A luxury holiday getaway for every season of the year
Everyone needs a break sometimes. To leave your troubles behind, recharge, and explore somewhere new. But what is your idea of a break? Perhaps the annual summer beach holiday and winter ski trip no longer excite you, or maybe they never did. Maybe you’re a warmth at winter kind of man, or a mild summer girl. Maybe you just can’t stand the thought of a classic holiday destination during the school holidays – you want to escape the madness, not enter it! With this in mind, we have put together a seasonal list of alternative holiday destinations, so that no matter the time of year you know there is somewhere you can go to escape the rat run. All you have to do is book your tickets.
Winter – New Orleans, Louisiana
For a warm winter break, New Orleans should top your list. And it isn’t all about Mardi Gras and crawfish boils, although they are both amazing parts of the unique southern-Cajun culture of the Big Easy. If you pick your vacation to land just after the Christmas holidays you will be able to check out the displays at the NOLA ChristmasFest, take a holiday Riverboat cruise, or catch one of the St Louis Cathedral Concerts. A personal favourite is the Celebration in the Oaks, where the famous oak trees of the city park are wrapped in lights – 165,000 people agree with me though, so buy tickets in advance if you don’t want to miss out! If you want to escape the obligations of a Christmas at home entirely, you could even head out before the holiday, and check out the bonfires on the river levees that take place on Christmas Eve.
With the weather topping out at around 15C in the winter months, New Orleans is a great destination if you want to get away from the bitter cold of the normal ski trip, but can’t quite face the thought of a dreaded sandy beach. On top of the winter festivities there is also the Bourbon Street Carnival, Mardi Gras, the French Quarter, and ghost tours to check out. And, although New Orleans isn’t all about the food, it’s definitely one of the most exciting features. Foodies will rejoice over jambalaya, gumbo, and beignets all so mouth-watering you might never want to leave the city.
Summer – Bar Harbor, Maine
Bar Harbor in the summer is truly spectacular, weather included. Here it stays mild, no warmer than around 25C, meaning you can make the most of all it has to offer without hopping between the safety of air-conditioned buildings. This destination is heaven on earth for active outdoor lovers, who would rather explore their surroundings than slow-roast in the sun.
Located on Maine’s Mount Desert Island, Bar Harbor is a quaint, traditional town, and a favourite vacation destination on the East Coast. You can take a stroll on village green, visit the historic gardens at the College of the Atlantic, attend a traditional crab boil, or visit one of the town’s many museums. If you are looking for something a little more adventurous then head to the coast, and make the most whale watching or scuba diving. Acadia National Park is just outside of Bar Harbor, offering both hiking and scuba diving opportunities. If you want to get more information on the essentials you will need for a scuba diving trip you can find the details here.
Spring – Fiji
Fiji is an island paradise, whatever you conceive paradise to be! Consisting of 332 islands altogether, with only a third of them inhabited, anyone can find their perfect place. I would recommend seeing as many islands as you can during your trip, to really get a sense of the Fijian culture and all it has to offer.
If you’ve got a taste for adventure, you may want to go on an ATV tour, sailing trip, or deep-sea fishing. Scuba diving is also popular – no wonder considering Fiji is known as the ‘soft coral capital of the world’. Increasingly under threat, go now to see turtles, sharks, manta rays, dolphins or even your own Nemo. Diving isn’t just for the practised expert; even beginners will find a dive to suit them. If you have any questions you can get the answer on Scubalist.pro.
Spring is the perfect time for this trip – go in May for a dry climate and mild temps, or compromise slightly higher chances of rain to save money and visit in April, the tail end of the rainy season.
Fall – Highlands, North Carolina
You might be wondering why the spectacular autumnal displays found in New England and Pennsylvania do not top the list of our favourite fall destinations. Well, if you go a few hours south, to Highlands in North Carolina, you will see why. As one of the highest towns east of Mississippi, Highlands has been a mountain getaway for over a century. There are tons of things to do whether you are going on your honeymoon, a solo vacation, or on a trip with your family. The town itself offers theatre, concerts and museums highlighting the best of the quaint town’s history. Venture out into the Nantahala National Forest for scenic drives, hikes, fishing trips and visits to stunning waterfalls to make the most of the spectacular autumnal views.
If you want an experience a bit more luxurious make sure to book your stay at the Old Edwards Inn and Spa. The hotel is in downtown Highlands and consists of several acres of property. During your stay you will be pampered with mineral pools, tennis courts, and an in-house restaurant with an award-winning wine list. There are even some hotel rooms that attach to the spa, so you can go straight from your bed to a massage.