Top 5 romantic holiday destinations
It’s officially the most romantic day of the year and to celebrate, we’ve rustled up five sumptuous locations around the world for a Valentine’s-inspired trip. Whether you see yourselves watching a glorious sunset in the Algarve, getting your pulses racing at the Canary Islands Carnival or exploring the underwater marvels of Egypt’s Red Sea, here are our top 5 romantic places to treat your loved one this year…
Red Sea Riviera, Egypt
Swim with your partner amongst the Red Sea’s vibrant corals and shoals and you might just fall in love all over again. When you’re not snorkelling or scuba diving in the unmissable Ras Mohammed National Park, why not take a private camel tour? Alternatively, just lie back and be prepared to be pampered at one of the indulgent spa resorts which populate holiday spots like The Red Sea Riviera in Sharm El Sheikh.
One of the ever-popular Canary Islands, Gran Canaria’s sultry climate owes much to its southerly location off the coast of Africa. It’s easy to find romance in the historic capital of Las Palmas, home to a magnificent mountain backdrop and the old Vegueta district, which is so picturesque it’s been awarded UNESCO World Heritage status. The best thing about choosing this spot for a holiday in February or March is getting to experience the feverish excitement of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria Carnival; watch the colourful parades and local dance acts and then kick off your shoes, grab your partner and join in!
Portugal’s southern coast has long been a honeymoon destination for the stars, and with good reason. Picture-postcard villages nestle among the rolling hills, while down by the sea gentle surf fringes a series of smooth white-sand beaches. Towns like Faro are perfect for pottering about amongst Medieval architecture, hand in hand, and if you have time, make the trip north to fit in some wine-tasting in the stunning Douro valley.
Costa del Sol, Spain
The romantic spirit of Andalucia permeates one of Spain’s most popular holiday destinations. After a couple of blissful days in the sun around towns like Benalmadena and the city of Malaga, venture north and explore cultural gems like Seville, Cordoba and Grenada, all within a few hours distance from the Costa del Sol resorts. Enjoy the atmosphere of sights like the Alhambra Palace and when evening falls, find some Flamenco dancing to watch and don’t forget to share a romantic spread of tapas by candlelight.
Nothing says romance so much as discovering a hidden cove on a Greek Island shore. Crete is an extraordinarily diverse isle and attracts visitors for everything from its distinctive taverna cuisine to its breath-taking gorges and clifftop vistas. For those who want to exchange the tourist trail for a more romantic one, try Balos Beach at the North-Western tip of the island: with blue-green lagoons and warm, paddle-friendly shallows, you can both fulfil that desert island fantasy you’ve always dreamed about…
If you’ve inspired to book a romantic trip this year, you can find details of all of these locations and more on our holiday destinations page.
What are your top tips for a romantic trip to remember? Share your past loves and hopes for the future in the comments below!