The Easter holiday is almost here! Have you started planning yours yet? If not, we’ve made a list of spots for you to get the most relaxation or adventure out of your week.
Sticking close to home
Brussles is less than two hours from London by Eurostar and only costs Â£69 with return. Brussles is home to some amazing Muesums and galleries, such as the RoyalÂ Museums of Fine Arts, Les Galeries Royales Saint-Hubert, and Galerie Albert Baronian; shops and markets like Rue Neuve/Niueuwestraa,Â Gallerie Agora, andÂ Rue du Bailli; and traditional pubs A la Becasse (The Lark), A La Mort Subite (Sudden Death), and Au Bon Vieux Temps (The Good Old Days).
One absolute must is The Grand Place,Â or Grote Markt. It is a medieval palace in the central square of Brussels and is surrounded by pubs for you to enjoy the sun and the scenery.
For those that want a more intimate experience with the city, there are a handful of walking tours available to travellers:
For those wanting to learn more about history and culture, there is a four hour walking tour called Brussels Mysteries and Legends will cost youÂ Â£49. Entrance fees to all locations visited during this tour are included and the tour ends with a complimentary Belgian beer or soft drink at Rene Margaritte’s favourite pub.
For the art lovers, there is a three hour coachÂ tour called Brussels Art Nouveau and Art Decco Architecture Tour will cost youÂ Â£26. Entrance fees to all locations visited during this tour are included. Learn the histories of 19th and 20th century artists the homes they built and lived in. The last stop is theÂ Horta Museum.
For the history buffs looking for a day trip, there is a 13 hour tour called Brussels: World War I Battlefields Tour of Flanders from Brussels. This tour follows the trail of World War I soldiers, visits the graves at the German Military Cemetery of Vladslo and Tyne Cot Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery, and moves over to Passchendaeleâ€™s Old Cheese Factory for lunch. To end the day, explore the In Flandersâ€™ Field Museum and attend the Last Post Ceremony in Ypres.
Getting your winter sports fix
Val d’IsÃ¨re isÂ located inÂ the Tarentaise Valley in southeastern France and lies 5 km from the border of Italy. Getting here is easy. There are several airlines that fly direct to Val d’IsÃ¨re: Ryanair, starting at Â£190; EasyJet, starting at Â£307; and British Airways, starting atÂ Â£414.
Hotellesbarmes.comÂ offers deals on lodging atÂ Les Barmes de lâ€™Ours, which is the Val’s premier hotel, starting atÂ â‚¬400 (Â£285.14), half board.
Tsanteleina.comÂ offers deals for theirÂ Hotel Tsanteleina that was built before the ski resort settled into the mountain. It is family owned and prices start atÂ â‚¬300 (Â£213.93)
If you’re a student aged 18-39 and travelling on a budget, check outÂ action-outdoors.co.uk‘s hotelÂ UCPA Val dâ€™IsÃ¨re. For onlyÂ Â£444, you getÂ full board, equipment rental, lift pass, and tuition or guiding
Day passes for skiing and snowboarding sit atÂ â‚¬50 (Â£36) and a week-long pass isÂ â‚¬286 (204Â£)
Whether you are a beginner or a pro, skiers and snowboarders will find the perfect slope for them here. There are specially arranged areas for beginners and children to take their time making it down the slope without worrying about getting run over by a more experienced skier or snowboarder. There are gentle Â areas on the pistes of the Verte, in the Bellevarde area, and the Madeleine in the Solaise area.
For the more experienced, Val d’IsÃ¨re will surely give you a challenge as these slopes have been training grounds for Olympic athletes. There are four areas: Solaise,Â Le Fornet,Â La Daille,Â andÂ Terrain park for you to test your skills.
For a relaxed village experience
Still fairly close to home is Catalonia, which is located at the foothills of theÂ Pyrenees and bordered by the Mediterranean Sea. Idyllic.
Tickets to Catalonia using British Airways atÂ lastminute.comÂ start at Â£118.
Catalonia is also a foodies dream. You can find the best farmhouse co-ops for relatively cheap to luxury dining.Â Catalans loveÂ bolets (wild mushrooms), calÃ§ots (large sweet spring onions), andÂ formatge (cheese).
If all you want to do is bask in the sunlight, here are 5 beaches to get your sun in:Â Platja de Sant SebastiÃ , Platja Illa Roja,Â Platja de Castell,Â Cala Fonda,Â Platja del Fangar.
If you want relaxing sport, you have a few options there as well.Â Inthesaddle.com allows you to explore theÂ Costa Brava on horseback for a whole week. You’ll be able to see medieval fishing village, untouched coves, sandy beaches. You’ll also see the homes of famous painters includingÂ Gaudi, Dali and Picasso. Board is included and packages start atÂ Â£725 per week.
If you prefer golf, there are actually PGA grounds in Catalonia.Â Carlemany Hotel – PGA Golf de Catalunya is a good spot to get a tour of PGA grounds and play a round. Packages start atÂ â‚¬424 (Â£304) for three nights and a complementary beer when you arrive.
For the artsy, there are plenty of museums, galleries, and historic areas to wander includingÂ Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya for visual art,Â DalÃ Theatre and Museum for Salvador Dali’s artwork,Â Archaeology Museum of Catalonia, andÂ Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art.
For those wantingÂ a little more sun (and wine)
Tickets to NapelsÂ withÂ EasyJet start at Â£134 with return.
One of the more unique things you can do in this city is adopt a skull. Capuzzelle is a cult that revolves around caring for the skull.Â People â€˜adoptâ€™ skulls in the cityâ€™s underground tombs where they can bring gifts, clothes, pillows and flowers for the skulls. In return, the souls of the skulls are said to protect their adopters.
This is a major city for art lovers and travellers can get a glimpse of the underground art scene of Naples. For the price of a metro ticket, you can go through tunnels worth of street art.
To get really hands on with the city, learn the Tarantella at the Bourbon court.
For the wine lovers, Naples is definitely the city for you. FromÂ Â£ 63, you can attend theÂ Vesuvius 4-Hour Wine Tasting Tour and Lunch from Naples. On this program, you get to drink wine from the vinyards on the slopes of Mt. Vesuvius while learning about its volcanic activity. If you want a little more history with your wine there is theÂ Naples: Ruins of Pompeii and Full-Day Wine Tasting Tour starting at Â£ 79. Tour the ruins of Pompeii while walking the same streets the ancient Romans did while enjoying wine with Mt. Vesuvius in its DNA.