Knowing how to spend your precious two weeks away from home can be tough. Obviously, you want to go everywhere and see everything, but it can be hard knowing if you’ve picked the right place. To steer you in the right direction, work out what you want from your next holiday. Is it sun, relaxation and beach? Sightseeing, culture and cuisine? Or activity and adventure?
Craig Duncan, a representative of Holiday Hypermarket, says: “The best way to pick the right holiday destination is to write down the aspects of a holiday that are most important to you. Don’t think too long about it – just put down the first three things that come to mind when you think of a great holiday. It’s a great way of narrowing down your choice.”
If you need a little more help, these nine top tips for picking the right destination will help you find your perfect holiday.
1. Plan your budget
Knowing how much you have to spend is the best way of producing a shortlist. If money is tight, look at winter sun, all-inclusive deals and off-beat destinations. Take a look online and compare deals across a range of providers.
2. Check the weather
Knowing the kind of weather you want on holiday is also a great way of deciding when and where to travel. If you don’t like it too hot, aim for Europe and the Mediterranean in spring or autumn. Do your research and get the timing right, especially for long-haul trips – you’ll want to avoid rainy seasons in tropical climates.
3. Research sightseeing trips
If soaking up cultures and seeing historical or world-famous sights are a priority, Greek historical sights and ancient monuments make a fabulous holiday – as can Luxor in Egypt and Italy’s Amalfi Coast. Always check the weather, too, as it may be easier to admire these stunning sights in cooler months.
4. How far is the beach?
Dig a little deeper and find out which resorts are within walking distance to the beach. If flopping on a sunlounger and swimming in the sea is a key activity, your precious time away will be much more relaxed if you can stroll there from your hotel. Top beachside resorts include Paphos in Cyprus, Playa Blanca and Puerto del Carmen in Lanzarote, and Sunny Beach in Bulgaria.
5. Try winter sports
If snoozing on a sunbed isn’t your idea of holiday heaven, pick a winter destination that offers lots of action. Skiing and snowboarding are the perfect antidote to the winter blues and overindulgence at Christmas. Look beyond France, Italy and Austria to beat the crowds – Sweden and America offer fabulous ski resorts as alternatives to Alpine favourites.
6. What’s the nightlife like?
Follow the in-crowd to tried-and-tested resorts for all-night partying. Ayia Napa in Cyprus is a well-known hotspot for clubbers. The main square is where it all happens, so make sure your hotel is within reaching distance of the bars, clubs and parties. Equally, San Antonio in Ibiza attracts world-class DJs to famous beachfront clubs and chill-out venues on Sunset Strip.
7. Is journey time a factor?
How much time do you want to spend getting there? For some, travelling is as much a part of a holiday as the destination itself. You may be heading for an exotic destination but a five-hour flight can feel like lost time if you’re not a traveller at heart.
8. Who are you travelling with?
Your choice of holiday depends on who you’re going with. Is it family or friends? Maybe you’re planning a romantic break? This is a key factor to consider when you pick your destination. Again, do your research as many hotels and resorts advertise whether they’re family friendly – and the same goes for adult-only holidays.
9. Get active or take it easy?
Would you rather chill by the pool or scramble through rainforests on a 4×4? Some resorts offer poolside retreats as well as thrilling adventures and activities. Check out Cape Verde’s Boa Vista island for a great mix of beaches, water sports and quad-bike tours. Alternatively, Phuket in Thailand has plenty of all-inclusive beach holidays, plus ancient temples and the sights and sounds of Phuket City.
These top tips help you pick the right holiday for you, covering all aspects of your break, from relaxation and quality time with family and friends, to winter sports and summer sun.
To read more on topics like this, check out the travel category.