Category Archives: Destination Guide

The Best Places To Go For A Hot Holiday At Christmas

If you are feeling the chill setting in, it’s not too late to ditch the Christmas turkey and go on a hot sunny break instead. Here are the top destinations to travel to this December!

Hot!

Cape Town Image by Ganossi CC0

Cape Town

Temperatures average a daily maximum of 19.8 °C with just 15 mm of rain, and an average of 11 hours of sunshine each day. The climate is very much like the Med, so you’ll be in for a treat if you like a good wine, as the place is home to some fantastic vineyards!

Lanzarote

Expect temperatures to reach 21.9 °C during the day with around 6 hours of sunshine. Due to its flat landscape, Lanzarote has lower rainfall rates than the other Canary Islands, so you’ll probably stay nice and dry. The island is well known for lunar-like volcanic landscapes, so if you like holidays that have a touch of surreal, this is the place for you!

Tenerife

This is a popular place for sun seekers during the Christmas period, with temperatures reaching a very pleasant 22.2 °C, during a 6 hour sunshiny day. Note that during winter it is wetter on the north side of the island. While the beaches draw crowds, it is the night sky that is truly impressive here. Teide National Park has been recognised as one of the best star gazing sites on the planet due to its close proximity to the equator and low levels of light pollution!

Hotter!

Melbourne Image by DroneUAVWorld CC0

Melbourne

The beginning of the summer sees temperatures reaching a toasty 25.5 °C with 8 hours of sunshine each day. It’s one of the driest cities in Oz, but during December the weather can be unpredictable, so at least pack a waterproof poncho. Melbourne is a cultural hub of wonder, so if you like a hipster vibe, damn good coffee and a destination teeming with art and design –this is the hot holiday for you

Cape Verde

Temperatures are dropping here at this time of year, to a much more acceptable average of 26.4 °C! Humidity is high, but the coastal breezes make it more than bearable. The main reason to head to Cape Verde at this time of year is for the beaches. Miles upon miles of golden sands and turquoise seas bordered by lush tropical landscapes.

Hot Hot Hottest!

Barbados Image by PublicDomainPictures CC0

Barbados

It’s hot all year round in Barbados, but in December you can enjoy the searing average temperature of 29.6 °C without the humidity, plus this season brings with it a nice breeze from the north-east trade winds. It does rain quite a bit – 112mm – but showers are short. Barbados is the birthplace of Rum, which goes really well with sun, and fun. If you like your sun, fun, and rum best on a white sandy beach or luxury yacht, then this is definitely the break for you!

Cancun

Could there be such a thing as too hot? Cancun can get very very hot, (reaching an incredible 37.5 °C in May), so December is an ideal time to visit with temperatures at a hot but bearable, 30.4 °C and rainfall at an average of 38 mm. The place is practically paradise with ivory beaches and sun-kissed seas, enticing divers, surfers, swimmers, and snorkelers as well as sun-worshippers.

Don’t forget your travel insurance! Give our sales team a call on UK(+44) 01892 833338, or go online to get a quote.

 

5 Of The Best Places To Spend Halloween

1. Mexico

Image by AndyG CC0

In Mexico, Halloween is for the kids, and greatly overshadowed by the Day of the Dead, which falls on 02nd November. This celebration however is just bursting with colour and excitement, which probably makes it the best destination in the world at this time of the year.

What is Day of the Dead?

Day of the Dead is an annual gathering in Mexico where people come together to celebrate the lives of loved ones who have passed away. Streets are packed with lavishly decorated market stalls selling lavishly decorated goods such as sugar skulls and ornaments for altars, there are parades of people dressed in costumes, with skulls painted on their faces; and amongst all that you’ll also find street vendors selling delicious foods, and altars where revellers can pay their respects.

2. Amsterdam

Image by Chase Elliott Clark CC BY 2.0

The Halloween Festival Amsterdam is a whopping three-day event, so even if you didn’t dress up as a zombie for Halloween, you might well look like one by the end of the festivities! Costume parties, all night horror film marathons, and gory makeup workshops are just some of the major events happening during the festival.

3. New Orleans

Image by Infrogmation CC BY 2.0 CC

They know how to party in New Orleans, and Halloween celebrations are no exception. The New Orleans Halloween Parade is second only to the famed Mardi Gras for dressing up street party fun for all ages. Celebrations are preceded by ghost tours, and visitors can get into the feel of the night by visiting any of the many voodoo shops that can be found in the city for some extra spooky fun!

 

Did you know? New Orleans is regarded as one of the most haunted cities in the whole of the US!

 

4. Barcelona

Image by Leon F. Cabeiro CC BY 2.0

This is another city well known for its party atmosphere! Among the many fiestas that happen throughout the year here you’ll find La Castanyada around Halloween. It is a popular All Saints’ Day festival celebrated throughout Spain, and it translates as chestnut time! As such, amongst the festivities you’ll find plenty of roast chestnuts being served alongside sweet potatoes, almond cakes, and sweet wine!

5. Bratislava

Image by Fotomek CC0

The Slovakian city of Bratislava has gained a reputation of having the most frightening Halloween celebrations in the world! Pubs, Clubs and bars all get in on the action turning the entire city into one big spooky party. Hotels also offer fright nights for guests, so make sure you book ahead if you want to spend Halloween here.

Avoid the fright of your life…. Get travel insurance!

Finding yourself in a pickle on holiday over a lost passport or stolen wallet is far more frightening than any of these Halloween events! Make sure that you get the cover you need should your holiday not go to plan.

Best September City Breaks for Couples

The kids are back at school, and the sun is still shining – the perfect combo for couples looking to take a late summer city break. Here are the top 5 places you’ll want to be and why this September…

Paris

image by cocoparisienne CC0

Would a list like this be complete without it? Not only is the city said to be the epitome of romance, it is a short flight, or even train journey from the UK – which means more time gazing into each other’s eyes on holiday. Plus it is packed with boutique bars, restaurants and cafes – just perfect for indulgent couple time.

Reykjavik

image by sapphoris CC0

Sensational scenery, vibrant nightlife, and the city centre has just about everything within walking distance. Three great reasons for couples to take a short break in Reykjavik! Also, temperatures just about to cling on to double figures right until the end of the month, fresh but pleasant.

Amsterdam

image by kirkandmimi CC0

Like Paris, this city is quick to get to, but the atmosphere is certainly more heady! The titillating city centre will bring some added excitement to a romantic weekend, but don’t forget that Amsterdam is blessed by a myriad of beautiful canals and winding cobbled streets, ideal backdrops for a romantic getaway.

Venice

image by Felix_Broennimann CC0

This Italian city is literally awash with romance. Whether you catch an opera in the opulent La Fenice opera house, take a gondola ride at sunset (please refrain from warbling the words from the Cornetto ad), or just wander the piazzas soaking up the amazing architecture – it’ll be a city break of a lifetime for two.

Marrakech

image by negahuk CC0

Adventure, luxury, a taste of the exotic… and it takes less than 4 hours to get there from the UK – no wonder this Moroccan city has made our list! It’s also a super-toasty temperature in September, around 35 °C. The dose of late summer sunshine is guaranteed to keep your romantic intentions topped up as well as your tan!

Fly Me To The Moon

While space tourism is coming on in great leaps, the reality of jetting off to the moon is not going to be a reality for a fair few years. You can however, take a hot air balloon flight over Cappadocia, Turkey, where the lunar landscape ticks “other worldly” boxes, like nowhere else on our planet!

Image by SashSegal CC0

What’s so special about Cappadocia?

Quite simply, it is a geological oddity that will blow your mind. Undulating landscapes punctuated by sharp volcanic peaks, and the locals were true troglodytes, living in homes carved from the soft volcanic rock. It is a unique place to visit that should be on every globetrotting bucket list.

Image by ddouk CC0

Make sure you get a birds eye view

Booking a flight in a hot air balloon is a must when you visit. While most of the attractions in Cappadocia are underground, the view from above is unmissable. Think pseudo-psychedelic volcanic landscapes, fairy chimneys, and sensuous folding valleys. Balloon rides usually set off around sunrise, which means you get to see the whole spectacular landscape bathed in the most beautiful light.

Image by Hans CC0

Stay in a (posh) cave

Would you believe there is such a thing as a 5 Star Cave? The cave hotels in the area are restored troglodyte dwellings that have been given a luxurious contemporary re-vamp, often with reclaimed stone, iron and wood. You can expect wi-fi, spa baths, and TVs. Wondering why Cappadocia’s residents choose to live in caves? The volcanic rock in the area is soft, so easy to excavate, and is an excellent insulation material, keeping the rooms at a perfectly pleasant 17 – 20 degrees all year round.

Image by LaCamila CC0

Go To Göreme Open-Air Museum

The finest examples of rock-cut churches and colorful fresh-as-the-day-they-were-done frescos from the 10th, 11th and 12th Centuries draw everyone who visits Cappadocia to Göreme Open-Air Museum. It is a wonderful chance to experience the stunning landscape and the unique architecture of the chapel clusters up close.

Image by Hans CC0

 

Don’t forget your travel insurance!

Recreational hot air balloon rides are covered automatically on our travel insurance policies, so you’ll be covered for that as well as lost or stolen luggage, passports, or holiday money, cancelled flights, medical assistance, repatriation…. Just give us a call on 01892 833338 or get a quote online.

 

Please note: Policies, terms, and conditions may change. All information published in this blog pertaining to travel insurance from worldwideinsure.com is only deemed valid at the time of publication.

Top 5 Private Jet Holiday Hotspots In Europe

Luxury travel has never been in such high demand, especially private flights to European hotspots that can be reached in just a couple of hours from the UK. After all, who would want to spend more time waiting to board a flight than the flight actually takes? If splashing your cash on a super-luxury getaway is your idea of fun – these are the most popular places to head this summer!

PrivateFly Citation XLS courtesy of Cessna’

1. Mykonos – Flight time approx. 4 hours

There has been an increase in interest of more than 50% in private flights to Mykonos – but even if you have the money, it doesn’t mean that you can just get in a jet and land there. This destination has become so popular that the island’s airport is forced to turn away private jets at peak times, and holidaymakers are having to make the last leg of their journey by helicopter from Athens!

Mykonos CC0 Courtesy of PrivateFly

2. Ibiza – Flight time approx. 2.5 hours

This summer-centric destination has been a party hot-spot since the sixties, and its popularity appears to grow year on year. It has gone from being host to secret beach parties, discotheques, nightclubs, and after-parties, to hosting big names in pop music every summer. Maybe that accounts for the 38% rise in interest in private flights since last year?

3. Palma de Mallorca – Flight time approx. 2.5 hours

Palma is a cosmopolitan city blessed with beautiful beaches. Who wouldn’t want to be whisked away to spend a few sun-drenched days here? Spectacular shopping, amazing restaurants, vibrant bars, and of course lazy days by the sea. No wonder it has had nearly 30% more interest from the luxury travel sector this year!

4. Santorini – Flight time approx. 3 hours 50 mins

Interest in private flights to this volcanic Greek island paradise has risen by 28%, but it is proving as tricky to get to by private flight as Mykonos during peak times. The advice? Book your private flight well in advance. Now until September is the best time to go for nightlife, swimming and sunbathing – if sightseeing without the heat is your priority, book a trip during October or November.

5. Naples – Flight time approx. 2.5 hours

The rise in popularity of flights to Naples (up 27% on last year) could be down to its authentic feel. It is less fashionable than Milan, less touristy than Rome, but it is where real Italians choose to live. As well as serving up what is arguably the best pizza in Italy, Naples is also perfectly positioned to reach some stunning island destinations such as Capri and Ischia – maybe this is what’s drawing the private jet-setting crew!

Is a private flight possible on your holiday budget?

PrivateFly Citation XLS courtesy of Cessna

As a guide, current charter prices for an 8-seater Citation XLS, from London Luton to Mykonos (one-way) with PrivateFly is £22,600.

 

A Gastronomic Guide To Travelling The World

Being on holiday is the number one excuse to eat as much as you like as often as you like – but what about heading somewhere based on the sort of foods you like to eat? We share some insights into what food is consumed where to guide your next gastronomic getaway!

Image by skeeze CC0

Meat

If meat is a must on your holiday head to the United States of America, where the average meat consumption is 120kg of meat per person per year. This may be the only place in the world you can order a 72oz steak, famously known as the Big Texan.

Seafood

In Japan, seafood isn’t just something to eat – it’s a part of the culture, and its presentation is an art form. It is also a place where chefs can fulfil their 007 wishes and get themselves a “license to kill” to be able to serve up Fugu, a dish made from pufferfish, which contains lethally poisonous parts!

Vegetables

India is hailed as the best place to go if you are vegetarian, but if you are looking for dishes prepared from a variety of freshly grown veg, then the stats say to go to the Netherlands, ranked Number 1 in the world for healthy eating.

Vegan

If you denounce all forms of animal product in your dinners, head to Taiwan. Their vegetarian cuisine is vegan by default because the Taiwanese are known for not eating much dairy, and eggs are usually an optional extra.

Cheese

Going by consumption, France would be your best bet as (unsurprisingly) the French consume more cheese than any other population in the world. This accolade is followed (surprisingly) by Iceland then Finland. If you’re a connoisseur – then you wouldn’t want to give Spain a miss, in particular La Mancha. Here you can indulge in the country’s most famous cheese Manchego, produced exclusively from the milk of Manchega sheep in the La Mancha region.

Eggs

Forget about how you might like your eggs in the morning, how do you like them for dinner? If the answer is cooked sunny-side-up in a skillet of tomato sauce, spiced up with chile pepper, turmeric, and cumin… head to Tunisia for the classic North African egg dish Shakshuka. How about hardboiled, whole, in an onion and tomato sauce, spiced with red chilli, coriander, and turmeric? This is an authentic Punjabi Egg Masala, which can be found in India.

A note about food safety abroad

The risk of food poisoning varies between destinations, but generally speaking, as long as food is piping hot and thoroughly cooked, it should be safe to eat. Particular foods to be aware of include:

  • Cheese and ice-cream as they can be made from unpasteurised milk.
  • Seafood can pose a problem even if well cooked.
  • Salads are difficult to clean so often remain contaminated by soil or flies.
  • Fruit and vegetable skins can also be contaminated by soil and flies – make sure they are peeled.

Don’t let food poisoning ruin your holiday… make sure your travel insurance will get you and your family the medical help you need fast.

Monaco Grand Prix Destination Guide

Where to go, what to do, what to expect, and how to do it in style!

Image by DigitArtClips CC0

If you fancy a taste of the high life, and want to soak up the glitz and glamour of Formula 1 on the sunny shores of the Med, then you’d better get yourself to Monaco for some serious F1 action. Here you’ll find yourself in the centre of some of the most exclusive experiences in the world…

The travel…

Unless you are arriving on your own super-yacht, you’ll need to get there in style. Believe it or not, travelling to Monaco by private jet is surprisingly affordable if there are a few of you, especially if you manage to book an empty-leg flight. Try the Stratajet app – a real-time private jet charter booking platform, it can shave an impressive 75% off charter prices, which will help buy a few glasses of bubbly once you get there!

The transfers…

A helicopter transfer will get you from Nice Airport to Monaco in a very impressive 7 minutes, and offer you stunning views on the coast (and course) en-route. Prices start at around £175. Alternatively you could save yourself £30 and arrive by limo. There are various shuttle options available too, ideal if you need to get from an out-of-town hotel to the race.

The accommodation…

Hotels and apartments in nearby Nice are the more affordable option, but you will miss out on the glitz and glam. Prices for places in Monaco however are pretty steep, even if you plan to “slum it” in an air bnb. ApartHotels are a nice compromise, offering the convenience of your own apartment, with the perks of a 5 star hotel. Five-day rentals over the race weekend start at about £2,500.

The experiences…

When in Monaco… well it would be rude not to indulge like a Hollywood star! Monte Carlo Casino is a must, but there are also a wealth of extra activities available over the race weekend including: Yacht tours of the coast, super-car hire, yacht and helicopter tours, and even a heli-gastro experience – yes, for a mere £3,000 you can take a helicopter ride to a gourmet lunch prepared by the best chefs in France.

The parties…

You haven’t been to Monte Carlo until you have been on a super-yacht, and you haven’t experienced Monte Carlo until you’ve partied on one. Thankfully for just £250 you can get yourself a ticket for a yacht party in the harbor, where anyone who is anybody celebrates throughout the night.

Oh, and the races…

From 25th to 28th May 2017, Monaco will become even more decadent, drenched in the kind of glamour only lots of money can buy. The Monaco Grand Prix is the most prestigious race of the year, noted for its challenging course (featuring the world’s most famous hairpin) and for its stunning views. While general admission tickets are available, bagging yourself a hospitality or VIP package really will give you THE holiday of a lifetime, with admission into The Paddock Club where you can mingle with the F1 Elite, and the Amber Lounge, host to the trendiest after-party in Monaco.

Don’t forget your travel insurance! We can tailor your travel insurance to suit whatever you want to do on your holiday, including jet-setting in private planes and helicopters, or taking to the waters in a yacht for some scuba diving or sailing.

Top 5 Destinations for Early Easter Sun

If you are in search of sun for over the early Easter break, we have some great news… There are loads of places you can reach in just a few short hours, take a look at this lovely selection of destinations, with the nearest first…

Sicily

Sicily by hirisflower CC0

Spring is the perfect time to explore Sicily’s coastline. Grab your hiking boots, pack a picnic of gorgeous Mediterranean cuisine and take in the splendid sights!

  • 7 hours of sun a day
  • Average daytime temp 16°C
  • Chance of rain
  • Flight time from London to Sicily is 2 hours 53 minutes

Malta

Blue Lagoon by Munea Viajes CC BY-SA 2.0

The clear blue water of the Blue Lagoon is best enjoyed well before the high season starts, ahead of the rush and intense heat of the summer sun.

  • 8 hours of sun a day
  • Average daytime temp 20°C
  • Chance of light rain
  • Flight time from London to Malta is 3 hours 5 minutes

Morocco

Morocco by kantsmith CC0

Head south to avoid the heavy rains typical at this time of the year in the north, and make sure you enjoy a traditional mint tea – it is the taste of Morocco!

  • 8 hours of sun a day
  • Average daytime temp 27°C
  • Chance of showers
  • Flight time from London to Morocco is 3 hours 14 minutes

Crete

Crete by jarekgrafik CC0

Moderate springtime temperatures make this the perfect time for hiking and enjoying the native flora, or booking a place on an outdoor adventure.

  • 8 hours of sun a day
  • Average daytime temp 20°C
  • Chance of light rain
  • Flight time from London to Crete is 3 hours 52 minutes

Cyprus

Cyprus by dimitrisvetsikas CC0

The beaches here are arguably at their best at this time of year as you are almost guaranteed uninterrupted views of the sandy shores and shimmering sea.

  • 9 hours of sun a day
  • Average daytime temp 21°C
  • Chance of showers
  • Flight time from London to Cyprus is 4 hours 25 minutes

The Biggest Firework Festivals of 2017

If you are looking for a break that packs a big bang for your bucks, then maybe you should plan your next adventure around a firework festival! Here are some of the most impressive firework themed events that are happening around the world in 2017 for you to enjoy.

April 15th Rouketopolemos – Greek islands of Chios

Image by phtorxp CC0

This event translates as “Rocket War”, and it takes certain types of travellers to throw themselves into the chaos that ensues. Rouketopolemos takes place in Vrontados. It is here a pyrotechnic battle is staged between two churches – in rival parishes – firing as many as 60,000 rockets between them actually at each other. Rouketopolemos is their way of marking Easter. We bet not many chocolate eggs survive the ordeal!

July 14th Bastille Day – France

Bastille Day Fireworks Image by Yann Caradec CC BY-SA 2.0

Each year the Bastille Day fireworks display lights up the Parisian skyline, and each year it brings something new in a themed event. War and Peace, Paris Welcomes The World, and Paris Is A Party are examples. Watching untold amounts of money literally go up in smoke from the Eiffel Tower is a popular event, and you’ll be shoulder to shoulder with around a million people! Bastille Day commemorates the storming of the Bastille in 1789, the start of the French revolution.

August 09th Singapore National Day

Singapore National Day Celebrations Image by Tony Gladvin George CC BY 2.0

The fireworks on Singapore National Day is a patriotic display of pyrotechnic wonders that gets bigger every year. To mark Singapore as an international hub, teams from around the world are invited to showcase their culture in the most magnificent way possible – with fireworks and pyromusicals – lighting up Marina Bay. The colorful event celebrates the country’s colourful rise to independence from Malaysia in 1965.

September 22nd – 25th Correfoc, Spain

Correfoc Fire Run Image by Somewhere In The World Today CC BY 2.0

This fiery pastime translates as “firerun” and is actually quite self-explanatory – especially when you read the tourist health and safety advice. Wear old clothes, cover your arms and legs, protect your neck with a bandana and wear headgear to protect yourself from burns. It is also advised that spectators wear earplugs to protect their ears, and that hands should be free to shield eyes at any time a “diable” gets too close. So what’s all the fuss about? During the Correfoc, “devils” are let loose, running through the crowds with fireworks attached to pitchforks. Not for the feint hearted. There are kids Correfoc events that may be less scary for the safety conscious traveller. Correfocs happen at lots of festivals throughout the year in Spain, we’ve picked a balmy autumnal event in Barcelona for your enjoyment!

October 31st Diwali, India

Diwali Fireworks Image by Kinshuk Kashyap CC BY 2.0

The Hindus celebrate the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, and knowledge over despair with the most massive firework display. Diwali hasn’t always had fireworks at the heart of its celebrations – traditionally candles were lit in a more modest celebration of light – and may not have for much longer. It seems that the enthusiasm for fireworks displays during this time is seriously affecting the air quality. Last year’s celebrations caused smog in Delhi for days affecting many people’s health. Weather conditions were thought to be a contributing factor.

November 05th Guy Fawkes, UK

Lewes Fireworks Image by Stuart Chalmers CC BY-ND 2.0

You’ll all be familiar with this celebration, but have you ever witnessed the shenanigans that happen in the little (and usually very peaceful) town of Lewes in East Sussex at this time of year? Lewes Bonfire Celebrations is one of the most spectacular of its kind in the world, where a procession of burning (often political) effigies make their way down the high street and fireworks are let off, well, wherever it seems! Tickets MUST be bought in advance, and don’t go thinking you can just drive in and park – most of the town is closed to traffic in the lead up to the celebrations.

December 24th La Noche Buena, Peru

Fireowrks Image by photogrammer7 CC0

The last date in the calendar takes us across the world to Peru, where locals welcome in Christmas with a big bang. The 24th is a day for feasting and drinking, and then Peruvians take to the streets and light fireworks before partying the night away. It’s summer in this part of the world, which makes celebrating xmas alfresco an unusual and beautiful experience, especially accompanied by festive fireworks!

If you fancy dancing with fire devils, spectating a rocket war, or just taking in the dazzling lights of Diwali, you’d better get yourself some travel insurance. We have a range of competitively priced policies that are low on excitement, but big on cover.