Whisk your loved one away to one of these romantic destinations…
I’m all of the opinion that when it comes to presents, I’d rather have a wealth of priceless memories than a list of material possessions. Give me tickets over a fancy handbag, whisk me away instead of buying me jewels or take me out to paint the town red rather than spank a load of cash on a fancy ornament for the home any day.
Whether you think Valentine’s day is a pile of something steaming or another fantastic excuse to spoil your beloved rotten, it’s always worthwhile having a few romantic ‘memory’ cards up your sleeve. Something that shows your darling dearest that you’re prepared to go that extra mile, to really personalise your offering and shower them with a new experience, dazzling short break or amorous getaway.
Not convinced? Well if anything, if you’re buying tickets, you generally need two of them so more often than not you can consider it a gift to yourself too!
Read on for romantic getaway travel inspiration…
The classic: Paris
Super easy and fairly cheap to get to from the UK by train, boat and plane. Personally I prefer travelling by Eurostar, where liquids – i.e Prosecco – are not prohibited and can be cracked en route (also worth taking a delicious picnic to compliment aforementioned Prosecco). Research blogs beforehand to seek out quirky pop up restaurants and bustling cafes hidden away down rambling alleyways. Seek out the sights – the Eiffel Tower is always worth a gander, or fancy something a bit different? Why not coincide the trip with tickets to an England V. France Rugby match at the magnificent Stade de France.
The eternally romantic: Rome
Ditch public transport and explore this stunning city on foot. Walking the streets feels like a history lesson through antiquity, the immensity and sheer number of lofty monuments, ruins and fountains is mind-boggling. Tick off a famous landmark round every corner – the colosseum, St Peter’s the Vatican, the Pantheon, Trevi Fountain…Pepper your day with well-deserved gastronomic breaks to feast on the equally beautiful food.
The fairytale city…& gallons of beer: Bruges
Go in December and the city is twinkly, festive and chocolate-boxy, it oozes the magic and romance of Christmas. Soak up the old-world charm, photograph snow-globe-inspiring architecture, and snuggle down in a cosy Inn to get giddy sampling the outrageously strong but highly delicious Belgian beers.
The staycation by the sea: Dartmouth
Since discovering Dartmouth a few years ago, it has always brought good things (touch wood). My brother passed out there (this is a good thing as of course, I mean as a naval officer), my now husband asked my father’s permission to marry me and it remains the only place I have really excelled at the coconut shy. I don’t mean to brag, but I was inexplicably outstanding. Coastal walks, fishy dinners, gorgeous sea views, it’s enough to make anyone want to propose.
The urban staycation: Bristol
Maybe because Bristol is my hometown and I love nothing more than showing people my treasured city, so I can recommend plenty of dreamy activities for the romance-seeking. In brief, a possible itinerary might look like this: breakfast at unfussy, unfailingly good Rosemarino, followed by a walk through pretty Clifton Village towards Brunel’s Suspension bridge. Wander down to the harbourside, past the SS Great Britain, sink a cheeky cider and some lunch at one of the waterside restaurants. As the sun is setting, purchase tickets to the Bristol Lido and sauna, jacuzzi and swim as the light fades and the pool starts glittering. Nourish your steamed selves at the Lido restaurant.
The mystery destination:
Only so-called as I have been watching way too many property programmes recently and they always end with a mystery ‘out-there’ house, something the couple had never previously considered and often end up loving the most. It’s not really feasible as a weekend trip, but for me, there’s nowhere more romantic than an African safari lodge. Located somewhere in the heart of deep dark Africa, thick with the sounds of nature, listening to the calls of the wild, living under the threat of danger – a trespassing elephant, a wayward hippo…early morning blood-red sunrises and places to laze in the afternoon heat. I could go on forever!