Easter escapes: 10 of the best last-minute holidays

If you’re dreaming of some Easter sand and sunshine but haven’t booked your break yet, here is our expert’s top pick of last-minute availability to suit families and couples.

Best for families

1. Beachside break in Cyprus

Flight time: 4h 20m
Temperature: 21C

With its long holiday season and inviting coastal stretches, this popular Mediterranean island is a good bet for a sunny beachside break in early April. Plus points for families with young children include affordable self-catering options within walking distance of sand and sea.

Visit Aphrodite's Rock on Cyprus

Visit Aphrodite’s Rock on Cyprus

Credit:
DEA / W. BUSS

From £730 per person, self-catering, based on a two-bedroom unit at the Kotsias Hotel Apartments at Pissouri Bay, through Sunvil (020 8758 4758; sunvil.co.uk) including car hire, departing March 28.

2. Family fun in Tenerife

Flight time: 4h 15m
Temperature: 20C

Largest of the Canaries, with beaches to suit all tastes and around nine hours of sunshine a day in April, this island is hard to beat for a dose of reliable warmth with children in tow. However, flights and accommodation are snapped up early so the big sun-and-sand operators are your best bet for last minute options.

The largest of the Canaries, Tenerife has reliable sunshine at Easter

The largest of the Canaries, Tenerife has reliable sunshine at Easter

Credit:
STOCK.ADOBE.COM/VICTOR MARQUES FERNANDEZ

From £729 per person, self-catering, at the four-star Sunwing Resort Fanabe, through Thomas Cook (0844 412 5970; thomascook.com) departing on March 30.

3. Surfing and yoga in Morocco

Flight time: 3h 30m
Average temperature: 19C

Active families with older children are well catered for along the sandy stretches of Morocco’s southern coast where sea breezes keep temperatures pleasant and Atlantic rollers offer good surfing for all abilities. Cooler nights see the thermometer drop to around 11C.

Morocco's Atlantic coast is ideal for surfing

Morocco’s Atlantic coast is ideal for surfing

Credit:
TIM E WHITE

From £905 per person, with breakfast, at five-star Paradis Plage Resort, through Health and Fitness Travel (0203 397 8891; healthandfitnesstravel.com) including a surfing programme, for departures between March 24 and 31. Yoga classes also available (age limits apply).

4. Serious sunshine in Barbados

Flight time: 8h 30m
Temperature: 30C

If you like your beaches sizzling hot and your sea like an inviting bath, Easter in the Caribbean ticks the boxes. Night-time temperatures are balmy too, perfect for al fresco dinners under the stars. Resorts offer lots of activities for energetic offspring.

From £2,122 per person, all inclusive, in a junior suite at Crystal Cove by Elegant Hotels through Caribtours (020 3797 2485; caribtours.co.uk), for departures between March 24 and 31. The price includes airport lounge passes and a 25 per cent discount for bookings made by February 28.

5. Escapist bliss in Mauritius

Flight time: 11h 30m
Temperature: 29C

For Robinson Crusoe beaches of pristine white sand, fringed with coconut palms and lapped by turquoise waters, combined with serious heat and top-end hotel options, this Indian Ocean island is a good bet for luxurious family fun. The flight may be long, but the time difference is only four hours.

Mauritius offers a relaxed holiday with beautiful beaches

Mauritius offers a relaxed holiday with beautiful beaches

Credit:
Masano Kawana/Masano Kawana

From £2,344 per person, half board, based on two interconnecting rooms at five-star The Residence through Powder Byrne (020 8246 5300; powderbyrne.com) departing on March 31.

Prices quoted are per person for a seven-night stay based on a family of four, (two adults and two children aged under 12 years), including flights and transfers, unless otherwise stated, and are subject to availability. Note that older children may be charged the same rate as adults. Average flight times are from London. Temperatures are average maximum.

Best for couples

6. Sand and spas in Mexico

Flight time: 9h 15m
Temperature: 32C

Idyllic white sand beaches fringe the Mayan Riviera between Puerto Morelos in the north and Tulum in the south, with sunbeds shaded by thatched tiki sunshades under leafy palms. Resorts are largely high-end, with pampering spas, some off-limits to children aged under 18 years.

With ruins and white sands, Tulum is the perfect escape at Easter

With ruins and white sands, Tulum is the perfect escape at Easter

Credit:
Monica and Michael Sweet/M Swiet Productions

From £1,095.50 per person, all inclusive, at five-star Excellence Riviera Cancun through Sovereign Luxury Travel (01293 832 459; sovereign.com) including a saving of 29 per cent, UK security fast passes and airport lounge access, departing March 27.

7. All-inclusive resorts in Goa

Flight time: 9h 5m
Temperature: 33C

With a coastline stretching for miles along the Arabian Sea, this western state of India is a magnet for beach-lovers. Whether you prefer a full-on party scene or a quiet, unspoilt stretch, there are around ten hours per day to loll on the sand and soak up the gloriously hot, early April sunshine.

Goa is stunning and offers great value

Goa is stunning and offers great value

Credit:
byheaven – Fotolia/www.pikoso.kz

From £1,390 per person, all-inclusive, at the 3Tplus Novotel Resort Dona Sylvia through TUI (0203 451 2688; TUI.co.uk) departing on March 31.

8. High dunes in Gran Canaria

Flight time: 4h 10m
Temperature: 21C

Known for its 143-mile coastline of black lava and white sand beaches, this Canary Island has something for everyone. You can choose from vast, tiny, sandy, rocky, busy or remote beaches or head to the spectacular dunes of Maspalomas, a protected nature reserve of sand hills on the southern coast.

From £2,139 per person, with breakfast, for nine nights at five-star Seaside Palm Beach through Classic Collection Holidays (0800 047 1964; classic-collection.co.uk) departing on March 28.

9. Tropical beaches in Thailand

Flight time: 11h 15m
Temperature: 32C

Powder-soft beaches backed by lush tropical gardens and lapped by translucent water combine with fabulously hot April sunshine. Perfect for romantic chilled-out holidays, resorts offer snorkelling, fishing and boat tours, plus pampering treatments and topnotch restaurants.

Thailand offers true heat and excellent food

Thailand offers true heat and excellent food

Credit:
anekoho – Fotolia

From £2,149 per person, with breakfast, based on a deluxe garden view room at Rocky’s Boutique Resort on Koh Samui, through Kuoni (01306 747008; kuoni.co.uk) saving up to £100 per person, departing on March 24. Tour reference: FE9120. Price includes a complimentary 60-minute massage.

10. Snorkelling and sand in Oman

Flight time: 7h 15m
Temperature: 34C

Early April temperatures are high, though there’s still some way to go before it reaches the June peak of 40C. White sands, palm trees and good snorkelling in a vividly blue sea makes the coast around Muscat a prime pick for beach-lovers. Pods of dolphins can sometimes be spotted just off shore.

You can sometimes spot dolphins just off shore of the Chedi

You can sometimes spot dolphins just off shore of the Chedi

From £2,879 per person, with breakfast, at five-star Chedi Muscat through Hayes & Jarvis (01293 762 456; hayesandjarvis.co.uk), departing March 31.

Prices quoted are per person for a seven-night stay based on two people sharing, including flights and transfers, unless otherwise stated, and are subject to availability. Average flight times are from London. Temperatures are average maximum.

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