Book months in advance and you’ve got plenty of choice when it comes to dates and destinations. But if you have more freedom to be flexible and are keen to make a huge saving, it’s better to sit tight and wait until prices are slashed. There’s still time left to head to the slopes and enjoy the Maldives before rainy season kicks in — and we’ve found the best deals to make it happen.
● Best deals from Times Travel partners
● The best family friendly holiday destinations
Dorset party path
There’s good availability, and 30 per cent savings, to be had at the luxurious Lulworth Cove House, in February and March. The thatched cottage — an open-plan yet cozy ten-bedroom home — is ideal for celebratory get-togethers, with a cocktail bar, cinema, games room and heated indoor pool, and sea views that were made for watching the crashing waves. Three nights’ self-catering costs from £5,995, or roughly £300pp, with seven-night stays from £11,995 (thewowhousecompany.com)
This Victorian seaside hotel has emerged from a revamp with stylish interiors
Spa and golf in Scotland
Maybe golf is what you’re after as we move out of the depths of winter. Marine & Lawn has introduced a February winter exclusive across its three properties in Scottish golfing hubs, including the Marine North Berwick. Less than an hour’s drive from Edinburgh, this Victorian seaside hotel has emerged from a revamp with stylish interiors, great food and a Caudalie spa — and the views across the Firth of Forth are ridiculously romantic. B&B doubles start at £160, including late checkout, a complimentary upgrade and £50 towards food or treatments (marineandlawn.com).
Taormina is where The White Lotus series was shot
Jet setting in Sicily
Taormina, as seen recently in the HBO black comedy series The WhiteLotus, is getting plenty of attention. If you’d like to see the glamorous clifftop town and spectacular Greek theater for yourself, Travelzoo is offering members a 40 per cent discount on four nights’ B&B in the four-star Albatros Beach Hotel in nearby Letojanni. Travel between April 16 and May 16, on June 5, or from October 2-10, and your stay will cost from £239pp, including flights from London, Bristol or Manchester, one dinner and a wine-tasting session (travelzoo.com) .
Hotel de Champoluc, Italy, is at the bottom of home run track
Skiing in Italy
Quaint but buzzy, Champoluc is the most popular resort in the underrated Monterosa area of the Aosta Valley, and the 35-room Hotel de Champoluc is handily located between the bottom of the home-run piste and the main Crest gondola. Travel on February 19 and you can save £1,015pp — 53 per cent — and pay £899pp for seven nights’ half-board, including Gatwick flights. The valley suits intermediate and advanced skiers, and the hotel has a lovely wood-panelled bar and restaurant (inghams.co.uk).
Fairmont Maldives is an island lover’s dream
Winter sun in the Indian Ocean
Not loving the weather? Follow the sun to the Fairmont Maldives, an island-lover’s dream of vast villas, bone-white beaches, green-blue lagoons, dolphin-watching cruises, a house reef brimming with colorful life and picnic trips to empty sandbars. The local ecology is a focus, particularly coral regeneration. Set off between February 23 and March 2 and you’ll shave almost a third off the usual price, with seven nights’ half-board now starting at £3,963pp, including flights from Heathrow and seaplane transfers (britishairways.com).
Sala Phuket is a beach resort with 79 glass-fronted rooms
Fly and flop in Thailand
Mai Khao is a long, caramel-coloured beach — surprisingly unspoilt given its location near the airport on Phuket, the largest of the Thai islands. Behind it is Sala Phuket, a beach resort with 79 glass-fronted rooms, suites and villas, all with outdoor bathrooms, most with their own pool and deck. Three additional pools, a soothing spa and Thai and international cuisine — which you can enjoy on a sea-facing rooftop — complete the picture. In March seven nights’ B&B costs from £1,659pp, including flights from Heathrow, saving you £400 (travelbag.co.uk).