Our favourite destinations for October half-term
BY - Tim Latimer, 22 August 2019, ARTICLES
BY - Tim Latimer, 22 August 2019, ARTICLES
October half-term is the perfect opportunity to get the family together to make the most of the late season sun.
There are plenty of reasons why October is a great month for a luxury villa holiday. The southern Mediterranean in particular remains warm and offers the ideal climate for families with young children or those who don’t like the strong sunshine of August.
The sea has had all summer to warm up too, so there are still plenty of opportunities for a refreshing dip in the sea. You’ll escape the crowds that flock in the peak summer months and with temperatures slightly milder you’ll be able to enjoy the beaches and sights without the queues or crowds all for fantastic value. Your days can be as action packed or as relaxed as you like on a villa holiday in October.
We have a fine selection of hand-picked luxury villas both near the beach or in the countryside, including smaller properties for an intimate holiday to larger villas for bigger groups. Many have private pools, and some are set in the grounds of a hotel, offering the privacy of your own space yet with the five star services and facilities on your doorstep.
Though slightly cooler, the days still remain warm in Italy come October. It’s an exciting time to visit too and a fantastic time to explore. Head inland towards central Italy and the stunning regions of Tuscany and Umbria and you’ll be greeted with rolling hills alight with an explosion of changing autumn colours.
October is also the main harvest season meaning foodies will be in heaven at this time of year, and there are plenty of ways to get involved. Traditional food markets pop up all over the region and in some places you can even pick your own; it makes for a great afternoon trying something new with the family.
Of course we couldn’t forget to mention the wine too and if you feel like an afternoon spent away from the kids, it’s a great time to head to one of the many vineyards across the region for sample the local vino.
>> Read our blog on village festivals in October in Tuscany.
Many of our luxury villas across Tuscany and Umbria are set within UNESCO heritage sites that blend in harmoniously with the natural beauty of the landscape, offering an unrivalled sense of peace and tranquillity. Yet, they are often located as part of a larger estate which have their own wineries, golf courses, spas, as well as offering cooking classes, children’s activities, cycling, historical tours and more.
There is truly something for everyone to enjoy on a luxury villa holiday and experience authentic Italian countryside at a unique and wonderful time of year.
With Florence and Siena as well as plenty of charming villages along the way within an hour’s drive, there is plenty to keep all ages busy and a wealth of culture to be explored.
Villa Oliviera in Tuscany was once a traditional 17th century olive press. Having been lovingly restored into a stunning three-bedroom luxury villa in Val d’Orcia, you’ll enjoy a private pool overlooking sublime countryside views and an adjacent terrace, just the spot to enjoy a glass of vino whilst watching the sun set.
We couldn’t talk about Italy and not mention Rome and what better time to visit than in the Autumn once the soaring heat of the summer has subsided and the crowds are fewer. City breaks don’t just have to be for adults too and there is plenty to explore.
Known as the eternal city, there isn’t much that Rome doesn’t have. Steeped in thousands of years of history, you could be wandering around The Coliseum one moment, taking in the sights of the famous Trevvi Fountain the next and enjoying some of the finest Italian cuisine over lunch.
At the end of a busy day, let your chauffer pick you straight up and take you back to the wonderful Villa di Roma, just a short drive away. Set in extensive gardens, it has a private pool and offers an ideal base from which to explore this ancient city.
With temperatures reaching up into the mid twenties in October, it can be considered t-shirt whether all year round in southern Spain. With a much more relaxed feel, longer days, blue skies, warm weather it’s a great time to visit. You might even find your own secluded stretch of beach to enjoy as just yours for the day with fewer people around.
Our luxury villas in Marbella and Ibiza are well placed and provide a great base for a family holiday in the Autumn, whether you simply want to make the most of the sun before the winter sets in back in the UK or take advantage of the slightly cooler climate with sporting activities or exploring the traditional towns to immerse yourself in the local culture.
From off road adventures, zip lining, kite boarding, hiking across the mountains at Ronda national park, animal safaris and boating trips, to exploring the charming local markets in Puerto Banus for a more relaxed afternoon on your luxury villa holiday, there is more to Marbella than you might think.
Our three-bedroom villa hidden within the grounds of the exclusive Marbella Club is set in a prime position on the golden mile just moments from a sandy beach. With a private pool which children are sure to make the most of and cool contemporary interiors, stay at this luxury villa and you’ll also have access to all of the facilities and five star services at the hotel.
Though known for its nightlife and beaches, travel out of the peak season and you might be surprised at what a relaxing and charming island Ibiza Is. Walk the ancient cobbled streets of the old town or go cycling along the coast, before heading to a tapas restaurant to try the local cuisine topped off with plenty of sangria, of course!
Villa Renata on the western coast on Ibiza is just 550m from Cala Conta beach whilst the old town is approximately 25 minutes away and easily reached by car. With a glistening pool just waiting to be jumped into, a cinema room and plenty of space both indoors and out, this luxury villa is a haven for families and friends looking for a relaxed getaway on this beautiful island.
The Greek Islands are some of the most southerly in the Mediterranean, meaning warm and sunny days well into October. Combined with the changing autumnal colours of the olive groves, it’s a beautiful time to visit. And as the evenings still remain warm, it makes dining outdoors at the dusk a treat, whether in the comfort of your luxury villa or in a local taverna.
Crete, the largest of the Islands, rarely drops below 20 degrees from September to November so swimming can be enjoyed without the risk of it getting a little cool.
With a longstanding history, don’t miss the opportunity to discover its famous ancient sites without the crowds, from Spinalonga Island just off of Elounda on the north coast to the Palace of Knossos near Heraklion and various monasteries scattered throughout the island. Inland, you’ll find picturesque mountain villages and hiking trails. One of the most spectacular is across the breath-taking ravines of Samaria Gorge, so lace up your boots, it’s not to be missed!
The Presidential Spa Pool Villa, located between the quaint fishing village of Elounda and the larger town of Agios Nikolaos is set in an elevated position offering impressive views across the blue waters of the Mediterranean. Sleeping up to six, the interiors have been beautifully finished but the real wow factor is the outdoor space, with a private pool, terrace and Jacuzzi.
Located off the west coast of mainland Greece, you’ll be in no shortage of beautiful beaches and lush green scenery on the Ionian island of Corfu. The majority of tourism is confined to the coastal areas, but if you head inland you’ll get an entirely different feel for the island. With sleepy villages to explore and the smell of fresh flowers and olive groves to take in. Or why not spend a day wandering around Old Corfu Town, with its pretty Venetian buildings, colourful houses and picturesque market squares, it is listed as a UNESCO world heritage site.
One of our favourite luxury villas in Corfu is Atolikos House. Set amongst five acres of private land on the Kasseopi estate, it’s a true gem on the north east of the island. A stunning freshwater pool overlooks the sea with the hills lining the horizon in the background, you’ll also find a large wrap around terrace, just the spot for a pre-dinner aperitif with your party. There is even a jetty and plenty of equipment available for snorkelling or kayaking, if you feel like a tip in the turquoise waters below. A light and fresh interior completes this stunning luxury villa.
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