It’s hard to imagine Movember starting just a decade ago. What has grown from a small, Australian event into an almost international rite of passage every November, sees a gathering of men from around the world seek to outdo one another with facial hair.
All for a good cause, of course.
This year, HomeAway’s raring to go (or should that be grow?), and our Mo Bros are as inventive as ever. From the classic ‘Rock Star’ to the Hogan-style ‘Trucker’, we’ll be sporting some very weird and wonderful ‘taches to raise awareness about men’s health, alongside the all-important funds to tackle prostate and testicular cancer. Alongside our Mo Sisters – thankfully supporting us through that embarrassing stubble stage – the moustache madness that is HomeAway.co.uk in Movember is sure to be as successful as ever.
There are a diverse range of ski holidays out there, and paradoxically, they’re not all about skiing.
OK, so that might sound like a fairly odd sentence to start off with, but we’re confident that groups and families—of all ages and abilities—can enjoy a winter break together; whether they all ski or not. With a stay at one of the ski chalets we’ve listed below, you can spend seven days on the slopes, balance your time between different sports, or forgo all that snow and while your hours away on other pursuits. Are you into black runs but your mate’s a budding gourmand? Perhaps your parents want a pampering but you’ve taken to snowboarding? Whatever the ski or non-ski situation, read on for our top tips when booking winter breaks.
Ski holidays in France show no sign of slipping in popularity ranks, and with good reason: the Morzine and Meribel ski areas (to name just two) are some of the finest the world over. But what about a ski holiday in France that’ll appeal to non-skiers too? No problem: Chamonix ski chalets should do the trick. Sleeping fifteen of your friends, this rustic ski lodge in Les Houches comes with private woods and a hot tub, and offers nearby opportunities for activities as diverse as ice climbing and wine tasting. And, being just an hour from Geneva, you can concentrate your efforts on exploring what neighbouring Switzerland has to offer, too.
If there’s one thing the internet has demonstrated in recent years, it’s that everyone loves an app. Some mobile apps now govern our lives – how we book flights, secure tables at restaurants, play games, view photos – while others merely seek to induce a chuckle. Making life faster, slicker, less troublesome: that’s the modus operandi of most apps. And a new one – designed to refine the process of finding and booking holiday homes – is no different.
The free HomeAway UK iPhone app is an essential piece of kit for travellers of all descriptions. Looking for more tranquillity than is offered by a busy hotel? Want to stay in your own private villa, cottage, houseboat? Cool. This app puts you slap-bang in the middle of a trusted marketplace, bustling with property owners who lease their abodes to tourists from around the world. Even if you’re just passing through a town or city for a weekend – to catch a show, visit a friend, watch a football match – you can rent an apartment for a fraction of the cost of a hotel.
Being a parent can be extremely rewarding. At times, it can also be tough. The ups and downs, the tempers and tantrums, the broken sleep and the unbroken smiles: parenting draws upon the full gamut of human emotions.
Some parents elect to document their family life and put the salient details online so that the rest of us can laugh, learn and empathise. We call these people mum and dad bloggers, and here at HomeAway.co.uk, we’ve got a lot of time for them. So much so that we’re proud to be sponsoring the Best Family Travel category in the 2013 MAD (Mum & Dad) Blog Awards. A celebration of the best parental musings, the MADs cover everything from photography to fashion.
Have a read through this year’s finalists and then cast your vote to determine which parent warrants a £500 holiday rental voucher courtesy of HomeAway.co.uk. The winner will be announced at the MADs awards ceremony in September.
All the Camping Gear details the adventures of a Yorkshire family of four. Written by Louise Turner, the blog comes with the tag-line ‘All the camping gear (and no idea)’. Louise’s engrossing tales about camping are elegantly written and laced with gentle humour.
Jetlag and Mayhem is the product of Nicola, an avid backpacker with a love of travel. Now married with two kids, Nicola documents her quest to see the world whilst caring for her family. Her newsy blog is packed with travel ideas including flight reviews and budget holiday suggestions.
Mums do Travel is written by Gretta Schifano, a freelance journalist who lives in south-east England with her family. Having lived and worked in Italy and Spain, Gretta now blogs about family holidays in her spare time. Mums do Travel is packed with holiday tips, including suggestions for family days out as well as guests posts and suggestions from readers.
Mum’s Gone To was created by Trish Burgess after she decided to type up her travel diaries. The blog commenced with ‘Mum’s Gone to Iceland’; since then, mum and family have gone on to visit Canada, Cyprus, Barcelona and many more destinations, with their adventures detailed in Trish’s upbeat blog. There’s also space in there for book recommendations and general chatter about the author’s busy life.
The Family Adventure Project is packed with ideas and inspiration ‘to make your family life active, adventurous and interesting’. More like a magazine than a humble blog, TFAP boasts an array of ideas for road trips, camping, hiking and other outdoorsy stuff that pits man, woman and child against nature. The blog is run by Kirstie and Stuart who share a passion for travel – and three children. Their family adventures make for inspirational reading.
Our parent bloggers show that mum and dad don’t just look after us; they can inspire and educate us through travel. These bloggers also show that a great family holiday doesn’t have to take you to the ends of the earth and that keeping the kids entertained doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Follow the links to see adventures from Stewart and Kirstie, find out where mum has gone to this time, and get great tips on family camping and backpacking. Vote for your favourite finalist on the MAD Blog Awards site then check back in September to see who wins the £500 holiday rental voucher. If this has gotten you thinking about your next family holiday we have thousands of great holiday homes at HomeAway.co.uk.
The entries have been amassing in our latest competition. We’ve asked you to send in those holiday moments that make you laugh, smile, swoon, sing; the ones you simply have to capture and cherish with a photograph.
So if you want to enter, once you’ve sourced this suitably striking image, a snapshot of your own personal paradise, simply add a caption and voila! We’ve had funny, wacky, even envy-inspiring entries – several landscapes were so to-die-for, we couldn’t resist re-wallpapering our laptop home screens with them.
Here’s a selection of some of our favourites. It wasn’t easy culling a shortlist from the repository of pics we’ve been sent, but we just about managed it. In some cases, those clever captions proved useful; by reading them, we got an insight into what your holiday meant to you. A simple pleasure, a once-in-a-lifetime experience, a divine marriage of sun, sea and sand: it’s fair to say boxes have been ticked, chuckles had, likes dispensed. We hope you enjoy them as much as we have!
Oh, incidentally, the caption begins “We found a place to…” Our intrepid travellers have supplied the end of the sentence for us, which appears below each image.