When you’re planning your annual family holiday, do you usually think sun, sea and sand?

If you live in a chilly Northern Hemisphere nation, it’s no wonder that you want a break from the dire weather and the chance to soak up some rays, top up your vitamin D, splash around in the sea and dine outdoors.

But perhaps you should consider a skiing holiday instead?

Sure, it’s chilly ̶ but skiing holidays can also be sunny, the scenery is stunning, skiing and snowboarding are great exercise, plus most ski resorts have plenty of exciting entertainment for adults and children off the slopes.

And if you choose a resort that’s part of a lift-linked ski area, you can conveniently explore a massive range of slopes for all abilities and sample the apres-ski in different locations.

Sounds cool? Take a look at these three awesome Alpine ski areas.

Espace Killy

Now often called Tignes-Val d’Isère after its two terrific sister resorts, Espace Killy is named after French skiing legend and triple Olympic champion Jean-Claude Killy.

There’s a vast, snow-sure, high-altitude skiing area of some 300km here which has 158 pistes to suit every style and ability of skier. Val d’Isère sits at an impressive 1850m, has slopes right up to 3400m and legendary apres-ski, while Tignes comprises five villages at 1550m to 2100m and the runs down from the Grande Motte Glacier are legendary ̶ the famous Corniche blue piste is a particular favourite.

Paradiski

Located in the skiing heartland of the Tarentaise Valley, Paradiski has a mind-boggling skiable area of 425km, with skiing available right up to altitudes of 325om and 264 well-groomed pistes. The area includes Les Arcs, La Plagne and Peisey-Vallandry, all of which are conveniently linked by the excellent Vanoise Express lift.

There are child-friendly, car-free resorts across Paradiski with terrific ski package holidays available from select providers ̶ for instance, Arc 1800 ski holidays from Erna Low include accommodation, ski hire and more. Meanwhile, children’s facilities in Paradiski is varied and exciting, ranging from the thrilling Colorado Luge in Plagne Centre to the excellent Nursery Tom Pouce at Peisey-Vallandry.

Grand Massif

Located in the Northern Alps close to Mont Blanc and in striking distance of both Chamonix and Geneva, the Grand Massif ski area includes the five diverse yet delightful resorts of Sixt, Les Carroz, Morillon, Flaine and Samoëns. This isn’t the best-known ski domain, but it’s a hidden gem with a 265km skiable area, slopes to suit skiers of all stripes and an excellent standard of accommodation.

All of these resorts have their distinct charms, but if you’re travelling with kids in tow, Les Carroz is a good pick because although there’s accessible skiing up to 2480m, the resort’s low-level, westerly location at 1140m is more pleasant for young kids finding their feet. The apres-ski in Grand Massif is varied and vibrant, but sampling international beers at Le White Pub in Flaine is a favourite pastime for many pleasure-seekers!

Choose any of these three top-rated French Alps ski areas for the holiday of your life ̶ happy skiing!

Are you looking for a perfect place for a fun-filled weekend for a group of friends, a family getaway, or a couple’s retreat? Put-in-Bay is the right place for you. Located just 20 miles from Sandusky, 80 miles from Cleveland, and roughly ten minute-drive from Catawba, this island offers a broad range of attractions and exciting things to do.

There is a lot to think about when planning your vacation in Put-in-Bay. From figuring out transportation to choosing accommodation and how to get around on the island, it can be downright stressful. But not anymore. Local platforms like Visit Put-In-Bay and travel forums provide helpful insights to help travelers figure out some of the affordable hotels and other services in Put-in-Bay. Here are some of the top-rate attraction sites in Put-in-Bay, Ohio.

1. South Bass Island State Park

Located on the opposite end of the primary activity in Put-in-Bay, this park offers a more natural and tranquil respite from the common tourist commotion in the downtown village. There are campgrounds and cabins on-site. There’s also a swimming area and a boat launch in the park.

South Bass Island State Park is an amazing place to visit if you’re seeking a spectacular and unobscured view of the unforgettable Put-in-Bay sunset. There’s a well-maintained green space with great park benches where you can relax with your family or friends while viewing the waterfront.

While visiting the park, it’s recommended to hire a golf cart to move around and explore the remnants of the famous Victory Hotel. This was the most famous hotel in the 1800s and was burned to the ground in 1919.

2. Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial

This memorial was created to honor the brave people who fought in the famous battle of Lake Erie in 1812. It was also intended to celebrate the lasting peace among the United States, Canada, and Great Britain. The memorial raises about 352 feet over Lake Erie and is located five miles from the world’s longest undefined border.

3. The Tour Train

If you choose not to hire golf carts, the tour train gives you the chance to tour Put-in-Bay in style. Just grab your binoculars, cameras, or sketchbook to document the moments of your tour on the island. If this sounds interesting, make your way to Downtown Bus Terminal to secure tickets and seats. This will be the beginning of your fun in Put-in-Bay. Note that the train makes several stops, and you can always alight and catch the next train as you explore the island.

4. Lake Erie Islands Wildlife Center

This wildlife center aims at preserving the natural wonders of South Bass Island. There are also interactive exhibitions, events, and classes that happen here regularly. By learning the importance of environmental conservation in a fun and more engaging way, you, your kids, or friends will find the fun and vacation thrill you seek.

Note Lake Erie Islands Wildlife Center is usually open every day from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm, and it’s a nice place for your family, kids, grandchildren, and friends. Both tourists and locals often take trips to this wildlife center, and you shouldn’t miss the thrill and opportunity to learn more about the animals and other aspects of wildlife in this region.

Some of the common activities in Lake Erie Islands Wildlife Center include children’s nature camps, nature walks, and annual festivals.

5. South Bass Island Lighthouse

The famous South Bass Island Lighthouse is the first thing you see as you approach the southern end of Put-in-Bay. It was first lit in 1897, and it is an important icon in the history of Lake Erie islands. Visiting this lighthouse offers you the chance to learn more about the history of this island.

One of the things to do while in Put-in-Bay is to tour this lighthouse. Note that the lighthouse is located at the southern end of the island, and there are fewer or no other attractions nearby. So, it’s recommended to hire a golf cart to get around in this area. This a convenient and affordable transportation option on the island.

These five top-rated attractions in Put-in-Bay are great places to go during your next vacation.

Even if you’ve never been to Athens, there’s no doubt that you’ll know that, as the seat of one of the ancient world’s greatest civilisations, it’s packed with jaw-dropping historical sites like the Agios Georgios Church, the Temple of Olympian Zeus, the Temple of Hephaestus and more.

But what if (shock, horror!) these types of iconic sites don’t actually float your boat that much?
Should you bin your trip to the gorgeous Greek capital in search of somewhere more suitable?

You’ll be glad to know that as a city that blends contemporary and ancient elements brilliantly, there’s even more to Athens than all of the above attractions.

If you like seeing the side of a city that’s a little bit different, take a look at these five top tips for alternative Athens!

1. Street Art

Athens has an awesome street art scene and top venue Technopolis (more of which later) held a huge exhibition of Banksy’s work last year. Legendary local artists here include Ath1281, INO, Billy Gee, Thisisopium, Insane 51 and N_grams, so watch out for their tags on eye-popping murals city-wide.

If you’re not happy discovering urban artworks here serendipitously, you can maximise your viewing pleasure with this cool Athens street art map by Street Art Cities.

2. Exarchia

A bustling boho neighbourhood located between Kolonaki and Kypseli, Exarchia has been a hotbed of radical counterculture for many years, so it’s a must-see for alternative adventurers.

Electro artist Leon of Athens has a recording studio here, there are ramshackle bookshops packed with revolutionary texts, cool cafes aplenty and nightspots like An Club, where you’ll meet all sorts of wonderfully weird characters.

3. Technopolis

A former gasworks (built in 1857), multi-purpose Athens arts centre Technopolis typically attracts more than 1 million visitors annually with a deep and diverse calendar of events that cover live music, performance art and theatre, contemporary dance, entrepreneurial gatherings and creative workshops for adults and children alike.
This is an ambient space with an awesome atmosphere and there’s sure to be something exciting on when you visit.

4. Ekei

Fancy busting a few outrageous moves on the dancefloor? Ekei, at 23-25 Lekka, Historic Centre, is definitely the place to be.

A two-storey building nestled between traditional silverware shops, the dancefloor is always bouncing in the basement (Ekei Kato) and the first floor (Ekei Pano). The infamous Issues club night is held every week and pumps out genres like hip-hop, funk and EDM.

5. Meteora

Fancy ditching urban attractions for a day or two to see an ancient attraction with a difference? Meteora is a surreal lunar landscape full of stunning rock pillars and curvaceous cliffsides that fold and flex as far as the eye can see.

357km from Athens, you’ll reach Meteora on the E75 road via Lamia, Domokos, Karditsa, Trikala and Kalapaka. Hire a car in Athens from Enjoy Travel, stay here for a day or two and explore the otherworldly environment and majestic monasteries perched precariously on cliffsides.

That’s our list! Share your own alternative Athens tips in the comments section.

The centre of paradise in the Mediterranean, Greece is a bucket-list country that is home to some of the best beaches in the world. What is on offer does not stop at sandy getaways; each island has its own unique selling point that will either make choosing easy or a little bit of a headache. Whether you are looking for parties, a Greek mythology lesson or verdant nature and untouched landscapes, it’s all possible within the 227 inhabited islands of the south of Greece.

While flights are available to the more popular islands, taking a boat allows more flexibility in your schedule, your budget and your island choices. To take the stress out of your Greece tour, there is some key information that you need to know before you start your island-hopping adventure.

Where You Can Go by Boat in Greece

While all of the islands in Greece are connected, it is not possible to freely hop between all that you wish, some are much further than you think!

Most Greek islands are only connected to the capital, Athens, via the Pireas Port and those that are closest. However, if you wishing to go to the famed islands such as Mykonos, Santorini or Crete, you’ll find a great number of options throughout the day, every day of the week.

Top Islands in Greece and How to Get to Them:

Mykonos

Mykonos is renowned for its party scene, with some of the most exclusive clubs in the world that attract celebrities throughout the year. Equally, it is possible to visit the island and have a calming and relaxing time while you sip on wine in a taverna. This diversity makes it a popular holiday destination for all types of travellers.

Mykonos can be accessed via most islands, with frequent ferries leaving from Athens, Santorini, Milos and Paros.

Sifnos and Serifos

For adventure, look no further than Sifnos and Serifos. Islands that are often forgotten about in the Cyclades archipelago of Greece, Sifnos and Serifos have slightly less infrastructure and more a more natural untouched landscape.

Adventurous types will revel in the long walks that take you to quiet beaches and perhaps even the chance to go cliff jumping. Here, you’ll see the beauty of the Greek islands away from the crowds.

As part of the Cyclades Islands, there are numerous ferries that go to Sifnos and Serifos from the neighbouring islands such as Santorini, Kythnos, Paros, Naxos and sometimes Crete. Only Sifnos is connected with Pireas in Athens.

Paros and Delos

Both Paros and Delos offer an interesting alternative to the beachside tavernas and bars, where you’ll bounce between ancient sites that tell of the mythological stories of these two islands. Delos is the birthplace of Apollo, so sacred that birth nor death are permitted on the island. Paros is known for immortalising the gods, as the home of the marble that was used to depict them for centuries.

As one of the more popular islands, Paros is accessible via Mykonos, Santorini and Athens. Delos, however, can only be accessed on a day trip from Paros, Naxos or Mykonos.

Crete and Rhodes

The best islands to relax on are Crete and Rhodes, where family-run resorts neighbour exclusive couple retreats that offer a quiet moment away from the hustle and bustle. As larger islands on the Aegean Sea, the resorts tend to be more spaced out, presenting a resounding air of calm.

You can get the ferry to Crete from Milos, Santorini, and Paros, while Rhodes is only accessible via Crete, Athens or Thessaloniki.

Boat Times Year-Round

Tickets for all ferry services within Greece can be bought online. However, the times for ferries change often and can be delayed. To avoid arriving at the wrong time, it is best to buy your ticket on arrival in Greece for an accurate schedule and smooth-sailing trip.

During the summer months, there are numerous ferries arriving in Greece’s top destinations. Ferries to the lesser-known destinations only run as little as twice a week throughout the year. Most ports throughout Greece have the ferry schedule posted one week in advance, so you know exactly when you are set to leave.

Organising a Greece tour with a local guide can take the stress out of booking your ferries to your favourite destinations. With constant updates on your travel itinerary throughout your trip, a guide will take care of all eventualities as and when they come.