We have another strange summer in prospect. After two frustrating years of stop-start travel, there has been a surge in peak season bookings – many by people who haven’t travelled since 2019 and are desperate for some Mediterranean sun.
So what do you do if you also want to get away, but haven’t yet booked? And is it too late if you are limited to travel during the school holidays? The answer is that there are still some options out there if you know where to look, but you will need to be flexible and prepared for the fact that the usual cheap, last-minute options may not be available.
We have tracked down 30 of the best family breaks that still have availability during the school holidays and have themed them according to different tastes and budgets. Whether you like to lie on a beach, get active, book a private villa or enjoy some long-awaited luxury, we have some suggestions. We even have a selection for those who have been put off by the latest spate of airport disruption and want to avoid flying altogether.
There is undoubtedly significant pressure on flights, which was already high and has intensified further because of the recent raft of advance cancellations – especially those by easyJet and Tui. Airfares are now at historic highs for many of the most popular destinations – especially at weekends. So be doubly careful about booking arrangements independently, and don’t confirm accommodation until you are completely sure that you can find an affordable way to get there.
Be aware, too, that accommodation is also tight in some areas. For example, it can be hard to find a villa anywhere in the classically popular areas of Andalucia, Umbria and Tuscany. But use our selection as a starting point and you will certainly be able to find something that ticks your boxes, and gives you the break you are so looking forward to.
This may well be a strange year, and demand may be high, but holidays won’t run out altogether. Here’s to summer!
Classic sun and sand
A 10-minute walk from a sandy beach, the four-star Holiday Village Lanzarote in Playa Blanca suits families looking for kids’ clubs, swimming sessions and football tuition. There are three restaurants and three bars, plus a splash park for small children and an aerial adventure course for over-6s.
How to do it: Tui (020 3451 2688; tui.co.uk) offers stays at the 4T Holiday Village Lanzarote from £1,002 all-inclusive, based on a family room. Departs July 25
By the sea near Bodrum
On the beach in the small resort of Ortakent, the low-rise Tamarisk hotel has flower-filled gardens surrounded by a large swimming pool. There is windsurfing, sailing, waterskiing and kayaking available locally, and Bodrum is only 20 minutes away.
How to do it: Cachet Travel (020 8847 8700; cachet-travel.co.uk) offers stays at Tamarisk Beach Hotel, from £1,245 half-board. Departs August 4