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Monday, 22 September 2014

Three affordable island break destinations for a summer break

The economic crisis in Europe has had many unfortunate effects, but for holidaymakers the rising Pound against the Euro is a small positive to take.
In recent years the two currencies have been almost inseparable but you can expect to get around 1.25 Euros for each Pound now - the best rate for over three years - meaning that a glass of wine can cost as little as a few Pounds or less in some European holiday resorts.

Prices in Spain, Portugal, and Greece have had to come down even further due to the need to attract more tourism; a break in these areas can be cheap while also injecting much needed cash into the economy of each area.

Island breaks are traditionally popular so for tourists looking beyond the mainland, here’s our lowdown of the best islands to visit in each region.

Spain: The Canary Islands

Every year, millions of UK tourists visit the Canary Islands, due to the many beaches and resorts that pepper the coasts of each island.

Gran Canaria and Tenerife are traditionally popular but can get very busy in the summer and finding an unspoilt beach is practically impossible.

For that reason, Lanzarote holidays are becoming more popular: the best beaches are in the south, some still unspoilt, and an extraordinary, contrasting volcanic landscape sits in the interior.

Greece: The Greek Islands

The islands of Greece are filled with beauty, history, and mystique. From Corfu to Crete, traditional holiday resorts can be enjoyed, but a large chapter of the story of western civilisation started here too and there are humbling monuments and attractions on most islands.

There are thousands of Greek Islands to choose from - although less than a hundred are usually visited by tourists - but the Greek island of Sani is uniquely set in a 400 hectare ecological reserve, fenced by unspoilt beaches, Sani holidays can offer an experience that’s even more distinguished than breaks on neighbouring islands.

Portugal: The Azores

Removed from the traditional tourist trail, the Azores - rising from the Atlantic Ocean about 900 miles west of Portugal - do not cater for mass package tourism, but that’s part of the attraction.

While the temperatures aren’t as high as in Greek or Spanish equivalents, the dramatic natural landscape is the big draw: the lakes, waterfalls, and mountains need to be experienced rather than viewed in a brochure, along with the whales and dolphins that emerge from the surrounding seas.

Island breaks are cheaper than ever before and while Europe waits to recover it’s a good time to both enjoy cheaper prices and help each local economy by visiting.

 

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