Comparing Coasts

15 June 2017

Comparing Coasts

Not booked a trip away over the summer yet? With June already halfway through we suspect it won’t be long before you start yearning for a well-deserved break. The question as always is ‘where?’. Somehow a holiday by the sea during the summer is a must. We’ve taken a whistle stop tour around five coastal regions around the world to help you decide where to get your fix of sea air this year!

Amalfi Coast, Italy

The stunning Amalfi coastline

An incredible combination of beauty and drama awaits you on the Amalfi Coast. The setting for many a film, the Amalfi Coast is one of Europe’s most desirable and romantic destinations. Set off down the ‘road of a thousand bends’ (a fast car is optional!) and admire the spectacular views from numerous lookout points as you travel between small villages and glamorous towns on a holiday to remember.

Places to visit & things to do

  • Sorrento -  The gateway to the Amalfi coast, Sorrento is a civilised and beautiful town in its own right and a good base for exploring the region's highlights.
  • Positano -  The coast’s most picturesque and photogenic town. A riot of colour with wisteria draped hotels and terracotta coloured houses which tumble down towards a sea of the brightest blue. Check out the fashionable boutiques and enjoy a pizza in one of the towns many smart restaurants.
  • Naples - You can’t be in Southern Italy and not visit Naples. Experience one of the oldest and most historic cities in Italy with incredible architecture, palaces and castles to explore. And then there’s the food, with some of the best pizza, pasta and coffee in the country.
  • Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius -  You’re not far from these incredible archaeological sites and it’s not every day you get to visit the site of the only active volcano in Europe! Fear not, there hasn’t been an eruption since 1944.

Where to stay

  • Santa Caterina - Timeless and elegant, Santa Caterina is a converted late 19th century liberty-style villa, hidden away in the hillside of the Amalfi Coast. Enjoy impeccable levels of service in this unquestionably 5-star jewel of the Mediterranean.
  • Belmond Caruso – A former 11th century palace which has been lovingly restored to its former glory. You’ll find yourself transported back in time staying amongst the ancient walls of Belmond Caruso. Stunning views out to the Tyrrhenian Sea complete the picture.

South West, UK

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Salcombe Estuary. Photo courtesy of salcombeinformation.co.uk

Summer is without doubt the best time to visit the South West of the UK. And with miles of stunning coastal regions it’s a fantastic destination for those who love to spend time by the sea.

Places to visit & things to do

  • Salcombe – Probably THE place to be seen during the summer months, this idyllic but trendy seaside town is perfect for an all-in-one holiday and ideal for families or couples alike. Walk the town popping into boutiques on the way before enjoying lunch at the Winking Prawn. For boat enthusiasts, Salcombe is a mecca – head out of the estuary and explore the coast by yacht or head inland via motorboat and meander down winding creeks. More information on Salcombe here.
  • Padstow – Also known as ‘Padstein’ in homage to its famous resident chef, Rick Stein, is a charming fishing town on the north coast of Devon. A fun day out and the perfect destination for foodies! We’d suggest grabbing some of the best takeaway fish and chips you’ll ever eat from Steins Fish & Chips on the harbour front, followed by a brisk walk out of Padstow, leaving enough time to return for dinner at The Seafood Restaurant (also owned by Stein).
  • Walking – The South West coastal path is probably one of the finest footpaths in the UK, if not the world. 630 miles long, it encompasses the best bits of the UK coastline. But don’t feel you need to walk all of it! You’re able to hop on and off at your leisure.
  • Stonehenge – heading down to the South West, you may well find yourself driving along the A303 past Stonehenge. Take the opportunity to pull off the road and head down to the visitor centre and then on to the stones themselves. Great viewed as the sun rises.

Where to stay

  • The Sea Balcony - Located in the heart of Salcombe with incredible views from the balcony across the Estuary, The Sea Balcony offers the best of both worlds with the VIP facilities of a grand hotel and the privacy of your own blissful retreat.
  • Vine House – A stunning waterside house located in the beautiful Batson Creek. Perfect for families or large groups, Vine House is set in extensive landscaped gardens with views down the Batson Creek. Idyllic!

Cote d’Azur, France

Monaco Harbour replete with Super Yachts

Synonymous with glamour, super yachts and A-listers, the Cote d’Azur is a beautiful destination, especially in the summer when the sun glints and glistens on the crystal clear blue seas (which give the Cote d’Azur its name). A luxurious holiday destination without doubt!

Places to visit & things to do

  • St-Tropez – Brigitte Bardot visited in the 50’s and ever since then this once peaceful fishing village has been a sizzling jet-set favourite. A fun place to just hang out and people watch from the terrace of a little café. After coffee, head out to the top of the village where there is an impressively fortified citadel with stunning views out to sea.
  • Monaco – You simply will not be short of things to do in Monaco. Head to the harbour to see one of the finest collections of super yachts before heading to Monte Carlo’s legendary marble and gold casino to try your hand at blackjack or bet it all on red with a spin of the roulette wheel.
  • Charter a yacht – The French Rivera is the perfect place to head out on a boat (ideally a large one!). Whether it’s for a day or longer it’s the perfect way to explore the region and soak up the sun.

Places to Stay

  • Cap Estel – An exclusive gated mansion, Cap Estel sits on the waters edge between Monaco and Nice. A subtle, chic and private hotel, it’s the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle that is so common on the French Riviera during the summer.
  • Hotel Metropole – Located in the heart of Monte Carlo, this luxurious hotel is the perfect base for a city break in this iconic city. Hotel Metropole is the epitome of extravagance with first rate service and the highest of standards.

California West Coast, USA

The view from the road. Route 1 - courtesy of David Iliff

The all-American dream destination, California occupies almost half the length of America’s west coast. Renowned for its stunning beaches and laid back nature (as well as superb weather!), California is a great place to explore for a week or two.

Places to visit & things to do

  • Route 1 – You just have to… no trip to California would be complete without heading out for a drive down the Route 1 Pacific Coast Highway. The road meanders along the coastline taking you through some of the most spectacular scenery in the world. Convertible car optional!
  • Napa Valley – Producing some awesome wines, Napa Valley is home to over 400 wineries. Clearly the perfect destination for wine lovers! Explore the vineyards, take a hot air balloon ride and enjoy the wine!
  • Yosemite National Park – Best known for its waterfalls, Yosemite is an outdoor mecca. Biking, rafting, walking – however you experience it, you’ll be taken aback by the vast beauty of this incredible region.

Where to stay

  • Post Ranch Inn – Set within the Big Sur mountain range, this resort really is a private haven of peacefulness. Incredible views over the Pacific and a backdrop from soaring red rocky mountains ensure this hotel has a wow factor like no other.
  • Belmond El Encanto – Set high up on the Santas Barbara hillside, with views over the beautiful Californian coastline, this resort is something special and offers an asylum of serenity within the contagious glamour of California.

Mayan Riviera, Mexico

 

The Tulum Ruins - Image courtesy of Carlos Delgado

Stretching south from Cancun to the dramatic cliff top ruins of Tulum, the Mayan Riviera offers visitors a blend of Caribbean barefoot luxury but without the restrictions of island life.

Places to visit & things to do

  • Tulum Ruins – The ruins of Tulum are set back on a strip of rugged coastline with a strip of brilliant beach and turquoise waters at their feet. A pretty breath-taking location and worth a visit. Head there early to avoid the crowds.
  • Playa del Carmen – Probably the Riviera’s trendiest city, you’ll find beaches, bars and great nightlife. The reefs out to sea are also an excellent spot for diving and snorkelling.
  • Dive the Palancar Reef - Divers return again and again to this beautiful hidden gem off the coast of the island Cozumel. While it may not be as large as other reefs, it is just as beautiful with its multicoloured (think bright pinks, greens, oranges, and yellows) marine flora and fauna.

Where to stay

  • Viceroy Mayakoba – Surrounded by palms, this beach front resort is quiet, intimate and romantic. The impeccable service and attention to detail starts the moment you check in guaranteeing a relaxing, luxurious stay.
  • Rosewood Mayakoba – Set amongst lush jungle and bordering the ocean, this resort is the ultimate in Mexican luxury. Enjoy award wining golf courses, fine dining and spa treatments during your stay. Rosewood Mayakoba offer you a real chance to relax and recharge your batteries.

We hope you’ve enjoyed our little tour of some amazing coastal destinations for your next holiday. For more information on any of these regions and accommodation options available to you give our expert travel consultants a call on  +44 1993 899 430 or click here for more contact details.