With the schools back open, many of us are looking forward to the October half term holiday and our last chance to grab some international sun before the end of the year. But where’s safe to travel with no quarantine rules upon return to the UK? At first glance the list may look limited but there are some fantastic winter sun destinations on the FCO Travel Corridor list. We’ve got you covered with our roundup of countries and islands to visit that are suitable for a family seven-night break, and of course, we have a few special offers up our sleeves to ensure that your getaway is not only safe but also great value for money, too.
Constance Ephelia Hotel
Praslin Island, Seychelles
Mother nature was very generous when she touched this collection of 115 islands. The Seychelles’ rugged beauty is nothing short of breath-taking and its experience as a luxury holiday destination delivers on every level. Untouched, unspoilt, and underestimated, it has authentic Indian Ocean charm by the bucketload… alongside luxury hotels, conscious resorts and silky-soft sand beaches!
Travel time from London to Seychelles is around 10-hours, if flying direct, making Seychelles best for older children or those used to long-haul travel. Perfect for a week-long trip, October half term sees warm temperatures with a calm breeze, providing much-needed coolness from the heat.
But what about COVID? Seychelles managed the pandemic well and recorded just 139 cases in total with no fatalities. The archipelago has been extremely strict on its entry requirements too, operating a traffic light system since opening its borders in June 2020 that only allows ‘green’ countries considered low risk entry. UK guests are welcome to Seychelles from 1st October 2020, just in time for the school holiday.
Oh, and it’s worth mentioning that the resorts are welcoming Brits back with open arms. Many hotels are sharing special offers for 2020 visits including up to 35% discount. Click here to view our latest Seychelles’ great value offers.
And if we haven’t already convinced you, maybe the fact that this destination has the royal stamp of approval will - it’s where the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge honeymooned back in 2011.
Click here to explore our Seychelles hotels.
Old Town Kaleici in Antalya, Turkey
Bodrum Beach, Turkey
One of the few European countries still on the UK governments’ FCO travel corridor list that offers warm weather in October, Turkey is an excellent short-haul option for families. The heat has dipped from peak summer months, but it’s still warm and a great time to truly explore Turkey’s hidden corners.
Bodrum, for example, offers a window into the country’s authentic self. This port city stretches from the southwest coast into the Aegean Sea, providing the perfect blend of city break and beach escape. With luxury boutique resorts scattered throughout and charming restaurants offering the very best in Turkish cuisine, you need never leave your hotel. However, if you do wish to indulge in some culture, families are sure to enjoy the local bazaars. And if you’re lucky enough to take nan and grandad away with you, we highly recommend that parents slip off to one of the fantastic beach clubs. The intimate hideout at Maçakizi is one of our favourites!
The country’s capital is another great hangout. Bursting at the seams with famous landmarks and traditional Turkish cafes, if you’re looking for a short break with the family, Istanbul ticks all the boxes. And if you’re visiting, be sure to explore the Ottoman’s glorious lifestyle with a day trip to Topkapi Palace.
But we’re not done. Turkey has more wondrous stops including the beaches of Antalya and Alanya – extremely popular for families looking to spend some quality time together beach or poolside. Multiple all-inclusive options will keep little ones occupied, where hourly ice creams, snacks and drinks are free flowing. And, it goes without saying, that resorts are sharing competitive prices for October 2020 so call our personal travel managers today on 0203 816 0985, to secure your half term holiday.
Click here to explore our Turkey hotels.
View of English Harbour from Shirley Heights
Carlise Bay, Antigua
Quintessentially Caribbean but with a distinct English accent, Antigua’s rum-infused mellowness is beautifully complemented by its British-style capital city St. John’s and the islands’ multiple forts of its colonial past. Expect topaz waves lapping palm-tree-lined beaches, friendly locals and colourful villages… every vista provides a scene straight from a postcard.
Antigua benefits from a tropical climate, and although October is one of its wettest months, this Caribbean island does not receive as much rainfall as its neighbours. Weather averages 30° in October, ideal for the beach, and with an average of 12-hours sunlight daily, be sure to pack plenty of SPF.
You’re spoilt for choice when it comes to accommodation in Antigua. One of our top picks is Carlisle Bay. Located on the island’s white sand and turquoise water, it boasts a backdrop of lush green jungle and five-star everything under its roof. From the suites through to the restaurants, luxury is not just the beginning here… it’s the middle and end too. Trust us, from the moment you arrive you’ll never want to leave!
Click here to discover more on Carlisle Bay including the resort’s amazing offer of up to 35% discount, complimentary half board plus an exclusive $200 resort credit. Oh, and children stay and eat for free!
What’s more, this isle is safe. Antigua and Barbuda collectively logged 95 cases of coronavirus in total which resulted in 3 fatalities. What’s more, all hotels and resorts have ramped up their health and hygiene policies and are going to great lengths to ensure safety for all guests and staff.
Click here to explore our Antigua hotels.
The Pitons from a stunning beach in St. Lucia
An ariel view of Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort
Another Caribbean gem, the island that is famed for its gloriously photogenic pitons is currently considered one of the safest holiday destinations on the planet. With only 27 confirmed cases of COVID-19 to date, and no fatalities, this isle is on the FCO travel corridor list and is spot on for an October getaway.
Just like its neighbours, St. Lucia provides year-round sunshine that beams over a combination of tranquil beaches and lush rainforest. Ideal for a ‘fly and flop’ holiday, St. Lucia also provides ample opportunities for the active families. Nature trails are popular, and once you reach the peak, each delivers the best views across the country.
Luxury hotels and resorts are prominent on this island, with Sugar Beach, A Viceroy Resort paving pioneering the islands white sands… it’s in the name after all. For an all-inclusive option, St. James’s Club Morgan Bay and Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort shouldn’t be overlooked. Oh, and if you’re looking for the best in boutique, Cap Maison Resort & Spa has you covered (and also offers an all-inclusive dining plan if required).
Click here to explore our full collection of St. Lucia hotels.
The Colosseum in Rome
Back closer to home now and to the country of pasta and piazzas, gelato and gondolas, fashion and football… and so much more! Italy is a diverse country and one which seems perfect for almost every month of the year. From weekend breaks in romantic Venice and bustling Rome, through to road trips around its beautiful lakes or cliffside along the Amalfi Coast, there’s a spot in Europe’s boot for all occasions.
On the FCDO’s travel corridor list, visits to Italy do not require a two-week quarantine upon return to the UK, making it ideal for a short-haul October escape for families. With less tourists than in spring and summer, it’s ideal for budding explorers who want to escape the crowds and discover at their own pace. Plus, little legs will be allowed a little breathing room to run freely.
To put some fun into education, the country’s capital is a great trip for growing minds. Bursting with history from the Roman empire, there’s a mountain of things to see and do that simply cannot be taught from a history book. While Italy’s fashion capital, Milan, is a great option for fashionistas. And, of course, Italy’s coast welcomes all ages all year round. So, whether you’re after a week-long break or just a few days getaway, you’re sure to find the perfect choice here.
Click here to explore our full collection of Italy hotels.
To start planning your safe October 2020 Half Term holiday, call our personal travel managers today on 0203 816 0985, or click here to submit an online enquiry. And, if you’re looking ahead to February 2021, click here to read our rundown of perfect destinations.
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