2018 Travel

Over winter and ready for some sunshine or in need of an incentive to kick start your healthy eating plan?
Then make January a bit more bearable and get a holiday booked! If you’d like to try somewhere different but are unsure where to start then check out the experts at TUI & First Choice. With holidays crafted around personal service, tailor made experiences, and hand-picked quality hotels, all-inclusive cruising and an award-winning airline, the ultimate aim is to enable customers to have a holiday that is designed exactly around their specific needs. Take yourself to the likes of Rhodes, Mexico or Gran Canaria for summer sunshine or check out Lake Garda – just added to the TUI summer 2018 line-up.

Charlotte Brenner, Marketing Manager at TUI & First Choice commented: “As thoughts quickly shift to summer holidays over the festive season, we are gearing up for a brisk start to the New Year and what is deemed the traditional holiday booking period. We are delighted to offer a wider range of TUI and First Choice exclusive properties for 2018 and we encourage Northern Ireland holidaymakers to plan and book now to secure their top choice holiday as well as avail of the early booking savings and free child offers out now.”

Hot spots for 2018:

• Best for kids –Costa Dorada
• Best for foodies – Majorca
• Best for romance – Lake Garda
• Best adventure – Gran Canaria
• Best activity/families with teenagers – TUI Family Life
• New destinations – Cyprus
• Best cruises – Marella Explorer
• Best long-haul – Mexico
• Best for Singles – Ibiza

Best for Families with younger Kids – Costa Dorada
Millions of tourists choose the all-familiar Costas in Spain for their annual holiday, and Costa Dorada is one of the best family spots. This resort boasts huge stretches of white sand, a lively promenade, and plenty of activities for all ages. There’s Aquopolis waterpark and the PortAventura theme park, which is home to Europe’s tallest rollercoaster and loads of attractions for little ones. Plus, Barcelona is within easy day-tripping distance for when you need a culture fix. Our TUI FAMILY LIFE Avenida Suites is right in the centre of Salou, putting you in close proximity to all the attractions, plus it’s a 10-minute stroll from the Llevant Beach. The suites here are smart, modern and spacious, and there’s access to a huge pool, too. Or, if you want to be right in the heart of the action, pick the Hotel H10 Salou Princess as your base, which is close to both the beach and PortAventura theme park.
• 28th August ‘18, Belfast to Costa Dorada, TUI Family Life Avenida Suites, 4 Star, 7 nights, Half Board from £1599 (2+1), £2119 (2+2)  (Free child places available)

Avenida Suites

Best for foodies – Majorca
Year after year Majorca leads the way with its short flight time, abundance of hotels/apartments and resorts and beaches that are ever so child friendly! But what about the amazing Majorcan food? It’s said that our tastebuds can bring back powerful memories – so, for an unforgettable holiday, make sure you fill your plate with some local dishes. Among the medieval streets of the Majorcan capital, lie tasty tapas joints that will have your mouth watering.  And, if there’s anywhere in the world that’s renowned for its tantalising tapas, Palma is one of them. But, if you’re committed to eating like a local try tumbet, a splendid vegetable dish, or fideua, the local paella made with noodles rather than rice.
• 05th May ‘18, Belfast to Majorca, Suneoclub Bellevue Lagomonte, 3 Star, 7 nights, All Inclusive from £539pp
• 18th June ‘18, City of Derry to Majorca, Suneoclub Bellevue Lagomonte, 3 Star, 7 nights, All Inclusive from £699pp

Majorca

Best for Romance – Lake Garda
Right in the heart of northern Italy, Lake Garda, is a stunning destination for a romantic getaway. There is a lot to do and see on this beautiful lake and with so much to offer you will want to return time and time again. A rich yet turbulent history has left behind ancient castles, towering above charming cobbled streets and medieval harbours, with the dramatic mountainous backdrop in the north giving way to rolling hills in the south. The relaxed Italian atmosphere, appetising fresh lake fish and pleasant summer climate are enough to captivate the hearts of all who visits. Walk the hills of Malcesine, take a stroll hand in hand along the promenade of Limone or go on a day trip to Verona and fall in love all over again in the home of Romeo and Juliet. Each of Garda’s lakeside towns is full of culture and history. Climb the towers of Malcesine, Torri del Benaco and Sirmione for beautiful views across the lake. Grand churches and prominent bell towers take centre stage in peaceful piazzas, alongside romantic winding cobbled streets lined with restaurants, bars and ice cream parlours.
• 16th June 2018, Belfast to Verona, Hotel La Perla, Garda, 3 Star, 7 nights, Half Board from £889pp.

Lake Garda

Best adventure – Gran Canaria
Gran Canaria is famous as a year-round spot for sun worshippers and last-minute holidaymakers. Did you know, however, that the island is also like a giant adventure playground? Yes, Gran Canaria plays host to all kinds of thrilling sports and recreational activities that will give your next trip a twist. Whether you prefer your adventures on land or in the water, Gran Canaria is bursting with activities for the energetic traveller. It is packed with beaches that enable you to surf and take part in other watersports like kitesurfing and bodyboarding. Gran Canaria’s warm waters and range of PADI diving courses available make the island a marvellous location to learn to dive or hone your deep-sea diving skills. Inland Gran Canaria is fairly undulating, which makes it the perfect place to go hiking. A short hour’s drive from Maspalomas stands the Pico de Las Nieves, the highest point of the island. Thanks to the beautiful climate and high-quality road surfaces, Gran Canaria is a great place to cycle all year round too. The island offers experienced mountain bikers lots of undiscovered trails and some seriously rugged terrain. Names such as ‘Devil’s Staircase’ and ‘Hill that Can’t be Climbed’ provide you with an idea of what the trails are like. Past volcanic activity on the island has created a backdrop of vertical cliffs, gullies, rock needles, crests and overhangs, allowing climbers to put their skills to the test. If these activities sound a bit strenuous why not go for a ride along the beach on a horse or camel? You can also jump on a dune buggy or jeep and explore.
• 19th May 2018, Belfast to Gran Canaria, Dunas Mirador Maspalomas ,3 Star, 7 nights, All Inclusive from £619pp.

Gran Canaria

Best activity/families with teenagers – TUI Family Life
It’s the dilemma that every parent faces come holiday time: how do I choose a destination and keep everyone happy? Get the balance wrong and you face a tantrum from your smallest children, or a teenager’s strop. Luckily that won’t happen if you book with TUI. Their Family Life resorts are perfect for children of all ages and make for splendid family holidays. The Bamse Club caters for 3 to 5-year olds, the @611 Club will suit children in the 6 to 11 age range, and there are evening clubs, which take place three times a week for older children and teenagers who feel the day is far too young to stay in and watch TV after dinner! They can also hang out in the free Wi-Fi area. Let the kids play hard as you cram in a spot of yoga or Pilates in the outdoor fitness area, or just chill out at the bar with a cocktail. The resorts’ hosts coordinate events and activities that the whole family can enjoy together. There is also evening entertainment like children’s discos and shows, plus live cabaret performances suitable for all of the family. Equipped with pools for parents to have a swim in and pools for children to splash around in, families can cool down easily while outdoors at the resort. Afterwards, you can replenish your energy with a range of foods in the restaurants onsite. With resorts in Salou, Bodrum and Zante, to name just a few exciting destinations, there’s some serious family fun to be had. Treat your family with a holiday to a TUI Family Life resort – offering sun and fun, you simply can’t lose.
• 22nd May 2018, Belfast to Majorca, TUI Family LIFE Coma Gran, Sa Coma, 4 Star, 7 nights, Self-Catering, from £1499 (2+2).
• 18th June 2018, City of Derry to Majorca, TUI Family LIFE Coma Gran, Sa Coma,4 Star, 7 nights, Self-Catering, from £2029 (2+2).

New Destination – Cyprus
Thanks to its sandy stretches, ancient sights and up-tempo nightlife, Cyprus is a firm holiday favourite, attracting everyone from families to clubbers. A mix of laidback and lively resorts fringe the island, along with beautiful beaches. And if you go inland, you’ll find sleepy villages, hidden hamlets and the scenic Troodos Mountains. The glorious island is steeped in 10,000 years of history and is evident throughout. The bright lights of Ayia Napa are one of the main reasons people book holidays to the Larnaca region of Cyprus. But you’ve also got Blue Flag beaches and picturesque countryside to look forward to. Holidays to the Paphos region also involve Blue Flag beaches, but there are forests filled with cypress trees, and seafood dinners at harbour-front tavernas to discover too.
• 23rd May 2018, Belfast to Larnaca, Green Bungalows, Ayia Napa, 2 Star, 7 nights, Self Catering from £599pp.

Cyprus

Best cruises – Marella Explorer
Earlier this year Thomson Cruises became Marella Cruises and Marella Explorer is the cruise lines’ newest (and largest ship) setting sail next year, joining recently launched ships Marella Discovery and Marella Discovery 2 in offering All-Inclusive as standard. Sailing from Palma, Majorca from May 2018, Marella Explorer offers even more choice, space and flexibility for customers, including two new cabin types, bigger than any other standard cabin in the fleet and a wider choice of dining and premium entertainment. The ship has a bumper 10 restaurants and 10 bars, as well as an indoor cinema and a Sport & Family Deck. You can expect fleet favourites like Snack Shack and Kora La, plus brand new spaces like Indigo – a swanky bar, club and casino. Customers on board the ship will also be able to experience ultimate relaxation in the new, state-of-the-art onboard spa, a partnership with the renowned Champneys; the spa will be their first at sea. Typical of a Champneys resort, the luxurious spa will feature a full treatment menu, including facials, body wraps, massages, manicures, acupuncture and more, as well as a salon, wellness centre and stylish relaxation room that boasts comfortable beds complete with stunning panoramic views. All Marella Cruises include tips and service charges in the price you pay before departure, plus cruises set sail at night meaning fewer days spent at sea and more time spent ashore.
• 29th Sept 2018, Belfast to Majorca, Marella Explorer, (4/5 Inside Cabin), Magic of Spain,  7 nights, All Inclusive from £1169pp.

Best long-haul – Mexico
Fancy retracing the thousand-year-old steps of the Ancient Maya people? Take advantage of TUI’s direct flights to Cancun Mexico from Dublin! There are more than a few impressive sights for you to explore on Mexico’s Caribbean Coast – with the most famous being the ancient city of Tulum. This crumbling civilisation is the home of Chichen Itza, which is now known as one of the seven new wonders of the world. And, there are several other temples for you to visit, including the impressive, towering El Castillo and the Templo Dios del Viento which guards the sea entrance to the city. Tulum is easy to get to from Cancun, so if you’re enjoying a sunshine holiday it’s easy to get your culture fix, too. You can even mix beach and culture on a Multi Centre holiday and combine your adventure back in time on the Caribbean Coast with a relaxing stay in dreamy Isla Mujeres, which is packed full of white sand beaches.
• 11th June 2018, Dublin to Cancun, Riu Lupita, 3 Star, 14 nights, All Inclusive from €1,569pp.

Mexico

Best for singles – Ibiza
TUI Scene offers a number of affordable hotels and apartments in key party destinations aimed at singles and young adults. Holidays to Ibiza need no introduction. Here, sun-soaked days go hand in hand with neon nights, so you can burn the candle at both ends. Top-line DJs and famous clubs stay open until the wee hours of the morning and is the recipe that has made the nightlife of Ibiza so well-known around the world. And the legendary and lively party scenes of San Antonio and Playa d’en Bossa show no signs of slowing down! Although it’s rightly earned its crown as nightlife royalty, there is so much more to Ibiza than its party credentials. In fact, the old section of Ibiza Town, also known as Elvissa, is actually a UNESCO World Heritage Site. As you stroll along the cobbled streets of this walled town-within-a-town, be sure to take a close look at the ancient stone walls which contain fragments of Carthaginian, medieval and Moorish structures.
• 21st May 2018, Belfast to Ibiza, Sunshine Apartments, 2 Star, 7 nights, Self-Catering from £359pp (based on 3 & 4 sharing)
• 21st May 2018, Belfast to Ibiza, Sunshine Apartments, 2 Star, 7 nights, Self Catering from £419pp

Ibiza

Holidaymakers wanting to book a holiday or find out more should click on https://www.tui.co.uk  or visit their local TUI Store or travel agent.