Beyond the beach

Dare to live the life you’ve always wanted.

You don’t need to be close to a beach to enjoy a fulfilling and revitalizing vacation. Over the past year, we’ve been looking for alternative luxury getaways in Europe, from bustling city getaways to serene rural retreats. Take a peek at a few of our favorite finds whether you’d like to stay among vineyards in Portugal, wander the cobblestone alleys of Andaluca‘s most charming cities, or wake up in a spa sanctuary in the Cypriot mountains.


Holidaymakers have traditionally flocked to Cyprus in droves to enjoy the year-round weather and unwind on the country’s Blue Flag beaches. However, if you travel inland to the Troodos Mountains, you’ll find the island’s undiscovered gems, including Byzantine monasteries, charming towns, some of the best vineyards in the Mediterranean, as well as a few well-kept spa resorts. In the historic resort village of Casale Panayiotis, guests can partake in activities like wine tasting and halloumi cooking. 

Tour to Troodos mountains and villages
Head out into the Troodos Mountains with this cultural tour, which mixes sightseeing and culinary adventure. After a visit to the coastal Aphrodite’s Rock, you’ll make your way inland, visiting traditional villages such as Lofou and Omodos along the way. You’ll also stop at the Timios Stavros Monastery and the Millomeris Waterfalls, with cheese and wine tastings and a break for lunch in Platres along the way. Travel in the comfort of an air-conditioned vehicle Group sizes limited to 21 travelers for an intimate experience Haloumi cheese tastings are included in the price of the tour Learn about, and taste, local wine at a traditional winery

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Mallorca is more than just a destination for family vacations and wild resorts. If you know where to look, you can find a more serene side to this Mediterranean island, such as its smattering of honey-hued spa havens tucked away in the countryside amid valleys of lemon groves.

The Zotry Mallorca Wellness & Spa, located on a storied 14th-century estate, takes a holistic approach to wellness, from the gourmet meals made with ingredients from their vegetable garden to the first-rate spa facilities. A magnificent hot-air balloon journey over the scorched Balearic plains is one of their special experiences that you may delight in in addition to their 24-hour dining and drinking options.

At Fontsanta Thermal Spa & Wellness Hotel, the dramatic location on the edge of a coastal nature reserve gives you a hint of sea salt in the air while still keeping you covered in a blanket of rural beauty. Indulge in a romantic getaway at this modern, adults-only resort, which offers sumptuous accommodations, exquisite dining, and a special thermal spa with 38°C spring water.

One Day Sightseeing Tour with Boat Ride and Vintage Train
Uncover the stirring landscapes of Mallorca’s west coast on this full-day tour. Following pickup from your hotel or the cruise port, travel by coach to the UNESCO-listed Serra de Tramuntana mountain range, whose formidable limestone peaks tower over the coastline. Follow the winding roads to La Calobra, where you’ll catch a boat to the coastal village of Port Soller. After free time to do as much or as little as you want, take the tram to Soller before capping your tour with a ride through Soller Valley aboard a vintage train. Discover the island’s natural beauty Drive along the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Serra de Tramuntana Take in views of the breathtaking coastline on a boat trip from La Calobra Travel to Son Reus aboard a vintage wooden train

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The “Golden Triangle” of Andaluca is made up of the stunning cities of Cordoba, Seville, and Granada. Even while each city merits a vacation all on its own, you could cross them all off your list with a custom Andaluca itinerary.

The largest and most well-known city in Andaluca is Seville. With stunning Gothic and Renaissance architecture, opulent palaces, and quaint Tablaos pulling you in with flamenco rhythms, every corner of this city reveals a historical mystery. After discovering the joys right outside your door, Hospes Las Casas Del Rey De Baeza is a charming jewel that is tucked away in the ancient town.

The Mezquita mosque in Cordoba is a remarkable example of Islamic architecture and the city’s main draw. Evenings are especially enjoyable as locals and visitors meet in cozy tapas bars tucked away down the winding Calles. Stay in the opulent Hospes Palacio Del Bailo, which features a Romanesque spa, or the H10 Palacio Colomera, where you can sip cocktails at the rooftop bar while taking in the cityscape.

Granada is fascinating to discover behind the imposing Alahambra Palace‘s magnificent walls. The Sierra Nevada mountains encircle the area, creating postcard-perfect scenery and neighborhoods that are steeped in multi-cultural history. Our top picks for lodging include Hospes Palacio De Los Patos, a stylish city apartment near the major attractions, or, for a special event, the Hotel Alhambra Palace, which is popular with celebrities and has stunning views of Granada.

Romans, Spanish, French, and British have all held power over the Maltese islands at various points in their long and colorful history. A twin-centre tour, where you spend some time on Malta and some time on the peaceful island of Gozo, is the greatest way to see this tiny archipelago. The hotels in historic Valetta, where the city itself is almost as charming, are definitely worth a visit. Rosselli AX Privilege, an opulent Baroque hotel bordered by Valletta’s congested streets, has been added to our inventory. After exploring the area, the rooftop plunge pool is a welcome sight. For the ultimate spa day, guests are welcome to utilise the spa facilities at sister property AX The Palace, which is across town and only a 15-minute drive away.

Full-Day Tour: Tangier from Seville
Plunge into the rich cultural tapestry of Morocco on a full-day trip to Tangier from Seville. Alongside your guide, travel to the African continent while absorbing views of the Bay of Tangier and the Strait of Gibraltar. On arrival in Tangier, plunge into the whitewashed cascade of buildings on a guided walking tour; stroll the narrow streets of the medina and learn about the history and culture of the Moroccan metropolis. Lunch and round-trip transfers from Seville hotels are included. Full-day trip to the Moroccan city of Tangier from Seville Sail to the continent of Africa and enjoy stunning views of coastal landmarks Take a guided walking tour of Tangier’s medina Learn about the history and culture of the city from a guide Lunch and round-trip transfers from Seville hotels are included

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We can now take you on urban experiences in Lisbon and Porto or to the Douro Valley, a haven for wine enthusiasts, if you’d want to see a side of Portugal other than its coastline.

The glitzy rooftop restaurant at Tivoli Avenida Liberdade, which is the place to be seen in Lisbon, is even called SEEN. The fabulous location in the heart of the city means you’re only a short amble from the designer shops and iconic yellow trams that rattle through the steep streets. You may take a break from the commotion in the health area, which has a Jacuzzi, water jets, and a heated indoor pool, at the nearby PortoBay Liberdade, which has a more upscale ambiance.

Oenophiles are familiar with Porto since it serves as the entrance to the Douro wine region. Vibrant laneways lined with upscale wine bars and seafood eateries, colorful homes, ornately tiled baroque churches, and a few of beaches are all nearby. A magnificent wine lodge, The Yeatman is set on a hill. The two Michelin-starred restaurants provide wine-pairing meals, and the Caudalie Vinothérapie® Spa offers treatments with grape infusions and an infinity pool structured like a decanter. Vila Foz Hotel & Spa is an unusual manor home situated in a posh coastal area with rooms facing the ocean if you desire to be removed from the bustle of the city.

Take your journey to the next level and travel to the stunning Douro Valley, the center of the wine area, if you’re not quite ready to put your glass of red down. Vintage House Hotel is located in a picturesque location on the banks of the Douro River in the quaint village of Pinho. The Port Wine Route may be explored during the day while relaxing by the pool and admiring the vineyard views. In the evenings, dine on fresh seafood in the restaurant before relaxing by the fire in the library bar.

A stately palace in the style of the Belle Époque is the Vidago Palace Hotel, which is tucked away in the spa town of Chaves, just north of the Douro area. When you’re not enjoying a glass of wine in the valley, you can play a round of golf on the 18-hole course or unwind at the all-white marble spa, which employs the mineral-rich water from the region’s subterranean springs.

Private Tour from Lisbon
Explore Porto with a knowledgeable private driver on a full-day tour from Lisbon. Known for its delectable signature drink, the center of Porto is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site with lovely architecture. Visit the vibrant downtown district, see landmarks like Clerigos Tower and Sao Bento station, and try some signature local wines and food (own expense). Situated on the Douro River, the city offers a beguiling mix of old and new that your guide shares during this informative tour. Private full-day tour of Porto from Lisbon Learn about the World Heritage-listed city’s historic and cultural sites Taste delicious port, wine and other regional delicacies (own expense) Take in sweeping views of the Douro River Enjoy a customizable itinerary with a private driver

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Private Day Sailing Boat Charter
This private yacht tour offers a luxurious, up-close way to explore Malta’s lagoons and seaside scenery. Meet your skipper at the Kalkara Marina near the Grand Harbour and head north toward Comino. Your trip is personalized, and can include stops at the Blue Lagoon or Crystal Lagoon, hidden sea caves, and more. Snorkel gear and stand-up paddleboards are included, and drinks and a generous barbecue meal are available on request. See the scenery without the crowds, and enjoy a fully personalized day out Explore lagoons, sea caves, and other locations only accessible by boat Opt to include a fresh barbecue meal, plus drinks and other nibbles Choose to swim, snorkel, stand-up paddleboard, and more at your own pace

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Need some travel inspiration? Find the perfect holiday or vacation destination with these great travel ideas and bucket list destinations.


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