8 hours on a plane is a day wasted but nowhere 2 hours away is warm enough or far enough for me to really feel like I’m on holiday. So, where I ask myself is the best holiday destination from London and other parts of UK for us Brits?
The ideal flight time for me is 4-5 hours and looking on the world map, there are a host of warm, luxurious and relaxing destinations within that flying time. Shame, none of the travel companies like Best at Travel, Kuoni, Virgin Holidays, Letsgo2 or Holiday Hypermarket ever consider that. You end up searching these sites for hours with a highly confused state of mind. Having been through this, I decided to post a little research for those facing the same dilemma as me.
So, which are the best Holiday destinations for people flying from the UK?
This listing will help you find your next holiday.
First, where do us Brits go most on holiday? I went through some search records on Google and found the following:
Top Holiday Destinations (by number of travellers from UK every year)
1. Spain holidays Since Spain is the most popular holiday destination for us Brits with over a million searches a month, I’ve divided Spain into regions to fully calculate its popularity.
- Majorca holidays – Majorca or Mallorca is heaven. I’ve been there myself. With a vibrant nightlife and amazing scenic views and beaches, this largest of all Spanish island tops Spanish holiday charts with over 300,000 monthly searches for Majorca alone. If you’re looking for a party place or an opportunity to be in the quiet surrounded by nature, Majorca is your best bet.
- Tenerife holidays – Tenerife is the largest of the 7 canary Islands in the Atlantic ocean. Just off the coast of Morocco, Africa, this Spanish territory commands the status of one of the most popular tourist destinations around the world. As they say, the place where spring never ends, Tenerife is the highest point of Spain with its Mount Teide volcano. The temperature averages 20 degrees celcius throughout the year and is considered to be the best in the world by many. 320,000 searches online every month.
- Gran Canaria holidays – Also one of the seven canary islands, the Gran Canaria is the second largest and second most populated after Tenerife. Volcanic in nature, The Gran Canaria offers a unique natural experience, with fissure vents, different soil and vegetation. The Gran Canaria is famous for its family holidays and is full of well appointed resorts. 180,000 monthly searches.
- Ibiza holidays – Ibiza is a beautiful little Spanish island located in the Mediterranean sea that has become hugely popular as a holiday top spot in the last 35 years. What makes Ibiza special is the extended coast line of sandy beaches, a chilled out way of life and seclusion. As all Spanish holidays, Ibiza town will offer you a buzzing nightlife and for those looking for peace and quiet, there are plenty of resorts surrounded by nature and tranquility. 135,000 searches per month.
- Other notable Spanish holiday destinations – With a 100,000 British people searching for holiday packages in Benidorm, this is the 5th most popular Spanish holiday destination followed by Costa del Sol at 60,000 searches and Lanzarote (another beautiful canary island) with 55,000 searches. Recommended – Spain holidays
If you haven’t yet experienced a Spanish holiday, you haven’t yet been on your best holiday. Majorca alone gets 2.5 million British holiday makers a year and 2008 was a record high.
2. Cyprus holidays – Cyprus is the number 2 holiday destination for us Brits. On average, 400,000 of us search for Cyprus holidays online every month. Yes! Every Month! No wonder I’ve been to Cyprus twice myself. In Cyprus, most popular spots are Limassol and Paphos – Paphos is full of ancient sites as old as 4th century BC, lies in the southwest of Cyprus and is a world heritage site by UNESCO. Limassol is the capital of southern Cyprus and is a popular shopping destination.
3. Turkey holidays – With just under 400,000 searches on Google alone, Turkey is the third most visited holiday destination for British holiday makers. The ex-Ottoman empire with a taste of Asia within Europe, Turkey is a top holiday destination where you’ll find snow-capped mountains and sunny beaches at a few hours’ distance. Istanbul, the largest city is where we flock most to, to live the Sultan size life for a few relaxing days.
4. Greece holidays – Close on the heels of Turkey, Greece holidays are very popular amonst British people. With just under 400,000 searches online a month, we love Greece, especially the Island of Crete. Crete, as legend goes, was where the Greek God Zeus was born and is the present resting place of Greek Gods. The southern-most of all Greek islands, Crete is the meeting point of Africa, Asia and Europe. If you’re looking for a busy, choc-a-block resort holiday, Greece is the place for you, where not UK holiday makers, but tourists from all over the world flck in great numbers.
5. Egypt holidays – Enter Africa – Egypt is our 5th most visited holiday destination and top-most in Africa. With 320,000 searches every month, we Brits get-away to Egypt often during the winter. The gorgeous clear waters of river Nile, 5000%2B years of history, tourist attractions like the pyramids and cities like the Sharm El Sheikh (the city of Peace) surrounded by the Red sea and Mount Sinai are top reasons for Egypt being a top holiday destination. I’ve been to Egypt twice and I’m in love with that place. People are friendly and forthcoming.
6. America Holidays
- Las Vegas holidays – I would have imagined America to be much higher up in the list of our top holiday destinations, but the long plane journeys and shortage of natural beauty are two major reasons why most people visit the United States for its advancements, not untouched natural places. Las Vegas leads as one of USA’s top holiday destinations. The city most popular for its casinos, gambling and high lifestyle attracts us Brits in large numbers every year.
- New York city breaks -The world’s capital city as its popularly known is the centre of all action. The list of tourist attractions is longer than London’s and if you’re expecting to get away, beware, you’re getting back into the mad rush. New York is a great weekend or short stay holiday destination if haven’t seen the Statue of Liberty or Madison Square Gardens.
- Florida holidays – The sunshine state of the US – Fun doesn’t end any time of the year in Florida. With 3 of the world’s best amusement parks – Disneyland, Seaworld and Universal, Florida is also the world’s amusement capital. Great place for family holidays.
7. Italy holidays – With 240,000 searches a month, Italy comes at number 6. Italy is made of two islands – Sicily and Sardinia. The mainland region of Italy is where holiday makers go in search of Roman empire history, leaning tower of Pisa, the Colosseums and Rome. Sicily is the largest Mediterranean island. Sardinia or Sardegna is a top holiday destination, famous for its natural beauty and beaches.
8. Caribbean Holidays – Caribbean Islands stand out as holiday destinations for the Americans (because of the proximity and short flights), but Europeans are not far behind. At a combined 200,000 searches per month from UK, The Caribbean is a fast growing holiday destination amongst us. The Caribbean refers to the Caribbean sea, islands in that sea and nearby coastal areas. Top holiday destinations within the Caribbean are Antigua holidays, St Lucia holidays, Jamaica holidays, Cuba holidays and Barbados holidays. Lying between North and South America, the Caribbean is famous for its holidays – from Golfing to sky-diving, fine dining to clubbing, there’s nothing the Caribbean doesn’t offer. That, at a time when Britain is freezing! No wonder, with recent media coverage, Caribbean holidays are busier than ever before.
9. Malta holidays – Coming back to Europe, Malta is a gorgeous island with an English connection. After gaining independence from United Kingdom in 1964, Malta developed itself as a top holiday destination. With English spoken widely, British people face no language barriers and holidays are even more fun. This Mediterranean island country offers some unique features like fishing villages, and a combination of Byzantine, Arab, Phoenician and St John Knights’ culture, architecture and cuisine. 160,000 monthly searches.
10. Dubai holidays – The world’s highest man made structure, world’s first under water restaurant, world’s first palm housing, world’s longest shopping mall, world’s first indoor ski system and world’s highest tennis court are just the tip of the iceberg. Dubai – The city of the world’s firsts opened its doors to the new world and we all visited in large number. Today, Dubai is the top holiday destination in the Middle East. With 150,000 searching for Dubai holidays every month, Dubai stands out amongst the 7 Emirates in UAE. With desert, beaches and mountains to offer, sunny holidays don;t get much better.
11. Maldives holidays – The paradise islands, as the 1 thousand two hundred fascinating Maldives islands are affectionately called, offer crystal clear waters and desert sands in the middle of Indian ocean. With 80 self sufficient islands cum resorts, you’re never short of natural beauty, peace and tranquility. The top “get away from it all” holiday destination Maldives won’t disappoint you. 120,000 curious British holiday makers search Maldives holidays every month.
12. Goa holidays – Further East, Goa is an English holiday maker’s favourite Indian holiday destination. With Churches and Temples co-existing in this city they call “Tropical Paradise”, you’ll find miles of beautiful palm tree beaches and acres of windy paddy fields. Adding to its charm are old fortresses, wide roads and motor cycle hires. The Portuguese were defeated off Goa in 1961 by the Indian army and since then, Goa has grown into the most popular holiday destination within India. With an offshore casino, saturday markets by resident British people and a rock music culture, Goa will give you unforgettable memories. Or you might end up in Goa longer than you planned, like many others. 100,000 searches.
13. Thailand holidays – Further east from India, welcome to Thailand. Best time to visit is between June and October. The capital city of Thailand – Bangkok boats of some of the world’s top 5 star hotels and is famous for its hospitality. Visit Thailand for a crash course in culture diversity and hospitality.100,000 searches.
14. Australia holidays – Melbourne is 22 hours and 30 minutes away from London. You better not plan a weekend break to Australia. A gorgeous country that holiday makers love, Australia is number 20 in this list only for its distance from the UK. Australia has everything from coral beaches, skyscrapers, nightlife, peace and tranquility, great standards of life, extreme sports – you name it. A great place for a long holiday, I rate Australia as one of my top holiday destinations and a must visit. Make sure you take out at least a couple of weeks to enjoy Australia fully.
15. Mauritius holidays – They say the beauty of Mauritius is its people. With clear waters, white sandy beaches and year-round holiday making, Mauritius is Asia’s Spain. Tourists from India, China, Japan and other far east countries keep Mauritius abuzz the year round with traditional dances, customs and delicious seafood. Being close to mainland Africa, in the summer, Mauritius can be very hot and humid, and therefore the best time to visit is July to September (their winter). With British and French history, you won’t face many language problems in this Indian ocean holiday destination. 70,000 searches.
16. Bali – The tiny yet perfect Indonesian island of Bali is the center of all action and one of Indonesia’s top holiday destinations. Visit Bali for white sand beaches, awe-aspiring cliffs, nightlife and to submerge into the truly multicultural environment. 35,000 monthly searches for Bali holidays.
17. South Africa holidays – When you mention any part of Africa for holidays, wildlife plays an important role and South Africa is no different. South Africa is UK’s top holiday destination in Africa for the British colonial connection. Amongst others, Port Elizabeth, Cape Town and Durban offer the best natural views and beaches. 30,000 monthly searches.
18. Hong Kong holidays – A few years ago, Hong Kong was a British territory. Now a part of China, Hong Kong is the most happening place in the far east. This majorly Buddhist city is a remarkable example of success of Capitalism and offers towering hotels, world’s most modern luxuries and one of the most popular holiday destination within Hong Kong is Kowloon. For some peace, you can travel to the Sai Kung peninsula. 27,000 monthly searches.
Still not sure where to go? If you don’t mind where you go, and you’re more focused on the kind of holiday, you may end up saving substantial sums of money. My best bet while booking a holiday is calling one of my favourite agencies – Best at Travel or Directline Holidays and just chatting to an advisor regarding what’s cheap this season. I’ve always found Best at Travel and Directline saving me money.