The sunshine hotspots we can’t wait to return to
We may be stuck inside but that won’t stop us dreaming of returning to our favourite sunshine destinations. Sit back, relax and soak up the virtual rays as we check in to the Caribbean, the Canary Islands and more.
Close your eyes and let a little Caribbean joy into your living room. Curaçao is a celebration of colour and character. The capital, Willemstad, welcomes you with a parade of brightly hued buildings, floating markets, seaside stalls, shops and malls. The Jan Kok salt flats are home to dazzling flocks of pink flamingos. And of course, you can’t leave without sipping a cooling cocktail blended with the famous Blue Curaçao liqueur. We’ll raise a glass to more Caribbean holidays soon!
If you’re hankering for some serious rays, Fuerteventura boasts 3,000 hours of sunshine every year and some of the best white-sand beaches in the Canary Islands. From miles of giant white sand dunes bordering turquoise seas at Corralejo to the rugged beauty of Betancuria, the island’s natural parks are a haven for surfers, hikers, birdwatchers and stargazers. We’ll be ready to burn off all that pent-up energy with adventures in the volcanic interior: Tindaya and the moon-like Bayuyo boilers offer top hiking and big views.
We’re longing to be back in this buzzing Portuguese city on a sunny day. It’s the perfect place to explore on foot. Wander the charming backstreets of its historic centre, set back above the impressive River Duoro. As you do, take in architectural and cultural wonders, atmospheric nooks and alleyways, lush gardens and glorious miradores (lookouts) with river and ocean views. And how we miss the food! This city’s reputation as a foodie mecca goes from strength to strength: from fine dining and fabulous fish restaurants to local markets, traditional cafés and authentic street food, the locals won’t let you go hungry.
Walking the 2km City Walls of Croatian jewel Dubrovnik is one of life’s great pleasures – especially so in the early morning or as the sun begins to set. Within them, rising up through the sea of terracotta tiles, is a perfectly formed historic centre with grand architectural wonders aplenty (the splendours a result of the port’s incredible wealth and status in the 16th century). Beyond is the sparkling Mediterranean, dramatic sea cliffs and the enchanting island of Lokrum, its beautiful botanical gardens and beaches a 10-minute boat ride from the Old Harbour. If your desire to see Dubrovnik again proves too great, binge on the complete TV hit series Game of Thrones, which uses many of the city’s striking landmarks to create King’s Landing.
St Vincent is the stuff of Caribbean dreams – peaceful and idyllic with sparkling waters and powder-soft sands. Its verdant landscape is a draw for nature-lovers: lush rainforests, cool caves, swaying palms and cascading waterfalls, many of which double as swimming holes. For an unforgettable escape, spend the day on the paradise island of Bequia (pronounced beck-way) – a mecca for yachtsmen and anyone looking for a secluded retreat. Now, that’s something to look forward to.
For its sheer variety, we’re itching to get out and about in this Canary Islands wonderland once more. From valleys to beaches to the volcanic ‘moonscape’ of Mount Teide National Park, this island gives you plenty of reasons to get out and explore in glorious sunshine. Take the cable car to the top of Mount Teide for jaw-dropping views, stroll the café-lined boulevard leading to the Plaza de España, or simply park up on the sandy shores of vibrant Playa de las Americas and watch the world go by – a simple pleasure we’ve all come to treasure.