Once the turkey’s all eaten, the mince pies demolished and even the last few unwanted Quality Streets in the tin have finally found favour (orange cream anyone?) most fit-to-bursting bodies will be crying out for a detox.
Earlier this year I spent five months working in a tourist office in the South of France. Before starting I really wasn’t sure quite what to expect, and was by no means ready for the stream of strange and curious questions which would end up coming my way. Nothing had suggested that the tourist office would turn out to be a general information office or that the majority of ‘tourists’ would, in fact, be local residents.
After bringing us the likes of Simon Cowell, Osama Bin Laden, Jordan and Jedward, the Noughties are almost over. But what were the Destinations of the Decade – stunning new places that are now firmly on the tourism map – and what will be the holiday hotspots of the Twenty-Tens/Oh-tens/Teenies/Tenties/Tenners? We asked some of our expert clients:
My friend Katy Regan and I went on our second mini-break recently. Mini-break number one was to Barcelona in the summer of last year, this time we decided to take in Tallinn. In both cities we did hours of walking but Tallinn by comparison is much, much smaller and more compact than Barcelona and easier to navigate around, although I wish I hadn’t insisted on wearing heels all the time – not the best choice of footwear for cobbled streets, stylish but silly.
Travelling to and from work I’ve been drawn to the colourful posters of the Incredible India advertising campaign, brightening up train and Tube stations around London, and transported to the tropical waters and the vibrant settings they picture. Having returned from the AITO Conference in Cochin, Kerala, on my first visit to the country, I would say the Ministry of Tourism’s product does exactly what it says on the tin.
For somebody who has never watched a live cricket match, never mind played it, it was a brave step to attempt my first cricketing appearance against a crack Indian outfit at the AITO conference in Cochin, Kerala, last Friday. All the more so when I saw how fast the first few deliveries whizzed by our opening batsmen.
Two-and-a-half years old and she wants to divorce her parents. “I don’t like my Daddy!’ she screams, face puce and feet planted on an uneven stone step overlooking the pastel-washed houses of Fiskardo. “I don’t need my Mummy!” The words feel like gunshots,
The Paul Morrison Guide Awards (www.wanderlust.co.uk) recognise just how important the role of a tour guide can be in the overall holiday experience. The presence of such luminaries as bestselling writer Bill Bryson, wildlife broadcaster Mark Carwardine, Telegraph Travel Editor Graham Boynton, Rough Guides founder Mark Ellingham and co-founder of Wanderlust magazine Lyn Hughes amongst the award judges reinforces this view.