Brits to get a FOUR DAY bank holiday break to mark Queen’s Diamond Jubilee

The extra long weekend, thanks to the Royal Wedding, put everyone in high spirits and now the Government is hoping to have a similar weekend next year in celebration of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

Next year’s Whitsun Bank Holiday, will be postponed from May until Monday, June 4 and an extra Bank Holiday will be added on Tuesday, June 5.

The celebration will mark the monarchs 60 years on the throne, will give Brits the a four day break.

It is hoped that millions will join in the celebrations, which mark the start of a ‘feel good’ summer culminating in the Olympic Games in London.

But business leaders have criticised the move saying it will damage firms during a period of economic downturn.

Phil McCabe of the Forum of Private Business said: ‘The extra day off will no doubt motivate staff, but at a real cost to firms.’

One of the highlights is expected to be The Big Jubilee Lunch, for which neighbours will be encouraged to share a meal. It is to be launched by the Palace and environmental and educational charity the Eden Project.

A Whitehall source said: ‘We hope everyone will join in by holding street parties or other celebrations to mark a very special weekend.’

A Royal source added: ‘Local celebrations have always been part of previous Jubilees.

Eden Project founder Tim Smit has joined Buckingham Palace to lauch the Big Jubilee Lunch

‘People particularly remember the street parties in 1977 for the Silver Jubilee and grassroots celebrations in 2002 for the Golden Jubilee.

Eden Project chief executive Tim Smit said: ‘We liven in a country where we keep talking about celebrating our differences, but this is a way of celebrating our commonality. One thing we have in common … is that we treasure the monarchy.’

A further highlight of the Jubilee celebrations is likely to be when the Queen’s Royal Barge leads a flotilla of more than 1,000 boats along the Thames on Sunday, June 3.

It will be the largest river pageant to take place in Britain since the reign of Charles II.

The Queen, who will be 86 when she marks 60 years on the throne, is due to become only the second British monarch to celebrate a Diamond Jubilee. The first was Queen Victoria in 1897.


Is hell other people’s children on holiday – or even your own?

Thomson launches Couples, a new child-free holiday experience at resorts worldwide
– One in three adults agree that “Hell is other people’s children on holiday”
– 40% say their own children adversely affect their holiday enjoyment

Thomson Holidays has today officially launched Thomson Couples, an all new adults-only holiday experience aimed at couples who want to spend time abroad in a child-free environment, away from their own kids, and other people’s. With the first Couples customers flying out this month, Thomson is the first mainstream travel company to offer 100% child-free holiday resorts worldwide.

News of the launch will be welcomed by more than three quarters (79%) of all those questioned for a Thomson Holidays survey* who admitted their holidays were affected by other people’s children, while 31% said that unruly youngsters have actually ruined a well-earned break.

What’s more, one in three UK adults (35%) said they agreed unequivocally with the statement “Hell is other people’s children on holiday”.

For more than half those questioned (55%) the main complaint about children is their behaviour in the hotel restaurant, while nearly half (48%) find the “general noise and whining” made by kids on holiday irritating. Another major gripe was noise from children in the room next door (45%), while for a third (32%) over-tired youngsters can also spoil an evening’s entertainment.

The hotel swimming pool is a flashpoint too, where 41% are irritated by the noise from excited children. Being splashed while sunbathing around the pool was annoying for nearly a third (30%), while 21% said they dislike being splashed by children while they’re swimming in the pool.

Interestingly, the problems are not solely confined to other people’s children. Some 40% of parents say their own kids affect the enjoyment of their holiday, while 4% of these say they can even ruin it completely!

The research went on to show that many people would like to see adult-only areas in hotels. More than half (55%) believe the bar should be a no-go area for kids, while 42% would like part of the swimming pool cordoned off for adults to swim quietly.

The subject of adults-only holidays is explored in greater detail in a thought-provoking ‘White Paper’ commissioned by Thomson Holidays, which also takes a light-hearted look back at the history of the family holiday. The paper includes interviews with people taking both Thomson child-free and child-friendly holidays in Cyprus during last October’s half-term holiday.

Luke Gaskins, Head of Product Development at Thomson Holidays, explained that Thomson Couples is part of the company’s commitment to designing holidays around the differing needs of its customers, and would complement its hugely popular Thomson Families resorts.

“Family holidays are incredibly important to Thomson and an extremely valuable opportunity for families to spend quality time together, enabling children to experience new places, foods and cultures – and have fun,” said Luke.

“At the same time, many parents also tell us how much they cherish a few days to themselves once in a while in addition to their family holiday, to recharge their batteries. Just as our Family resorts are focused on keeping children entertained, Couples is completely geared to adult relaxation and together time. At a Couples hotel, peace and quiet both come as standard”.

Available from summer 2011, Thomson Couples will feature 19 contemporary hotels exclusive to Thomson UK customers in stunning locations across all haul types.

All hotels in the Thomson Couples range are part of Thomson’s Premier Collection, which include the company’s very best 4T and 5T hotels. Couples customers will also enjoy complimentary benefits including increased luggage allowance, priority transfers, day-before check-in and dedicated holiday advisors when overseas.

Bid for your next holiday… and donate to charity

Ever wanted to donate to charity but feel like you can’t afford to be charitable and enjoy life’s other personal luxuries? Well holidaylettings.co.uk has the perfect solution: Bid4holidays enables you to have a holiday and help change lives.

Bid4holidays launches on 31 May at 9pm. An ebay style online auction, you’ll be able to bid for a week’s stay at one of more than 180 holiday homes and all the proceeds will go to charity. Every day during June a stay in up to six homes will be auctioned off. All homes in the auction are advertised on Holiday Lettings and the weeks have been kindly donated by the home owners. Auctions will run for 24 hours, starting and finishing at 9pm. All funds will be split equally between Cancer Research UK and Helen & Douglas House, the company’s two charities of choice.

The auction demonstrates Holiday Lettings’ dedication to its charities of choice with the target for the initiative an incredible £100,000. An ambitious but also highly achievable goal says Kate-Stinchcombe-Gillies, spokesperson for holidaylettings.co.uk: “This is a terribly exciting initiative. Cancer Research UK and Helen & Douglas House are fantastic charities to work with and we are thrilled to have found a way that our every day offering can be used to raise significant funds for their causes.

“The principle behind Bid4holidays is very simple but packs a punch; by bidding for the holiday you want, you could help change someone’s life. Our advertisers have been incredibly generous offering their homes for the cause and we simply hope that people will get behind this campaign while securing a wonderful holiday at the same time.”

Claire Rowney, head of corporate partnerships for Cancer Research UK, said: “We’re delighted that Holiday Lettings has launched the Bid4holidays auction to raise money for Cancer Research UK. Sadly more than one in three of us will develop cancer at some point in our lives and Cancer Research UK’s work is critical to ensuring more people beat the disease. Survival rates have doubled in the past forty years and our doctors, scientists and nurses have been at the heart of this progress. We thank Holiday Lettings for helping us to continue our life-saving research and supporting our fight to beat cancer.”

Vanessa Fay, corporate fundraising manager for Helen & Douglas House, said: “This is a wonderful idea and we can’t thank Holiday Lettings and their advertisers enough for their support. When people take part in the auction they will not only have the chance to bid for a stay at a fabulous holiday home, they will be helping us give young people with life-shortening conditions the opportunity to live their life to the full.”

The auction starts on 31 May. In the meantime, people can sign up for alerts to receive a nudge when the auction launches and to hear each morning what’s up for auction that day.

Get ready to start bidding and change a life with your next holiday!

Enjoy the relaxing pace of a holiday in Jamaica

To say that Jamaica holidays are memorable doesn’t even scratch the surface. This is the island where time stands still, so expect to relax more completely than ever before. Not that you won’t be busy! There’s a phenomenal range of things to do on Jamaica Holidays, especially if you like to be outdoors. Rolling hills contrast with steep gullies and the towering Blue Mountains beg to be explored. Dunn’s River Falls is also breathtaking – both the view and the climb! Your Jamaica holidays could just be about lying on the beach or it could include trekking through tropical forests, horse riding on the beach, rock climbing up waterfalls, rafting upriver…

Virgin Holidays offers a wide range of hotels from around the globe. From all inclusive family holidays to relaxing escapes for couples Virgin Holidays are sure to have the perfect package holiday deals for you. There is an extensive range of hotels including 3V to 5V ratings, offering excellent facilities and services. There is something for every budget along with a number of cheap package holiday deals to choose from. If you’re looking for value for money as well as comfort and style then look no further than the Virgin Holidays Favourites collection. So book your package holiday deals now with Virgin Holidays and we’ll fly you direct to Barbados, Antigua, St Lucia, Grenada, Tobago, Jamaica and Cuba with convenient connecting flights to other Caribbean and USA destinations.

Virgin Holidays offers a wide range of hotels from around the globe. To make sure you know how much your holiday is really going to cost then why not pick an all inclusive holidays. From all inclusive family holidays to relaxing escapes for couples Virgin Holidays are sure to have the perfect holiday for you. There is an extensive range of hotels including 3V to 5V ratings, offering excellent facilities and services. There are also super special offers where you are sure to find a bargain that is cheap; all inclusive holidays are not to be missed! So make sure you pick an all inclusive holiday for your next amazing break with Virgin Holidays.

With a wide range of Jamaica Hotels on offer with Virgin Holidays, you will be spoilt for choice. If you’re looking for value for money as well as comfort and style then look no further than the Virgin Holidays Favourites collection. But if it’s a touch of luxury you’re looking for with your Jamaica Hotel than the Platinum collection is perfect for you. Virgin Holidays also offers adults only and family oriented Jamaica hotels, there really is something to for everyone.

(For more information: www.virginholidays.co.uk)

New tax for Brits with French holiday homes

The new tax could hit Britons that own holiday homes in France with thousands a year.

The property tax would see the French government charge on any home that is rented out for the year. This is likely to affect as many as 200,000 Brits that own second homes in France.

When renting out a holiday home during the time when it’s not used, Brits will be charged 20 per cent of it annual rental value.

However there is a loop-hole, if the home owner rents their property out for the whole year with a local letting agent they will be exempt from the tax.

Property tax laws are being overhauled by French President Nicolas Sarkozy’s government and is expected to come into force on 1 January 2012.

This new tax will be added to the two taxes already pai by French holiday home owners; the taxe fonciere, which is paid by the house owner and the taxe d’habitation, which is paid by those who live in it.

But Government ministers have argued that second home owners should help pay for French public services, such as the maintenance of roads.

A spokesman for the French finance ministry said: ‘Being the owner of one or more second homes implies that one benefits directly or indirectly from local and national public services, like the police, legal system and national infrastructure’.

However the tax might face a legal challenge in the European Court before it becomes law, legal experts have stated that it could be viewed as discriminatory towards foreign owners of second homes and might face a legal challenge in the European Court before it becomes law.

 

Hungary for a Stag Weekend?

Stag parties for the husband-to-be may not be as romantic as a marriage proposal on bended knee but they’re almost as important a part of the nuptial tradition. The low cost of air flights right now makes it possible for the groom and his gang to party hardy in places where their money will stretch the furthest – like Budapest Hungary.

At first the Pearl of the Danube may seem like an unlikely spot for a stag party, but it’s come a long way since the grey days of the oppressive Communist regime. With dozens of dance clubs and casinos lining the riverbanks that stay open till 4am every night, the action never stops in Budapest.

Should you decide to spend your last wild weekend as a single man in Budapest, a number of British companies offer planning assistance:

Stag Republic: Stag Republic has been organising stag weekends in Budapest since 2000, and now hosts approximately 5,000 clients per year – at least half of whom are referred by extremely satisfied past customers. Activities are mixed and matched to suit the guest list’s tastes and can include shooting parties, boat rides, strip poker with beautiful women and the classic stag party at a strip club among other things. The price varies according to where you stay and what you choose to do, and you will be expected to put 25 per cent of it down at the time you make your reservation. Contact them through their website:http://www.stagrepublic.co.uk/budapest

As its name suggests, Chillisauce promises hot times – in Budapest as well as a number of other cities throughout both the UK and eastern Europe. Chillisauce offers activity packages ranging from £125 to £125 per person, which allows you to estimate total costs while you’re still in the party planning stages. While many of the packages feature standard stag party fare like lap dancing, clubbing and open bars, some of them are more unusual: Package No.#1439, It’s Been Emulsional, offers guests the chance to fight a paintball war on a former Russian military base. For more information: http://www.chillisauce.co.uk/stag-weekends/budapest/

Last Night of Freedom has been in business since 1999 and organises stag parties and hen parties both. You can either settle on one of their standard weekend packages or build your own. among the options if you choose to create your own entertainment venue are limo lap dances, mud wrestling, football, fencing, paintballing or KGB-style shooting. Prices are not listed upfront but all other details may be found on their website: http://www.lastnightoffreedom.co.uk/about-us/

Stag Abroad features weekend packages that range from £89 to £139. Daytime activities emphasise sports like banger racing, indoor and outdoor carting, paintballing and quad biking, whilst evening activities are geared towards the naughty. Want to eat sushi off a live girl table? Now’s your chance. More information is available at http://www.stagabroad.com/budapest-weekend/

Ash cloud causes no disruption to BA today

British Airways is conducting a verification flight to help determine procedures to continue flying in accordance with risk assessment methodology developed by ICAO, the global aviation governing body, over the last 12 months.

The flight will produce data that should help the understanding of the limitations of the models being used to forecast ash dispersal.

The flight, by a British Airways Airbus A320, departed from Manchester airport this evening to fly toward the Newcastle area and then over Glasgow and Edinburgh before heading south and arriving at London Heathrow.

The aircraft, and its flight performance, will then be subject to detailed inspection and analysis overnight by the airline’s engineers. All data will be made available to the CAA.

We regret the cancellation of today’s services between London and Scotland, and London and Newcastle. These cancellations were made entirely on the basis of the information given to us by the CAA and the Met Office.

We expect flights to all areas, including Scotland, to operate normally today.

“Pick of the bunch” – Getaways for Gardeners

With next week’s Chelsea Flower Show completely sold out, all is not lost if you have been left without a ticket to London’s most prestigious event. Why not consider an early summer holiday and take some inspiration from some of the world’s most beautiful gardens and recreate that relaxed ‘holiday feel’ in your own back yard. So whether your greens fingered or not, take a look at these “blooming marvelous” Thomas Cook holidays to help inspire your very own exotic garden makeover.

South Africa – Cape Town

Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden

Whether for a casual stroll, more strenuous walk or lazy picnic, these gardens are a must-see for any visit to Cape Town. Nestled against the steep and rugged slopes of Table Mountain, they are a celebration of South African flora showcasing thousands of unique plants and flowers such as the Protea.

Thomas Cook Signature – 7 nights in Cape Town from £1,098 per person

Staying at 4 star Protea Hotel President in Cape Town on bed and breakfast, flying with South African Airways from London Heathrow – 26th June 2011.

Malta – Valetta

Barrakka Gardens

Popular with locals and visitors, Valetta’s Barrakka Gardens offer the best views over this city’s Grand Harbour. Beautifully manicured and dating back to 1661 when they were private gardens for the Italian knights, today they provide a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of Valetta’s busy streets. Divided into two parts, Upper Barrakka has various statues and monuments including one dedicated to Winston Churchill, and those visiting the gardens at noon or sunset can expect to hear the cannon that are fired as a salute dating back to British rule in Malta.

Thomas Cook – 7 nights in Malta from £344 per person

Staying at the 4 star Rivera Resort in Marfa Bay on bed and breakfast, departing London Gatwick on 21stJune 2011.

Morocco – Marrakech

Jardin Majorelle

Owned by Yves Saint Laurent until his death in 2008, these gardens are full of perfumed flowers, fruit trees, water and shade and Marrakchis consider them to be paradise on earth. This beautifully manicured oasis contains plants from the five continents in an enchanting framework.

Cresta – 3 nights in Marrakech from £269 per person

Staying at the 3 star Hotel Oudaya in Marrakech on bed and breakfast, flying with Easyjet from London Gatwick – 27th June 2011.

For more information please visit: www.thomascook.com

Baby turtles latest guests at Centara Grand Maldives

They were, in some ways, like any other newly-arrived guest at the Maldives: blinking in the sudden golden sunlight, easing their way across the soft, warm sand, and heading instinctively for the sparkling ocean.

These were, however, not tourists, but newly-hatched sea turtles that emerged to the delight and wonder of staff and guests at the Centara Grand Island Resort&Spa.

To the great surprise of everyone on the island, which is located in the South Ari Atoll, the mother turtle had come ashore in the early hours of March 15, dug a hole in the sand with her flippers, and laid more than 100 eggs before making her way back to the ocean.

Staff, acting on the advice of the local sea turtle conservation center, had covered the eggs with netting to protect them against predators and then waited.

Four species of turtle roams the Maldivian sea and nests among the islands, namely the Green, Hawksbill, Olive Ridley, and Loggerhead turtles. A fifth species, the Leatherback, visits the archipelago from time to time but does not nest there.

The female laying her eggs here was a Green turtle, a species that can nest three or four times a year. The female does, however, not nurture her young, and never sees the nest site again. Consequently, the eggs and newly-hatched babies are very vulnerable.

Centara Grand Island Resort has its own house reef, complete with its own shipwreck, and a diverse collection of aquatic life swims around the resort, including turtles. This, however, was the first time anyone at the resort had seen a female come ashore to nest.

As the weeks passed, staff and guests kept anxious eyes open for any trouble. Usually, turtles lay eggs on uninhabited islands, far away from human beings, but very much at the mercy of crows and shoreline birds always on the lookout for the next meal.

On the afternoon of Saturday May 7, to the sheer joy of everyone watching, 102 baby turtles hatched and emerged tentatively from their sandy nest, heading towards the waves. It was an emotional moment for everyone. The babies all made it safely into the calm waters of the lagoon, and from there, once they had gained their sea-legs, made their way into the open ocean.

Set among the perfect islands and blue ocean of South Ari Atoll in the Republic of Maldives, 25 minutes by seaplane from Male, Centara Grand Island Resort&Spa Maldives offers 112 suites and villas. The resort offers diving and snorkeling enthusiasts outstanding opportunities including an excellent house reef complete with a dedicated sunken ship wreck, and is within easy reach of the top dive spots in the Maldives.

Treat Your Father this year with an adventure

Put a smile on dad’s face on June 19 with a Father’s Day treat to remember, such as a trip to his favourite sporting occasion or an activity-packed holiday abroad.

SPORTING EVENTS

European F1 Grand Prix
– Flanked with beautiful beaches, the European F1 Grand Prix in Valencia is a great treat for fathers with a passion for fast cars. Built harbour-side to rival Monaco but with a fiesta atmosphere, cars rarely leave the waterfront and even cross over the canal on a swing bridge before passing through the historic fish market. Just a short flight from the UK, Valencia is one of Spain’s most vibrant cities with a great mix of culture and entertainment. It is even home to Spain’s most famous dish – paella. The event is a great excuse for fathers to soak up the sun whilst watching the excitement of Formula One.
– On Saturday 25th June 2011, watch the qualifying rounds at Circuit de Valencia to find out the final positions before watching the big race on Sunday 26th June. Prices start from GBP350pp including 3 nights B&B accommodation at the 3* Expo Hotel, Valencia (24th – 27th June 2011). Weekend Grand Prix tickets are available from GBP205pp. Flights are available on request. Sport Abroad (08456 803086 / http://www.sportabroad.co.uk).

Wimbledon 2011
– Treat fathers to a VIP day out at the oldest and most prestigious tennis tournament in the world. Enjoy the ‘magic’ of The Championships with all the traditions – strawberries and cream, crisp white clothing, lush green courts and world-class tennis. Sportsworld’s No.1 Court Experience includes excellent seats on No. 1 Court and relaxed, informal dining in Sportsworld’s Champions Lounge.
– Prices start from GBP395pp (plus VAT) including morning coffee, three-course buffet lunch, complimentary bar (beer, wines, Pimms and soft drinks), traditional afternoon tea and a car park pass (one per four guests). This package is available for private tables of two or more. Sportsworld (01235 555844 / http://www.sportsworld.co.uk).

Royal Ascot
– For horse racing fanatics, or those that just enjoy the occasional flutter, a luxury day at Royal Ascot (14th – 18th June 2011) is something fathers are sure to appreciate. Few sporting venues have the heritage and history of Ascot, which has been firmly in the British social calendar for almost 250 years. Champagne flows, the sun shines gloriously, bets are placed and emotions run high giving dads a day out full of atmosphere.
– Events International’s Platinum Package costs from GBP299pp and provides access to the Platinum Suite hospitality marquee located on the inside of the course, opposite the main grandstand, with a viewing gallery overlooking the winning post. The package also includes general admission tickets, morning coffee and biscuits, a Pimms reception, a complimentary bar, four course lunch with wine, afternoon tea, Tote betting facilities and car park passes (1 per 4 guests). Events International (01432 263263 / http://www.eventsinternational.co.uk).

Henley Royal Regatta
– For fathers with an interest in rowing, Sportsworld offers hospitality packages to Henley Royal Regatta, a typically English event on a beautiful stretch of the River Thames. In the picturesque surroundings of the Oxfordshire countryside, the Regatta (29th June – 3rd July 2011) is one of the highlights of British summer.
– The Sportsworld packages costs from GBP190pp (plus VAT) and includes access to The Riverside Enclosure which is based at the start of the course with great views of the action. Also included is access to a private garden area, morning coffee and patisserie, a champagne & Pimms reception, four course lunch with wine, a complimentary bar, traditional afternoon tea, entertainment from a jazz band and magician and car parking (1 per 2 guests). Sportsworld (01235 555844 / http://www.sportsworld.co.uk).

ACTIVE HOLIDAYS

Bridge family gaps on the River Kwai
– Fathers can try their hand at bamboo rafting, elephant riding and spend a night in a hill tribe village hut on this 10-day adventure in Thailand. If he’s a fan of the film, he will appreciate the visit to the Bridge on the River Kwai which is accompanied by a wander through the World War II cemetery and museum in Kanchanaburi. The tour finishes in Bangkok where he will get the chance to explore all the delights this city has to offer, including the Grand Palace, Wat Pho or the Emerald Buddha.
– The Siam Encounter, departing on 18th June, costs GBP445pp land only including transport (elephant, bus, boat, overnight train, taxi & tuk-tuk), accommodation (2 nights train, 1 night village hut, 4 nights guesthouse & 2 nights hotel), some meals (3 breakfasts, 2 lunches & 1 dinner) and an experienced local group leader. Imaginative Traveller (0845 077 8803 / http://www.imaginative-traveller.co.uk).

Cycle the bridges and canals of Italy
– Best known as being the gastronomic capital of Italy, Emilia Romagna also offers fathers some of the gentlest cycling in the country. Travelling through hidden hamlets, forgotten farming villages and pretty riverbanks, this is the perfect choice for dads who are more used to four wheels than two. This new independent hotel-to-hotel cycling holiday explores the eastern part of Italy, where the gold-sand beaches of the Adriatic stand alongside undiscovered art cities like historic Ravenna and Ferrara, Italy’s ‘cycling capital’. Staying in quality family-run hotels and an agriturismo, all offering superb cuisine, another highlight is 2 nights in gorgeous Comachio, a postcard-pretty lagoon town criss-crossed by a series of canals and bridges.
– The Cycling in Emilia Romagna tour, departing 18th June, costs GBP1237pp including flights and transfers, half board accommodation, luggage transfer, bicycles, route notes, a regional information booklet and local map kit. Headwater (01606 720199 / http://www.headwater.com).

Exchange the Sunday roast for a Turkey adventure
– This activity-packed trip takes in many of Turkey’s lesser known highlights, from the famous Grand Bazaar of Istanbul, incredible Greco-Roman ruins of Ephesus and the humbling battlefields of Gallipoli to the surreal fairy chimneys of Cappadocia and the natural wonders of Pamukkale. This 10-day trip will provide dads with an intoxicating mix of sights, experiences, beauty and history.
– The Turkey Adventure tour, departing on 18th June, costs GBP475pp land only including transport (overnight train, ferry & bus), B&B accommodation (1 night train & 8 nights hotel) and an experienced local group leader. Flights start from GBP199pp. Imaginative Traveller (0845 077 8803 / http://www.imaginative-traveller.co.uk).

Pick the Picos de Europa for protected wildlife
? This 8-day trip offers active dads the chance to explore Europe’s largest national park, the Picos de Europa – an area of dramatic beauty and home to many protected species and birdlife. The area still remains one of the truly unspoilt places in Spain that few visitors have discovered and boasts a spectacular range of limestone peaks, ridges and deep valleys. The high ground is a ‘moonscape’ of dramatic rocky terrain, almost devoid of vegetation, while the lower valleys are full of beautiful wildflowers in the spring. On the free day, fathers who prefer not to relax at the family-run hotel have a range of exhilarating activities to choose from, such as caving, canyoning or canoeing.
? The Picos de Europa walking holiday, departing on 18th June, costs GBP758pp including flights, 7 nights hotel accommodation, transport (minibus, bike & horse), most meals (7 breakfasts, 5 lunches & 5 dinners) and an experienced group leader. The Adventure Company (0845 287 1198 / http://www.adventurecompany.co.uk).

Take to the trails of the Italian Dolomites
– The new 8-day scenic walking holiday explores the majestic Alta Pusteria Valley to the region’s north. For fathers who like walking, this region provides a paradise of well-marked trails (thousands of kilometres accessed by local cable cars). The superb walking on this single centre holiday is matched by deluxe rooms and wonderful local cuisine in four-star family-run hotel. The area is renowned for its 3000m jagged peaks of heavily eroded limestone which are recognised by UNESCO as one of the most unique and spectacular mountain environments in the world.
– The Walking in the Italian Dolomites trip, departing on 18th June, costs GBP964pp including flights, half board accommodation, route notes, map kit and a local representative. Headwater (01606 720199 / http://www.headwater.com).

Walk on deserted forest tracks in North Cyprus
– This 8-day trip offers fathers a great opportunity to explore possibly the Mediterranean’s best kept secret – North Cyprus. Based in the picturesque coastal town of Kyrenia, he will walk on deserted forest tracks used only by farmers and heavy with the scent of wild flowers, enjoying stunning mountain views and dramatic coastal scenery along the way. Like most of its Mediterranean neighbours, Cyprus has witnessed many invaders over the years and consequently has many castles to explore, including the dramatic ruins of St Hilarion’s Castle and the 14th Century Crusader abbey of Bellapais. Dazzling beaches all add to the unique charm of the island.
– The Kyrenia Trails trip, departing on 18th June, costs GBP729pp including flights, 7 nights hotel accommodation, some meals (7 breakfasts & 5 lunches), transport (minibus) and a local group leader. The Adventure Company (0845 287 1198 / http://www.adventurecompany.co.uk).