Don't think that all resorts have the same characteristics all through the year. A resort's character is determined by a number of factors, with weather and style of visitors being very important. Playa del Ingles (Gran Canaria), San Antonio (Ibiza), Magaluf (Mallorca) and Playa de las Americas (Tenerife) may live up to their 'tabloid' image of young drunks during July and August, but outside of these months, and particularly in the winter, these resorts become very stylish destinations. Similarly mediterranean islands are a different place in spring and late autumn compared to mid-summer. Personally we would avoid mid-summer 90°F temperatures for any "Warm Island" destination.
When you go may be determined by personal circumstances; such as school holidays; and by holiday company brochure prices. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on your viewpoint, much of Europe is committed to mid-summer holidays - don't ask us why this tradition still exists, just accept that it does. So if you want crowds August is your month. If you prefer good value and a less frenetic atmosphere, avoid the summer months. We have grouped styles of traveller and destinations to give an idea of when and where would suit a wide range of holidaymakers:-
Young, Clubbing and Drinking. It has to be July or August in a major resort such as San Antonio (Ibiza), Magalluf (Mallorca), Playa del Ingles (Gran Canaria) or Greek Islands, any time outside of these months, or any other resort, is likely to be too quiet for you. If you are looking for a more upmarket/gay club scene go for Ibiza town on Ibiza.
Canary Islands. Best between October and May with mid-winter being most popular. Families should choose main islands and main resorts (see Tenerife, Lanzarote). Walkers, botanists and twitchers (birdwatchers) will be well pleased with all the islands and should consider the more adventurous destinations of La Gomera, and La Palma. Honeymooners should consider the Hotel JardinTecina in the south of La Gomera for two weeks. Los Cristianos and Costa del Silencio in southern Tenerife are well suited for wheelchair access around the resort if this is a priority.
Balearic Islands. Mallorca has something for everyone so long as you pick your time and resort to suit your preferences. Menorca is much flatter and quieter (except for market day in Mahon) than the other islands, but does have a 'refined' air to it. Spring (particularly for birdwatchers) and autumn are the best seasons with winter breaks available in south-west Mallorca. Resorts range from "outrageously lively" (see above) to small quiet bays with a few hotels and apartments.
Madeira. All year destination with climate similar to the wetter Canary Islands. A botanist's paradise for both cultivated and endemic species, also good for walkers. No beach resorts so it appeals to more mature 'child-free' visitors.
Alpujarras. If you think southern Spain is just the Costa del Sol they you do not know Andalucia. Besides the historic towns of Grenada and Ronda we have a walking guide book and map to introduce you to the little known region of the Alpujarras. Superb scenery and walking among the southern foothills and valleys of the Sierra Nevada. If you are based in a Costa del Sol resort this beautiful region is just 90 minutes drive away.
Axarquia & Aracena. Our new destinations provide rewarding walking routes with the best of unspoilt rural Spain. Sierra de Aracena is our personal favourite in the north-west of Andalucia while Axarquia lies alongside the Costa del Sol and is Charles Davis' 'home' wild region.
Walk! UK Of course we have a come along way, years and thousands of kilometres on foot, and where have we finally come to but the UK. Now you can enjoy the same style of DWG guide books for 'Home' destinations of Lake District North, Lake District South, Yorkshire Dales North & Central, South Pennines, Devon, Isle of Wight, Malverns, Peak District South, Brecon Beacons, South Downs, Dartmoor, Dorset, and Exmoor, as you get for our 'Abroad' destinations. Perfect for a UK walking holiday or a quick break enjoying the UK landscape.
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