined to certain parts of the island, a majority of Ibiza is suitable for a family-friendly summer break. One of the most popular destinations is Es Cana – found on the north east coast of the island. It’s a bustling resort which is home to a weekly hippy market where you can find a range of authentic souvenirs. You’ll also find one of the biggest beaches on the whole island, as well as smaller coves which are ideal for those with children of a younger age.

 

Alternatively, Cala Llonga is a relaxing resort which is brilliant for families. Its beach is long and with shallow waters it means you don’t have to worry too much about younger children playing in the sea.

 

Couples

 

Santa Eualia is one of the best options for couples looking to take a trip to the island, and is another resort which revolves around its two beautiful beaches. Here you have a range of great restaurants – ideal for those wanting to book a cheap holiday to Ibiza on a self-catering basis and experience the range of cuisine on offer. The water sports and activities on offer are bound to give you some fantastic memories to take home with you.

 

For couples wanting a romantic, more secluded getaway then Cala Tarida is a bit of a gem. There are lots of bars and restaurants in the resort, yet it doesn’t attract the bustling crowds that some of the larger, more well-known areas like Es Cana do. It also has a lovely beach which is ideal for snorkelling.

Posted in Destinations, Ibiza