One sure fire way to see you through the winter blues, and enable you to successfully negotiate the gloom that envelops much of the country at this time of year, is to start thinking about and planning your holiday. Whether you want to wait until the height of summer, prefer to get away a little earlier or hold off until the other side of September to avoid the crowds, there is nothing like getting a holiday organised to lift your spirits. With that in mind, here are some places you should be thinking about visiting in 2012.
One area of the world that is enjoying a growing reputation as a holiday destination is Eastern Europe and nowhere is this more evident than Croatia. The pristine coastline boasts some of the most beautiful sights in the world. Idyllic resorts dot the bays and make the ideal base from which to enjoy your stay. Alternatively, you can choose to stay on one of the many stunning islands that lay off the coast – Hvar is a particular highlight.
For fascinating history, a trip to Dubrovnik is well worth the effort while, and wherever you go, the food is sure to delight. What’s more, Croatia offers excellent value for money. When you can get holidays to fascinating destinations – what’s not to like?
While these areas are up and coming and new on the scene in terms of their holiday appeal, some old favourites still hold all the quality and charm that made them so popular in the first place. One such place is, without a doubt, Spain. The Iberian region’s biggest strength is its versatility. Whether it’s sun, sea, sand and cocktails you’re after or an intriguing cultural journey, Spain has it all.
Dance the nights away and recuperate on the white sands the next day in Tenerife and Ibiza, drink in the architectural majesty of Gaudi (not to mention the skill of the world’s best football team) in Barcelona, or enjoy the facilities in resorts such as La Manga. Whatever you want to do, Spain is, and will continue to be, numero uno for millions of holidaymakers.
When it comes to city breaks, it’s still hard to beat the ease and convenience of simply hopping across the channel, either by train, plane or boat and heading for Paris. A city so aesthetically stunning you could spend your time simply wandering the streets, gazing around in awe. Paris has more than enough going on besides the architecture to keep everyone entertained, and is home to some of the best shopping and restaurants in the world.
Continuing with the cultural theme, head to Italy to experience fantastic food in a stunning setting. Rome, Florence and Venice all compete for your affections with surroundings to die for, while fashion savvy travellers, not to mention sports fans, the world over will find themselves naturally gravitating towards Milan. For somewhere rather more untouched by tourist hands, head for the medieval market towns and sprawling vineyards of Umbria, while Puglia boasts 500 miles of coastline, each stretch more stunning than the last.
For a further taste of history, why not look towards Northern Africa and Egypt? One of the best ways to get a taste of all this remarkable country has to offer is with a cruise on the Nile. As you luxuriously float between the temples of Karnak and Luxor, keep an eye out for the infamous Valley of the Kings and Aswan. Cairo also boasts the Egyptian museum, home to the solid gold death mask of King Tutankhamun. Just outside the city lie the breathtaking, iconic pyramids and the Sphinx.
Wherever you go in 2012, make sure your holiday this year is the best one yet.