Where? Antigua, Caribbean
Once a British outpost, Antigua mixes hectic city life and untamed nature. A regular stop on the cruise ships route, the island’s claim to fame is its 365 beaches. But there’s more to it than sea, surf and sand: duty free shopping, a 4WD spin up Fig Tree Drive for a spot of jungle adventure or snorkelling at Hell’s Gate.
On Sundays, Shirley Heights is the place to be seduced by the steel bands. Go ‘all-inclusive’ at the swish Jumby Bay where four poster beds and sunsets are the specialty or for something more contemporary, check into the newly opened Carlisle Bay. A masterpiece of modern design with its own movie screening room, stunning pool, palm fringed beach and an imaginative seaside restaurant, it’s without a doubt one of the Caribbean’s swankiest hotels.
Shop til You Drop
Where? Dubai, UAE
It’s definitely worth spending a few days in the ‘The City of Gold’, the thriving metropolis risen from the sand. Internationally renowned, the hub of the Middle East is unique.
The Emirate is a feat of modern architecture and cutting edge design. Cosmopolitan and ultra modern, Dubai is dotted with opulent hotels and mega malls. At the Deira City Center mall alone, you’ll find 300 shops spread over 1.2 million square feet ! Take in the local culture at the Jumeirah Mosque or the Dubai Museum in the impressive creek side Al Fahidi Fort. For some traditional shopping, wander through the fragrant Spice Souk or the famously sparkling Gold Souk. We love the Arabian style at the One and Only Royal Mirage and the beachfront Ritz Carlton.
Relax at the Spa
Where? Banyan Tree, Seychelles
Seychelles is famous for having some of the most pristine beaches in the world.
Of the 100 islands, only 16 islands are home to hotels, such as Mahé, the largest island in the Seychelles. On the south western coast of Mahe you’ll find the Banyan Tree Seychelles nestled amidst lush tropical greenery with stunning views of Intendance Bay.
Take in the beautiful Creole houses, artists’ studios, national reserves and marine parks, visit the sea in a glass-bottom boat or just relax at the spa. Another favourite mellow past time is watching life go by from your own deck: either at the beachside or in the rainforest. For the utmost privacy, push the boat out and book the Presidential Villa in its own private cove on the water’s edge…
Go on Safari
Where? Masai Mara, Kenya
January and February are the hottest months in Kenya!
The best way to see the country is in small groups thanks to tailor-made safari itineraries taking you “off the beaten track”. With both flying and driving safaris available, luxury tented camps, Kenya will give you a real taste of “Out of Africa”.
Though tourism is well developed in Kenya, there are still a number of ‘hidden gems’ to be found. To catch the Wildebeest Migration visit in late summer when the plains of the Masai Mara are covered with 2 million Wildebeest and plenty of other game! It’s one of the natural wonders of the world…
Learn to Dive
Where? Red Sea, Egypt
You’ll be spoilt for choice in Egypt. Oozing with history, there are too many things to do…
Take a cruise down the Nile, visit Cairo’s pyramids, the Sphinx, the bazaars or the Valley of Kings, the pyramid of Giza or take a trip to the glorious beach resorts on the Red Sea.
Sea, sun and spectacular diving are on the menu at the popular resort of Sharm el-Sheikh at the southern tip of the Sinai peninsula. The resort is a hot destination for divers in search of colourful exotic fish and rare corals. An aquatic paradise! If you want to get out of the water, try a sunset camel ride, dinner under the stars with the Bedouins or just relaxing by the pool.
Where? Koh Samui, Thailand
Aside from fantastically exotic surroundings, Thailand offers real value for money in a country where attention to detail is everything and incredible hospitality comes naturally.
The tiny island of Koh Samui, in the Gulf of Siam is surrounded by a marine national park famous for its extraordinary diving. The island’s other highlights include Big Buddha, an impressive golden figure that sits on the northern tip of the island, busy Chaweng town and the island’s many picture perfect beaches. A long time favourite with backpackers, Samui is now offering a range of chic luxury resorts. Try the fisherman’s village of Bophut, a mellow community with beach bars and plenty of restaurants, home to the beachside Anantara Resort where rooms have an ultra sleek décor and the gardens overflow with frangipani and bougainvillea.