With many of us looking for our next adventure as soon as travel restrictions are lifted but apprehensive about the prospect of flying in wake of COVID-19, planning our next flight-free destinations and trips could be just what we need. So we have rounded up our top 5 to spark your imagination in post-lockdown travel as soon as it is safe to do so.
From exploring some of the most picturesque towns in France to city weekends, ski breaks, and country boltholes, here are a few ideas for British travellers looking for their next flight-free adventure by train or car.
Le Touquet Paris-Plage, Northern France, by Eurostar or Car
Le Touquet’s proximity to the UK makes it ideal for those who want to go abroad as soon as possible but are wary of travelling too far. Set along seven kilometres of white sandy beaches, the seaside town is a hub of sport with almost 300 activities available, from sand yachting and wakeboarding, horse riding and championship golf courses – spend your first international holiday enjoying an action-packed break on this little-known part of the French coastline.
Set on the beach, Novotel Thalassa offers a comfortable & trendy bolthole just a couple of minutes walk from the centre of the town’s shops, cafes and markets. Alternatively, the famous Le Westminster Hotel is re-opening this summer following a multi-million-euro investment to become the only five-star hotel on the Opal Coast.
Prices at Novotel Thalassa Le Touquet Hotel start from €162 per night on a half board basis. Prices at Le Westminster Hotel tbc. Eurostar fares start from just £29 one-way. For more information please visit www.letouquet.com
Stonefield Castle – a fine example of Scottish baronial architecture
Built in 1837, Stonefield Castle is a fine example of Scottish baronial architecture and still retains much of its original furnishings, wood panelling, ornate ceilings and marble fireplaces. Beyond its interior splendour, the castle is set in 60 acres of woodland gardens, lapped by the shores of Loch Fyne. It is based just two miles from the idyllic fishing village of Tarbert, one of the most attractive villages on the Mull of Kintyre peninsula. With plenty to do and great walking spots, Scotland is one of the quickest flight free destinations to travel to.
Nightly rates at Stonefield Castle start from £130. Visit https://www.bespokehotels.com/stonefieldcastle.
Discover one of Edinburgh’s Hidden Gems with a Scottish City Break at The Glasshouse
Set in the heart of Edinburgh, with the shopping haven of Princes Street, historic Edinburgh Castle and the Scottish National Portrait Gallery all just steps away, YTL Hotels’ The Glasshouse is the ideal destination for a post-lockdown break.
The Glasshouse proudly boasts one of Edinburgh’s true hidden gems- a two-acre rooftop garden, offering guests a tranquil oasis in the heart of the city. With some of the most extensive outdoor space of any hotel in Edinburgh as well as 29 rooms with direct garden access, the hotel is ideal for those looking to enjoy the fresh air of the great outdoors, while still having easy access to all the city’s main attractions. Accessible to all guests, the rooftop garden is the ideal place for a summer picnic, afternoon tea or evening drink under the stars and boasts breathtaking views of the city and of the famous Calton Hill.
The 77-room Glasshouse hotel greets guests with the impressive original church façade, before they are transported into the contrastingly contemporary design on the inside. Heading up to the award-winning Whisky Snug, another hidden gem of the city, guests can peruse the impressive whisky cabinet, and settle in with a dram or two for the evening.
Nightly rates at The Glasshouse start from £200 per night.www.theglasshouse.co.uk
Escape to a Haven of Tranquility in the Côte D’Azur with Gardens Designed by Diarmuid Gavin with Oliver’s Travels
Oliver’s Travels’ La Bayadere is set in the hills on the edge of the medieval village of La Turbie, sleeping 12 guests in six bedrooms. The villa once belonged to the world-famous ballet dancer Rudolf Nureyev and its beautiful gardens have been designed by the internationally renowned Diarmuid Gavin who has created a haven of tranquillity with sea and mountain views. Take a dip in the heated infinity swimming pool or lounge on the decked terrace admiring the incredible views.
The charm and glamour of Monaco is just a 15-minute drive away whilst Nice and Cannes are also a short drive by car. On the edge of a national park, there are some amazing walks across the region as well as tennis, rock-climbing and watersports nearby plus beautiful golf courses with glorious views.
Late 2020/2021 rates from £14,547 for a seven-night stay. To book, visit www.oliverstravels.com or call 0800 133 7999.
Stay Chic in Saint-Tropez at Hotel Lou Pinet
Maisons Pariente’s, Hotel Lou Pinet in Saint-Tropez is set to re-open its doors in July following an extensive refurbishment. Located five minutes from the Place de Lices nearby the region’s most sought-after beaches, the five-star hotel offers guests 34 spacious guest bedrooms and suites bathed in natural light with private gardens, the popular Beefbar Restaurant, two bars, a Tata Harper Spa and a large emerald green swimming pool privately concealed away from the lively surroundings of Saint-Tropez.
Soon to be opened for the second season following the hotel’s premier opening in June 2019, guests can once again look forward to enjoying an intimate hideaway that echoes the vintage Saint-Tropez spirit of the 60’s and 70’s created especially by French architect, interior decorator and designer Charles Zana.
Easily accessed by car or train Saint Tropez is one of the easiest flight-free destinations to visit.
Nightly rates at Hotel Lou Pinet start from 430 Euros on a bed & breakfast basis. For reservations and information visit www.loupinet.com email [email protected] or call +33 4 94 97 04 37