Best places to travel in February

India – Agra

I’ve got to start with this place and the Taj Mahal because the effect it had on me when I first caught sight of it was more than breathtaking. It is and enchanting experience and it is so beautiful it brought tears to my eyes.

 

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The best time to visit the Taj Mahal is early morning. It is magical to watch it slowly appearing through the mist. The marble will dazzle you and the colour of it appears to gradually differs throughout the day as the light changes. It took 22 years and 20, 000 workers to build it and the results are awesome. However, be careful of the touts outside. They can be very persistent and quite intimidating if you’re not used to that sort of thing. If you don’t want them to be so pushy, then you need to be firm with them. If you don’t want their services, then let them know. Show them the slightest bit of interest and they won’t leave you alone and there are a lot of them there trying to make money out of you. You have been warned! mumbai 036mumbai 006

India itself is a very unique country, unlike any other with its diversities. Doing the Golden Triangle is very popular, taking in Delhi and Jaipur. Both places are well worth a visit. We hired a private driver to show us round which works out very reasonable, cost wise. Most service industries work out very reasonable as labour is cheap in India on the whole. I had the best pedicure I’ve ever had in India. They took so much time preening my tired feet, it was very impressive.mumbai 052

mumbai 007I also visited Mumbai, which was another memorable experience. Indians don’t appear to take much notice of authority, for instance, most seem to ignore traffic lights, and I witnessed many of them driving down one way streets the wrong way. If that wasn’t enough, then you’ve also got the rickshaws driving too fast as well as the many different animals that suddenly come into the road including goats, cows, horses, camels. You really are taking your life into your own hands when travelling by road. It is an amazing place though and you won’t experience anywhere else quite like it from the huge span of slums to the marvels of the opulent architecture, this has to be one of the most unique cultures I’ve ever experienced. It is buzzing, vibrant, and you will see and smell sights and sensations never experienced before. Whether it be 50 people hanging off a bus or visiting beautiful temples, it will live long in your memory. The food is great here, especially if you love spicy food like me and it’s more cosmopolitan than I was expecting. I will say though, Indians don’t like queuing. Be prepared for a tussle whether it be in a shop or airport terminal, it feels more like being at a football match. mumbai 014 
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Best places to travel in January

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Dominican Republic

The Dominican Republic is an ideal place to go this time of year. It’s like being in the West Indies only it’s cheaper. If you can handle electric power cuts whilst you’re getting ready to go out in the evenings, then this is a great way of experiencing the typical white sandy beaches and aqua blue seas that you associate with the Caribbean. The culture is unique in that there is no such thing as a typical looking native here. The population is very mixed. The Dominican Republic is the most visited destination in the Caribbean with its great climate, golf courses, resorts and value for money.

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There are a lot of really good all inclusive deals to this part of the world and I’d recommend staying in Puerto Plata for a great all round holiday

Best Places to travel in January

Cancun, Mexico  cancun

If you’re still looking for a last minute deal for this month, then for me one of the best places to travel in January is Cancun in Mexico.I just love it here, with its enticing white sands, turquoise sea with plenty of watersports, lots of nightlife, great shopping, good foods and first class service, it’s almost impossible for Cancun to put a foot wrong. The bars even show live English football games which was a nice unexpected surprise for me.

There are a lot of really good all inclusive deals to Cancun and I must wave a flag for the Riu chain of hotels. I’ve used them in other parts of the globe and they’ve been good but the service I received in Mexico was exceptional.  chichen itza

If you’re interested in a bit of culture then there’s much on offer with the history of the Mayans and sights such as the famous pyramids and temples of Chichen Itza on the Yucatan peninsula – well worth a visit.

Best places to travel in January

Cape Verde           2014-11-12 12.53.14

Not many people you ask seem to know where Cape Verde is but when you look on the map and see how close the islands are to Senegal in Africa, you’ll realise why it might be a good choice for a holiday in January. You can enjoy the Saharan trade winds and endless hours of sunshine. Together with the unspoilt white beaches and the friendliness of it’s people, it’s a great place to while away the hours and recover from the festive season’s excesses. There are many all inclusive complexes both on Sal and Boa Vista, the two most popular of the islands in the Azures and they give excellent value for money.

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The main language spoken is Portuguese but most of the locals speak English. I tried my first ayuverdic massage here and it really was a most enjoyable experience, a little bit different with the therapist arranging my body into some yoga poses whilst lying there. It really gave me the feel good factor, as did the sun, food and entertainment.  2014-11-16 21.52.40

As a relatively quiet part of the world, (it has not yet been discovered by the masses) I would thoroughly give it the thumbs up as a remedy to get the New Year off in a positive frame.