James Whitaker Travel Designers Agent Insight

Which long-haul beach holiday packs the biggest punch?

James Whitaker-Sheppard of Travel Designers on how to choose the right beach holiday for your client.

Typically, when deciding on where to venture for a long-haul beach holiday, the two main areas are the Caribbean and the Indian Ocean. Both offer heat, sunshine, sandy beaches, warm waters and an array of beach resorts to choose from. As similar as these types of holidays can be, the differences can be vast.

Let’s take the Maldives for example, the perfect honeymoon destination, known for its island resorts offering private beach villas and overwater accommodation. The Maldives is the ultimate archetypal fly-and-flop location.

Further south in the Indian Ocean, there is Mauritius and Seychelles. Mauritius, with a slightly cooler climate, can provide attractively priced three- and four-star resorts, right through to high-end five-star luxury, so it can easily suit most budgets. The Seychelles, made up of several islands, is the perfect choice for those seeking to island-hop and for those happy to pay a bit more on the outset and while they are there, as all-inclusive deals are rarely available.

Moving over to the Caribbean, one big plus over the Indian Ocean, is flight time and the number of direct services available from the UK, particularly Gatwick. Within seven-to-ten hours you can reach most of these stunning islands, where island life is felt the moment you leave the airport. There are so many islands to choose from, and again, you can find budget-friendly and budget-blowing options galore!

St Lucia is one of my personal favourite islands in the Caribbean. I love the laidback nature of the locals, the dramatic backdrop of lush tropical hillsides and the variation of resorts. There’s everything here from family-friendly all-inclusive beach resorts, to luxury and exclusive five-star properties, through to private villas and smaller three-star bed-and-breakfasts.


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