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St. Ives boasts a quartet of golden-sand beaches. Sheltered coves draw swimmers and sun-worshippers, but water-sports aficionados visit St. Ives for great surfing, windsurfing and water-skiing conditions. And on your way there, keep your eyes peeled for a dude with seven wives. You never know when nursery rhymes might come true.
Cornwall is the extreme southwestern peninsula of England. It has the longest stretch of continuous coastline in Britain and it is one of the sunniest areas in the UK. With picturesque villages, Celtic ruins, light blue waters, gardens and parks and unique architecture it certainly is among the most scenic areas of England. Home of many events and festivals and the land of Cornish pasty, it is definitely worth visiting.
Catch a wave in Cornwall! Beach, surfing, and scenery draw the crowds to Newquay every summer. Perfect your tan on the beach, paddle in the shallows, or join the surfers out at sea. Just out of town, the Holywell Bay Fun Park, Newquay Zoo, and Blue Reef Aquarium provide family fun, and dedicated cycling tracks offer an alternate way to tour nearby towns of Bodmin, Padstow, and Truro.
<div id="VR_GEO_BLURB_TITLE">Devon Cottages - The Ultimate in Relaxing Breaks </div><div id="VR_GEO_BLURB_CONTENT"><p>From the wilds of Dartmoor to the wooded hillsides of the Lyn Valley, Devon is undoubtedly one of England's most beautiful counties. Its overwhelmingly rural landscape means that catered accommodation is restricted to over-subscribed Bed and Breakfasts and hotels which are mostly concentrated in towns like Exeter and Barnstaple. </p><p>Devon is a great location for a family holiday in the great outdoors, with everything from beach resorts at Ilfracombe to rambling in the hills of Exmoor and tors of Dartmoor. It is a large county, but whether you want to follow the Tarka Trail, or walk down the Doone Valley, you can be sure there will be cottages open for holiday rentals nearby. </p><div>Devon's Cottages, All Mod Cons </div><p>Most of Devon's holiday rental cottages started as farm buildings of some sort, and planning restrictions mean that many of them retain their rural charm on the outside. However, the cottages are generally renovated to 21st Century standards inside, with double glazing, TV, washing machines and fully-equipped kitchens. Families are well catered for in the higher end properties with games rooms, sometimes including full-size pool tables and large gardens for children to explore. </p><p>Despite the unpredictability of Devon's weather even during the summer months, the comfort of these properties gives great peace of mind. Moreover, a week's holiday rental of a cottage in Devon can cost as little as £300 - £400. During the peak season you can spend as much as £900 a month for one of the larger or more luxurious cottages, which still works out to be cheaper than a lot of hotels, especially if you have to book several rooms to accommodate a family of four or five. </p><div>Town Mouse or Country Mouse </div><p>To get the best of Devon's startling countryside and its friendly communities, renting a holiday cottage near Lynton and Lynmouth can be a good start. It is a useful base from which to explore North Devon, and is within walking distance of several beauty spots, such as Watersmeet (complete with a small but impressive waterfall) and the Valley of the Rocks. Separated by a steep cliff, you can travel up a funicular railway from coastal Lynmouth to clifftop Lynton, with plenty of stunning walks, shopping opportunities and several beaches and boat trips to nearby coastal attractions. </p><p>The twin villages also boast a concentration of well-equipped holiday cottages, from modest fisherman's cottages on the path to Watersmeet to grander hillside houses on the way to the Valley of the Rocks. Whatever your budget, Lynton and Lynmouth can provide some tempting accommodation options for your first Devon holiday. </p></div>
From Shoreditch’s swaggering style to Camden’s punky vibe and chic Portobello Road, London is many worlds in one. The city’s energy means that no two days are the same. Explore royal or historic sites, tick off landmarks from your bucket list, eat and drink in exclusive Michelin-starred restaurants, enjoy a pint in a traditional pub, or get lost down winding cobbled streets and see what you stumble across – when it comes to London, the possibilities are endless.
Stroll Las Ramblas and enjoy Barcelona's unique blend of Catalan culture, distinctive architecture, lively nightlife and trendy, stylish hotels. You'll find Europe's best-preserved Gothic Quarter here, as well as amazing architectural works by Gaudi. La Sagrada Familia, considered Gaudi's masterpiece, is still under construction (your entrance fee helps to fund the project). Feel like a picnic? Look no further than the rambunctious La Boqueria market, where you can stock up on local delicacies.
Palma, the economic and cultural hub of Majorca, is a delightful base for exploring the island's many gold and white beaches. A former Moorish casbah, or walled city, Palma's Old Town is an appealing maze of narrow streets that are a delight to explore on foot. Hop on the Soller Railway for a 17-mile scenic trip, visit 14th-century Bellver Castle and the museum of contemporary art, and check out the nightlife.
Bask on four miles of golden beaches, hit the Mediterranean Sea on water skis or stroll along Benidorm's promenade and revel in its seaside charms; it's a true Spanish beauty of the Costa Blanca. Originally a fishing town, the city's historic center wows with its blue-domed 18th-century church and picturesque alleyways. Panoramic views reward those who climb into the surrounding Canfali hills, and nearby rocky coves reveal underwater riches for scuba enthusiasts. End a day in the sun with a feast of local seafood.
The Algarve's sunny shores offer perfect escapes for all types, from those seeking the hot nightlife of flashy, energetic Lagos to those desiring secluded stays in rambling Sagres. Portugal's most southerly region offers historical attractions in former Moorish capital Silves and fascinating Tavira, great golf, fabulous beaches from Praia da Luz to Armacao de Pera, thermal springs at Caldas de Monchique, and miles of limestone caves and grottoes, cliffs and bays along its rugged coastline.
Malaga, Pablo Picasso's birthplace and the gateway to the Costa del Sol, is a hectic, sometimes unruly city of 550,000. An impressive number of museums and monuments, including the 11th-century Alcazaba fort and Museu Picasso Malaga, provide plenty of diversions for those who opt not to spend all their time on the coast's famed beaches and in their accompanying bars. The old city bustles with taverns and bistros. The generous Paseo del Parque offers a delightful stroll past banana trees and fountains.
The Costa del Sol juxtaposes gorgeous Mediterranean old towns and inland national parks with developed beach resorts. Famed for being the birthplace of Picasso, Malaga serves as a gateway to family-favourite stops such as Benidorm and Fuengirola.
<p>The recent trend for staycation holidays means that British people are increasingly rediscovering the natural beauty that lies on their doorstep and North Wales is a ruggedly good example of this. Snowdonia is a region of great natural beauty that is dominated by mountain ranges including the Snowdon mountain from which the region takes its name. The gigantic Snowdonia national park offers visitors hill-walking, mountain climbing, and wildlife watching. Or, if you fancy a change of scenery, you can come down from the mountains to the 200+ miles of coast. There, you’ll find secluded coves and world class beaches such as the five mile long Tywyn beach. </p><p>Sometimes it’s good to take the weight off your feet and the Snowdon Mountain Railway offers a unique opportunity to ride a steam train up to the top of a 3,560 foot mountain, enjoying stunning views along the way. The line has been in operation for over a hundred years and children under the age of 4 go free, making it perfect for families whose kids have a Thomas the Tank Engine fixation! </p><p>One of the great attractions Wales offers tourists is its wealth of historic castles and Caernarfon Castle stands as one of the most imposing relics of a distant time. Built in 1283 by the English King Edward the First, its initial role was to help subdue any thoughts of Welsh rebellion but it now helps Welsh coffers by attracting countless visitors. </p><p>The Isle of Anglesey is an island situated off the north-west Welsh coast but connected to the mainland by two bridges across the Menai Strait. It’s yet another area of great natural beauty and is worth a visit during your North Wales sojourn. As an island, it offers lots for water lovers including sailing, kayaking, surfing, kite surfing, diving, and fishing. Or you can just dip your toes as you enjoy one of Anglesey’s great beaches. </p><p>With kids in mind, make sure you schedule a visit to the Anglesey Sea Zoo. It’s the biggest aquarium in Wales and will bring you face to face with a huge variety of marine species including conger eels, octopus, lobsters, and sharks! </p>