With the UK experiencing such cold and dark winters is it any wonder that more and more of us are opting for a winter sun break rather than the traditional two weeks in the summer? And as we transfer our allegiance from summer to winter what are the things that we need to remember to make our holiday go without a hitch? We catch up with JP Donnelly, founder of 5 Star Villa Holidays (www.5starvillaholidays.com) to find out.
1) Choose the right destination! Florida is many a winter sun seeker’s go to place for guaranteed sunshine. Head out there in November and you may still be lucky enough for shorts weather, even December and January in Florida will usually be pleasant at around 16°C to enjoy the many sights of Orlando in short sleeved tops. And let’s face it, us hardy Brits will probably have our shorts on then too!
2) Broaden your horizons. There are also destinations a little closer to home that you can consider for a winter break. Places like Alanya in Turkey get over 300 sunny days per year, with average temps in December a relatively balmy 12°C; surely a good 12 points higher than it’ll be in Britain about then. Whilst in Cyprus, you can expect around 15° for the festive season.
3) Be a culture vulture. If you’re heading out on holiday in the winter months, it’s the perfect opportunity to see some of the sights as you don’t have the oppressive heat to contend with that can zap your energy. Turkey has over 15 UNESCO World Heritage sites to visit like the mythical caves and fairy chimneys of Cappadocia, whilst Spain has 44 and Cyprus 3, including the Tombs of the Kings in Paphos. Hire a car and get out and about!
4) Grab yourself a deal. Whilst more people are opting for winter breaks, the majority of demand tends to come in the summer months so holiday firms are always looking at ways of making winter sun appealing. Get onto mailing lists so that you can be first to hear of offers on accommodation and flights and price up different regional airports alongside major airports for a comparison.
5) Indulge your hobbies. With resorts much quieter, winter is a great time to take a ‘hobby break’. Spain is a real hot-spot for golfers with a plethora of brilliant courses, such as the El Valle Golf Resort near to Murcia on the Costa Calida, or Champion’s Gate in Davenport, Orlando Florida. And if golf’s not for you, how about taking up the wineries trail in Spain, or even Turkey which is less well known for its wine but has some amazing vineyards.
6) Find a home from home. Heading on holiday in the winter, perhaps even for Christmas, can be a big deal and it’s important that you find place that you can feel at home where all of the family can converge and enjoy that special time. A villa can be a great choice, offering space, home comforts and freedom with the added joy of a little sunshine too!
5 Star Villa Holidays have over 1000 luxury villas in Spain, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Turkey and the US www.5starvillaholidays.com and is offering £50 off all new villa bookings made by 31st August 2016 on their website or by calling 0151 494 9145. Simply quote XMAS.