Top Destinations to Visit in 2021

Throughout the world over the last year and a half, Covid-19 has drastically changed all of our lives and impacted businesses like no other. To no surprise, the Travel Industry has taken perhaps the biggest falls of all.

I remain hopeful and still want everyone to look bright into the future and plan their dream vacations. With that said, here’s my top Travel recommendations for 2021.

MOROCCO

Chefchaouen, Morocco

A stones throw away from Spain on the North African Coast, Morocco is a perfect destination for a get away full of adventure, culture and sublime scenery. Personally when I think of Morocco, I visualise vibrant colours, culture rich markets and stunning landscapes of the Atlas Mountains. It’s relatively inexpensive with small scale hotels and villas to accommodate all travellers.

When’s the best time to visit?

The best time to visit Morocco is Spring (March-May) or Autumn (September-October). During these times it Temperatures range between 25-35°. Summer months can reach well over 38°.

Where can I stay?

Some visitors to Morocco like the Sandy scene and therefore stay in the well-known region of Agadir. The resort is well know for its array of golf courses, long stretch of beach and a flourishing promenade lined with restaurants, bars and cafes. It’s a perfect spot for a nonchalant experience.

Agadir

Depending on how you like to book holidays, with a quick search on Agadir, you can come across luxury hotels where prices can be as low as £250 for a 7 night stay for 2 adults. With an additional flight cost of around £100pp, you can really keep your budget low for a top-rated holiday. Alternatively, for those who prefer package holidays, a 7 night stay for 2 adults could be as low as £300pp ATOL Protected.

For a more active holiday, Marrakesh would be a great place to start. Further inland, Marrakesh is a medieval city dating back to the Berber Empire. The spirit of Marrakesh can be seen through it’s beautiful mosques, palaces and gardens. The city is thriving with Souks (marketplaces) where magnificent colours can be seen throughout the maze of alleyways. Whilst exploring the radiant streets of this city will be free, you could also find time taking a camel ride into the desert or touring into the mountains. With many companies you can do day excursions exploring the city and beyond, or specific tour holidays are widely available.

Marrakesh

Prices for day excursions such as Atlas Mountains Tour start at around £50pp but it’s key to shop around as you can get it cheaper. In addition trips into the desert are around £35 but can be made longer which would increase depending on the desired itinerary.

Marrakesh and it’s Notable points of Visit:

  • Bahia Palace
  • Koutoibia Mosque
  • Cactus Thiemann
  • Saadian Tombs
  • Le Jardin Secret
  • Badia Palace
  • Musée Yves Saint Laurent
  • Djemaa El Fna

Ultimately I believe Morocco is an absolute must for the family getaways, explorers and culture pioneers. Even if you were to travel alone, a quick search on Hostelworld will bring up a grand selection of well-recommended places to stay. To add, a single-traveller will also get personal suggestions of places to visit & explore.

Important Information

  • Currency for Morocco is Dirham (MAD) £1 is about 12 Dirhams.
  • The telephone code for Morocco is 212
  • The language of Morocco is Arabic but there are settlements that speak Spanish and French as well as English.
  • There are currently no Visa Requirements for Tourists if your stay is under 3 months. It is advised passports should have a validity of 6 months.
  • Regarding Covid-19 Regulations, follow all up-to-date Travel Advice on the Government Website. Www.Gov.uk

KEFALONIA

Cephalonia is the largest Greek island situated in the Ionian Sea. With a serene mountain-covered landscape covered in idyllic olive trees and a radiant turquoise sea, it’s the perfect destination for the couples, families and groups.

When is the best time to visit?

Kefalonia’s high summer season runs from June-September where temperatures range from 20-28°. During this time, the island can get extremely busy with tourists. If you’re after a quieter stay, the island remains open during the winter and into spring.

Where can I stay?

Being a well-loved holiday destination, there are plenty of resorts, towns & villages that you can stay in. Kefalonia is well loved for its golden beaches, authentic Greek towns and waterfronts lined with locally owned tavernas. Some of the favourites are:

  • Lassi
  • Argostoli
  • Lixouri
  • Skala
  • Sami
  • Katelios
  • Svoronata
Lassi

How much will it cost?

Kefalonia holidays cater for those who enjoy booking things separately and those who prefer to book package holidays. Several Airlines fly from the UK into Kefalonia such as TUI, EasyJet, Jet2, Ryanair. A simple search via airline websites or Skyscanner and Expedia will bring up flights starting from £66 per person for a return flight. Booking.com and Airbnb are well recommended for individual accommodation bookings. Kefalonia has hundreds of locally owned villas and accommodation and a 5 bed Villa for a 7 night stay starts from £152 a night. Obviously the size and location of the property will vary the overall cost.

Alternatively for package holidays, Kefalonia is a popular destination and can be searched through TUI, Loveholidays, Hayestravel and Onthebeach: ATOL PROTECTED. Costing of package holidays varies depending on party size, location, star-rating of the accommodation, board basis (All inclusive etc) and time of year. A brief search of 2 adults 2 children for a 7 night stay in July, starts at £1500 which includes Flights, Accommodation and Transfers. In addition there’s hundreds of holiday options to cater for you. A real draw for some of the Tour-Operators is the deals and discounts they offer; from low deposits, free-child places and on-screen savings. It can be a real win!

Free Kids-Place with TUI

What can I do there?

The beautiful island of Kefalonia has many things for everyone in the family to see and do:

  • Explore the Capital City of Argostoli with authentic Greek Markets
  • Climb Mount Ainos
  • Go Beach Hopping – Kefalonia is home to some of the finest beaches in Greece.
  • Explore Koroni Cove – The home of Loggerhead Turtles
  • Explore the sleepy villages of Assos and Fiskardo
  • Wine Tasting
  • Dine in glorious Tavernas
  • Try your hand in some Watersports
  • Drogarati Caves
  • Melissani Lake
Assos

Important Information

  • Greece is 2 Hours Ahead GMT
  • Outlets in Greece at Double not Triple – So bring an Adapter.
  • Telephone code in Greece is 0030
  • Tips aren’t mandatory but are welcomed.
  • Kefalonia uses Euros. Cash machines and Foreign Exchange Bureau’s are very accessible across the island.
  • You can often get a better Exchange Rate for Currency before entering the country. Shop around
  • There are frequent Bus & Taxi Services that passes all main towns and villages.
  • There is currently no Visa Requirement for EU Citizens.
  • Regarding Covid-19 Regulations, follow all up-to-date Travel Advice on the Government Website. Www.Gov.uk

FLORENCE – ITALY

Without a doubt the whole of Italy is a destination that needs ticking off the bucket list. The essence of a city break is very much desired for many people when planning a holiday. With that said, Florence is the perfect place for a quick weekend getaway.

Florence is the Capital of the Tuscany region in Central Italy. This beautiful city is renowned for it’s Renaissance Art Masterpieces, Medical Architecture and Its status in Modern Fashion.

When’s the best time to visit?

Warmer weather runs from early May to late September. During these sunnier months Florence has many beautiful Renaissance Art festivals, open-air dining and vibrant architecture tours. Winter months brings fewer tourists but is as equally as exciting to visit.

Where can I stay?

Being a large city, Florence has an excellent array of accommodation options to cater for any type of traveller. I quite like to search accommodation on Booking.com, Airbnb or Hotels.com. For first time visitors, staying in the Centro storico or historic district would be ideal as you can easily walk to points of interest as well as being surrounded by extraordinary wine bars & pizzerias.

Florence
  • Centro Storico – Duomo / Uffizi / Ponte Vecchio –In the heart of the Renaissance town where everywhere is accessible via foot. In the summer months is very busy with tourists
  • Oltrano and Santo Spirito – central neighborhood close to the Arno river with lovely piazza surrounded by cafes and wine bars
  • Santa Croce – Close to the historic center with an authentic lively local market
  • San Niccolò / Piazzale Michelangelo – for artisan workshops, a thriving restaurant scene and magnificent views of the city
  • Santa Maria Novella (Station area) – Situated a little further out but is well known area for cheaper accommodation that is convenient
  • Fiesole – pretty hillside town just 10-15 minutes out of the city with views over Florence

How much will it cost?

Being a city break, I would recommend spending 3/4 days here. Anything over 6 days can make the trip quite expensive. It is also important to bare in mind that what you’re wanting to do whilst here can impact the cost.

Accommodation:

  • Hostels – Anything from €20-€50 per person, per night. Many owners increase prices over the weekend which can be a surprise for many.
  • Budget Hotels – Going as if you were travelling in a 2, you can expect twin rooms to be around €75-€130 per night but this can be more depending on location and if it includes Breakfast.
  • Rental Accommodation- Company’s such as Airbnb and Booking.com offer an amazing array of accommodation facilities that can sometimes be a cheaper alternative. For a 3 night stay in July can cost as low as £277 for a B&B Double Room. Depending on location, Amenities and Time of year this can obviously vary the cost.

Food & Beverages

Beautiful family owned cafes and restaurants are a great way to explore the traditional Italian cuisine. I would say a general rule of thumb on eating out a day is around £30/40 – remember to keep this in mind when searching accommodation as some will include breakfast! There are more up-market style restaurants that will obviously cost more and for more budget conscious travellers, you can find food stalls and small corner cafes that offer cheaper options.

Activities

Plazzo Vecchio

Dependant on what you enjoy doing whilst on holiday massively impacts how much it will cost to do an activity or two.

For galleries and museums, I would set a budget from between £20-£50 for admissions. The Palazzo Vecchio guided experience is £31 per person and Gallerie Degli Uffizi is £30.79 per person for an example. Some of the admissions are more expensive if you’re guided and if it includes any beverages.

Gallerie Degli Uffizi

I definitely recommend Wine Tasting if you’re making a trip to Florence and the surrounding Tuscany Areas. Not only is it a beautiful location to appreciate authentically made wine, it doesn’t cost a fortune to do. Cheaper wine tasting days are roughly £60 per person but if you want to push the boat out, there are luxury wine tasting days which are approximately £130 per adult.

Although many things in Florence cost money to do, you can always spend the day cost-free strolling through flourishing markets and observing the beautiful sites of the city.

Important Information

  • Italian is the language.
  • Country Code 0039 Local Code 055
  • Emergency Services 112/113/118
  • Currency is the Euro
  • Time is CEST (Central European Summer Time)
  • Citizens do not require a visa if travelling from the UK and EU
  • Covid-19 may mean you will be required to have a PLF(passenger locator form) on arrival, along with Vaccination Proof or PCR Test – keep up to date on requirements on the www.gov.uk website

These are just some of my recommendations and options when travelling to these destinations. There’s a ton more blogs and factual websites that give a further insight on things to do/ places to stay.

This little piece has taken me a while to write because I’ve been contemplating when was the right time to post given the on-going pandemic. With that said I do truly believe the end is in sight and travel will bounce back tremendously. When it does, I hope to continue exploring, writing and inspiring readers to get on a plane and go.

Loz X

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