Ah, summer vacation has been the highlight of every year for as long as you can remember, right? The excitement as you plan and book your summer vacation, the anticipation as the date approaches, and perhaps the excitement as the weeks drag on. It can be a little frustrating. And you can enjoy the thrill of buying new summer clothes, packing your bags, preparing your suitcase and waiting days in advance.
There’s no denying that summer vacation is the best. But summer vacations have come a long way since the days of his standard two-week package trip to Spain. Summer holidays have upped the excitement factor and I realized that not everyone wants to sit on the beach or be tied down to a hotel for the entire trip.
So, for those looking for something a little different this year, we’ve put together five summer vacation options…
#1. Get active in the mountains
It’s no secret that I love mountains. When you think of the Alps, you probably think of snow-capped mountains, snowboarding, and après-ski, but a vacation in this beautiful region is just as wonderful as a summer getaway.
Temperatures hover around the low 20s and there are around 11 hours of daylight each day, plenty of time for an adventurous outdoor holiday. Choose a resort with a lake, such as Lake Monttrion in Morzine, rent a paddleboard or kayak, or try mountain hiking trails with stunning views of the mountain range. Alpine Elements is full of alpine inspiration!
#2. Refresh your body and mind with a yoga retreat
Rather than gorging yourself on an all-inclusive buffet, why not choose a holiday where you return looking and feeling better than when you left? A few years ago, I went to a luxurious yoga detox retreat in Fuerteventura. All the food there was super healthy and I practiced yoga and Pilates every day.
It was a real break from the processed foods we are used to eating. My body felt great afterwards. Plus, I came home much more relaxed and blackened than ever. Well, it’s a holiday!
#3. Take a glam camping trip
In case you missed the memo, glam camping, or “glamping,” is all the rage right now. Gone are the leaky tents of yesterday as campers seek better facilities and a more luxurious atmosphere for their camping holidays. After all, just because you’re away from home doesn’t mean you can’t indulge in a little luxury.
There are plenty of places to spend a few nights adventuring in a yurt, teepee, gypsy caravan or beautifully decorated tent. A few years ago I was lucky enough to go ‘glamping’ in a real tree house in Powys, Wales…complete with real fireplace and outdoor hot shower! Luckily we were all alone in the woods so there was no one around to watch our quick naked run back to the hut afterwards!
#4. Do a city break marathon (we’re not talking about running!)
Most people only take city breaks for a few days, but if you’re interested in your culture, a long trip connecting several European cities is a great way to get the energy of Europe without ever setting foot on a beach. It’s a great way to experience it. I like to think of it as ‘holiday tapas’.
If you want to try a little bit of everything in one country, Italy is a great place to start. Spend a few days exploring Venice’s canals (and munching on locally made gelato) before hopping on a train to the fashion capital of Milan. The city is famous for its high-end shopping, great art galleries, and some of Italy’s finest architecture. If you have time, why not visit the wine regions of Lombardy and sample some of the most delicious wines you’ve ever encountered. Finally, hop on another train and head south to Rome, home to the Colosseum, which has amazed visitors for 2,000 years.
The best part is that you can build your city break marathon based on your interests. Low-cost airlines like EasyJet and Ryanair make one-way flights cheap and easy to do.
#5. Go island hopping
If you’re looking for a little sunshine but don’t want to laze around on the beach for two weeks straight, why not book an island hopping trip? Greece and Croatia are both very popular destinations because they have a lot of islands and different companies offer different experiences.
Party lovers can take a boat trip around Croatia’s sunny islands, including a stop at Outlook Festival, which sits atop a fortress overlooking the Adriatic Sea and has one of the best settings for any festival in Europe.
If you’d like to see some of the islands at a more relaxed pace, charter a yacht and cruise around some of the smaller islands, meeting locals and enjoying delicious seafood. Hmm!
Do you have another idea for your summer vacation?