Spring has sprung in Salzburg

April 16, 2014 at 3:35 AM
Salzburg old town, Austria

Salzburg old town, Austria

My favourite season is without a doubt spring.  As winter wanes and the days grow longer and warmer it’s a sign that it’s time for us to shake off our winter doldrums. The fresh air and blossoming spring landscape inspires us to put an end to our winter hibernation and explore the world around us.  If I could choose any place in the world for a spring holiday it would be Salzburg.

The Austrian city stretches out along the Salzach River, on the northern rim of the Alps.  The city is not only famous as the birthplace of Mozart and the setting for The Sound of Music, but it also has some of the world’s most magnificent examples of Baroque architecture.

Somerset: Keep calm and carry on

April 14, 2014 at 6:15 AM
Spectacular Cheddar Gorge

Spectacular Cheddar Gorge

This year has certainly thrown out some challenges in the way of weather, but how amazing has it been to see how the regions most affected have rallied? A coming together of communities, local businesses, councils, travel providers and many other organisations and individuals who have committed to helping in any way possible.

Over the last few weeks I have felt honoured to share stories from some of these individuals and organisations, learning how much has been done so that we can all look forward to spring and summer in some of England’s most beautiful counties. To see what I’ve been up to, check out my posts on Cornwall and Devon

This week I have been looking at Somerset, long a favourite holiday destination for not only U.K. holidaymakers but international visitors too. For those who have not yet had the pleasure of visiting the heart of the West Country, now is the time to take a look and learn just why it’s such a popular location. For seasoned visitors, it’s also time to take a look – at what’s going on over the next few months. Somerset is open and ready to welcome visitors; in fact, it’s literally bursting with events and attractions!

Family friendly days out in the UK & Europe

April 13, 2014 at 2:20 AM
Make the time to enjoy a day out with the family

Make the time to enjoy a day out with the family

Boredom-induced whining, siblings waging war for de facto ownership of the remote control, impatient demands even the most schooled negotiator would fail to meet: brace yourself, folks, the Easter holidays are just around the corner – and hot on the heels, a potentially torturous summer break is but a mere soggy spring away. To the kids, this means two months of freedom from school and an inevitable sense of expectation. To the parents – ah, not so much!

Don’t get me wrong, dear reader: any mother or father relishes the opportunity to spend more time with their apple-cheeked little darlings. On the other hand, keeping them amused for the duration of any extended time-off is a feat of Atlas-like proportions.

Enjoying that "spring vibe"

Enjoying that “spring vibe” (Photo: Bo Gordy-Stith)

However, there’s no need to despair! These days, the oft-uttered phrase “there’s nothing to do” should be all but expunged from our collective vocabulary. The wealth of activities on offer throughout the country assures that it’s easy – in theory at least – to alleviate any form of tedium that may set in over the holidays. From most outposts of the British Isles, you’re never more than a short journey away from all manner of family-orientated ventures. Alas, if you’re a long journey away from theme parks, beaches and zip-wired forests, I suggest you keep the Sky remote on your hip – and protect it with your life!

Cornwall: Keep calm and carry on

April 7, 2014 at 5:23 AM

Spring has most definitely sprung, and a county that is very close to my heart is truly blooming: iconic Cornwall. Stunning at any time of the year, each season gives a different but nonetheless wondrous perspective on this spectacular county. Spring comes like a breath of fresh air, giving a new lease of life to everything. Cornwall, like Devon and Somerset, weathered spectacular storms at the beginning of the year – but with true community spirit, hard work and an inspired enthusiasm, Cornwall is open, ready and excited to welcome visitors this Easter.

A jewel in England’s crown: The Lake District

April 2, 2014 at 1:00 AM
the beauty of the English lakes in spring

the beauty of the English lakes in spring

Spring has officially sprung, although I am sure we will experience some cooler weather again and of course the inevitable April showers will soon be upon us. But the fact that the trees have green leaf buds, the grass is lush having been watered by the recent downpours and the clumps of daffodils have bright yellow heads reminds us all that Easter is just around the corner – and with it the promise of warmer, sunnier days. Of course the shops are already stocked full of Easter treats, and I am staunchly ignoring my children’s pleas to purchase them now – apparently because they deserve a reward for whatever reason they think may sway my judgement!

I often talk about my family in posts as I love to share the travel experiences we have, hopefully inspiring other families to start their own travel memory bank. My favourite time of year is Easter. For the last 14 years we have spent the bank holiday weekend away in the UK, either just the four of us, or with friends and their children. A popular destination is the Lake district, and it’s not just a favourite of mine – it is a renowned UK destination worldwide, which isn’t surprising considering it boasts such stunning natural beauty.