Being cooped up for so long was a mammoth challenge. So how about a mammoth holiday as the antidote. Take a look at these extra-long holidays around the world.
1. See all the islands of the Azores – 21 nights from £2,288pp with Sunvil
Sete, Cidades-Lake with Sunvil
Witness the Azores in all their glory on this 21-night escape taking in the volcanic landscapes, hot springs and vibrant flora across its nine major islands. Spending two to three nights on each, see São Miguel’s verdant rolling hills and crater lakes, observe Flores’ impressive basalt columns, visit Corvo – the archipelago’s smallest island, admire the pastel-painted buildings of Horta on Faial and discover Pico’s magnificent volcano. Relax on the beautiful beaches of Santa Maria, see the fajas (coastal plateaus) of São Jorge and explore the Azores’ oldest city on Terceira.
How much: The trip costs from £2,288 pp (two sharing) including 21 nights’ B&B, flights (London via Lisbon to São Miguel), all inter-island flights, boat crossings & transfers. Call 020 8758 4722 to book this trip.
2. Time to take a 23-night Grand Tour of South Africa –
from £4,495 pp with Jules Verne
South Africa vineyard
Where better to spend those precious extra weeks than spectacular South Africa? Travelling from the Kruger to the Cape, this 23-night small group tour promises colonial and African history, rich wildlife and unforgettable unspoilt scenery, as well as climates ranging from the sub-tropical (on the KwaZulu-Natal coast) to semi-desert in regions such as the Karoo. Visit tribal communities, townships, battlefields, winelands, the Garden Route. Departing 21 October 2020, and from January to March and August to November 2021.
How much: Grand Tour of South Africa costs from £4,495 pp (two sharing), including flights (Heathrow), transfers, 21 nights’ B&B, seven lunches, 11 dinners, excursions, and the services of guides & local reps. Two overnight flights.
3. As long as you want in Derbyshire’s Peak District from £564pp with holidaycottages.co.uk
Keen to get back out there again, but not “out out”? This could be the perfect staycation solution. Set in the delightful Peak District village of Taddington, 1 The Retreat (sleeps four plus one dog) blends cottage character with opulence – think cosy comfort, colourful, quirky furnishings and a romantic slipper bath in the master bedroom. Walkers are spoilt for choice, with four Dales to explore and hiking trails that start direct from your doorstep. Or bring along your bikes and explore the miles of quiet country lanes and rolling rural views at your own pace.
How much: A three-week stay costs from £564 pp (£2,257 total) plus £20 per week supplement for a dog.
4. North Devon, River Valley View for people & pups – Dog-friendly North Devon from £456 pp with Canine Cottages
Reconnect with nature during an extended break on North Devon’s stunning Hartland Heritage Coast, staying at River Valley View (sleeps four plus two dogs). Offered by dog-friendly self-catering specialist Canine Cottages, this stylish holiday home has everything for pampered pooches… and their human companions. Stride out for miles along clifftop walks, explore secluded coves and vast sandy beaches, and visit pretty fishing villages. Or simply opt to enjoy the peace and solitude of the 20 acres of riverside pasture, meadow and woodland in which this property is set.
How much: A three-week stay in September costs from £456 pp (£1,823 total) plus £20 per week supplement per dog.
5. Infinite days overlooking infinite views from your infinity pool – Corfu from £688 pp with CV Villas
Villa Bliss, Corfu
Get away from it all with an extended trip to Corfu’s tranquil northeast, staying in the hilltop property, Villa Bliss. Nestled among ancient olive trees and boasting incredible views of the coast and the White House (former home of The Durrells) below, the hi spec property built over three floors is the perfect private base for a family or group of friends to spend a well-deserved three (or even four) week break. With plenty of space for everyone to relax, there’s also no shortage of activities nearby, with hiking trails on the doorstep and water sports on the beaches of Kalami, Kouloura and St Stephano (5 mins’ drive).
How much: A three-week stay costs from £688 pp (£5,502 total), with daily maid service. Flights extra.
6. A leisurely self-drive holiday along Normandy’s coast – France from £1,380 pp with Kirker
Normandy coast, Etretat
Swap your French city break for a slower-paced holiday, driving along the beautiful and historic coast of Normandy from Cherbourg to Le Havre. Spend three nights at the elegant Château La Chenevière – commandeered by both sides during WWII – then on to the stylish beach resort of Deauville, staying at the 5-star Normandy Barriere. Discover fascinating history from the Bayeux Tapestry to the D-Day Landings, charming harbour towns such as Honfleur, and delicious local cuisine.
How much: Tailor-Made Normandy costs from £1,380 pp (two sharing) including car ferry (Portsmouth), seven nights’ B&B, excursions, Kirker Guide Notes & Concierge.
7. Once-in-a-lifetime 3-weeks to southern Peru – from £1,954 pp with G Adventures
On the Inca trail
Take an extended trip to southern Peru to experience some of its most astonishing landscapes, culture and history. G Adventures offers an epic three-week tour.
Explore the UNESCO city of Cusco, hike the Inca Trail, and spot wildlife in the Amazon. Sample delicious cuisine in Arequipa – UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy, see Lake Titicaca’s floating islands of Uros, visit local communities in the Sacred Valley to learn about agriculture and the traditional way of life, and much more.
How much: The cost is £1,954 pp, including 20 nights’ accommodation (hotels, homestays & camping), most meals, transfers & excursions. Flights extra.
8. A Grand Aurora Tour in Scandinavia – from £3,525pp with The Aurora Zone
Maximise your chances of seeing the Northern Lights on The Grand Aurora Tour that encompasses Sweden, Finland and Norway. Beginning in Stockholm, spend two nights at the iconic Ice Hotel before heading into Swedish Lapland and over the Finnish border. Activities include a 17km husky safari, a snowmobile safari, a horse-drawn Aurora sleigh ride, a reindeer sleigh ride accompanied by a local reindeer herder, Arctic sauna experience, Northern Lights hunt by minibus and much more. The trip concludes in the cosmopolitan city of Tromsø, Norway, above the Arctic Circle.
How much: The cost is from £3,525 pp (two sharing) including flights (London), transfers, eight nights’ accommodation, seven breakfasts, two lunches, three dinners, activities, cold weather clothing and expert guides. Departs 1 Jan. – 19 March 2021. Extra nights can be added in Stockholm/Tromsø. www.theaurorazone.com.
9. Dive, surf and kitesurf adventure in Sri Lanka and the Maldives – from £12,500pp with Planet Travel
(c) Planet Travel Holidays
Planet Travel has put together a unique Sri Lanka and Maldives ocean sports and cultural tour. This epic 21-day luxury tour will include a 5-day learn to kitesurf and yoga course, luxury tented safari and remote North exploration of Sri Lanka, 3-day learn to surf course in Arugam Bay and 5-day luxury Maldives resort stay with manta trip, where you can snorkel with up to 50 majestic Manta Rays at one time.
Explore the North West of Sri Lanka where the flat water lagoons around Kalpatiya and Mannar offer some of the most idyllic locations on the Planet to learn to kitesurf course with daily yoga. Combine this with an exploration of the natural North of Sri Lanka, previously inaccessible by tourists.
How much: The trip costs £12,500 pp with international flights from the UK, all internal flights, private chauffer guide in Sri Lanka, and Half Board in The Maldives.