5 holiday destinations that involve zero compromise
Whether you’re planning a holiday with friends, family, or your partner, it can be tricky to find a destination that suits everyone’s wants and needs. So, we’ve done the work for you and found 5 wanderlust inducing locations that will help you strike the perfect holiday balance.
VALE DE LOBO, PORTUGAL
TEE TIME: Just a short drive from Faro airport, Vale do Lobo – the longest-established luxury resort on the Algarve – is a golfer’s heaven, boasting two of Portugal’s finest golf courses: the Ocean and the Royal.
TAN LINES: For unwilling caddies, it’s also got one of the most incredible beaches on the Algarve: A full kilometre of private golden sand, bookended by top-end restaurants to cater for every aspect of good eating or daily indulgence. The sea is seriously beautiful so eat well, knowing the best cardio workout in the world is sitting right in front of you.
MICHELIN STARS: ‘Lion City’ might be best known as a place to change planes, but it’s swiftly becoming a destination in its own right. Not least thanks to its resurgent restaurant scene, with 12 new Michelin-starred restaurants in the last year alone taking the tiny island’s total to a ridiculous 38.
HIPSTER BARS: For those who prefer a night on the tiles, it’s also home to some of the most unique pubs, clubs and watering holes in Asia, including no less than six venues in the current 50 Best Bars in the World list. Make a week of it, then have a night to recover.
SHOPS: Dallas is a shopper’s paradise, with more malls, independent boutiques and department stores (including Neiman Marcus’ glittering flagship) than you’ll be able to cover in a week. There are new budget flights from London Gatwick starting in May (with Iceland Air). Did we mention the shopping is all tax free, too?
CHOPS: America’s coolest city in the 1980s, Dallas is undergoing a renaissance. Not only is it a mecca for barbecue lovers – the beef brisket at Pecan Lodge is worth the price of the flight alone – but the best waiting staff you’ll find anywhere in the world can be found at Kenny’s Wood Fired Grill.
ST MORTIZ, SWITZERLAND
DOWNHILL: Tearing down black runs on skis isn’t everybody’s idea of fun in the mountains. But if it is for you, you’d struggle to find better runs (to suit all levels of winter fun lovers), than St Moritz. If skiing is all a bit 80s power-play for you, every other angle of winter break is covered too, high up in the Alps.
DOWNTIME: Switzerland lays claim to many of Europe’s finest spas, including the highly lauded Badrutt’s Palace Spa designed to cater for every aspect of therapy, massage and all round wellness. Also, the views are absolutely stunning.
GET WETTER: Not as overrun as Bali (its neighbour), Lombok is gaining a reputation for independent travellers who want to surf in its crystal clear waters. Having long lived in the shadows of its surfing sibling, it’s a well chartered (and cheap) plane ride from Bali, where almost perfect empty waves meet deserted white sand beaches. Practise your Point Break fantasy until you’re ready to go full Swayze.
BE BETTER: With sessions on white sand beaches or, if you should choose, through the highly rated indigenous yoga studios, class sizes are modest and the instruction is first rate – even the yoga mats are provided. After a day of solid surf or zen-like meditation, little Gili Trawangan island off the coast is where the party’s at for both of you.