Don't wait 'til summer. How about getting a nice bit of early season sunshine?
Book yourself a cheap flight to the sun. February half-term? Easter? Find somewhere to stay (we do hotels as well!), and there you go - you've got something to look forward to. You don't have to go far. Here are six ideas for cheap escapes to the sun in the coming months, all with return flights for under £75.
1. Faro, Portugal from £54
Check the stats: over 300 days of sunshine and over 100 sandy beaches! We’re talking about The Algarve, which will have 65 non-sunny days over with by March, when you can get a flight to Faro for a big fat dose of Vitamin D, all for the price of a ticket to the theatre. The Algarve is pleasantly quiet in spring, so you’ll have plenty of space to stretch out on your sun lounger.
2. Majorca, Spain from £51
It may be pushing it a little to promise winter sun in the Balearics, but you can get a good dose of Mediterranean light and T-shirt temperatures in Majorca in March. Grab a flight to Palma next month for just £58 return – probably cheaper than a payday night on the town. As it’s the off-season you’ll have no problem finding a cheap place to stay in Majorca’s fine historic capital.
3. Malta from £71
Spring will soon arrive in the southern Med, when a some beach destinations come within range for a liberal dose of early season sun. Positioned half-way between Sicily and Tunisia, Malta is far enough south to be a reliable place to escape to the sun in March. Experience a riot of local colour by going at Carnival time - 28 February 28 - March 4.
4. Split, Croatia from £46
Having been an up-and-coming alternative to Spain and Greece, Croatia is now a firm favourite among Med summer sun destinations. If you don’t fancy the heat of high summer, go in May when you can get a flight for under £50 return to indulge in some pre-season fly-and-flop beachtime. From Split, take the ferry to the island of Brac, where you’ll find Zlatni Rat, often voted one of Europe’s beast beaches.
5. Ibiza, Spain from £50
If you can’t wait until your summer holidays to party ‘til the sun is high in the sky, or you would prefer to chill with cultured locals rather than large it with lagered-up lads, you can grab a return flight to Ibiza in May for under £50. If you do want to hit the dancefloor, some of the White Isle’s superclubs like Pacha in Ibiza Town open their doors in April.
6. Nice, France from £54
Do the French Riviera in style, on a budget. If funds don’t quite stretch to a season in Cassis, live the dream with a cheap break in Nice. Flights are very reasonable, and being a big touristy city, there is an accordingly affordable range of accommodation. Nice’s beach doesn’t compare with the beauties along the Riviera coast, but a must is a stroll (or rollerblade) along the seafront on Promenade des Anglais, followed by a serious session of people watching over a chilled bottle of rosé at a pavement café in Vieux Nice. Lovely.