Choosing the perfect holiday this summer;
The summer holidays industry continues to grow and to offer more and more options for would-be holiday makers, but with so much to choose from, it can be hard to make that final decision. We’ve put together a few ideas that should help make the process of deciding a bit easier.
The beach holiday is the classic getaway idea, and Europe offers many options. You don’t have to fork out a great deal of money either, as travel agents like Thomas Cook are able to offer very affordable getaways because of their size. Of course, you can have a ‘higher-end’ holiday if you wish, by paying more for a better hotel in a better area of a given resort.
As far as UK holiday makers are concerned, Spain is still the king of affordable beach holidays, but don’t forget about Greece and Turkey, as they can offer some fantastic getaways – often for similarly low prices. All these countries possess wonderful coastlines with great beaches. A beach holiday in France, on the other hand, may be considerably more expensive.
If you really want to budget, you might try backpacking for a few weeks. Modern hostels are often very comfortable and give you the power to move around and see lots of things. They are also very cheap. Marry this to finding out where the locals eat – and traveling by public transport – and you could enjoy a very low-cost break.
Sun, sea and excitement are to name just a few things to experience when you visit Europe’s party capital. But aside from the clubs, bar and nightlife, Ibiza holidays have something a little more to offer than what you might expect.
Sure, Ibiza does have a fantastic club scene with the likes of Ammesia, Pacha and Eden, but the bright neon lights only shine so far and this island has not forgotten what it once was.
More recently, the Spanish Tourism board have been working hard to promote Ibiza’s family-oriented tourism – a move that clearly shows the island is keen to dispel those stereotypical images that relay the party seeking majority.
And for those that have travelled to this Balearic Island, they would be the first to tell you that this is strictly the case. With large portions of the island registered as UNESCO World Heritage Sites, those protected areas inhibit the natural beauty that was once so discernible in these parts.
One of the more notable includes ‘God’s Finger’ in the Benirras Bay. Set in a sandy cove, the quiet surrounding makes for a peaceful setting to relax and unwind, while the pine covered hills backdrop the golden beach with lush greenery making for a beautiful colour contrast.
Benirras is notorious in Ibiza’s underground scene for being somewhat quirky, particularly at sunset. Spend a day on the beach and your ears will be filled with nothingness albeit the faint sound crickets in the hills. Come the breaking sunset that sound is replaced with the bongo drums and hippie chants as percussionist and alternative crowds gather.
Ibiza Holidays are steeped in history…
Away from the heaps of natural beauty, Ibiza is steeped in history. In 654 BC Phoenicians settled on the island and named it Ibossim, dedicating it to their god of music and dance Bes. Oddly, though some would argue that the island has been over-developed to accommodate its club fanbase, it is within the island’s history to celebrate dance and music.
Ibiza was later known as Ebusus by Greeks who had similarly come to settle on this beautiful island, which literally translated to ‘pine covered island’. A reflection on the islands beauty, these times also spelled out an industrious era as the island became a major trading post amongst the Mediterranean routes. But conflict between the Phoenicians and the Romans broke down any thriving trade, as the war consumed the island. It had stemmed Carthage, an ancient city on the coast on North Africa, which fought with Rome during the Punic Wars.
It is from this time that much of the Ibiza’s history was born and why much of the island is protected as a world heritage site.
Like many of the Mediterranean islands, Ibiza’s climate remains hot year round, averaging temperatures of over 21 degrees centigrade. In peak season during the summer months, temperatures can reach as high as 30 degrees.
All in all, this island has a lot more to offer than glow sticks, whistles and neon lights. Of course, its night life will cause trepidation among those travellers seeking calmer shores and that lively side of Ibiza will always exist. But on the wave of Spain’s attempts to cleanse its revelry image, there could be some cheap deals to be found in those quieter parts of this misunderstood destination.