Travel PR’s top six Indian summer suggestions in the UK and Europe
Embrace the lingering warmth of summer with Travel PR's curated list of the top six Indian summer getaways in the UK and Europe. Don't bid farewell to the sun just yet – these suggestions promise to extend your enjoyment of the season, offering a perfect escape for those reluctant to let go of the dog days.
Soak up glorious, late summer sunshine on the coast this September – from £203 per room per night at The Grand Hotel, Eastbourne
Not all hope is lost – embrace the belated British warmth this Indian summer, down on the white cliffs of Beachy Head, and discover some of the most magnificent scenery the South Coast has to offer. From 15 – 24 September, enjoy the breathtaking scenery of the British coastline at the Eastbourne Walking Festival, celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. It’s an excellent opportunity to reconnect with the great outdoors -visitors will be offered advice and guidance from walking and hiking experts, with an array of routes across the South Coast from which to choose. Make the most of the prolonged summer season at The Grand Hotel in Eastbourne, a five-star property right on the seafront, boasting luxury suites, bespoke interior decoration, a home away from home atmosphere – and excellent afternoon teas! Overnight stays from £203 per room per night, inclusive of breakfast. Visit www.grandeastbourne.com or call 01323 412345.
Catch waves in the Vendée’s late summer swells – from £157 per night with Yescapa
September might be the best month to visit France for surfing. Loved by both the French and their overseas visitors alike, the Vendée’s gentle, sloping beaches and frequent swells against its dramatic coastal backdrop make the perfect setting for a late summer reef break. Generating waves to suit any type of surfer, the Vendée coastline tends to be overshadowed by the famous waves further south, meaning generally fewer crowds in this region. Take a drive down the coast to the picturesque town of La Rochelle, also known as La Ville Blanche (White Town), with its beautiful, half-timbered houses and its collection of lighthouses. Take to the road in Alessandro’s two-berth Volkswagen T6 converted van. Sleeping up to four, the van offers a spacious and comfortable dining area and kitchenette, with all of the home comfort extras to make your trip as easy and enjoyable as possible. Pick up from South London. Travel to France by ferry. The cost of a six-night hire is from £945 (£157 per night), including full insurance and up to 100 km per day. For more information and to book, visit www.yescapa.co.uk.
Magical music at La Mortella – Italy – from £2,920 pp with Kirker*
Make the most of the late summer sun on the idyllic island of Ischia at The Kirker Ischia Music Festival, where distinguished musicians play a series of private concerts exclusively for guests. The music programme, performed at the Sala di Musica at La Mortella – the island’s spectacular subtropical and Mediterranean garden – includes private recitals given by the internationally recognised Maxwell String Quartet, and pianist Thomas Kelly. Guests will stay at Hotel Tritone, perfectly located on the beach of San Francesco, a few minutes’ walk from the historic centre of Forio, the second largest town on Ischia. Explore the island, enjoy a private guided tour of the world-famous La Mortella, to learn the history of the garden and how it was developed in accordance with Lady Walton’s vision by the celebrated designer, Russell Page. The Kirker Ischia Music Festival costs from £2,920 pp (two sharing), including return flights, seven nights’ accommodation with breakfast and dinners, six private concerts, one concert given by the Walton Trust, plus all sightseeing as described, with entrance fees and gratuities, and the services of the Kirker Tour Leader. Departs 11 October. Call AITO* member Kirker on 020 7593 2288 (www.kirkerholidays.com).
Discover the southernmost point in Europe this Autumn – Crete from £762 pp with Sunvil*
The island of Crete is blessed with a mild climate late into October, so grab the last chance of summer sunshine before the UK winter begins. With 650 miles of spectacular coastline, Crete is the largest Greek island. A stunning mix of mythology and mountains, Gorgons and gorges, baklava and beaches, minarets and Minoans, this island invites exploration. Hike through the stunning Samaria Gorge or ride the road train from Panormos to the tiny villages in the foothills of the White Mountains. Experience real Greece with this trip and stay at Iliana Apartments, a firm favourite in the pretty, atmospheric village of Panormos, with laid-back charm, two good sandy beaches, and a photogenic harbour. The modern apartments have an inviting freshwater pool, plus it’s just a three-minute walk from Panormos’ main square with its selection of seafood cafés and restaurants. Departing 10 October, this seven-night self-catering holiday costs from £762 pp (two sharing), including return flights (Gatwick) with 23kg hold luggage, and transfers. Call AITO* member Sunvil on 020 8568 4499 (www.sunvil.co.uk).
A rural break in Spain’s Subbética during the olive harvest – Andalucia from £1,140 pp with Sunvil*
Visit the little-known, enjoyably hilly region of Subbética, in Spain’s Andalucia, and discover – and take part in, if you wish – the olive harvest in November. Walk the ancient limestone peaks and river valleys of the Sierras Subbéticas, one of the least-known National Parks in Spain, and a UNESCO Geopark to boot. Learn about this destination’s quirks and stories, and discover the locals’ genuine warmth with a stay at the charming, eco-friendly boutique hotel, Casa Olea. Lovingly converted from an olive oil farmhouse and considered one of the best luxury B&Bs in Andalucia, Granada and Cordoba are both just over an hour´s drive away. For the gourmand, fresh, locally-sourced produce is served in the hotel’s bodega, and the owners run olive-oil tasting sessions before dinner (10 Euros pp). Plus, the swimming pool offers panoramic views of the olive groves, hills, Moorish watchtowers and river forest. Departing 16 November, this seven-night B&B stay at Casa Olea costs from £1,140 pp (two sharing), including return flights (Gatwick) with 23kg pp hold luggage, and car hire. Call AITO* member Sunvil on 020 8568 4499 (www.sunvil.co.uk).
Take a dip into Faroese culture at its finest this September – from £230 per night at Hotel Brandan, Tórshavn, the Faroes’ capital
Based in the Faroe Islands, Atjan Wild Islands Festival (6 – 10 September) offers an entirely unique, five-day experience in a place that’s unspoiled and unexplored, with wild beauty in abundance. Start your mornings in the Atlantic Ocean with a bracing wild swim, or follow a trail through serene, green valleys and along jagged mountain-top pathways. Throughout the day you can compete in the festival trail races around the island, with a choice of a 10K, half marathon, marathon, or ultra-marathon. The festival’s hosts are also passionate about music, parties and performances, meaning fantastic nightlife, including live music concerts and a beach cove hot tub. Stay at the understatedly elegant Hotel Brandan, located within walking distance of the city centre. With every room boasting luxurious beds, stylish and upmarket furnishings, and the added touch of Faroese artist Edward Fuglø’s interior decoration, there isn’t a better way to top off your stay. The cost of a five-day AWI Festival ticket is £209 pp, including Race Entry, Adventure Film Night, Pub Crawl Run, Opening Party, Post Race Party, Live Music Concerts, Four-Day Hot Tub Pass, Concierge Access, Closing Party and more. The room-only rate of Hotel Brandan is 2,000 DK per night (approx. £230). Visit www.visitfaroeislands.com.
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