Turquoise blue sea, white sandy beaches, warm weather – It sounds like the perfect summer holiday. If you have been contemplating a Mediterranean holiday, let us help you narrow down your choices by discussing our top five Mediterranean islands. We’ll cover the best places to see, eat or stay in Crete, Mallorca, Sardinia, Ibiza and Corsica.
Crete is a popular holiday destination amongst many European nationals. As the largest Greek island, Crete offers something for everyone. There are some amazing hiking trails that will take you past herb-scented trails and unspoilt beaches. If you are into history and archaeology, be sure to pay a visit to the Palace of Knossos. There is a reason that this is Crete’s most well-known historical attraction. Many parts of the palace have been excavated or even restored. If you just want to enjoy the sun and relax, Crete has some great beaches such as Frangokastello Beach in the south that comes with a Venetian castle, or visit Elafonisi Beach and view the pink sands.
One of Spain’s more popular islands Majorca, or Mallorca, is a perfect destination for families. Not only are there many family-friendly hotels, Majorca’s warm climate and weather makes it a perfect destination in October for half-term. There are a host of activities you can book whilst you’re there: from hiking to cliff jumping. Although taking a nose dive off a cliff sounds a little severe, you will be in great hands with experienced guides. If you are looking for more child-friendly excursions, Palma has a great aquarium, Palma Aquarium, that is home to the deepest shark tank in Europe. If you are in Palma, you can also take a vintage train to Sóller. The trainline is over a century old and was originally intended for farmers to bring their produce to the market.
Sardinia is another great family friendly island in the Mediterranean. There is loads to do for all ages, from cave exploring to wildlife watching and water sports. Even if you want to rent a car for a day for extra exploring, car rental companies will offer to chance to hire car seats for a fee. You can decide to stay in self-catered accommodation, but there are also various family-oriented resorts including Mark Warner‘s Perdepera Beach Resort. The advantage of such resorts is that they offer childcare provisions for kids from the age of four months and up – perfect if you need an adult-only moment. If you are looking for an amazing place for a day at the beach, visit Piscinas sand dunes. Often described as Europe’s Sahara Desert, the dunes reach up to 60 meters in height! It’s right next to the sea, making it a truly spectacular place to relax.
Perhaps one of Greece’s most famous islands, Santorini is an impressive view built against the side of a cliff. The famous white buildings with bright blue roofs seem the epitome of a relaxing holiday in the sun. The allure is huge for tourists and Santorini annually welcomes 1.5 million tourists! Santorini, officially known as Thira, used to be a circular island until a volcano erupted and took half of the island with it. As Santorini is such a popular tourist destination, there is a multitude of organised trips you can join: from winery tours to cruises. There is even an open-air cinema, CineKamari, which screens movies throughout the summer.
Corsica is a great destination for a post-summer holiday as temperatures will still be very warm and mild. The sea will also have had a chance to warm up a little more, making it perfect for a beach getaway. There is more to do on Corsica than just soak up the sun. With Corsica’s amazing geographical diversity, the landscape is also perfect for a more active holiday including hiking and kayaking. The island enjoys extremely clear waters, and so you can see up to 15 meters deep without issue. This makes for some absolutely gorgeous sights, fields of seagrass and sand banks. If you have the time, visit the fortress town called Bonifacio. It is earmarked as one of the most spectacular towns with citadel walls and ancient houses that rise out of cliffs. What are you waiting for?