Aug 27, 2015

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Still looking for some sun? We round up last-minute inspirational deals at under £250 per person...

Still looking for some sun? We round up last-minute inspirational deals at under £250 per person

With the UK summer turning into a washout, Brits have been racing to book last-minute sunshine holiday deals. And, with prices rising due to lack of stock, you would be forgiven for thinking you cannot find a bargain. Fear not, because we’ve found seven deals for under £250 if you can get away during September. Go Greek There are bargains galore across the Greek islands this September. Zante is a great choice, with both quiet resorts and full on party beaches. The weather is still great as summer morphs into autumn, with daytime temperatures in the high-twenties and night-time averages that linger around 20C. If you don’t want to bake on the beach all day, take a boat trip to the stunning Smugglers Cove and catch the Face of Poseidon Cave on the way. Alternatively, with Olympic fever heating up for Rio 2016, a day out to Olympia – the home of the original competition on the nearby mainland – will get you in the mood for Brazil. Stay at the three-star Canadian Hotel in Laganas, Zante, on a seven-night self-catering break with Airtours, departing Gatwick or Manchester on September 17 for £205. A holiday that’s no Turkey The crowds have left the beaches and the scorching summer temperatures are replaced with long hot days and a cool breeze. September is an ideal time to visit Turkey and bustling Marmaris has a long beach, an historic old town and plenty of ways to make the most of your time on holiday. Take a traditional Turkish bath near the Grand Bazaar, try out all manner of water sports or let your hair down of an evening with a fine choice of restaurants, bars and clubs. Enjoy seven nights staying at the three-star Club Ceylan Apartments in Marmaris with Thomson on a self-catering basis, departing Manchester on September 14 for £190. Departures from London Luton cost £243. Can you brave the Costa Brava? The Mediterranean coast of Spain is lined with resorts that deliver high standards and a range of holiday options. And, with the current great value of the euro and reasonable prices in bars, restaurants and shops, your holiday pound really can go further on the seductive Spanish shoreline. Consider budget-friendly Lloret de Mar for your break this September. Brits have been visiting this...

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Aug 27, 2015

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In pictures: 10 airports you’d actually want to get stuck in...

In pictures: 10 airports you’d actually want to get stuck in

Arriving at the airport to find your flight has been delayed can put a real dampener on your holiday. Hours of waiting in soulless airport purgatory stretch ahead as you sit hopefully watching the departures board. But believe it or not, there are airports around the world where you might actually wish you could stay longer. Airport hell? Try these 10 examples of airport heaven (well, OK, close to it) instead. 1) Madrid-Barajas Airport, Spain For the superb architecture Madrid-Barajas Airport has scooped a bundle of awards for its superb architecture – including the prestigious international Stirling Prize when it opened in 2006. Calling it the world’s top airport for architecture, National Geographic Traveller praised Terminal 4’s “cathedral-like vault drenched in natural light”. Comprising multicoloured pillars and a “floating” bamboo roof, the airy design can be enjoyed from a series of suspended walkways. The look is so far from the drab and dreary airport norm, it almost makes you want to weep. 2) Changi Airport, Singapore For the super-relaxing facilities Fancy a dip in a Balinese-themed rooftop pool while you await your delayed flight? How about steaming in a spa or wandering around a butterfly or sunflower garden? In fact, Changi has so many de-stressing options you risk missing your flight because you’re so blissed out you’ve fallen asleep. You could always take one of the airport’s whistle-stop tours of Singapore to prevent that happening. Changi Airport won top spot for the third year running in the 2015 World Airport Awards for extraordinary perks such as these. 3) Hong Kong International Airport For the peerless entertainment Getting stuck at the world’s second busiest airport could keep you entertained for hours. Among the futuristic diversions at Hong Kong International Airport are a huge “4D” cinema (with more “sensory” thrills than 3D, apparently) and an Aviation Discovery Centre complete with flight simulator (if you really can’t wait to get on the plane!). Or you could just pass the time fiddling with a PlayStation at one of the airport’s free “game poles”. More retro diversions include practising your swing at the airport’s very own golf course. MORE: Your 10 top holiday bugbears revealed 4) Schiphol Airport, Amsterdam For the masterpieces on show Amsterdam is one of the world’s greatest places for seeing art, and what makes Schiphol unique in the airport world is its annex of the city’s Rijksmuseum Art...

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Aug 24, 2015

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The party’s not over – find the action after Ibiza...

The party’s not over – find the action after Ibiza

Ibiza’s biggest clubs will soon be closing their doors and calling time on another wild summer of late nights, big hangovers and infectious dance beats. Whether you forgot where you were in Amnesia, went Insane at Pasha or got lost in Space, it’s now time to settle back into your sensible home life and focus on the garden, or maybe that shelf that needs fixing ­– the party’s nearly over, right? Wrong. Ibiza’s famous brand of sweaty hedonism...

Aug 24, 2015

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Can’t travel light? Which airline has the best checked-in luggage allowance?...

Can’t travel light? Which airline has the best checked-in luggage allowance?

Low-cost airlines have brought with them the trend of travelling with one piece of hand luggage only, packed to the gunnels. The aim? To avoid paying for checked-in luggage. And travellers have employed increasingly ingenious ways of carrying more on board – although we don’t recommend the antics of boy band member James McElvar. He was the guy who wore 12 layers of clothing recently in an attempt to avoid paying £45 for baggage on an easyJet flight...

Aug 24, 2015

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12 ideas for days out this August bank holiday...

12 ideas for days out this August bank holiday

Wondering what to do over the coming bank holiday weekend? Whether you fancy learning how to waggle dance or you’re keen to discover how chocolate shaped one of England’s oldest cities, these fantastic days out are sure to keep boredom at bay, writes Tamara Hinson. 1. Best for shaking your tail feather: Africarnival, Horniman Museum, Forest Hill, London Price: free Get your groove on at this free urban festival, which takes place on August 30. Visitors can expect a...

Aug 18, 2015

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Street food fight – let your stomach rule your holiday decisions...

Street food fight – let your stomach rule your holiday decisions

Food glorious food. We need it, we love it and some of the more gastronomically aware among us live it. The keenest foodies even use it to dictate where next to go on holiday, according to the latest research from TravelSupermarket. A quarter of Brits said they booked a destination based solely on the food, while almost half (47%) said they considered street food to be the most authentic way to dine abroad. To celebrate this culinary travel...

Aug 18, 2015

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Avoid a visa rip-off!

Avoid a visa rip-off!

The Indian government has recently confirmed that it will extend the online electronic visa service to UK visitors (the e-Tourist Visa), which is excellent news for Brits planning a winter sun holiday to Goa. Not only will this make it easier to apply for – there is no longer the need to send in documentation or make an appointment to visit the Indian visa agency in London – it is also cheaper with a cost of $60 (£39)...

Aug 17, 2015

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How to do the Greek islands on a budget...

How to do the Greek islands on a budget

Greece has thousands of islands. Some, like tiny Kastellorizo, are no more than dots on the map while Crete, the biggest, is more than 150 miles long. In between, there’s something to please everyone and fit most budgets. Summer and clear blue water are Greece’s big crowd-pleasers, along with relics of lost civilisations such as Knossos on Crete, medieval fortresses such as Rhodes’ Old Town, and dazzlingly pretty villages on isles like Santorini and Mykonos. And, of course,...

Aug 17, 2015

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Should I go to Greece this summer?

Should I go to Greece this summer?

Planning to travel to Greece this summer? You might still be questioning the destination as the choice of your holiday after months of news around Greek bailouts, demonstrations in Athens, talks of a “Grexit” (or Greece leaving the euro) and, more recently, news of migrants landing on islands such as Kos and Lesbos as they flee from countries including Syria. But is this all a media storm? What’s it really like at the moment in the ever-popular resorts spread across...

Aug 11, 2015

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Why I’m now a holiday park convert

Why I’m now a holiday park convert

When you’re on holiday with a toddler, the simple things in life suddenly become more important:  sleep, stress-free meal times, and activities that put a smile on everyone’s face. And that’s why, for the first time in my adult life, I decided that a holiday park was the place for our family summer holiday. We’d never been on a campsite with our one-year-old before, so I was slightly nervous – but here’s why I’d recommend it. We enjoyed...