Book this year's beautiful luxury getaway for less than you would have imagined...
For the coolest view in town, seek out the Sala Rattanakosin hotel; enviably located along the eastern bank of the Chao Phraya river and with striking views of the Temple of Dawn (Wat Arun), it’s a hidden gem in Bangkok’s authentic Old Town. The boutique bolthole has been designed with its impressive views in mind and, after a day’s sightseeing, dine alfresco on the scenic riverfront restaurant’s overwater dining deck serving international dishes and a diverse selection of traditional Thai favourites.
Then at sunset, enjoy a tipple or two at the chic rooftop bar with panoramic views of the city’s glowing temples. There are endless things to see and do while you’re here; don?t miss Wat Pho, an imposing Buddhist temple next to the Grand Palace, which you can also visit to see how the Kings of Siam used to live; it’s been their official residence since 1782.
How to do it: DialAFlight offers a 10% saving on a four-night stay at the Sala Rattanakosin, Bangkok. The price of £639 pp includes four nights’ accommodation with breakfast (two sharing), flights (London), car and boat transfers. Valid for departures 1 September to 26 October.
Cancun, which sits on the northeast corner of the Mexican Caribbean, is composed of fourteen miles of pristine white beaches shaped like a number “7”, home to many Mayan archaeological wonders, turquoise seas, a bountiful underwater world, and world-class vacation amenities. It is still considered the gateway to the Mayan World (El Mundo Maya).
Mayan temples and ritual sites are everywhere, some smothered by lush jungle, others easily accessible. Hot, tropical weather is guaranteed, and you?ll spend endless afternoons relaxing on the beach, cocktail in hand! Base yourself at the Barceló Costa Cancún four star hotel, a beautiful complex built in the Mediterranean style in the Bahía del Caribe with views of the Playa Lindaf. Surrounded by well maintained tropical gardens which lead directly onto the beach, the hotel boasts a large pool area, a host of leisure facilities and you will be well looked after by the friendly staff. It also features a spa, in case you need to relax even more!
How to do it: 7 nights all inclusive at the 4 star Barcelo Costa Cancun costs from £994 per person, including flights from Gatwick with Thomas Cook, departing on 31 August 2015. To book, visit www.sunshine.co.uk
Imagine sailing around some of the most beautiful European destinations under a lovely, summer sky. Departing from Venice, you’ll take in a range of classic and historic cities, such as Istanbul, Athens, Florence and Rome, exploring their ancient sites and enjoying all they have to offer, from the Colisseum to the Acropolis. You’ll also get to explore the stylish Greek island of Mykonos, the Provencal port of Toulon, and end up in the foodie city of Barcelona.
How to do it: A 12 night cruise on Princess Cruises’ Island Princess costs from £899 per person, including return flights to Venice and return from Barcelona. The cruise departs from Venice and takes in Istanbul, Mykonos, Athens, Naples, Rome, Florence, Toulon and Barcelona, where it disembarks. This is based on a departure date of 2 August and includes a free upgrade to Balcony cabin. To book, call 0845 543 6615, or visit www.travelbagcruise.co.uk.
Head to Paradis Plage in Morocco, just an hour north of Agadir, where families can enjoy a week of beachside fun and fitness – enjoy morning beach runs, try out body boarding and hone your surfing skills with expert led lessons! Spend afternoons practising yoga in the beachfront glass-walled studio, while the little ones play sports, games and build sandcastles at the complimentary kids club.
All classes and activities are optional, so you can dip in and out as you please and free time can be spent relaxing on the 3-mile white sand beach, visiting the spa to soothe tired muscles or relaxing around the pool. Spend evenings indulging in traditional and international cuisine in one of three alfresco restaurants, kick back with a film in the outdoor cinema or listen to the waves around a camp fire on the beach.
How to do it: 7 night holidays (1-8 August) available from 838pp (£3,352 total) based on a family of 4 sharing a 2 bedroom / 2 bathroom Prestige Suite on a B&B basis, including return flights to Agadir, private airport transfers and entry to kids club for 4-12 year olds. www.thehealthyholidaycompany.co.uk/trips/paradis-plage
Overlooking a long stretch of golden-sand beach, a cluster of sleek town houses form the Vidamar resort. Families will enjoy many of the resort’s on-site facilities, including a spa, kids club and a variety of dining venues, while having the added benefit of their own space to relax in.
Spend days poolside, where little ones will love splashing about in a choice of 3 salt-water pools and adults will favour the swim-up Tiki bar. Alternatively take a short stroll across a purpose-built walkway over dunes to the fabulous 6km sandy beach for sunbathing and sandcastle making. After days on the beach, head next door to the Salgados golf course or relax and enjoy local cuisine at one of four alfresco restaurants – with plenty of choice for the pickiest of little eaters.
How to do it: 7 night holidays (from 31 July – 7 August) are available from £945pp (£3,778 total) based on a family of 4 sharing a 2 bedroom / 2 bathroom private residence on a self-catering basis, including return flights to Faro, private airport transfers and kids club. To book, visit www.thehealthyholidaycompany.co.uk
The largest of Thailand’s islands, Phuket is situated off the west coast in the Andaman Sea, and is a lot more vast than you?d think. Aside from the glowing stretches of powder-soft beaches and pure blue skies, expect mountainous landscapes, a fascinating culture and a captivating, ornate old town. Base yourself at the luxury Merlin Beach Resort, nestled on Tri-Triang Beach, where the tranquil atmosphere seems a world away from Phuket’s entertainment hub, Patong, which is situated nearby. Patong itself must be seen to be believed – a glittering nightlife comprising upscale restaurants, lively bars and bustling streets make up one of the island?s most renowned beach destinations.
How to do it: Best at Travel is offering a 7-night holiday for £999 per person, flying with Singapore Airlines from London Heathrow. With this offer you’ll even receive a free upgrade to a deluxe room, with a delicious daily breakfast buffet included. To find out more, visit www.bestattravel.co.uk, or call 0203 733 9459.
Internationally renowned as an epicentre of lights, entertainment and neon-infused adventure, Las Vegas is the place to go when you yearn for dazzling, unadulterated fun. Whether you’re an active thrill-seeker or a fan of luxury accommodation (or both), a holiday to Nevada’s most populous city will leave you with memories that last a lifetime.
Even if you’re not a fan of gambling, there is plenty to keep you occupied, from shopping, to eating, to award winning shows. Try a holiday that combines the best of Vegas with a a once-in-a-lifetime helicopter trip to the breathtaking Grand Canyon, where you can sit back and take in bird’s eye views of the striking rocky landscape – one of the world’s seven natural wonders. This way, you get the best of both worlds; world class fun and entertainment combined with an experience over the desert and the chance to marvel at nature.
How to do it: Best at Travel offers 4 nights’ accommodation and return flights with Virgin Atlantic for a cool £989 per person. This great-value holiday package also includes tickets for the High Roller. Located in the glittering outdoor entertainment district of The LINQ, this remarkable 550-ft tall structure is the largest observational deck in the world, with each cabin holding up to 40 people. To find out more about the Las Vegas & Grand Canyon Discovery Package, visit www.bestattravel.co.uk, or call 0203 733 9459.
If you’ve seen House of Cards, you’ll know that America’s capital city is as much one of the main characters as Frank or Claire Underwood. It has plenty to offer, too; you can observe the White House, gaze the imposing Lincoln Memorial, walk down the National Mall to the distinctive Washington Monument and more. Culture fans will enjoy spending time in the Smithsonian museums (there are 19 in total, from the Natural History Museum to the Air and Space Museum) and for those interested in conspiracy theories, there’s even an International Spy Museum! Not to mention world class cuisine and shopping.
How to do it: My America Holiday has four nights at the 4* Loews Madison staying on a room only basis for £695 per person including flights with Virgin Atlantic from Manchester, based on two adults sharing, book by 30 June. To book go to www.myamericaholiday.co.uk/washington-holidays or call 020 8290 9797
The island of Zanzibar has been called the “quintessential Indian Ocean experience”, combining white-sand beaches with remote village life and the exotically urban Stone Town. Part of Tanzania’s east-coast archipelago, Zanzibar is a name “that conjures extraordinary, exotic images — of Arabian Nights scenes coloured with dhows, spices and treasures”, says Condé Nast Traveller.
Influenced by Arabic and Indian settlers, the island’s kitchens produce delicious flavours using coconut milk, freshly ground spices and even fresher seafood. Although Zanzibar’s beaches are a huge draw for many travellers, it?s also worth visiting Jozani Chwaka Bay National Park — home to the rare red colobus monkey, over 50 species of butterfly and mangrove swamps — the sprawling Darajani Market in Stone Town for colourful fabrics and jewellery, and Mnemba Atoll, Zanzibar’s best diving spot.
Make the most of it with an amazing deal that bases you in the 4 star VOI Kiwengwa, a traditional thatched resort. Facilities include an outdoor swimming pool, a gym and several dining options, including the Ngalawa Restaurant for Italian and international dishes. The all-inclusive plan covers buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as mineral water, soft drinks, house wine, local beer and spirits by the glass, until midnight**. The à la carte dinner for two at the al fresco Baobab Beach Cafè can be taken on any night of your stay and includes a private waiter and a 3-course meal with a bottle of wine.
How to do it: Travel deal website Travelzoo.com has worked with Citrus Holidays to put together a fantastic Zanzibar holiday. A seven night all-inclusive break, including accommodation, return flights from London Heathrow, Edinburgh or Manchester and private transfers costs £899 per person, with select dates between 30 August and 14 December. Book via www.citrusholidays.com
Settle into your sun lounger with a Rum Punch as you take in the beauty of Montego Bay. Known equally for its duty-free shopping, clear-water snorkelling, diverse nightlife and natural beauty, Montego Bay makes for a perfect Jamaican getaway. It’s Jamaica’s second largest city and is also the country’s original top tourist destination, offering a lively cosmopolitan atmosphere and beautiful beaches.
The Holiday Inn Sunspree Resort in Montego Bay provides you with the best of this Caribbean paradise and offers an ideal holiday retreat for singles, couples and families. Equipped with a private beach with sun loungers and parasols, 2 outdoor swimming pools, a separate pool for children, an adult only jacuzzi and a furnished sun terrace, it’s the perfect place for doing as little as possible; however, if you are feeling energetic, there’s a leisure centre, a children’s playground, mini golf, 4 tennis courts, a fitness gym and a Spa offering various massages. Activities available around the resort and at the beach include canoes and pedalos, banana boat rides and water-skiing, diving, sailing, beach volleyball, basketball, billiards and table tennis.
How to do it: A 7 night, all inclusive stay based on two adults sharing costs from £986.45 per person; departure date 10 September 2015. Book via www.sunshine.co.uk.