It might not seem like we’re getting close to summer, thanks to the sub-zero temperatures and megastorms New York has suffered recently. But pretty soon the leaves will be out in Central Park and sun will be shimmering off the waters of the Hudson. This means you need to start thinking about where you’re spending your magic two-week holiday in July and August. Sure, booking a trip to Florida or upstate might be your first thought, but what about doing something completely different in 2018?
To help you get a bit more creative with your holiday ideas, we’ve put a list together of some varied options to suit all budgets.
If you’ve got the cash, then we can’t recommend Las Vegas enough. As well as the massive choice of amazing, world-famous casinos including Caesar’s Palace, the Luxor and New York, New York, there are also tons of world-class restaurants, shows and entertainment all over the city. You can also take a once in a lifetime trip to the Grand Canyon, which is just as mind-blowing as it looks in photographs.
But anyone can go to Vegas. Have you thought about a trip to Europe? Not many people think of a European destination as great spot for a casino holiday. The continent’s most famous casino is the Casino de Monte Carlo in Monaco, and a trip along the French Riviera is a great way to see it. A quick stop at a lesser-known casino and hotel called the Hyatt Regency Nice Palais de la Méditerranée a must, too.
The Casino de Monte Carlo attracts a huge amount of customers who are seeking a unique gambling experience. Online casinos also face plenty of competition, so one way of standing out from the crowd is by having a distinctive web design and theme. Adopting a nostalgic touch, such as images and sounds from the Vegas gambling scene in the 1950s is one way of doing this – and that’s the whole attraction of 777 Casino, one of the most unique online casinos on the web. Check it out for its incredibly authentic retro design, engaging gameplay graphics, its live real-time interaction with professional dealers and other players – as well as its gambling perks such as free spins no deposit games and bonuses. Just make sure you only play while you’re over in Europe, as online casinos aren’t legal in much of the US.
Many of us brush off the dust in January with the aim of getting a beach body ready for the summer, but why not just get fit while you’re taking time out? Relaxing holidays are great, but you always end up eating and drinking too much and come back in September with a few extra pounds.
Instead of booking that sunny, all-inclusive hotel in Southern Europe, why not dust of your bike and try and cycle while you’re there? By covering 50 miles a day, a keen cyclist could get through most of France, a country renowned for its picturesque cycle routes, in a couple of weeks – and see loads of great sights along the way. Alternatively, the UK’s Lake District is an exceptional destination for walking holidays, and you can book everything luxury houses to cheap and cheerful hostels in order to get out and explore the one of the most spectacular wild spots in the country.
If all of this energy expenditure doesn’t sound like a holiday at all, then a yoga holiday may be the answer for those who like the sound of a fitness holiday, but can’t be bothered with too much moving around. There are plenty of hotels and dedicated Yoga retreats all over the US too, so you won’t have to venture too far to reach your inner zen.
Instead of being self-indulgent and looking after numero uno this year, why not spend your time helping others? The feeling of being charitable is hard to beat and may be the one thing that helps you to put a stressful work like into perspective.
You’ll find lots of dedicated conservation holidays dedicated to saving both wild and captive animals, from wild horses in the US to Elephants in Africa – but you could even just offer to spend some time at your local cat and dog shelter if your budget restricts you from expensive flights and accommodation.
If you’re more about helping people than animals, there are also plenty of organisations dedicated to providing subsidised trips to parts of the world where people are less fortunate. Whether it’s putting your skills to work by teaching or helping to look after sick people on a trip that lasts several months, or two weeks spent just helping people get on with their daily lives, there are plenty of websites and projects that can arrange volunteering opportunities and aid breaks that are geared towards giving multiple types of help.
Who says you need to get on a plane or leave your hometown to have a great holiday experience? If you spend the vast majority of your time on the road, or spent cooped up in the office, then a week or two spent at home could be a welcome change. As well as getting to spend more time with family and loved ones, you could even end up discovering local activities, pubs and restaurants that you’d normally overlook. Plus, you can even enjoy a lie-in every day in your own bed, or even discover a new hobby. But what ever you do, don’t book two weeks off and spend it all watching daytime TV. Here are some ideas for a staycation that could offer a unique experience:
- Going outdoors – use apps to discover more about the nature in your area, whether you’re exploring it by bike or on foot
- Try mindfulness – learning to meditate can be the ultimate way to switch off and unwind
- Experience other cultures – rent out your spare room on Airbnb or Couchsurfing and host someone from another country
- Take a digital detox – completely disable internet access to disconnect from the digital world, and enjoy living in the present without as many distractions
Although holidays can be expensive and occasionally more stressful than if you’d stayed at work, they’re an important part of switching off and getting closer to the people you should really be spending more time with. So instead of picking that quick and simple 13 nights in a B&B in Spain, push the boat out and see where a truly unique holiday could take you.