Page 1

Portugal's best kept secret


City vs country Find your perfect getaway

culinary Odyssey through The Langhe


Tee time

Tenerife's Isla Baja coast

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e m o c l e W on rd!


You’re flying with us at our busiest time of year and we are very happy to be taking many of you on your long awaited and well-earned summer breaks. There’s no feeling quite as good as waking up on the day you’ve had circled in your diary, knowing that you are flying off for your little bit of sunshine and relaxation. And with Monarch we want your holiday to start the moment you step on board. Our cabin crew are here to help get your holiday off to a great start and will do anything they can to make your journey that little bit more enjoyable. We know how ‘nice’ they are, and we recently worked with a team at Goldsmiths University in London to prove it. You can read all about it on page 14. We also have lots of new treats available for you to buy on board to help you start relaxing. From creams to cocktails, our new range has something for everyone, so take a look and treat yourself! It’s been a busy few months at Monarch and we’re now flying to some great new city break destinations: Porto, Split, Stockholm, Valencia and Zagreb. You can read all about them throughout the magazine. We also meet Ben, our Monarch Hero for this issue. Ben is one of our Customer Services team and will always go the extra mile to help. There’s lots more for you to read too – from golf to gastronomy and great suggestions for your winter break – you’ll find there is something for everyone. Our staff and our customers’ fundraising is ongoing and the Monarch Foundation’s charity partners continue to benefit from this. We’re delighted to be supporting a Macmillan cancer unit at Tameside, Greater Manchester and to announce that we’ve started working with the National Autistic Society (NAS). Scratchcards are back by popular demand and available to buy on board and a donation from the sale of each one will go to the NAS. You can read all about our fundraising events on pages 16-19. So, enjoy your read. Thank you for choosing to fly with us today and we hope you enjoy your flight and holiday. We look forward to welcoming you on board again very soon.

Andrew Swaffield, CEO Monarch


Contributors SARAH BAXTER

Sarah is a travel writer, magazine editor and author of several books, including Where To Go When (Lonely Planet, 2016) and The History of the World in 500 Walks (Aurum, 2016). Follow her adventures @sarahbtravel


Travel writer Carolyn is a regular contributor to The Times and other national magazines and newspapers, as well as an author for Lonely Planet. She’s an expert on travelling in France and is also keen to explore other corners of the world.


Brighton-based travel journalist Tracey regularly contributes to Metro, Daily Telegraph, the Daily and Sunday Express and Family Traveller magazine. A keen golfer, she is an abysmal packer and often last on the plane.


Jeremy is a qualified wine taster (Bordeaux University) and cook (Ballymaloe). He has worked as a freelance wine, food and travel writer since 2000 for clients such as Ivy Press, The Telegraph, Metro and Laithwaites.


staying in one region for a year before moving onto the next. Emma is currently stationed in Portugal, where pastel de nata have become part of her daily bread. Follow her @gottakeepmovin


Award-winning British freelancer Zoe has lived everywhere from Bordeaux to Buenos Aires and writes about her travel experiences for publications and websites including National Geographic Traveller and the World Travel Guide.


A travel writer for more than a decade, Helen writes for the Guardian, Observer, Times, Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Rough Guides. She rests her battered suitcase in London but is more often found on the road, travelling around throughout Europe and far beyond.


Andrea is an award-winning fiction and travel writer with a PhD degree in anthropology. She regularly contributes to travel magazines like Paste and NYMag. Her Croatia-focused blog Zagreb Honestly ( is a mixture of inspiring travel information and quirky insights into Croatian culture.


Writer, journalist and web designer Elle has lived in Spain since 2006. She is motivated by white wine, food, dogs and her partner Alan, although not necessarily in that order. She is the co-owner and writer of

Liz is the editor of A Place in the Sun magazine and has been covering the overseas property market for over 15 years. Writing for national newspapers, radio and lifestyle magazines, she’s become one of the most prolific and knowledgeable writers on the subject.



Laura is best known one of the faces of Channel 4’s A Place in the Sun. A keen writer with a passion for travel, she blogs for Hello! Magazine and travel writes for The Mail on Sunday. She recently launched her own travel website Hamilton’s Hotspots in association with Monarch.


Emma is a British travel writer who’s been on the road since 2012. She champions slow travel by

From the editor

XX Editorial Editor: Kylie Martin Contributors: Sarah Baxter, Carolyn Boyd, Tracey Davies, Jeremy Dixon, Elle Draper, Laura Hamilton, Emma Higgins, Zoe Mcintyre, Helen Ochyra, Andrea Pisac, Liz Rowlinson, Lee Saunders, Andrew Williams

Manchester-born Lee is a freelance travel writer. Sun-deprived, he moved to Tel Aviv, where he works as an independent consultant in the travel, leisure and legal industries, writing articles, blog posts, and brochures for a range of clients.


Andrew is a freelance journalist who writes for publications including Mail on Sunday, Sunday Express, GT and Metro.

XX Art & Pictures CREW Agency Ltd Managing Director: Sarah Newton Managing & Creative Director: Michael Mursell Digital Manager: Mario Andryszczuk Senior Digital Designers: Tina Wei and Tanja Lute Senior Graphic Designer: Rena Constandinou

XX For Monarch Group Head of Communications: David Page Press & PR Manager: Colette Eagles Marketing & Advertising: Gemma Hyslop

It’s no longer just about location when it comes to choosing a holiday destination – it’s about the experience you’ll have when you’re there. So we’ve packed this issue full of unforgettable travel experiences, from a culinary odyssey through Italy’s Lange region to battling ‘pterodactyls’ on one of Tenerife’s most beautiful championship golf courses. And don’t forget to check out our revamped Retail Therapy section… we hope you love it as much as we do.




MYSTIC CHARM: Zagreb is an architectural gem with a laid-back vibe (Page 42)

In this issue

Retail therapy

4 Welcome


A few words from our CEO Andrew Swaffield.


From the latest hotspots to the latest openings, a look at what’s new in and around our destinations.


 Each year our staff and customers raise thousands of pounds for charity. We meet children at a primary school in Kenya who we have helped.

With the summer finally upon us, now is the perfect time to revamp your wardrobe with the season’s hottest trends.


Give up plastic bags forever with our pick of the most stylish shoppers and totes.


Clean up your beauty routine with products that make natural ingredients the star.


 The beauty and diversity of Monarch destinations as captured on camera by our customers.

50 KIDS destination guides

From the merchant of death to the strongest girl in the world, the really important stuff you need to know about Málaga and Stockholm.

Behind the scenes 93 IN-FLIGHT food & Wine

Find out how 630,000 of you helped us decide what made the grade on our new summer menu.

95 NEW WINES FOR SUMMER DAYS Did you know that wine tastes different in the air? Find out what else influences which wine we serve on our flights.


A peek behind the scenes with the people who make Monarch special.


LIGHT FANTASTIC! Nature’s most astonishing light show! (Page 10)


Destinations 21 MADEIRA 

Madeira has a reputation for being touristy. But look a little closer and you’ll discover it has everything you need for a brilliant break.


Linger awhile in the Algarve’s capital to discover a delightful mix of Moorish remains and 18th-century architecture along cobbled streets and medieval walls.


There’s plenty to do on this unspoiled Balearic isle, from exploring the unforgettable Caves of Drach to paying homage to a Gaudí masterpiece.


 This ancient city with a modern heart is bordered by possibly the last section of Spain’s Mediterranean shore where you can have a beach to yourself.

Culinary Odyssey: The vineyards of Langhe, near Turin (Page 68)


With the Red Sea and the desert on its doorstep, it’s not hard to see why the shimmering modern port city is one Israel’s most precious jewels.


With architectural gems, a flourishing street art scene, eyecatching museums and a lively restaurant scene, the Croatian capital is a wonderful melting pot of old and new.


Known for its endless beaches, from miles-long sandy crescents to rocky, turquoise-watered bays called ‘calas’, Menorca is perfect for family breaks.


Ten ways you’ll lose your heart to this little island.

Lifestyle & living 54 RUBY WAX

The comedian talks travel, comedy and tango.


Rustic solitude or big-city buzz for your next getaway? We give you the low-down on regional hubs where you can have both.


Join us on a culinary odyssey through the undulating hills of Langhe where prized vineyards and rustic cuisine offer a delectable feast for the senses.


Monarch blogger and A Place In The Sun presenter Laura Hamilton reveals her top picks for holidays with the kids.

Cover Portugal’s Best Kept Secret In the middle of the Atlantic there’s a majestic island with sleek hotels, chic swimming spots and a developing art scene.


The rugged Isla Baja coast provides a spectacular backdrop for the island’s most beautiful championship golf course – just watch out for the ‘pterodactyls’.


Looking for a bolthole abroad with year-round sun? It’s hard to beat Cyprus for its excellent climate and location.


After centuries of Port production, the Douro Valley is now almost as famous for its modern table wines.




Everyone’s talking about...

Buzzing old town: The lights of Porto from traditional Rabelo boats moored on the Douro River

Portugal’s second city is first rate – as savvy travellers are starting to discover


orto has long played bridesmaid to Lisbon. Despite its 900-year history and wonderful wine, Portugal’s second city hasn’t caught on with city breakers. But that’s about to change... First Lonely Planet named it one of its top ten best-value destinations in 2017, a nod to its inexpensive museums, cheap trams and value wine tours. Then travellers from 174 countries cast their votes for Europe’s Best Destination 2017. And the winner was unanimous: Porto. The city is definitely having a moment. This is partly the legacy of it being declared European City of Culture in 2001. Many of its run-down streets have been rejuvenated, especially in the riverside bairro (area) of Ribeira which is now abuzz with cafés.


Must-dos include riding the vintage tram to the beach and taking a boat trip up the vine-flanked Douro River. Then pop over to Vila Nova de Gaia for the portwine houses and dinner at The Yeatman. Its chef, Ricardo Costa, was awarded his second Michelin star last November. He’s only the second chef in Portugal to have two stars and has well and truly put Porto on the gastronomic map ■ Monarch flies to Porto from Birmingham, London Luton and Manchester. See the city in style: Porto’s historic tram network dates back to 1872 when the first ‘American cars’ were introduced

3 reasons to split Why everyone’s making a break for the Croatian seaside city this summer It offers great Brexit value The Croatian currency is the kuna, which isn’t so strong against the pound as the euro. Beers cost less than £2; dinner for two less than £40.


ADRIATIC DREAMING: Dramatic coastal mountains form the perfect backdrop to Split’s scenic waterfront

GET STUFFED Because it’s a Game Of Thrones location

Gorge yourself in Valencia, World Food Capital and birthplace of paella

Split has the world’s best Roman ruin – and it’s featured in Game of Thrones (back on screens this July). The remains of Diocletian’s Palace lie at the heart of the city, with shops and cafés tucked amid the ancient Roman columns.

The sun is (almost) always shining

Split logs an impressive 2,628 hours of sunshine a year. Or take a ferry from the city to Hvar, which boasts 2,760 hours and claims to be ‘Europe’s sunniest island’ ■ Monarch flies to Split from Birmingham.

Meet the Renaissance man Painter, sculptor, engineer, scientist, architect, mathematician, architect, inventor... was there anything Leonardo da Vinci couldn’t do? Thanks to Dan Brown’s bestselling book-turned-film The Da Vinci Code and various conspiracies over the Mona Lisa, the name Da Vinci is still well enshrined in popular culture. Rome’s newly opened Leonardo da Vinci Experience brings together the genius’s machines and paintings for the first time. On show are 50 life-size inventions made according to Da Vinci’s sketches and faithful full-size reproductions of his most famous paintings – including the Last Supper, the controversial painting at the centre of Brown’s novel. The multi-media experience, complete with holograms, promises a unique insight into one of the most ingenious minds of the Italian Renaissance ■

Feeling peckish? Head to Valencia! Spain’s third-largest city – and the home of paella – is World Food Capital 2017 and will be the focus of discussion about food sustainability this year. Get a sense of Valencia’s foodiness by heading out to the huerta, the city’s market garden greenbelt, on a new Rice Bike Tour. Or visit Bombas Gens, a 1930s factory set to reopen as a gastro-cultural centre. Between meals, explore Valencia’s modernist architecture, from the Central Market (more food!) to Santiago Calatrava’s mesmeric City of Arts and Sciences ■ Monarch flies to Valencia from Birmingham. Compiled by Sarah Baxter

Hotspot news


Aurora alert As a solar minimum approaches, book now for the best chance to see the northern lights


f seeing the northern lights dance across Arctic skies is on your bucketlist, book a trip now. The frequency of aurora is influenced by an 11-year solar cycle, with most activity occurring during the solar maximum. The solar minimum, which sees fewer displays, is due in 2019/2020. So this winter should offer the best lights shows until at least 2022. Fly to Kittila, 200km north of the Arctic Circle in Finnish Lapland and a hotbed of auroral activity. Spend days riding snowmobiles, mushing huskies and meeting Santa – and nights looking for those mesmerising lights ■Flights and holidays from Gatwick, Manchester and new for 2017/8, Birmingham.


Health and hedonism Embrace both extremes on Ibiza, the party island with a growing fitness fetish


biza is known as the place to party. And 2017 is no exception, with a lively line-up of DJs and Pacha celebrating is 50th year. But Ibiza is also gaining a reputation as a wellness destination, with as many visitors coming for clifftop yoga as nightclub carousing. Cotton Beach Club has opened a new luxe fitness club by San Antonio’s Calo des Moro Beach. With a hip restaurant and bar, enormous sun terrace, two outdoor pools and a huge indoor gym looking onto the Med, suddenly exercise seems a lot more appealing ■

Step into the forbidden forest Now is the time for a Harry Potter-themed stop in London “I’ve got to go to the library!” Hermione Granger famously proclaimed. And Potter fans should head there too – to mark the 20th anniversary of the publication of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone the British Library has pulled together a spellbinding exhibition inspired by subjects studied at fictional school Hogwarts. Harry Potter: A History of Magic (from October 20) will include centuriesold material from the library as well as JK Rowling’s archives, all just a stone’s throw from the mythical beginning of the journey to Hogwarts on Platform 9¾ at King’s Cross Station… as if that isn’t enough, fans can now enter the Forbidden Forest and come face to face with the winged hippogriff Buckbeak and huge spider Aragog. The forest where Harry took on Voldermort is the latest attraction at the Warner Bros Studio Tour in Hertfordshire ■

Hotspot news


FallEN STARS: The stunning Perseid meteor shower

Starlight Reserve, renowned for some of the world’s best night skies

Star attraction A new chef adds extra sparkle to Tenerife’s marvellous mountain trip

O 12

ne of the most out-of-the-world experiences on Tenerife has become even more stellar. The Sunset and Stars trip, which begins with an evening cable car ride up Mount Teide (Spain’s highest peak), now includes a cocktail dinner designed by the Canary Islands’ only two-Michelin-starred chef,

Erlantz Gorostiza. It’s a chance to sample some of Tenerife’s best cuisine before stepping outside with expert astronomers to enjoy the surrounding Starlight Reserve, renowned for some of the world’s best night skies. Top tip: travel in August to catch the Perseid meteor shower ■

Bike-bacK mountains

Innsbruck is heaven for cyclists this summer In June 2017 Innsbruck hosts world-renowned mountain-biking tournament Crankworx. Professional riders from around the globe will descend on the Austrian city for four days of festivities and hard riding, focused on the bumps, jumps and trails of nearby Mutteralm Park. No matter if you’ve missed the competition – you can still head to Mutteralm. The park has been spruced up for the event: there’s a new rental centre and mountain-bike shop, plus a new track, the Götzner Trail, a sporty run twisting down the slopes and through the forest ■

60 second guide to Lefkas All you need to know about one of 2017’s hottest ‘ island’ escapes It isn’t actually an island

Lefkas was actually part of the mainland until the seventh century BC, when the Corinthians cut a canal. It’s now connected via a causeway, just a short drive from Preveza airport.

It has some of the world’s bluest seas

In 2017, Travel & Leisure magazine named Lefkas’ Egremni Beach on its list of the planet’s most dazzlingly blue waters. Note: reaching the cliff-backed sands requires a steep descent down 355 steps.

It has Europe’s best windsurfing Come to Lefkas in summer to meet ‘Eric’, the famed afternoon wind that makes Vasiliki Bay, on the island’s south coast, the continent’s top windsurfing spot.

It’s a culture hub

The Lefkas International Folklore Festival is a riot of parades, dancing, traditional costumes and free-flowing wine. The festival’s 55th outing will be held 20-27 August 2017.

It has hidden treasures

In 2016 archaeologists unearthed an ancient theatre on Lekfas’s Koulmou Hill that no one knew was there.

It’s authentic Greece

There are some lively spots on Lefkas, but the island is largely given over to goats, olive groves, quiet village squares, pretty churches and tavernas. The real deal ■

Authentic Greece: Windmills opposite Agios Ioannis beach

turquoise beauty: Katsiki beach, Lefkada

Hotspot news 13

The ‘lab test’ in action




Proven – Monarch staff are the ‘nicest’ 017 is the ‘Year of Nice’ for Monarch - a year-long campaign to promote the traditional values of chivalry, courtesy and respect.

According to Monarch’s Chief Operating Officer Nils Christy: ‘We are often described as the nicer airline and holiday company and we pride ourselves on this and in the service that our cabin crew give you, our customers.’ But how do we know our cabin crew are nicer – where’s the proof? Well we undertook some research which was conducted by Professor Jonathan Freeman at Goldsmiths University in London. The study saw 100 participants

complete a series of psychological research measures before taking part in two lab-based behavioural demonstrations. In the lab, subjects were shown a sequence of video images — such as an overcrowded Tube platform, a traffic jam or a screaming child — while their facial reaction was measured. The results found that Monarch employees scored higher than the general sample of members of the public on psychological constructs associated with being nice, such as emotional intelligence, often described as the ability to read other people’s emotions and react in an appropriate way. ‘Monarch employees tended to score a little higher on emotional

intelligence than the rest of the subjects,’ said Professor Freeman. ‘They also scored significantly higher on agreeableness and empathy.’ Cabin crew ‘star’ Geri Dargan, who features in Monarch’s advertising campaign and also participated in the study, said: ‘We’ve always been known for our traditional values and the warmth of our customer service, but it was really interesting to see it put to the test. I think everyone would benefit from the test and become a bit more self-aware – niceness really should be higher on everyone’s list of priorities’ ■

tripadvisor Winner!

We’ve recently been voted as a winner in ‘Regional & Low Co the Airlines’ categor y st on customer reviewbased on tripadvisor over s tripadvisor – www.t the last year. Visit - and rate your flig ht experience.

NEW MONARCH ROUTES TAKE OFF More Bag for your Buck This summer, we’ve increased our hold luggage allowance for all beach package holiday makers from 20kgs to 23kgs. So now you’ll be able to pack a few more holiday essentials that you didn’t think possible – like that extra pair of shoes, handbag or a box of your favourite tea bags ■


Monarch has launched new routes to Porto, Spilt, Stockholm, Valencia, and Zagreb

Traditional water cannons welcome the first flights

Celebrations took place for five great new routes that have taken to the skies in the last few months - Porto, Split, Stockholm, Valencia and Zagreb. All the destinations are great for both city breaks and extended holidays with ideally timed flights. You can fly to Porto and Stockholm from Birmingham, Luton and Manchester, Zagreb from Gatwick and Manchester - and we’re the only airline with direct flights - and Split and Valencia are both from Birmingham. Take a look at for holidays, city breaks and flights to all destinations ■

Blooming Marvellous!

Channelling Adele, number four in the list was giving someone a call to say hello (12%), with women responding three times better (15%) than men (10%) to a friendly chat. Charlie said: ‘It was a real pleasure to spend the day cheering up commuters at London Victoria. For me gardening is such a wonderful past time, it not only helps keep people active but lots of research shows that it has a very positive influence on a person’s mental state. When I am abroad, I love getting out in the sunshine and exploring the local flora and fauna!’

To coincide with Chelsea Flower Show 2017, TV gardener Charlie Dimmock joined (Ground) forces with Monarch to cheer up commuters with a giant floral plane at London Victoria Station


he ex-Ground Force favourite and current presenter of BBC’s Garden Rescue unveiled the 15-foot-long and 15 foot-wide plane, covered in 10,000 flowers native to Monarch’s new flight and holiday destinations. The blooms included honeysuckle from Stockholm in Sweden, sunflowers from Porto in Portugal, lavender from the fields of Zagreb in Croatia, and red carnations – Spain’s national flower – from Valencia. The floral work of art took a staggering 207 hours to create, with each of the 10,000 flowers delicately attached by hand.

Following new research that found giving fresh flowers is one of the best ways to brighten someone’s day*, Charlie joined Monarch cabin crew to hand out hundreds of free posies to unsuspecting members of the public. Charlie spent the morning charming passersby, as the survey revealed that some of the nicest gestures Brits can do to raise someone’s spirits is flash them a smile (19%) or give them a compliment (18%). A simple hug was named as the third nicest gesture, with 1 in 6 Brits (13%) feeling better after a cuddle.

Monarch’s Floral Plane then jetted off to Birmingham New Street station to put more smiles on the faces of the public. And as part of Monarch’s ‘Year of Nice’, cabin crew awarded the friendliest commuters with a free pair of flights every hour ■ For nicer flights and holidays visit: * Smile (19%), Compliment (18%), Hug (13%), Call to say hello (12%), Giving flowers (8%), OnePoll, May 2017, 1,000 respondents

For more information or to book Monarch flights, please visit

HM Ambassador to Stockholm welcomes Monarch to Sweden Traditional Zagreb dress to welcome Monarch customers on the first flight

The Mayor of Porto joins the celebrations

For further information or to book holidays and flights, please visit

Hotspot news 15

Foundation The Monarch Foundation is the cornerstone of Monarch’s corporate responsibility programme. It brings together the incredible generosity of our passengers, employees and our commitment to a range of charities. Last year we raised over £460,000 for our charity partners. Thanks to our customers and staff, we’re able to make a difference to the lives of all sorts of people. Here’s how we’ve raised money for our charity partners so far in 2017

£128,000 raised by our customers onboard


£35,000 raised by our staff in the UK and overseas


raised through our website via Pennies

Children at Matha Primary School in Kenya used to struggle to get clean, safe water – until Monarch employees raised money for a project that transformed their lives. One year on, the team that raised the most money visited the school to see how their fundraising had made a difference


ater: it’s something most of us take for granted but for 663 million people across the world, access to clean and safe water does not exist. Until a year ago, this was the situation for the 300-plus pupils at Matha Primary School in Kenya. The school is in Makueni County, around three hours from Nairobi, a semi-arid area that has long suffered from drought. Matha pupils walked up to 10km to fetch water from the river to the school before class. The only thing worse than the long, dangerous trek was the water-related illnesses the children got from drinking the dirty, contaminated water they collected. But last year their lives were transformed. In a fundraising first for the Monarch Foundation and charity partner Just A Drop, Monarch employees raised money to help

£173,000 Total

The charity partners of the Monarch Foundation


monarch foundation

Changing lives in Kenya

you’re helping too

build a rainwater harvesting tank to supply the school with safe water.

but also for sanitation, safety and agriculture. People can also now harvest crops thanks to these water tanks.’

The new tank harvests water from the school roof during the two Kenyan rainy At a similar project funded by the seasons. The project also provides Monarch Foundation at Kasue Girls sanitation and hygiene education with Secondary School, the team saw three handfirst-hand how the washing stations school community ‘It was an incredible trip. We has benefited from near the toilets. education feel really privileged to have hygiene Visiting the school on how best to use seen how the money we to see how their water to stay healthy. fundraising has have raised has changed the ‘It was an incredible made a difference, the Monarch trip,’ said team. lives of so many people.’ team that raised ‘We feel really the most money privileged to have for the project found the experience an seen how the money we have raised has eye-opening one. ‘We learnt the value changed the lives of so many people.’ of water,’ they said. ‘Being hydrated helps concentration and the pupils The team also visited two sand dam no longer feel tired before they get to projects funded by the Monarch school. The water is not just for drinking

Did you know? ●●768 million people in the world do not have access to clean, safe water ●●Around 2.5 billion people do not have access to adequate sanitation ●●The average distance a child in Kenya walks to collect water is 6km ●●£1 is all it takes to provide a child with clean, safe water for 10 years

Supporting a collaboration between One Water and Just A Drop, Monarch is extending its programme to bring essential water, hygiene and sanitation to even more Kenyan communities with the sale of One Drinks. A contribution from every onboard sale of One bottled water and Apple & Raspberry sugar-free juicy drink is now donated to Just A Drop. The funds will go towards the charity’s sand dam project. Foundation, the Kyambezi Sand Dam and the Kwa Maui Sand Dam. Sand dams store thousands of litres of water in the particles between the grains of sand which filters and cleans the water. This means if the rains fail the communities still have access to water. Shallow wells can then be dug to access clean water using a hand pump and livestock can also get water. The Kyambezi Sand Dam is Just A Drop’s biggest project to date and will bring safe water to more than 1,500 people in Makueni County. Kwa Maui Sand Dam is driven by a women-led self-help group which will help the community to grow vegetables to sell at market and produce modest incomes. Pauline Prow, Chair of The Monarch Foundation, said: ‘Providing clean, safe water is helping to change the lives of hundreds of people and it was a privilege for the team that visited Kenya to see what their fundraising has helped to achieve’ ■

Monarch Foundation


Supporting Autism Awareness

As part of the Monarch Foundation’s work to support autism awareness, a special day was organised for Luke Jones and his family


Monarch CEO Andrew Swaffield spotted the story and invited the Jones family to spend a day at Manchester Airport to help Luke and his family prepare for their next holiday.

The Monarch Foundation is pleased to announce that a small donation from the sale of all scratch cards sold onboard Monarch flights will go to the National Autistic Society. The NAS is the leading UK charity for people with autism and their families, providing life-changing advice, services and information to approximately 700,000 people.

uke, an eight-year-old boy with autism, became increasingly anxious about his Monarch flight to Gran Canaria and was almost hysterical prior to take-off. But with support from the customers and crew on board, Luke’s family managed to settle him so they could continue with their holiday. Luke’s Mum Lauren posted a heartfelt thank you to everyone for their support that became a viral hit on Monarch’s social media sites. Lauren said: ‘As a mother of a child with autism I often feel judged by his different behaviour but the crew and passengers on our flight showed acceptance and patience. Thank you for not judging us - you have no idea what a blessing you were!’

scratchcard charity

Funds raised by donations from the sale of scratch cards will be directed towards the NAS National Helpline, often the first point of contact for people with autism and their families. The team provides specialist advice to more than 16,000 callers. Luke and his brother David were treated to a full private tour of the airport, with a trip to the Runway Visitor Park, lunch in the Runway Café and the chance to watch aircraft take off. They also had a tour of Concorde and spent time with some Monarch crew. The highlight for the boys was sitting in the captain’s cockpit seat. The visit highlights Monarch’s commitment to providing a positive experience for all customers – we are

widely recognised for our outstanding customer service as a ‘WorldHost’ accredited business. Working towards the Autism Friendly Award, we aim to do as much as we can to support customers with hidden disabilities. After the visit, Lauren said: ‘we are so grateful to Monarch and Manchester Airport for providing us with such a wonderful experience – it is something that Luke will remember forever’ ■

£50,000 for Tameside Macmillan Unit ‘With chemotherapy, clinical haematology services, complementary therapy and cancer information all together in one place, patient experience will be improved enormously’


very year more than 1,000 people in Tameside and Glossop are told they have cancer and there has long been a need for a purpose-built centre where local people can access specialist cancer treatment. Monarch Foundation charity partner Macmillan Cancer Support has responded by building a new state-of-the-art unit for patients.

Carol Diver, Macmillan Advanced Nurse Practitioner


The new unit is already accepting patients in the Tameside, Glossop and Greater Manchester areas but the capital appeal is

still open for the unit so Monarch wanted to help. With the support of our customers and the funds we’ve raised onboard, Monarch has donated £50,000 to the unit to help fund the new facilities. Pauline Prow, Chair of the Monarch Foundation, said: ‘The new facilities will make a huge difference to patients. Cancer touches the lives of so many and we are delighted to be able to make this donation to this significant local project. It will allow our customers and staff to see for themselves the direct impact their fundraising efforts can have on people’s lives’ ■


he streets of London became the runway for Monarch’s very own awesome foursome when they took part in this year’s Virgin Money London Marathon. The team of Manchester-based crew were attempting to break the Guinness World Record for the Fastest Marathon in a Four Person Costume. And what else would a Monarch crew wear but a custom-made aircraft? Built by Monarch Aircraft Engineering apprentices, the 535cm long plane was made from lightweight aluminium and weighed in at 21kg. Its engines were powered by a low-carb and high-fat diet while the aircraft included some optional extras such as auxiliary fuel tanks that stored two litres of race-day refreshments! The team ran the 26.2-mile course for Great Ormond Street Hospital Charity (GOSH) and Macmillan Cancer Support. Leading them was Captain Simon Gauge, Virgin Money’s second highest individual marathon fundraiser in 2016.

Photo: Andrew King Photography

Awesome foursome run London Marathon

The unique partnership between Monarch and Blind Veterans UK has been shortlisted for a 2017 Business Charity Award. The nomination recognised how sighted guiding training has been incorporated into Monarch’s cabin crew training, raising awareness of the difficulties faced by visionimpaired passengers and advising how to make travelling a better experience for those with sight loss.

monarch foundation

A great partnership

The partnership also reaches out to the estimated 50,000 veterans battling sight loss who do not realise they are eligible for the charity’s support. If you are a vision-impaired ex-Service man or woman, go to or telephone 0800 389 7979 ■

The Perfect Blend

or attempting a Guinness World Record!’ he said. ‘Training included regular runs with 5kg backpacks to prepare for the weight of the aircraft. Needless to say, it was a challenge fitting preparation in around our schedules and regular 4am starts.’ Simon ran for GOSH along with Cabin Crew Caroline Brown, while Cabin Crew Manager Jacq Jones and Captain Steve Day ran for Macmillan. Also taking part in the marathon were First Officer Matt Corkhill and Compliance Auditor Cherie-Louise Thomson for Macmillan; Aircraft Engineer Tom Deacon and Sales Director Gary Anslow for GOSH; Captain Jerry Greville-Heygate for Blind Veterans UK; and Direct Marketing and CRM Manager Liam Gibson for Parkinson’s UK. The awesome foursome didn’t break the world record this time round but their fantastic attempt helped the Monarch marathon runners raise more than £25,000 ■

‘Between us we have 58 years of flying for Monarch but it’s fair to say we never thought we’d be crewing a plane quite like this one

For further information or to book holidays and flights, please visit

On 29 September kettles will be boiled and cakes will be baked again at Monarch’s bases across the UK for Macmillan’s World’s Biggest Coffee Morning. We’re joining people all over the UK to raise money for our charity partner Macmillan Cancer Support and to help make sure no one has to face cancer alone ■

award-winning work The Monarch Foundation was delighted to receive the National Impact Award, for its work engaging customers and employees, at the GOSH Corporate Partnership Awards earlier this year. The award is recognition for our employees and customers all around the UK and overseas who help to support GOSH in ways which have a national impact ■

Monarch Foundation 19

We are an international water development charity - we bring clean and safe water to communities in need. Please find more information about us at: Reg. charity number 1100505

With the generous support of Monarch customers and staff, Just a Drop has recently completed a project at Matha Primary School in Kenya which will bring clean and safe water and hygiene to 302 children – life-changing work. Monarch is currently supporting us to bring clean and safe water to a further 6,171 people in Kenya through building two sand dams and another school water tank at Kasue School. This will achieve a huge impact and we’re very grateful for the support we receive from Monarch.


destination MADEIRA


Madeira Madeira is a dramatic subtropical outcrop in the middle of the Atlantic, scattered with lush botanic gardens and soaring mountains that pierce the clouds Words: Helen Ochyra

This vertiginous island in the middle of the Atlantic is a dramatic subtropical outcrop


adeira has a reputation for being touristy, but look a little closer and you'll find the lush Portuguese island has all the makings of a brilliant break: sleek hotels, chic swimming spots, hip bars, boat-fresh seafood and a developing arts scene. This vertiginous island in the midst of the Atlantic is a dramatic subtropical outcrop, where towering cliffs dwarf tall palms and unspoilt beaches lead out to a playground for surfers and scuba divers.


The capital Funchal is a city that clings to an amphitheatre of rock, its airport built on concrete stilts out in the ocean and its primary pastime plunging into the Atlantic for a salty swim. Here fishing boats of all shapes and sizes haul in deep-sea fish that look like monsters and sun-soaked locals knock back a potent rum-based cocktail called poncha as they watch the sun set from dockside tables. In the old town, an art project has breathed new life into the peeling paint of ancient buildings and a young population props up a thriving

PRETTY AS A PICTURE: View over the small fishing village of Camara de Lobos

small bar scene that fills the cobbled streets until well past midnight. Galleries here sell contemporary artworks, while traditional cafÊs continue doing what they have for decades: serving up plates of grilled fish and vase-sized glasses of milky coffee. Explore the island beyond Funchal and you’ll find gardens galore, the plant life oversized and oversaturated, beaches that seem to cling to the base of soaring cliffs and craggy mountains that pierce the clouds. Madeira is unlike anywhere else on earth.

destination MADEIRA

AND THEY'RE OFF: Rubbersoled locals escort visitors from Monte by toboggan


Funchal faces firmly out to sea and on sunny days the locals can often be found on the seafront promenade, strolling from one bathing spot to the next. Grab a lounger at the Lido ( and take a dip in the large saltwater pool, filled daily by the Atlantic. Head for heights? Cabo Girão is one of the highest cliffs in Europe (at 580 metres) and there’s a glass walkway suspended over it – CAPITAL CITY: Fort of São Tiago in Funchal

so you can watch the Atlantic swirl directly beneath your feet. Don’t forget to look along the coast for cracking views of Funchal too. The air is so pure in the village of Monte that it was once a health resort for high society. Today it’s an easy trip up from Funchal on the cable car (, a 15-minute ride that takes you above the city and into the hills. You can return to Funchal by toboggan, a two-seater wicker sledge operated (at speed) by rubber-soled locals.

XX Location Madeira is the largest of the four Atlantic Ocean islands that make up the Madeira Archipelago, an autonomous region of Portugal off the northwest coast of Africa. XX Coordinates 32°39.4'N 16°54.35'W XX Size 801 km2 (309 sq mi) XX Population 289,000 (estimate, 2016) XX Average Annual Temperature: 19.6°C (67.3°F) XX Coldest Months January and February – Average high 19.7°C (67.5°F) XX Hottest Months August and September – Average high 26.4°C (79.5°F) Source: Instituto de Meteorologia Fly to Madeira from Birmingham, London Gatwick and Manchester Flights and holidays are bookable at

Destination guides 23

By Day

By Night

OK, so it’s not the island’s highest point, but Pico do Arieiro does have a road leading up to it – so you can take in the dizzying views without the muscle strain. Walk 10 minutes from the visitor centre to reach the viewpoint then look down through the clouds into the plunging, verdant valleys.

You won’t get kicked out of Scat Funchal Jazz Club until very late indeed – it stays open long after others have called it a night. Expect jam sessions and high profile acts as well as great cocktails. The oceanfront outdoor terrace is a great place to watch the sunset.

Madeira’s lofty cliffs are a hint at what lies beneath. Beneath the Atlantic that is, and around the island’s plunging edges. Strap on a scuba tank to explore the underwater canyons and subaquatic flora of Garajau marine reserve with Focus Natura (

Save the stroll along Rua de Santa Maria in the old town until the evening, when you can check out the 200-plus artworks on the alleyway’s painted doors between stopping for a Coral lager or poncha in the small bars that line this ancient street.

ALLEYWAY ART: One of the painted doors along Rua de Santa Maria

Beaches seem to cling to the base of soaring cliffs

Casa do Rum: Rum factory and museum in Porto da Cruz


Drive to the island’s north coast and the charming village of Porto da Cruz, its black sand beaches backed by dramatic cliffs. This is a hotspot for surfing but is better known for rum thanks to the sugar cane plantations that surround it. Visit Casa do Rum for a tasting. It’s only 2hr 15min by ferry to neighbouring Porto Santo, and one of Europe’s best beaches. The island’s southern coast is lined with some nine kilometres of buttery sands and there are funky beach bars such as Pé Na Água serving up fresh fish.


destination MADEIRA

CATCH OF THE DAY: Fresh fish at Funchal's famed Mercado dos Lavradores (Farmers' Market)

Take a pew: Cliff view over the Atlantic and Camara do Lobos town


Take your pick from the catch of the day at Vila do Peixe’s ( counter before taking a seat high above the fishing village of Câmara de Lobos and staring out through floor-to-ceiling glass at the Atlantic below.



Art deco posters and a crisp blue and white colour scheme make Belmond Reid's Palace one chic place to stay. Bathing terraces run down to the Atlantic and there’s afternoon tea on the terrace.

Funchal’s best seafood menu is served up on the terrace at Doca do Cavacas, overlooking a popular swimming spot. Try the espada – a local fish with succulent white flesh.

Stay in a Monte manor house with original wooden floors, antique furniture and a billiards room. The Quinta do Monte Estalagem also has a heated indoor pool and extensive gardens.

Dress for dinner at Madeira’s only two Michelin-starred restaurant Il Gallo d’Oro. (www.ilgallodoro.portobay. com). The four-course tasting menu by chef Benoît Sinthon changes regularly; expect creativity.

Within flip-flop swinging distance of the Lido, oceanfront Melia Madeira Mare has a large outdoor pool area, an indoor pool and spa. Most rooms have sea views and all have balconies ■

Destination guides 25

Gateway to the Algarve MOORISH: Beautiful sunset over the town of Faro

Linger awhile in Faro and you’ll discover a delightful mix of Moorish remains and 18th-century architecture along cobbled streets and medieval walls Words: Emma Higgins


he gateway to the Algarve, Faro welcomes hundreds of travellers through its airport every day. Sadly, comparatively few see the city as they head straight out to a resort elsewhere in the region. It’s a shame, for there are plenty of reasons to linger in this port town. Faro is layered in history: founded by the Romans and occupied by the Moors, it was almost entirely flattened in the 1755 earthquake


then beautifully rebuilt. The historical old town, Cidade Velha, is contained almost entirely within the medieval city walls. Largely untouched by the earthquake, it is everything picture-perfect about Portugal: whitewashed two-storey buildings, cobbled laneways and storks nesting atop lampposts. Everything is easily navigable on foot, allowing you to spend your days ambling the streets, hopping between century-old churches and along the breezy walkways of the marina, eventually

flopping down in the shade under a café umbrella to cool off with a glass of vinho verde – a slightly fizzy, light Portuguese wine that pairs perfectly with sunshine. A huge expansion of Faro Airport is due for completion this year. This development means an increase of passenger numbers from six to eight million, an exciting growth that has put a spotlight on this unassuming coastal community. The future is bright for Faro, and travellers can find more exciting things to do here than ever before.

destination FARO

ROMAN ROOTS: The Sé de Faro Cathedral was reconstructed after an earthquake in 1755

Must see

Don’t miss Faro Cathedral or Sé de Faro – it’s one of the highlights of Faro’s old town. Built on an important Roman and Moorish site, it was completed in 1251. The original structure was damaged in the earthquake, so what you see today is a breathtaking mix of Renaissance, Gothic and Baroque architecture. Faro’s domed 16th-century Renaissance Convento de Nossa Senhora da Assunção, in what was once the Jewish quarter, houses the Museu Municipal de Faro. With mosaics dating back to the third century, 9th to 13th-century Islamic artefacts and 20th-century pieces from renowned local artist Carlos Filipe Porfírio, there are few better places to get your bearings on Faro’s cultural background. TAKE A STROLL: Glimpses of the port from the old town

XX Location The capital of southern Portugal’s Algarve region, Faro is the country's southernmost city. XX Coordinates 37°02'N 7°55'W XX Size 202.57 km2 (78.21 sq mi) XX Population: 64,560 (2011) XX Average Annual Temperature 18°C (64°F) XX Coldest Month January – Average high 16.1°C (61°F) XX Hottest Month July– Average high 29.2°C (84.6°F) Source: Instituto de Meteorologia Fly to Faro from Birmingham, London Gatwick, Leeds Bradford, Manchester and London Luton Flights and holidays are bookable at

Destination guides 27

destination FARO

By Day

As your flight lands in Faro, you may spot the labyrinth of islands and lagoons that make up Ria Formosa Natural Park. These almostdeserted islands play host to some of the Algarve’s most secluded beaches and a diversity of ecosystems that attracts rare birds. Ilha da Barreta, the most accessible from Faro, takes about 30 minutes to reach by ferry.

Back on the mainland, stroll through the Arco da Vila, a 19th-century arch built on the city’s medieval Moorish gateway – it makes the best starting point for an exploration of the old town. Also, stop by the 18th-century church Igreja do Carmo, home to the haunting but poignant Chapel of Bones made from the remains of more than 1,000 monks.

The Arco da Vila makes the best starting point for an exploration of the old town

SUNDOWNER: Looking across the marina at sunset

By Night

Head out for a sundowner with views over the water – O Castelo is a favourite for an early evening drink. Wander further into the old town to Praça Dom Francisco Gomes, a romantic spot by night where you can sit outside on a table at Columbus Cocktail & Wine Bar ( The small yet magnificent Italiante Teatro Lethes ( pt/teatrolethes) is one of the oldest theatres in Portugal. Most nights of the week you can see dance, drama or music – including fado, a melancholic Portuguese style of singing.

Destination guides 29

PRETTY PALACE: The 19th century bluetiled palace hotel in Estoi


The historic town of Loulé, just 17km north of Faro, is known for its municipal market. In this striking pink and white building, you can watch skilled fishmongers scale their catch and stock up on gourmet gifts to go – from Algarve honey to bags of piri piri spice. If markets are your thing, don’t miss the one at Olhão, a charming town filled with tiled buildings 10 minutes by train east of Faro. Famed for the Palácio de Estoi, Estoi is also close by (11km north). The 19thcentury blue-tiled palace has been converted into a pousada, an up-scale hotel.


For classic Portuguese dishes, there are few better places in Faro than 2 Irmãos (www. Open since 1925 and one of the oldest restaurants in Portugal, this humble eatery serves traditional dishes from bacalhau a bras (salted cod) to lamb stews and grilled pork steaks.


For something special, treat yourself to a meal at Faz Gostos ( The slightly higher prices here are worth it for the outstanding food: tiger prawns in mango sauce, stuffed squid and typical Portuguese desserts such as trouxa de ovos, a sweet made with eggs yolks and sugar. ZZ


For easy access to Faro combined with a resort stay, upmarket Vilamoura, just 30 minutes out of the city, ticks all the right boxes. The child-friendly Crowne Plaza is set directly onto a long sandy stretch of beach, only a short stroll from the shops, bars and restaurants of the upmarket resort. Arguably the most famous resort on the Algarve Albufeira is a little further (40 minutes) away. The Auramar Hotel, on a headland in the lively Oura area, has wonderful sea views from its pool area making it just the spot to recuperate after a day taking in Faro’s sights ■

ALGARVE HOTSPOT: Albufeira from the beach

Majorca, Spain By: Sue Banting

eat where

Majorca, Spain


I would recommend Majorca it as it is an unspoilt island with much to do and see in a delightful climate. Just the place to go for a sunny autumn break and only a couple of hours away by plane!


Alongside the picturesque marina are some excellent eating places, clean and good value for money. The local Catalan-speaking people are friendly and welcoming.

drop-off and pick-up points for several clean, sandy beaches. There is a Sunday market that is good for shopping and picking up nice quality souvenirs.



There is a recently opened virtual exhibition, boutique and lounge celebrating the Majorica simulated pearls (since 1890) in Porto Cristo which also has a shop near to the Caves of Drach and worth viewing; some elegant pieces at reasonable prices. Every visitor should see the Caves of Drach, with an amazing collection of beautifully lit lakes with stalagmites and stalactites. The joy of seeing a gondola sail in with musicians on board playing familiar classical music is a real romantic treat at the end of the tour.

Visitors can enjoy trips around the island to Palma to visit the simply stunning cathedral with its central rose window and Gaudí restoration. You can also see other buildings of historical interest. For people who are interested in art, there is the Joan Miró Museum, north-west of Palma, accessible by bus or hiring a car. For the musically inclined there is the Chopin museum in Valldemossa where his original Pleyel piano is exhibited. You can also visit the north east of the island, Port de Pollença to bask on glorious beaches and enjoy fabulous views.

word on the street Majorca

Word on the Street

A warm time to visit without the crowds is mid-October when it is around 24°C, so pleasant to walk around and catch the rays for a tan on the clean, sandy beach at Porto Cristo.


There are several places to stay in Porto Cristo and restaurants and bars including the Porto Bella which is well worth a visit. An excellent bar, restaurant and grill called the Sa Cantina was welcoming with freshly cooked food and attentive service.


In Porto Cristo, there is an opentop bus service that takes a route around the south coast where there are punctual and regular

For nightlife, a 15-minute taxi ride takes you from Porto Cristo to Cala Millor with a pedestrianised seafront promenade lined with restaurants, bars and clubs to party the night away!

Want to pen your own Word on the Street for Passport magazine? Why not live your travel-writing dream and become a contributor to the next issue by writing an editorial piece on your favourite destination following the example above. Don’t forget the accompanying holiday shots! With up to five Word on the Street pages in each issue, there’s every chance it will be published! Send to:

Destination guides 31



F Almería is an ancient city with a modern heart and its nearby coast is perhaps the last section of Spain’s Mediterranean shore where you can have a beach to yourself Words: Elle Gandy Draper


rom the Moorish castle that dominates its skyline to its Arab baths, the ancient city of Almería offers much to travellers seeking an authentic Spanish experience. The capital of the province that shares its name, Almería seamlessly blends the ancient with the modern and offers a plethora of cultural experiences. Gastronomy is a serious business here. Of course, traditional Spanish tapas is on offer – often free with a glass of beer or wine – but Almería is also embracing fusion and fine dining with top


chefs dishing up Michelinlevel plates at High Street prices. Despite this, Almería is one of the cheaper cities of Spain to visit. A glass of wine rarely costs more than €1.50 and numerous museums or monuments are either free or request only a nominal entry fee. Locals are fiercely proud of their heritage in this southeastern coastal city. With thousands of businesses thriving within its winding streets and numerous plazas, it hums with frenetic activity. Almería is a city ripe for exploration; venture deep into its working heart to discover its best-kept secrets.

destination ALMERIA

Must see

No visit to Almería city would be complete without walking up to the Alcazaba The 10th-century Moorish fortress, high on the hill over looking the city, is the second largest fortress in Andalucia (after Granada’s Alhambra) and offers breathtaking views. The beautifully restored Aire de Almería bañuelo (or Arab baths; www.airedealmeria. com/) in Plaza Vieja are more than 800 years old and a perfect place to unwind. Treatments are on offer alongside the thermal baths – the latest lets you soak in the antioxidant qualities of a good red wine.

ANCIENT GARDENS: The beautiful Alcazaba gardens

XX Location In the southeast of Spain on the Mediterranean Sea, Almería is the capital city of the Andalusia region. XX Coordinates 36°50.25'N 2°28.05'W XX Size 296.21 km2 (114.37 sq mi) XX Population 194,203 (2016) XX Average Annual Temperature 19°C (66°F) XX Coldest Month January – Average high 16.9°C (62.4°F) XX Hottest Month August – Average high 31°C (87.8°F) Source: Agencia Estatal de Meteorología

TOWERING REFUGE: The impressive six-towered Catedral de la Encarnación

By Day

Don’t miss the impressive Catedral de la Encarnación, the city’s unusually weighty, six-towered cathedral was built not only as a place of worship but to provide refuge from frequent pirate raids from North Africa. It's

basically a Gothic/Renaissance building with baroque and neoclassical features added in the 18th century. There’s a good selection of museums: the Museo de Almeria (www.facebook. com/MuseoAlmeria/) uses multimedia technology to excellent effect

Fly to Almeria from London Gatwick and Manchester Flights and holidays are bookable at

to focus chiefly on two prehistoric Almerían cultures – Los Millares (3200–2250 BC), probably the Iberian Peninsula's first metalworking culture, and El Argar (2250–1550 BC), which ushered in the Bronze Age; the Centro Andaluz de la Fotografica (www.

Destination guides 33

Almería seamlessly blends the ancient with the modern and offers a plethora of cultural experiences

puts on top-class exhibitions of work by international photographers; while the interactive Museo de la Guitarra, close to the cathedral, tells the absorbing story of Antonio Torres, credited with designing the acoustic guitar. Shopping lovers should make a beeline for Avenida Federico Garcia Lorca where international brands sit alongside independent stores or head to the city’s main Plaza Vieja for the regular fêtes showcasing local artisan products.

By Night

When the sun goes down, Almería really comes to life; abandon the main thoroughfares and disappear into the backstreets for the best bars. Casa Puga ( may be the oldest bar in town (it opened in 1906) but is still a good choice close to the cathedral. El Vino en un Barco ( elvinoenunbarco) is known for its ingenious cocktails and fabulous tapas. Try the kraken sour, concocted from spiced rum, lemon and ginger beer.


Almería has miles of sandy coastline and you may be lucky enough to have a section all to yourself. The easy option is to choose a town or village with a beach and enjoy the benefits of chiringuitos (beach bars) and easy access. The more challenging option is to hike down tracks signposted from the coastal roads to hidden calas (coves). Less than an hour’s drive to the east is Cabo de Gata, a windswept national park where you can enjoy some of Spain’s most flawless and least crowded beaches, see wild flamingos or grab lunch in San José.


STREET SOUNDS: Musicians entertain passersby in Almería

destination ALMERIA

Almería province is a hotspot for filmmakers and has been the setting for numerous films, not just Spaghetti Westerns like A Fistful of Dollars but also historic epics such as Ridley Scott’s Exodus. You can tour sets and take in a wild-west show at theme parks Oasys Parque Temático or Fort Bravo in the nearby Tabernas desert. Head further north to Vélez-Blanco where 'slow tourism' has really taken off. This mountain village on the edge of Sierra María Los Vélez national park has its own castle, monastery and theatre. This year’s annual fiesta runs 10-13 August. Bring your phrasebook because only Spanish is spoken here.

BREATHTAKING: The worldfamous Alcazaba Fortress

TYPICAL TAPAS: Selection of authentic treats


Spanish cuisine is a delight in Almería city. Seafood lovers should visit Marisqueria Baviera on Calle Tenor Iribarne. Try the cazón en adobo, marinated and fried dogfish, or the bacalao frito (cod fried in batter). At the Avenida Mediterraneo end of the city, try La Galería Neo Taberna (www.facebook. com/LaGaleriaNeoTab/) on Calle Libano for stylish tapas like taquito de atún rojo (slices of seared tuna sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds and drizzled with sauce).



The former fishing village of Aguadulce, a 15-minute drive out of Almería city, is a beautiful base from which to explore the region. The four-star Diverhotel Aguadulce Hotel (set on a cliff top overlooking the sea) and Playadulce Hotel (right next to the beach) offer the best of a seaside break with easy city access ■

botanic beauty: Ficus tree roots in Aguadulce park

Destination guides 35


THE SEA With the Red Sea and the desert on its doorstep, it’s not hard to see why the shimmering modern city of Eilat is one Israel’s most precious jewels Words: Lee Saunders


destination eliat


omewhere beyond the sea, somewhere waiting for me,’ crooned the late singer Bobby Darin in his popular 1959 hit. That somewhere could very well be Eilat. Eilat is a modern city sitting proudly on the northern edge of the tranquil Red Sea, a shimmering oasis in the Negev desert. But it is no mirage and offers an abundance of fascinating activities to stir the soul of the most curious traveller. Whether you are looking for exciting family activities or recharging your batteries, Eilat has it all. Nestling in the sand dunes of southern Israel, the port and resort city was founded in 1950 and is renowned for its relaxing beaches and calm waters. Here, visitors can snorkel or dive with our more intelligent mammal cousins – the dolphin – or explore coral reefs brimming with underwater life in all its technicolour and search for hidden treasures glimmering underneath the water’s surface. Set against the backdrop of a majestic desert landscape, Eilat is the perfect spot to either take a memorable dive, a fun jeep tour, a bloodpumping hike or a short cruise on the Red Sea, with spectacular views of Jordan and Egypt in the distance.

XX Location At the northern tip of the Red Sea, Eilat is Israel’s southernmost city and part of the South Negev Desert. XX Coordinates 29°33'N 34°57'E XX Size (84.789 km2 or 32.737 sq mi) XX Population 49,734 (2015) XX Average Annual Temperature 25.4°C (77.7°F) XX Coldest Month January – Average high 21.3°C (70.3°F) XX Hottest Month July– Average high 40.4°C (104.7°F) Source: Israel Meteorological Service Fly to Eilat (Ovda airport) from London Luton Flights and holidays are bookable at

Destination guides 39

DOLPHIN DIVE: Swim with the dolphins at the Dolphin Reef

UP CLOSE: Coral teams with life at the underwater observatory

Photo: Dafna Tal/Israeli Ministry of Tourism

Must see

Away from the busy distractions of the world outside, Eilat offers the chance to be as close to nature as you possibly can be. A visit to the Dolphin Reef Eilat ( is fully recommended. This unique ecological site allows you to snorkel, swim and relax with bottlenose dolphins, magically bonding with them in their natural habitat. Close by is the Underwater Observatory Marine Park (, which showcases a mesmerising display of more than 800 species of fish, stingrays, turtles and 20 types of sharks in Sharks World, the largest pool of its kind in the Middle East.

DOLPHIN DIVE: Swim with the dolphins at the Dolphin Reef

Capture amazing views of the coral with either a short cruise from the marine park, on a glass-bottomed boat, the Coral 2000, or in the idyllic Coral Beach Nature Reserve, a perfect spot to appreciate the shallow reefs and see Mother Nature at her finest.

Photo: Galit Amiel/Israeli Ministry of Tourism IN FLIGHT: Flamingos fly over Eilat

By Day

With warm temperatures most of the year, there is no substitute for taking it easy and enjoying the city’s shopping, museums and waterfront entertainment. The enormous dome-shaped Ice Mall ( provides an escape from the heat, combining two floors of fashion stores and dining options with an ice skating rink as its centrepiece, while Mall Hayam offers a diverse and inexpensive shopping experience, due to Eilat’s status as a Free Trade Area. If nature proves more therapeutic, head to Eilat Bird Watching Centre, established in the 1990s on what was an industrial wasteland. The region is a critical stopover for millions of birds before and after they cross the Sahara Desert. Free-guided history and nature tours from the Eilat Tourist Office are a good way to get your bearings.


By Night

One of the city’s hottest and longest running shows is the spectacular WOW Show ( For more than 15 years, this show has been dazzling visitors with breath-taking dancers, 3D animation, quirky comedians and awe-inspiring. The 2017 theme is Splash: Jump Into The Water.

destination eliat

Eilat is a shimmering oasis in the Negev desert

LUXURY SLEEPS: Eilat hotels shimmer at night

Eilat is also a popular fixture for live music. Much-loved prestigious music festivals, such as classical Eilat Chambers Music Festival, the Winter Red Sea Jazz Festival and the Mizrahi dance festival, take place each year. Live music can also be found at the iconic Three Monkeys ( and Bardak ( bars.


No visit to Eilat is complete without a trip into the desert to appreciate the remarkable surrounding areas. Timna Valley Park (, 30km north of Eilat, is a wonderful region to explore. Rich in copper ore, this area has been mined since the 5th millennium BCE and features routes to ancient copper mines and Solomon’s Pillars sandstone formation. Visitors can ride on camels, Eilat’s own four-legged taxis, at Camel Ranch ( to the Eilat Mountain Nature Reserve where gazelles and ibex still roam free, just north of the city. DESERT DELIGHTS: Camel riding in Eilat’s Mountain Nature Reserve Photo: Dafna Tal /Israeli Ministry of Tourism


Among the high-end eateries in the city, 5th Avenue (www. is one of the city’s newest and most enjoyable venues. The New York-style cocktail bar specialises in five different types of international cuisine – Italian, American, Mexican, Oriental and Asian – and after the food’s finished, live music ensures the party continues late into the night. Seafood restaurants Fish Market ( and the cosy Rak Dagim serve up a tremendous selection of the freshest seafood – such as grouper, seabass, St. Peter’s fish and grey mullet. ZZ


For luxurious accommodation in the heart of the city, the Dan Eilat is hard to beat. Named by Condé Nast Traveller as one of the five best resort hotels in the Middle East, this firstclass hotel is a self-contained vacation paradise near all the attractions. Close to Eilat’s North Beach, the Dan Panorama is the perfect home away from home for a memorable vacation, while the comfortable Astral Village Hotel goes the extra mile, offering guests a warm ambience ■ Photo: Dafna Tal /Israeli Ministry of Tourism

Destination guides 41

Vibrant and offbeat mystic charm

I With architectural gems, a flourishing street art scene, eyecatching museums and a lively restaurant, Zagreb is a wonderful melting pot of old and new Words: Andrea Pisac


n an ever more hectic world, Zagreb continues to project magical calming powers. Despite its buzzy urban flair, Croatia’s capital stubbornly sticks to its exquisite laid-backness. The AustroHungarian built Down Town and medieval Upper Town are made for leisurely strolls, with architectural gems lurking at every corner. Lush parks and semi-wild green stretches snake around the city's heart, giving way to sun-kissed café terraces that demand to be visited. Whether it’s cold or hot, locals here love life alfresco – the best proof of this is in the recent explosion of street festivals. Zagreb’s wintry fairytale setting earned it the title of Best European Christmas Market for two years in a row but there are plenty of peppy summer activities too: parks become open-air cinemas while food

stalls line picturesque squares. A new verve erupts in micro locations, like the Martićeva Zone, the so-called creative neighbourhood which has reinvented itself as an art and design hub. Even the sleepier Upper Town comes alive, throwing music concerts inside the courtyards of Baroque villas. Perhaps the biggest surprise for visitors is the lively Zagreb restaurant scene, from new generation street-food and fusion to Mediterranean and traditional, authentic Croatian. Art lovers don’t go hungry either. The city has the highest number of museums per square metre and a unique kerbside appeal thanks to the gorgeous sculptures – especially those by Croatia’s leading artist Ivan Meštrović – and arresting street murals by local and international artists – including OKO, Lonac, Lunar and Etien scattered around its public spaces.

destination ZAGREB

Must see

Oozing with mystic charm, Zagreb’s Upper Town is a historic jewel crisscrossed with meandering gas-lit alleyways. Hop on the quirky and world's shortest Funicular to see the medieval Lotrščak Tower from where a canon is fired every day at noon. Linger around St Mark's Square with the namesake church displaying the fab red-and-white checkered roof. On its eastern side there is the unearthly Stone Gate passage turned shrine, where people pray and light candles. For an eerie night-walk spiced up with folk legends, check out Secret Zagreb Tours ( Further in the leafy uphills, Mirogoj, one of Europe’s prettiest cemeteries, features a stunning collection of sculptures.

XX Location The Croatian capital is in the northwest of the country, on the Sava River and at the southern slopes of the Medvednica mountain XX Coordinates 45°49'N 15°59'E XX Area (city) 641 km2 (247 sq mi) XX Population 792,875 (2011) Average Summer Temperature 22°C (71.6°F) Sculptastic: The pretty cemetery of Mirogoj

XX Coldest Month January – Average high 3.7°C (38.7°F) XX Hottest Month July– Average high 26.7°C (80.1°F) Source: Croatian Meteorological and Hydrological Service Fly to Zagreb from London Gatwick and Manchester Flights and holidays are bookable at

Destination guides 43

Daily dishes: The bustling food market in Dolac

By Day

To get the true feel for Zagreb, head to Dolac daily market early in the morning. Fondly described as the ‘belly of the city’, the Dolac fizzes with people and dazzling colour. Pull up a pew in any of the nearby cafés to

enjoy the bustle. To stretch your legs after lunch, hit the visionary Green Horseshoe – a network of parks (including the Botanical Garden) which connects the finest squares and streets of Down Town. Before

nightfall, cross the Sava river and head to the impressive Museum of Contemporary Art (, a meandering building that houses remarkable work by leading Croatian and international artists. Green Connections: One of the network of parks in central Zagreb


destination ZAGREB

By Night

Zagreb’s fun artery – Tkalčićeva Street – never disappoints on a night out. This popular pedestrian strip of cafés, bars and restaurants overflows with cheery people, each searching for a favourite haunt. Walk uphill to the Booze and Blues Bar ( for live jazz, blues and soul. If you find their signature spirits too strong, try the nearby Craftroom – it stocks more than 150 craft beers – and sample the awardwinning local brew Zmajsko. Discerning wine lovers will be right at home at Sherry's (, where Croatian tapas are paired with top-notch local wines (red plavac mali and white graševina) to the sounds of live jazz.

Night time: Bustling cafés serve up fun on Tkalčićeva Street


It’s rare for a metropolitan city to be as close to unspoilt nature as Zagreb is to Medvednica mountain ( Its lush hiking trails and sweeping meadows are a magnet for the locals. Set off from Šestine village and visit the stunning medieval castle Medvedgrad. Then head to the Grafičar mountain hut to refuel with a hearty homemade lunch, including a superb apple strudel. For a less sporty day trip, catch a bus to the nearby postcard-perfect Samobor town. Stroll around its idyllic Baroque streets, making frequent coffee and cake stops. Don't come back without tasting the famous Samobor custard cream cake at Livadić cafe (

Keeping watch: The medieval castle of Medvedgrad nests on the southern slopes of Medvednica, where it has watched over Zagreb for eight centuries

Destination guides 45

Be sure to induldge in Zagreb's cafe culture

Luscious: Melt-in-themouth bell jar cooked lamb



To have the best of both historic and modern, pick the luxe Sheraton Zagreb Hotel*, snuggled among elegant Down Town buildings and only a short walk from the main attractions. Everything you need to pamper yourself is on site: swimming pool, spa, gym, including a fine dining restaurant and a swanky bar. Step outside

and you’re in the heart of the artsy neighbourhood with chic cafés, bars and shops. For a unique central location, make Dubrovnik Hotel* your Zagreb address. You'll sleep a stone’s throw away from the main Jelačić Square in a dashing Art Deco building. Enjoy the hotel’s café – one of the oldest in the city ■

* Hotels bookable at hard to miss: Blue whale by French graffiti artist Etien


Traditional Croatian cuisine is a delight for meat lovers, and its bold flavours don’t get much better than those served up in Vinodol ( Go for their signature dish: melt-in-the-mouth veal or lamb roasted under a bell jar and pair it with a Dalmatian red wine. For a classier take, head to Trilogija (, a tiny gastro haven under exposedbrick vaults. Their eclectic menu uses only the freshest of ingredients from the nearby Dolac market. Be sure to indulge in the Zagreb café culture and don’t miss the homemade cakes at the chic Velvet café (


MENORCA, SPAIN By: Neil Newton from Stamford Neil and Jan Newton have owned a villa in Binibeca since 2004 and spend at least half the year there. They are regularly visited by their three children and six grandchildren. XX fly from all uk airports to menorca

word on the street menorca, spain

Word on the Street where



Mahon, the capital of Menorca, and the adjacent municipalities of Es Castell and St Luis to the east.

If the children can be dragged away from the pool or beach, Mahon is a lovely old City with a lovely deep water port and very walkable. The central shopping area is pedestrianised and there’s an outdoor market on Tuesday and Saturday mornings where you will almost certainly be persuaded to buy ‘avarcas’, the distinctive and unique Menorcan sandal. A walk along the port is a very pleasant way to spend an early evening.

There are some nice small hotels in Es Castell and Punta Prima. Without children, I would recommend one of the agriturismo establishments for their tranquillity.


It’s great for family holidays. There are a few small and some very nice boutique hotels, but the vast majority of visitors will be in selfcatering accommodation with a beach never far away. Menorca has little in common with the more ‘lively’ parts of Majorca and Ibiza.




Until the end of May, nights can be cooler. Even in high summer, temperatures are rarely oppressive, with a breeze usually present. September and early October are also very pleasant.

The main beaches at Binibeca and Punta Prima have canoes for hire and there are cycle hire shops dotted around. Diving schools are located at S’Algar and Cala Torret. A particular treat for my grandchildren is the water park at Biniancolla. A wonderful way to see Mahon from the water is to head to Es Castell and catch the water taxi into the main part of the port. The waterfront at Cala Fons in Es Castell is very beautiful.

Punta Prima and Binibeca Vell have quite a choice. Binibeca Nou/Cala Torret has a row of restaurants at the sea edge. Fine dining can be found at Pan y Vino, Biniarrocca hotel and Alcalfar Vell. My particular favourite is La Baia, at Biniancolla – a little Italian at the head of a beautiful inlet just above the sea. Mahon is a dining mecca but changes frequently, check the local English mag, Roqueta, to take your pick.


Don’t miss the St Luis Fiesta if you are there at the end of August. Similarly, the Mahon Fiesta in early September.

Want to pen your own Word on the Street for Passport magazine? Why not live your travel-writing dream and become a contributor to the next issue by writing an editorial piece on your favourite destination following the example above. Don’t forget the accompanying holiday shots! With up to five Word on the Street pages in each issue, there’s every chance it will be published! Send to: For further information or to book holidays and flights, please visit

Destination guides 47


10 ways YOU'LL


to Gran Canaria

For a little island, Gran Canaria charms in a big way. Paradise is just a short-haul flight away 1. YOU WON'T GET A FRIGHT FROM THE THERMOMETER

5. One for all the family

There are no extremes of hot and cold – the average annual temperature is 24°C. The sun may play hide and seek with you at times, but seasons blend into one on Gran Canaria.

3. Life’s a beach on Gran Canaria

The island has 60km of beaches along its 236km coastline. Whether you’re after picture-perfect carpets of golden sand or a more secluded rocky enclave, there’s a beach to suit everyone. A day at the seaside is a luxury for many, but here it’s one of life’s everyday pleasures.


2. It's an isle of natural beauty

Gran Canaria offers dramatic differences in terrain: from the green and leafy north to its mountainous interior and the spectacular golden sand beaches of the Saharan south (the highlight is the Maspalomas

Dunes). Contrasting with this is a rugged coastline interspersed with white sandy beaches. From the lookout on the towering 6,395ft-high Pico de las Nieves with its uninterrupted views towards the 5,900ft-tall Roque Nublo, you can appreciate why almost half of the island is a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.

4. Gran Canaria is a huge outdoor gym

There are plenty of attractions to keep even the littlest ones entertained. From Sea Trek Helmet Diving and undersea yellow submarine trips to Wild West shows and wildlife encounters, there are plenty of great family days out. This summer sees the opening of a 10,000sqm aquarium, Poema del Mar (Poem of the Sea), in Las Palmas port. One of the most modern aquariums in the world, it runs largely on solar energy and is home to about 350 species of fish, sharks, turtles, dolphins and amphibians. All-year-round warm weather equals all-year-round outdoor sports. With seven golf courses within a 50km radius, it's been named Europe's top golf destination by IAGTO Awards. Hikers can explore trails crisscrossing the island, while cyclists will be tested by steep climbs but rewarded with jaw-dropping views. And the Atlantic's fantastic for those who want to surf mega waves, discover amazing marine life or fish for their supper.

advertorial gran canaria

6. Step back in time

Gran Canaria's pre-Hispanic heart continues to beat six centuries after the Spanish Conquest. Find out about the earliest inhabitants at the excellent Canarian Museum and several well-preserved archaeological sites: the Painted Cave in Galdar, Cenobio de Valerón and newly reopened Maipés de Agaete Archeological Park. Christopher Columbus stopped off at Gran Canaria on his way to the new world in 1492. Learn about his time here at Casa de Colón (Columbus House).

7. Savour the flavour From almond orchards to the world's most northerly coffee plantations, there's a huge range of produce and gastronomic treats to try. Highlights include the almond sweets of Tejeda; the cheese of Guía; honey rum from one of Europe's oldest distilleries; Blat Vodka, the 'purest in the world'; and

Gran Canaria Denomination of Origin wines at the Wine Museum in Santa Brígida.

8. Escape from the 9-5

From luxury Beach Clubs & Spas – like the Maroa and Amadores with their sushi bars and spa lounges – to smaller more intimate wellness centres, Gran Canaria is the perfect place to recharge. Many spa treatments feature the skin-soothing Aloe Vera that grows on the island.

10. Town and country Gran Canaria style Each of the island's 21 municipalities has its own identity. From the cave community of Artenara, the highest on the island, to Mógan and its Little Venice of a port, there's a diversity you would struggle to find in islands double its size.

9. Home to a capital of cool

The atmospheric capital Las Palmas de Gran Canaria is an eclectic mix of cultures with a fine selection of boutiques and cool bars. Stroll through the cobbled streets in the historic neighbourhoods of Triana and Vegueta. Or take a plunge at one of the world's greatest urban beaches, Las Canteras.

For further information, visit Gran Canaria 49




a g a l á M CRE SE T

city a ums se y u m a cit of ... from Nowadays Málaga is reinventing itself as a city of museums. It now has more of factories Málaga in Andalucía on the Mediterranean Coast of Spain is one of the world’s oldest cities. When the Phoenicians founded it in 770BC, it was called Malaka, which loosely translates to ‘factory’. It stayed true to its roots, later becoming Spain’s first industrial city.

than 30 – covering everything from art and archaeology to bullfighting and crystals.

At the moment Málaga is hosting the first foreign outposts of two high-profile museums: the Centre Pompidou Málaga and a branch of the St Petersburg State Russian Museum. Do them one after the It’s not all museums, there’s also an 11th-century other and you’ll feel Moorish palace-fortress called the Alcazaba and like you’ve visited three 1st-century Roman amphitheatre to explore. countries in one day… The sun shines in Málaga for about 300 days every year. No wonder it’s the capital of the Costa del Sol (Coast of the Sun).

uma stadi g war stoppin Work on the Estadio La Rosaleda football stadium started in April 1936 but ground to a halt for four years because of the Spanish Civil War! The first game was finally played in 1941 when Málaga CF (then known as Malacitano) took on Ferroviara Madrid and crushed them, 6 nil.


the for three of one price

ou y id D ? know Spy Kids and Mask Of Zorro star Antonio Banderas was born in Málaga. Still can’t place him? He also did the voice of Puss In Boots in the Shrek films and Burger Beard the Pirate in The SpongeBob Movie.


J. Domínguez ©Museo Picasso Málaga, España

One of the most famous artists of the 20th century, Pablo Picasso, was born in Málaga. But he only spent ten years of his life there — not long enough to paint much, but plenty of time for the city to claim Spain’s most famous artist as its own. It has two museums devoted to him: Casa Natal, where he was born, and the Museo Picasso Málaga in Buenavista Palace. J. Domínguez ©Museo Picasso Málaga, España

It’s like Picasso was born an artist: his first word was piz, short for lápiz the Spanish word for pencil.

Estimations of how many works of art Picasso produced in his lifetime range from an incredible 50,000 to an astounding 147,800.

? what flamenco the Málaga has a long tradition of flamenco: a fiery and passionate music and dance form featuring acoustic guitars, singing, handclaps, heel stamps and castanets.

r u o y g a r D e r e h folks

kids’ guide to Málaga


st e late on th selfy t i c th e —a lo g y y. ro u n d Zip a en techno ric Segwa or s in gre cing elect offer tour y n il s a e l m i a a n b rf pa l co m u a n d y o u w n . a r e v o o y r Se n yo u ls for renta rike out o t to s

s seum ’s mu ally a g a l f Má to re Two o urage you e Museo h o c en n—t a de n ds o l a M ú si c s i c a h t e d ge mu o e ctiv ia ctiv Intera (an intera de Cienc o r a . t g ) n a M ál n d C e e m us e u m um) a nc muse ipia (scie Pr i n c

d es an a Jo n gin g n a i d n like In r ra tic ha Make he drama in the Sie t l i t k h u l c o a a w n ab of Mo nal Park, here s e g o d i T t . bri aw ay da N a l s, N e v a u r s ’ d r i ve r i ve r p o o , o s e. l h r l o a o l f tw e xp ater o w t o s l s l a re a a n d t u n n e c a ve s

tale y fish y er Av

If you’re born in Málaga you are known as a boquerón (or boquerona if you’re a girl), which means anchovy. Unsurprisingly, the salty little fish are a local delicacy — Malagueños eat theirs whole.

Kids only! Top Secret! 51






m l o h k c to

for ... one babies water Love the water? Well, the Swedish capital may be the city for you — spread across 14 islands and connected by 57 bridges, it has an astounding 96 beaches! And it’s the only European capital that can be explored by kayak.

g for

posin photos

When Swedish people pose for photos they don’t say ‘say cheese’ they say ‘säg omelett’, which means (you guessed it) ‘say omelette’!

years 0 0 1,0 GS N I K OF The Swedish monarchy is one of the oldest in the world – it has had a king for more than a thousand years. The current king is Carl XVI Gustaf.

y to of ice gatewa world hotel another The Stockholm Archipelago (or group of islands) is just 20 minutes out of the city. It’s a mesmerising world made up of more than 30,000 rocky isles carpeted with sandy beaches, forests and wildflowers.

OU Y D I D ? W O N K


The smörgåsbord, a buffet-style meal with multiple hot and cold dishes of various foods on a table, officially became a main meal at the 1912 Olympic Games in Stockholm.


Travelling north? In the remote Lapland village of Jukkasjärvi (200km from the Arctic Circle), you’ll find the world’s first ice hotel. Each room is sculpted from huge blocks of ice taken from a nearby river. Guests have to wear coats and sip warm drinks as the temperature is always minus 5°C!

If the Icehotel is too far a trek, find out of what it’s like at Icebar Stockholm or London – everything except the liquids in the drinks is made of ice. Kids are allowed in with adults during the day.

Visit Sweden from the end of September until the start of April and you may come across nature’s most astonishing light show – the aurora borealis. These incredible lights are caused by tiny particles from the sun. When they hit our atmosphere, they release energy in the form of coloured lights.

r u o y g a r e r D e h y l i m fa

When Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel invented dynamite in 1867, he became known as the ‘Merchant of Death’. But Alfred wanted to be remembered as a nice man, so he set up the Nobel Prizes – annual awards given to people who advance peace, science and the arts.

s s l a ve r i o r s , yo u r a w Meet ds when 963AD o and g el back to e was av r t at l i f e tim e r w h i n g th e v o c s to di y like dur ngaliv, i re a l l at V i k t g age ’s newes n. n i k i V m l d o r h å e Stock on Djurg n o i t at t r a c

cold mr Anders Celsius (1701-44) was a Swedish astronomer who devised the Celsius temperature scale. It is now the world’s most used temperature scale (although the United States still uses Fahrenheit).

he nic , t e T i ta s a n k o n h t e k a i Just l arship Vas 1628. It in w y t h ab e d g ya g e mi e n v o o n th e s e o w d i a s m n r s a t – i ye ed t 333 as salvag d 17thsp e n e r ve e it w befor only pres he world. e h n t ip i t it’s r y sh u t n e c

To convert Fahrenheit to Celsius: subtract 30 and halve the resulting number. Celsius to Fahrenheit: double the number and add 30.

dest he ol rld, t , n e k a n s i n th e w o a it to S A v i s r m u s e u m g th r o u g h e om -ai ll i n open like trave It’s also h t . i ou n b y e de e re is a re Sw zoo, wh nimals u t a i a m i n o ck h o l m av ia n . to St t Scandin and lynx e e n e i r m e can the wolv like


rebel model

Not met Pippi Longstocking yet? Let us introduce you: this girl rebel created by Stockholm’s writer Astrid Lindgren isn’t like other children. She is the strongest girl in the world, lives by herself in a colourful house in the forest and has a pet monkey and a horse. Dress up as Pippi and slide down the roof of her house, then take a story train through Astrid’s stories at the children’s cultural and adventure centre Junibacken on Djurgården island.

kids’ guide to stockholm

Noble merchant of death


re u lt cu

Swedes love drinking coffee and eating cinnamon rolls (kanelbullar) and even have a special word for the daily ritual of meeting friends for a coffee break: fika.

For further information or to book holidays and flights, please visit

Kids only! Top Secret! 53

Waxing lyrical Comedian Ruby Wax confesses she loves not knowing what she’s going to see next Words: Andrew Williams


omedian Ruby Wax didn’t intend to make a career out of making people laugh. Born in Chicago, Wax moved to London to be a classical actress and joined the Royal Shakespeare Company. ‘I knew I was terrible,’ she has recalled. ‘I’d see actors wincing. Then Alan Rickman told me to write the way I spoke.’ Wax went on to work with Jennifer Saunders, Dawn French and Tracy Ullman on sitcom Girls on Top before presenting her own documentaries, interviewing celebrities such as Imelda Marcos and Donald Trump – who kicked her off his plane when she laughed at his presidential aspirations. Wax, now 63, has spoken about her struggle with mental health in recent years. In 2013, she received a Master’s degree in mindfulness and has written two books related to the subject: Sane New World and her latest A Mindfulness Guide For The Frazzled. She has also joined forces with Marks and Spencer to launch Frazzled Cafés to help customers improve their mental wellbeing. The cafés host ‘talk-in’ sessions where people who are feeling ‘frazzled’ can share their stories. Wax says the idea is to reassure people that ‘it’s okay not to be okay’.


monarch MY TRAVELS

How important is travelling? It’s what I like to do most. I love being on tour and not knowing what I’m going to see next. I use the travelling time to write. I like seeing places my friends haven’t – I swam with manta rays in Papua New Guinea last year.

What was your first holiday as a child?

Wisconsin. It was a place on a lake with a lot of cows. We stayed in one of those old clapboard hotels. Wisconsin was considered a pretty exotic place to go if you lived in Chicago. We’d play ping-pong all day and all night.

Where do you holiday with your family?

Cape Town – I own a house there. I really like it. Here every high street is the same, but there aren’t any franchises there, so people set up their own unique businesses. It’s very multicultural and it’s close to mountains and the ocean.

And your worst trip?

Capri in the 1980s. The place was a giant facelift wearing a diamante t-shirt. We stayed for an hour then came home. And when I went to Alabama to do a documentary – it’s two hours from Washington, but they live in poverty. They throw snakes at each other to show how much they believe in God.

My most memorable trip was going to Brazil with my husband... We went out every night and watched people dance the tango What’s been your most memorable trip? Going to Brazil with my husband. Americans needed a visa, so they let my husband in and sent me off to the embassy in Argentina. I made friends with Irish MPs who were studying wind! We went out every night and watched people dance the tango.

Where are you going next?

To the Burning Man Festival [in Nevada] then diving with whales in Tonga.

Are there any places on your bucket list?

Japan – my book is out there. It might find an audience with all the tiger mothers – they might be creating one kid who is a genius, but the rest will go insane.

What do you never leave home without?

My suitcase. It’s just a cheap one on wheels. I’ve never been interested in expensive luggage.

For further information or to book holidays and flights, please visit

Ruby Wax 55

See the sights of Stockholm


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the gallery

Gallery The


he Gallery pages are here to celebrate our customers as photographers and the beauty and diversity of all the destinations that we fly to. We love to showcase your favourite holiday memories captured on camera and share them with our readers in every issue. We had hundreds of entries and it was very hard to choose just ten for this this edition of Passport. So congratulations go to all our finalists – especially our overall winner Jessica Isaacs. A Monarch flight voucher is winging its way to Jessica now.

Have you missed out this time? Tweet your photo @monarch using the hashtag #GetMeOnPassport or email your entry to for your chance to feature in our next issue. You can enter up to three images. Each image should be accompanied by a 25-50 word description explaining where and when you took the shot. Finalists will be chosen to feature in each issue of Passport and the overall winner will receive return flights for two with Monarch, to any of our destinations. So get snapping!

Mount Teide, Tenerife This stunning view was a treat following a steep cable car ride up Mount Teide. It felt amazing to be walking above the clouds — although a little chilly! This picture was taken along one of the trails. Sarah Goodman, London | May 2017

The gallery 57

Venice, Italy This photo represents the penultimate days of an unforgettable euro-trip where I travelled through 12 countries and 20 cities in 25 days. The shot was taken on my final boat trip in Venice, with the beautiful setting sun overlooking the Grand Canal. Saliah Bryan, London | September 2016


Gallery The

Playa Blanca, Lanzarote We were taking a teatime stroll when I heard accordion music on the breeze. The elderly musician had gathered quite a crowd and as I took this photo, he gave me a beautiful smile. I love the way the colours and the evening sun give the picture an almost sepia quality. Jan Brumby, Hull (2017 UK City of Culture) | November 2016

Armacao de Pera, Algarve This photo sums up one of the historic traditions of the Algarve: its fishing industry. The boat sits on one of the loveliest beaches and conjures memories of hot, sunny days eating sardinhas grelhadas (grilled sardines) right on the sand.

Lorraine Coulton, Looe, Cornwall | April 2016

The gallery 59

Timanfaya National Park, Lanzarote The Timanfaya National Park made me feel like I was on a whole different planet, it was the highlight of Lanzarote for me. Florence Liang, London | March 2017

Nova Vaga, Lisbon Nova Vaga is one of Lisbon’s most stunning beaches. Surf fun was had by all. A definite go-to for any beach lover. Leonie Bell, Lichfield | April 2017


Gallery The

Ribeiro Frio, Madeira This photo is taken from the Balcoes viewpoint near Ribeiro Frio (cold river) at Easter. It shows the heart of the island: deep valleys surrounded by mountains that are home to the subtropical Laurissilva forest (designated a World Nature Heritage Site by UNESCO). Paul Starkey | April 2017

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Rome, Italy Our first family trip to Rome with our baby daughter for my husband's birthday which had been booked before she was born. Tara Bruton, Birmingham | March 2017


Gallery The

Praca do Comercio, Lisbon We flew to Lisbon with three generations of my family to celebrate my Mum's 70th. Lisbon has it all‌fascinating history, authentic charm with fabulous restaurants and beaches. It was the perfect destination for the whole family. Jessica Isaacs, Lichfield | April 2017

Palma, Mallorca Happy memories from our anniversary weekend in Palma. Rachel Wallbridge, Birmingham | April 2017

The gallery 63


y r t n u co

Rustic solitude or big-city buzz for your next getaway? Some regional hubs offer both the high-octane verve of a cultural capital and the majestic open space of the countryside. Still undecided? You could spend a week (or two) in each… Words: Carolyn Boyd


CITY: Nice

The capital of the Côte d’Azur is an intriguing blend of rustic provençale life and Riviera chic. First stop must be the narrow lanes of the old town, Vieux Nice, where the architecture has a decidedly Italian feel. Duck into the many traditional restaurants, where generations of the same families serve up traditional provençale dishes such as Ratatouille and the onion tart Pissaladière. Elsewhere, Nice is a hotspot for art lovers; head to the modern art museum, the fine art museum and the Matisse museum, set in a beautiful rose-coloured villa high above the town.


Country: Alpine Foothills Hard to believe, when the ski slopes are so much further north, but the foothills of the southern Alps roll down to touch the hills just behind the city of Nice and the idyllic town of Menton. Away from the yachts and fashionistas, these rugged hills are a hiker’s paradise, with sensational walks through the fragrant landscape, pine forests and the perched villages. Among them are the pretty villages of Castellar and Sainte-Agnès, both are mazes of cobbled streets and terracotta-roofed houses that overlook the turquoise sea below. Hike up the nearby Mont Baudon for a sensational 360-degree view of the sea and the mountains.


City: Barcelona

The Catalan capital makes for an enchanting city break, whatever your interest. The city’s main draw are the architect Antoni Gaudi’s many whimsical works, which include the awe-inspiring Sagrada Familia cathedral, the Park Güell full of colourful mosaics and Casa Batlló museum, housed in a postmodernist architectural masterpiece. Away from Gaudi’s legacies, soak up the atmosphere in the Gothic Quarter, where you can stroll down the famous Las Ramblas avenue before wandering the labyrinthine streets that link the various squares. A trip to Barcelona wouldn’t be complete without soaking up the vibrant restaurants and lively nightlife.


Country: Pyrenees Just over an hour north of Barcelona, you’ll find yourself at the gateway to the Pyrenees, the rugged mountains that straddle the French-Spanish border which offer an altogether different flavour of Catalan country. Berga makes a great base for hiking the trails that lead up into the Queralt mountains and foodies will love the local mushroom bounties that take pride of place on menus in the autumn. Further north, the mountains get even more dramatic the closer you come to the border, with the province of Andorra perched between the two countries.

City vs country 65

City: Malaga

While its airport serves the resorts of the Costa Del Sol, those who pause a while in the city of Malaga will discover it is a hub of art and culture. Its newest arrival on the cultural scene is the outpost of Paris’ Pompidou Centre, offering contemporary art exhibitions in its ultramodern architecture. The gallery sits on the city’s so-called ‘Mile of Art’ alongside the city’s other art museums. Elsewhere, visit the impressive Gothic cathedral, surrounded by narrow cobbled streets with vibrant and rustic bars, alongside quirky shops and stylish boutiques.


Country: Andalucia Get up into the hills above Malaga and you’ll be spoiled by the wild and rugged landscape, pretty villages and historic towns. Make a beeline for stunning Ronda, a beautiful town perched dramatically over a steep gorge. One of Spain’s oldest towns, it dates from the 9th century BC and has a fascinating history thanks to its long period of Moorish rule. Venture further on to the Sierra de Grazalema Natural Park and explore Andalucia’s ‘white towns’, tiny whitewashed villages squirrelled away in the mountains.


Country: Sintra-Cascais Natural Park Strike out from vibrant Lisbon to the Sintra-Cascais Natural Park and it’s hard to believe such a wildly wonderful landscape is so close to the country’s capital. It’s just an hour by car to the Unescolisted park and the Serra de Sintra, which features rugged mountains, dense forests and remote lakes that are perfect for hiking. Closer to the Atlantic coast, visit Europe’s westernmost point Cabo da Roca, where you can admire the breath-taking views of the coastline from 100-metre cliffs. Meanwhile, at Colares, the terraced streets step gracefully down to a pretty beach.


City: Lisbon

Seven hills cradle the colourful Portuguese capital in its Atlantic coastal setting. With its narrow cobbled streets, majestic squares and colourful architecture, it is sure to capture your heart. Stroll through the historical buildings, browse the artists’ ateliers and shop for local crafts. Catch a tram to the fortified hilltop castle Castelo de São Jorge to soak in the views, then sip local wine in a taverna while you soak up the sound of Fado, the folk music whose mournful sounds fill the streets after dark. To dip your toes in the ocean, head down to the Estoril coast and stroll along the promenade.

For further information or to book holidays and flights, please visit

City vs country 67


y t n e l p Touchdown in Turin to embark on a culinary odyssey through the undulating hills of Langhe where prized vineyards and rustic cuisine offer a delectable feast for the senses says Zoe McIntyre



barrel of laughs: The cellars of Marchesi di Barolo


for collectors’ shelves and celebration dinners – seek them from the source and you’ll pay a fraction of the price you’d find at home. Local cuisine is equally as indulgent, awash with rare truffles, crumbly Castelmagno cheese and meltingly tender meats prepared from time-worn recipes.

Here you’ll find family-run cellars producing deliciously full-bodied wines like Barbaresco and Barolo from native Nebbiolo grapes. These aren’t Italy’s standard supermarket bottles but the sort of recherché vintages destined

I leave behind Turin’s wide boulevards and drive 60km south on a mountainbacked autostrada that soon morphs into sinuous country lanes bumped along by rusty tractors. Geometric vine trestles stretch in every direction, interspersed by crumbling farmhouses and bushy hazelnut groves. This is quintessential Langhe: a land of epic serenity, forgotten in time.

hile outdoorsy types associate Piedmont with high-octane Alpine pursuits, for gastronomes this north-west Italian region is the hallowed home of Langhe – a bucolic stretch of Unescolisted, vine-clad hills adorned with impossibly idyllic villages offering ample opportunity for scenic drives, sweeping vistas and decadently long lunches.

Historic winery: Marchesi di Barolo

Foodie road trip 69

The hallowed home of Langhe – a bucolic stretch of UNESCO-listed vine-clad hills

LAND OF PLENTY: View over Barolo vineyards

My first stop is Barolo, the eponymous cradle of Langhe’s most coveted wine. Here I visit historic winery Marchesi di Barolo, credited with fine-tuning Barolo’s fermentation process to create the first modern-style bottles some 200 years ago. It soon became the tipple of choice for Piedmont royalty, earning Barolo the epithet King of Wines. Touring dim cellars, I pass age-old wooden barrels before tasting a glass of the red elixir as rich and complex as its storied past. In Barolo’s ochre-shaded streets, I’m entertained by a quirky little corkscrew museum displaying a dizzying array of antique stoppers in pearl, ivory and even tortoise shell. It’s the collection of Paolo Annoni, a charismatic local who also runs the adjacent wine-barcum-restaurant, Barolo Friends. On its sun-drenched terrace, I dine on a befitting dish of veal braised in Barolo wine followed by creamy panna cotta. The remaining afternoon is whiled away exploring tiny medieval hamlets, all in close range, each more picturesque than the last. First comes La Morra, boasting sweeping terrace panoramas, then romantic Serralunga and its majestic 14th-century fortress. By sunset I reach Monforte, a fortified settlement crowned by a gorgeous outdoor amphitheatre from where I watch fading light brush Langhe in golden hues.


SHADED STREETS: With quirky museums, bars and restaurants

FINE ILLUSTRATIONS: Corkscrew evolution at the museum

TRUFFLE HUNTERS: Alba truffle show delights

Do it yourself Getting there Monarch operates regular flights to Turin from London Gatwick, Birmingham and Manchester. Flights start from £29 one way. Getting around Various rental car companies operate from Turin-Caselle airport including Avis, Budget and Hertz ( From the airport, follow directions to the A55 and then the A6 to arrive in the Langhe. Total drive distance: 90km (1h15mins). The stops Eat and drink Barolo Friends Piazza Castello 3, Barolo Tel: (+39) 0173 560 542 Osteria dell’Arco Piazza Savona, 5, Alba Tel: (+39) 0173 363 974

MOUTHWATERING: Poached pears

Le Case della Saracca Via Cavour 5, Monforte d'Alba Tel: (+39) 0173 789 222 Roberto Sarotto Wine Bar Piazza M Ferrero 3/A, Alba Tel: (+39) 0173 364 955

SWEET TREAT: Barolo Friends' creamy panna cotta

I’m ravenous by dinnertime at Le Case della Saracca, nestled in one of Monforte’s backstreets. Its extraordinary interiors are the sum of four medieval houses transformed into a cave-like maze of dining grottoes connected by spiral staircases and glass walkways. I settle into an intimate alcove and order a Jerusalem artichoke tart coated in cheesy fondue, then tackle a sizzling prime rib before devouring a desert of wine-poached pear dipped in dark chocolate. It’s a mammoth feast of medieval proportion well suited to the history-rich setting. Come morning, Alba is buzzing with shoppers stocking up on artisan honeys and home-cured salamis at the local market. It’s Langhe’s liveliest town, world-famous for its autumn International White Truffle Fair when

Piedmont’s fabled fungi are sold at bank-breaking prices to zealous gourmets. Along Alba’s main drag, I find countless truffle-infused delicacies in the gourmet shop I Piaceri del Gusto before stopping for a frothy cappuccino and handful of hazelnut baci di dama (lady’s kisses) biscuits at the wonderfully old-fashioned Petitti patisserie. Outside, pretty porticoed streets are scented with sweet aromas that emanate from the sprawling Ferrero empire on the edge of town. Its story began in deprived post-war times when a thrifty local baker, Pietro Ferrero, tried crushing local hazelnuts into his expensive cacao to make rations last longer. His experiment paid off with the creation of a nutty chocolate paste, Nutella, to the delight of chocoholics worldwide.

Bar Pettiti Pasticceria Via Vittorio Emanuele 25, Alba Tel: (+39) 0173 441 612 WHERE TO VISIT Marchesi di Barolo Via Roma 1, Barolo Tel: (+39) 0173 564 491 I Piaceri del Gusto Via Vittorio Emanuele 23A,1 Alba Tel: (+39) 0173 440 166 Serralunga Castle Via Castello, Serralunga Tel: (+39) 0173 613 358 Corkscrew Museum Piazza Castello 4, Barolo Tel: (+39) 0173 560 539 More Info Langhe Tourist Office Piazza Risorgimento 2, Alba Tel: (+39) 0173 358 33

Foodie road trip 71

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Cornering Alba’s redbrick piazza, an unmissable stop is the sleek wine bar of Roberto Sarotto. It’s unique for only stocking wine from the passionate owner’s own vineyards but, with 20 different labels, there’s plenty of choice. Accompanied by irresistible nibbles, a tasting of eight wines (a steal at €18) could include a fruity Arneis white or a tannin-thick Barbera Elena, named after Roberto’s daughter. I go away with a 1999 vintage Barbaresco; its intense flavours, Roberto assures me, will only improve with time (if I can resist instant uncorking, that is). Any residual tipsiness is soaked up during a final lunch at the elegant Osteria dell’Arco. It’s a famous purveyor of Slow

Food, a worldwide movement founded in Langhe to challenge fast-food culture and champion local produce. Scouring the menu, my attention is caught by Tajarin 40 Tuorli – fresh pasta made with a staggering 40 egg yolks per kilogram of dough. My plateful arrives vivid-yellow and dripping with meaty ragout, which I intend on savouring but devour in mere mouthfuls. Weighed down with countless take-home treats (and perhaps carrying a few extra pounds myself), I spend the drive back to Turin salivating over ways to recreate the sublime tastes and flavours of this unforgettable epicurean adventure ■


Work up an appetite on a seven-day cycling tour of Piedmont, peddling through some of the region’s most important vineyards with plenty of wine-tasting and sumptuous dinners along the way.

Truffle hunt

Cook up a storm

Scour the Piedmont countryside for your own prized tuber with the help of an expert truffle hunter and his trained dog. The hunt is followed by a hearty lunch and wine tasting.

For further information or to book holidays and flights, please visit

Learn the secrets of Piedmont cuisine during a day-long cooking class in Alba where you can try everything from handmade pasta to more complex recipes before feasting on what you prepare.

Foodie road trip 73

Top family destinations A Place In The Sun presenter Laura Hamilton gives us her top picks for holidays with the kids


have travelled with my children – Rocco, 3, and Tahlia, 19 months – since they were babies. I flew to Austria with Rocco for The Jump just three weeks after he was born, while Tahlia’s first trip was to Palma, Mallorca. It wasn’t easy but I did it – even though I got some funny looks at the boarding gate!

The Canaries

The Canary Islands have a fantastic yearround climate. I found myself basking in 26 degrees in Tenerife last December. There are so many things to do: beaches, water parks, go-karting, basketball courts, soft play places and outdoor adventure parks. If you love shopping, a visit to the Safari Centre in Playa de las Americas is a must.

I was definitely of the mentality that I did not want my love of travel to stop once I had little ones. One of my favourite sayings is ‘the world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page’. Rocco and Tahlia are extremely well read and long may that continue!

Even though we have been to lots of far-flung places, when you have children visiting the Canary Islands and the Balearics is always a safe bet. Mallorca, Tenerife and Cyprus are three of the most family friendly places – so they top of my list of countries to visit with the family!


4* Parque Santiago III & IV Apartments in Playa de las Americas These popular apartments are perfect for families and provide cots. There is a Splash Park on site with water slides and they are close to the beach, restaurants and shops.

Fuerteventura 4* Barcelo Castillo Beach Resort

Costa Caleta is perfect for the family. It benefits from a beachfront location with a brilliant kids’ club. There are three children’s pools and entertainment in the day and evening.


4* Sands Beach resort, Costa Teguise It is the ultimate family unit with a beautiful beachfront location and private beach. There is a Hotel Kids Club, five separate children’s pools and a playground.


Hamilton’s hotspots

The Balearics


Intertur Miami Ibiza Hotel & Apartments

This popular hotel next to Es Cana beach is a lively place with entertainment, sports and a children’s pool with waterslides. There’s a kids’ club and free use of a family utility room with a washing machine, fridge and microwave.

The Balearics have some of the most beautiful sandy cove beaches and clear turquoise waters. In many ways, they are comparable to the Canaries, with one of the few differences being the flight time. It’s around four hours to get to the Canaries but just over two to get to the Balearics.


Princesa Playa Hotel & Apartments, 4*+ Cala ‘n Bosch / Son Xoriguer This property is in peaceful surroundings just 400m from the beach. Sporty youngsters can enjoy table tennis, a pool table, tennis court, basketball and volleyball as well as five-a-side football. There’s also a well equipped gym and Jacuzzi.


5* Olympic Lagoon Resort Paphos


Stylish and modern, it is family friendly, luxurious and well equipped. Facilities include: five pools, waterslides, six dining options, three bars, sports court, fivea-side football, spa, sauna, Jacuzzi, gym, kids’ and teens’ clubs and a football academy.

Larnaca area

Papantonia Apartments 3* Close to the sand-andshingle Marlita Beach, it has great swimming pools, a large sunbathing terrace and entertainment. For guaranteed family fun, there is unlimited free access to a waterpark just 300m away.

For further information or to book holidays and flights, please visit

Cyprus is a fascinating place with an interesting history, it has an amazing summer climate and the food is delicious (lots of Greek salads, meze, kebabs and fresh fish). Many of the restaurants have play areas and there are water parks, great shopping areas and historical excursions.

Hamilton’s hotspots 75

Tee time on Tenerife The rugged Isla Baja coast provides a spectacular backdrop for the island’s most beautiful championship golf courses – just watch out for the ‘pterodactyls’ Tracey Davies


monarch Golf coasts


dragonfly roughly the size of a pterodactyl fluttered on to the tee putting me right off my stroke. And if it wasn’t the iridescent blue of nature’s helicopters that dazzled me into lamely knocking my ball into the rough, perhaps it was the cocky red-beaked duck boldly strolling on to the fairway or the disarmingly charming rabbit hopping on and off the course. Well, that's my excuse for my dismal performance and I’m sticking to it.

With an average year-round temperature of 22 degrees, Tenerife is one of the most popular golf destinations in Europe. I’m spending a long weekend in Buenavista del Norte on the north-western coast. A little over an hour’s drive from Tenerife South airport, the relatively untouched Isla Baja region is mostly known for its rugged, volcanic mountain ranges, lush banana plantations and quaint Canarian hill villages – it’s a million miles from the sunny, sangria-fuelled beach resorts of the south.

Rugged Runways

Golf course in northern Tenerife with volcanic mountain range beyond I’m staying at the Meliá Hacienda Del Conde, a five-star adults-only hotel attached to the Buenavista Golf Course. Set in the lush foothills of the seven million year-old Teno Massif mountain range, the hotel has been built in the colonial Canarian style – all whitewashed walls, terracotta roofs and sweeping dark wood verandas. At its heart is a splitlevel infinity pool carved out of volcanic rock, which almost

tempted me away from the golf course this afternoon. Designed by former World No.1 Steve Ballesteros, the 18-hole Par-72 championship course is one of the most beautiful on Tenerife. Its spectacular setting overlooking the Atlantic Ocean makes it a popular choice for big tournaments, including the Tenerife Ladies Open and the Ryder Cup de Canarias.

Golf coasts 77

Championship Course

Green grass area in the golf resort of Buenavista del Norte After lunch, I wander down to inspect the course. I’m a little rusty, so I spend the afternoon warming up on the driving range and huffing and puffing over missed shots on the putting green. This may or may not have been affected by the wine-heavy three-course lunch at the hotel. My view from the range is of the soaring, furrowed velvet cliffs of the Teno Mountains. It reminds me of the opening scenes of Jurassic Park. With John William’s epic score ringing in my ears, I fully expect to see flocks of murderous pterodactyls flying overhead or hear the blood-curdling roar of a T-Rex clumping through the trees, which puts me right off my swing. Next morning, I’m up early to beat the forecasted brisk trade winds which can somewhat challenge the amateur golfer. The first nine holes all have long,

undulating fairways where you can show off a lovely long drive. Weaving my buggy around the palm-fringed course, dodging marauding wildlife, the second nine holes of the game were intensified by the blazing midday sun and sparkling coastal views. At hole 10, I manage to tee off with aplomb and follow the ball as it bounces down the long baize-green fairway, where the white foamy rage

of the Atlantic Ocean crashing against the craggy volcanic cliffs almost licks it into the hole. It doesn’t, of course, but it's the closest I get to being on par. At times, I found it hard to concentrate and spent more time scanning the shimmering horizon for breaching whales and bottlenose dolphins frolicking in the navy waters, which is not unheard of.

Dolphin watch

Dolphins frolick in the shimmering waters After the game, I retire to the hotel spa to recover, after forgetting how much 18 holes takes out of you. I choose a rejuvenating massage followed by the YHI spa ritual, which glides you through a series of hydrotherapy pools, saunas and Turkish steam baths, perfect for soaking off the strains caused by my dodgy backswing. In the warm evening, clacking cicadas applaud my, ahem, natural golfing prowess, as I head over to Salazar, the hotel’s fine dining restaurant. After a Canarian feast of tuna tartare and rich Iberian roast pork, washed down with several more glasses of the local grape, I turn in for the night, ready to tackle the course again tomorrow. Distracting pterodactyls permitting, of course.


monarch Golf coasts

What to do aside from golf Take a hike

Wooden plate on the hiking route through the Masca gorge

Hiking in Masca

Intrepid hikers come from all over the globe to conquer Teno’s deep ravines and forested canyons. A popular starting point is Masca, a charming hill village tucked away from the coast. This tiny hillside hamlet has spectacular views of the canyon and down to the sea and has the moniker of the Machu Picchu of Tenerife, thanks to its towering bullet-shaped pinnacle.

Look West

View of the sea and cliffs with the Punto Teno lighthouse

Wildlife spotting in Punto Teno

A 20-minute drive from Buenavista del Norte is Punto Teno, the most westerly point of Tenerife. It’s regarded as one of the best diving sites on Tenerife with sunken wrecks and lava tubes, and home to eagle rays and Moray eels. If you don’t want to get your feet wet, head south along the coast to Los Gigantes high cliffs where you’ll likely spot bottlenose dolphins and shortfinned pilot whales in the channels between Tenerife and La Gomera.

Lucky for some

Aerial view of the coastal village of Garachico

Garachico’s natural rock pools

One of the island's oldest towns is probably the unluckiest. Garachico, once the island’s most affluent area, was plagued by a series of natural disasters: fires, floods and freak storms. Its run of bad luck culminated in a massive volcanic eruption in 1706 which almost destroyed the town. However, the lava storm formed a series of spectacular natural rock pools along the coast, most of which are large enough to swim in when the Atlantic swells each day.

For further information or to book holidays and flights, please visit

Golf coasts 79

New dawn for

CYPRUS Looking for a bolthole abroad with year-round sun? It’s hard to go past Cyprus for its excellent climate and location, says Liz Rowlinson, the editor of A Place In The Sun magazine. Buy now and you could be settled in before winter sets in back home


he Eastern Mediterranean island of Cyprus has come a long way since its banking crisis of 2013 and is quietly beginning to prosper again. Its superb climate – 330 days of sunshine a year – beautiful beaches and Anglo-friendly culture have made it a firm favourite with families, retirees and the yachting set. Long-held cultural ties with Britain mean that about 70,000 British nationals have made the island their permanent home. There are many second-home owners too; drawn by recent purchasetax reductions and the low cost of living. In recent years, Brits have been joined by an increasingly diverse group of investors from around the world, a trend that is helping to fuel the island’s property market recovery and facilitate


The summer issue of A Place in the Sun magazine comes out in May and is available in WHSmith and all good newsagents. The next property exhibition will be held at Birmingham’s NEC on 22-24 September 2017

new infrastructure projects. Such growth is almost completely lacking on Cyprus’s Greek island neighbours. The island’s successful conclusion of its economic adjustment programme – following the 2013 bailout by international lenders – has improved its image, and credit ratings agency Standard & Poor predict the Cypriot economy to expand by about 2.7% this year. Perceived as a ‘safe haven’ country offering security and stability compared with some of its neighbours, the island has gained buyers from Russia, Lebanon, Egypt, Israel and the Arab Emirates, alongside a resurgent domestic demand and British interest. According to official figures, sales to non-Cypriot buyers rose by 34 per cent, year on year, in 2016. So what is everyone buying there?

monarch overseas property

Nautical but nice? Marina properties

Located in the eastern Mediterranean, Cyprus is a great destination for cruise stop-offs and yachting. It is a single day’s sailing from destinations such as Rhodes, Crete, Antalya, Marmara, Alexandria and Port Said. Mooring or berthing fees are usually more affordable than those in the south of France, Italy and the Balearics. For a decade the new marina drawing international attention to Cyprus has been Limassol’s. But boat-loving buyers now have another option – in the popular resort of Ayia Napa. Famed for its beautiful beaches – that frequently appear in the lists of Europe’s 20 best beaches – and lively nightclub scene, Ayia Napa is an easy transfer from Larnaca airport in the south-east of the island. The new €220 million Ayia Napa Marina ( project – a collaboration between the Cypriot entrepreneur Gerasimos Caramondanis and Egyptian investor Naguib Sawiris – will really put Ayia Napa on the map, says Marina CEO Stavros Caramondanis. ‘It is a game changer because this will slowly change the perception of the resort.’ The project offers luxurious residences and state-of-the-art yachting facilities, coupled with five-star hotel services and amenities. Two ‘twisty’ high-rise towers will provide apartments for ‘young, vibrant’ buyers (East Tower) or families (West Tower) – prices from €740,000. That might seem hefty

but it buys a two-bedroom 89sq m apartment with a 25sq m verandah. In six months prices have gone up by 5 per cent and smaller units have sold out – there are 32 owners so far and a third of them have boats, reports Caramondanis. The project is three months ahead of schedule and there will be more one-bedroom units released early next year, when the West Tower is launched. There will also be 29 beachside villas or island villas with private berths, while more than 500 berths will be leased out when the marina opens in 2019. Ayia Napa marina will be the first entry point for yachties in the west of Cyprus – and the second largest marina on the island – but for now Limassol Marina is the largest, with 1,000 berths. Twenty-seven different nationalities (including British) have bought properties around the marina and some owners even live there full time, attracted by the security, concierge services and facilities – shops, restaurants, fitness club and beach. The final phase of properties has just been released, with 61 one to three-bed apartments on a private island accessed by private bridge just steps from the beach. Prices start from €1,450,000 (

announced a new plan for the Larnaca marina and port in January. Reports claim this marina is set to be the largest in Cyprus, involving a large number of apartments, luxury villas a hotel and a commercial centre. There is also a new marina planned for Paphos – currently enjoying its 2017 Capital of Culture status with a summer of events and celebrations – at Potima Bay between Kissonerga and Peyia. When built, it will have a capacity of 1,000 berths.

FOR SALE Ayia Napa Marina, €740,000

In Cyprus’s most exciting new marina development, there are new spacious two-bedroom apartments (and villas) available in the twisty East Tower.

If these prices are a little steep, there are further marina projects in the pipeline. The Transport Ministry

Overseas property 81

Bargain resales and new builds

After the banking crisis, Cyprus worked hard to incentivise overseas buyers by tweaking its ‘golden visa’ programme at the €300,000 threshold to include parents. This means that buyers spending over this total receive residency permits. They also introduced a Capital Gains Tax exemption concession and introduced a 50 per cent reduction in property transfer tax (until 31 December 2016). Most British buyers spend €200,000 to €250,000 on a villa with a pool in the Paphos region – Peyia, Kapparis, Kato Paphos and Paralimni are all favourite areas, while Protaras, Larnaca and Famagusta are also popular. Recently a couple from Liverpool that appeared on the TV series of Place in the Sun bought a practically new apartment in Tersefanou for only £36,000. It had been purchased new for £135,000 in 2008 and hardly used by the investment-purchaser. This may not be typical, but it is proof that great deals still exist. The same estate agency that brokered this deal have a one-bedroom property nearby for €57,500 ( Pissouri is a popular village near Limassol and here you can get a threebedroom villa with a pool for around €265,000. If you prefer something


brand new, the Limassol Del Mar development on the port’s seafront offers two to six-bedroom apartments from €1,100,000 (



Paphos, €325,000

Protaras, €495,000

Just a five-minute drive to the popular Minthis Hills golf course in the Paphos area, this is a fourbedroom house with a separate guest annexe.

This is a new three-bedroom, three-bath property with a pool in the sought-after Green Bay area near Ayia Napa and Protaras.

FOR SALE Limassol del Mar, €1,100,000

In a new iconic building designed by the same architects as London’s Battersea Power Station, these are two-bed apartments in a state-ofthe-art gated frontline development.

Costa del Sol

It’s hardly surprising that the ‘sunshine coast’ of southern Spain is a popular place for year-round living, retirement and off-season golfing

breaks. The area has been one of the chief beneficiaries of security issues elsewhere and Andalusia’s regional government has predicted record tourism figures of 30 million for 2017. It’s no secret that property prices spectacularly boomed then busted a decade ago. Values still remain down from the 2006 market peak and there are bargains to be had. Better value tends to be found at the western or eastern fringes of the costa or inland. That said, agent Chestertons Affinity have a bank repossessed two-bedroom,

monarch overseas property

Three other winter sun escapes

two-bath apartment with partial sea views in a development on the east side of Marbella for €140,000.


The largest and most developed of the Greek Islands, Crete is the top choice for British property hunters seeking all-year warmth. Roughly the same distance north of Africa

as it is south to Athens, it has mild winters where the temperature averages about 15 degrees in the daytime. Buyers tend to gravitate towards the northern coast as it is handy for the two airports (Chania and Heraklion) and has the lion’s share of amenities. Popular hubs are Chania, Rethymno and Ayios Nikolaos. In Crete you have a good choice of new builds or affordable traditional stone houses. You can

get a new four-bedroom, fourbath villa with a heated outdoor pool for €399,000 in Litsarda, 35 minutes from Chania through agent Caversham Barnes.


The Canaries really are stand-out favourite for seekers of year-round sun and stunning scenery. It’s not just British buyers – Belgians, Germans and Scandinavians also

flee their chilly homes in favour of balmy winters. Tenerife is the biggest market with the most diverse range of offerings, from studio apartments at around €60,000 to an increasingly array of high-end offerings, although the typical budget is around €175,000. Many buyers have historically bought in the south, the busiest and most developed area. A typical offering is hassle-free turnkey home on a development that is easy to maintain from afar.

For further information or to book holidays and flights, please visit

Grupo Viqueira is selling new one-bed apartments within the large resort of Sotovento – just 10 minutes from the airport and close to shops, beaches and golf – in south Tenerife for €143,000.

Overseas property 83

Wine Master Class

Portugal’s New World

After centuries of Port production, the Douro Valley is now almost as famous for its modern table wines. Jeremy Dixon examines the evolution and revolution of this remarkable region


he Douro Valley used to be one of the most unlikely vine growing landscapes on earth. It took blood, sweat and gunpowder to transform its steep, rugged slopes of schist into the sweeping, contoured terraces that made viticulture possible.

Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir, Portugal stood by its wealth of traditional varieties that few others had ever heard of. By the Millennium, wine drinkers were thirsting for new and distinctive flavours and a young generation of Douro winemakers responded with the likes of Touriga Nacional, Touriga Franca and Tinta Roriz.

These stunning vineyards clearly deserve their UNESCO World Heritage listing, but one has to wonder why they were ever constructed and on such a vast scale. The Nine Years’ War (1688-1697) with France was a key driver. Deprived of their usual source of wines, English, Scottish and Dutch merchants turned to Portugal. They saw potential in the strong wine of the Douro, made in monasteries by skillful Jesuits, and wasted no time expanding the vineyards.

With its established reputation, the Douro Valley had a head start on lesser known Portuguese regions. Before long, nearly all the port quintas (estates) were supplementing port sales with high-end table wines and from new, modern vineyards more affordable wines emerged.

Port, taking its name from the city of Oporto from where it was shipped, was originally fortified with brandy to keep it stable on its journey to market. Such was its success that by 1756, the Douro Valley became the first vineyard region in the world to be demarcated and regulated (a year ahead of Tokaji). Fast-forward to the closing decades of the 20th century and while the rest of the world was planting Chardonnay,


Picturesque Porto: Where port was originally shipped from

Historically, Douro wines are a ‘field blend’, made from an assortment of the 30 or 40 varieties that often grow side by side. It was not until the 1970s that individual varieties were formally identified, enabling the best to be grown separately. Douro table wines are well suited to modern tastes. Reds reveal all the complexity of vintage port but without the elevated alcohol. Ripe and concentrated with a chocolatey richness, they typically combine wild forest fruits, black cherry and raspberry with lovely floral and mineral freshness.

The Douro Valley used to be one of the most unlikely vine growing landscapes on earth. It took blood, sweat and gunpowder to transform its steep, rugged slopes

Fact File

The Douro Valley is located inland in northeast Portugal. It follows a 100km stretch of the Douro river and covers around 250, 000 hectares of which around 15% is under vine. The climate is officially ‘extreme continental’ with cold winters and torrid summers.

For a great value example, try the Bons Ares from Ramos Pinto or Crasto from the high hinterland of the Douro Superior. The range from Quinta do Passadouro is also excellent and includes a single varietal Touriga Nacional.

The first commercially available Douro table wine of the modern era was Barca Velha in 1952. It is famous throughout Portugal and a favourite of football manager, José Mourinho.

The outstanding Quinta do Vale Meão shows what the Douro is really capable of at a price akin to the best of Bordeaux. The estate’s ‘second wine’, Meandro, is hugely satisfying and less than £20 a bottle.

These days, production in the Douro Valley is split fairly evenly between port and table wines. Innovation in the Douro Valley is benefiting port production too. There is a new generation of Single Quinta wines with a greater focus on grape varieties, terroir and vineyard management. Improved brandy spirit and robotic foot treading are also pushing quality to new heights.

Douro whites range from being fresh and fruity to having more complex olive and fennel nuances. Grapes such as Malvasia Fina, Moscatel, Rabigato and Viosinho, especially when from old vineyards at high altitudes, provide thrilling examples. The lovely quality Planalto, from Casa Ferreirinha, is widely available and comes at an everyday price. At the premium end, Guru is one of the Douro’s finest whites, offering exciting, racy mineral purity and integrated oak nuances. It is made by Jorge Serodio Borges and Sandra Tavares of leading boutique winery, Wine and Soul ■ A complete list of Douro wine stockists in the UK can be found at

For further information or to book holidays and flights, please visit

monarch wine masterclass

World Class: UNESCO heritage vineyards alongside the Douro River

Tabletastic: Modern Douro wines offer a whole new world of flavour

Touriga Nacional: The Douro’s finest grape variety

Wine masterclass 85



Summer is in the air which means it’s time to update your wardrobe with something shiny (or florally!) and new

Mad for metallics

From Claire Foy’s shiny pink dress at the Golden Globes to Beyonce’s long-sleeve red sequin gown at the Grammy’s, the red carpet has never sparkled as bright as it did this year. Follow the celebs’ lead and embrace light-reflecting textures and shiny finishes to give your wardrobe and accessories a contemporary edge. But don’t just stick to silver and gold – this summer it’s all about injecting a little dazzling colour into your metallic pieces.

clockwise from main image: Monsoon Dress, £129, Folli Follie Rose Gold Ring, £30, V by Very Metallic Bucket Bag, £30, Top Shop Shoes, £65, Oliver Bonas Nel Pleated Metallic Skirt, £65, New Look Pink Metallic Hooded Anorak, £44.99, Sainsbury’s Home Ethereal Metallic Geo A5 Notebook, £2, Bobbi Brown Shimmer Palette, £39.50 (RRP £65), available on board Katie Loxton, The Perfect Pouch, £15 (RRP £17), available on board Dune Black Everlynn Trainers, £120, New Look Blue Metallic Bag, £15.99 and Shoes, £27.99, as before



FLOWER POWER Florals are no surprise for spring but this summer brings updated blossom prints with a nod to seventies kitsch. Keep your look bang up to date by choosing prints that give this year’s must-have colour yellow a starring role. The sun-drenched hue in all shades, from bright to mustard, is a firm favourite with celebs (think Viola Davis’s bold Michael Kors gown at the Golden Globes) but can be tricky to pull off for mere mortals. Breaking it up in a floral print makes it less daunting – letting you always take your sunshine with you.

clockwise from main image: Marks & Spencer Per Una Dress, £59, Escada Fiesta Carioca, £22,50 (RRP £27) available onboard White Stuff Saffron Patchwork Scarf, £25, White Stuff Polly Floral Necklace, £22.50, Star by Julien Macdonald Bag, £45, Debenhams Butterfly by Matthew Williamson Swimsuit, £42, as before Marks & Spencer Autograph Top, £45, as before Miss Selfridge Chartreuse Floral Collar Dress, £52, Yellow Sateen Floral Brocade Gladiator Block Heels, £29.99, Apricot Rose Gold Floral Cut Out Bracelet, £6, Debenhams Nine by Savannah Miller Dress, £65, as before

Retail Therapy 87

TIMESHARE exit STRATEGY Are you looking to legally get rid of your Spanish Timeshare?

Due to the recent ground-breaking Spanish Supreme Court decision 15th January 2016, you CAN cancel your contract and claim your money back, even if you have been enjoying the use of the Timeshare in the meantime. Cancelling your contract can be done if you meet just ONE of the following requirements:

If Sold in perpetuity

“Floating Weeks�

You paid money within the rst three months of the contract

Your contract does not adhere to the applicable Consumer Rights

Claim would Include: Principle amount paid for the contract Any monies you paid within three months of the contract can be claimed as double By successfully cancelling the contract through the Spanish Courts, you can claim back all the maintenance fees paid, from the start of the contract through to today Legal interest on the total amount of the claim Application for refund of Legal costs paid for the claim (although this is a discretionary decision of the Judge on a case by case basis)

JLCA & As.-Lawyers is an independent Legal Firm convering the whole of Spain including the Canary and Balearic Islands, with specialist experience in Timeshare claims. Contact our Team directly for a review of your claim to connrm viability and claim amount, which is free of charge and without obligation.

T: (Spain) 0034 966 698 796 / (UK) +44 (0) 2037 555292 E: available in the following languages

totes we


he world is drowning in plastic. Think about all the plastic bags and packaging you get through. Where does it all wind up? Well, your shampoo bottles will be sitting in a landfill site for the next 500 to 1,000 years. But that’s just you. Now multiply the amount of plastic you get through by 7.5 billion – that’s how many of us are walking the earth at the moment. Scary isn’t it? About 8 million tonnes of plastic makes its way into the world’s oceans each year. If we continue on the same polluted path, by 2025 that figure will be 155 million tonnes. Imagine ten grocery bags of trash lined up on every foot of coastline around the globe...



There is a change we can all make: step away from plastic shopping bags. Shoppers in England used to get through 7.5 billion plastic bags a year; but the introduction of a 5p levy on single-use bags saw this figure plummet to 500 million within six months. The number of plastic bags found on UK beaches halved as a result. There’s no need to compromise on style: whether you opt for a bright bold tote or quirky canvas number, you’ll be the coolest – and most conscientious – customer on the block.

Main image: Alison Striped Tote, £20, from l-R Top to bottom: Patrick Caulfield Waxed Cotton Tote by Tate, £25, Single Poppy Cotton Reusable Bag, £3.49, The Pack Society Multi-coloured Tote, £28.99, Pelly Multi-coloured Patterned Tote, £7, H&M Powder Pink Pleated Shopper, £24.99, Radley London Canvas Tote, £9 available onboard Love From London Shopper, £8.50, Anya Hindmarch Silver Cloud Ebury Tote, £1,295, Hockney Woldgate Woods Tote by Tate, £15,

Retail Therapy 89

Clean up your beauty routine


he beauty industry thrives on buzzwords – 2016 was the year that ‘antipollution’ stole the show, with new lotions and potions promising to protect us against skindamaging micro-sized particles. But 2017 is all about ‘clean’ beauty. It seems people of all ages are paying more and more attention to what exactly goes into creating their beauty products and are on the lookout for cleaner, greener options. Google’s top 2017 skincare trends included searches for products with natural ‘hero’ ingredients (clay, turmeric, charcoal, coffee). So it came as no surprise to beauty insiders when Pantone announced its colour for 2017 was a vibrant yellowgreen called ‘greenery’.

Clean beauty ties together several trends – natural, organic, sustainable and ethical. Its rise follows on from the enthusiasm for ‘clean eating’ driven by bloggers such as Deliciously Ella and the Hemsley sisters. And the movement has it’s own champions – last year London saw it’s first ever ‘wellbeauty’ event put on by Clean Cult, a collective of likeminded thinkers with a vision for creating a clean beauty scene in the British capital.

for you. Here are four musthave products you can buy on-board to kick start your beauty kit detox.

Switching to products that feature natural hero ingredients may just be the best thing you ever do for your skin. But finding your way through the green maze can be tricky, so we’ve done a little of the navigating

Dr.PawPaw Original Balm or Tinted Peach Pink Balm, £10 (RRP £13.90)

Loved by celebs (Jo Whiley and Alicia Keyes are fans), Dr.PawPaw has won several awards since it hit the market. The multi-use soothing balm offers antibacterial and antimicrobial properties courtesy of three hero ingredients: pawpaw (papaya), olive oil and aloe leaf juice. Nutrient-rich fermented pawpaw is loaded with antioxidants, vitamins and minerals to aid skin repair. The olive oil adds antiinflammatory quality, while the aloe promotes skin regeneration and restores moisture. When it calls itself multi-purpose it really means it. While Dr.PawPaw will surely banish even the driest of lips you can also use it on cracked heels and elbows, as a hand cream, to treat skin irritations, to help heal minor wounds and as a finishing product for your hair (we have it on good authority that it’s also great at taming unruly eyebrows). The tinted balm is great value because it gives a lovely kiss of colour and moisturises your lips at the same time.



Grounded Coconut and Lime Body Scrub Set, £20 (RRP £34.95)

Coffee scrubs were relatively unheard of in the UK until Grounded founders Tasha Harris and Lloyd Hazell appeared on Dragon’s Den seeking backing for their product. The Essex couple developed the product to help Tasha’s eczema after she tried a similar scrub in Bali. Coffee has been used in skin care for hundreds of years – it has antioxidant properties that protect skin from UV rays and slow down ageing; firms skin and diminishes cellulite; and soothes red patches on sensitive skin. The finely ground Robusta beans used in Grounded scrubs hydrate and exfoliate, act as a diuretic helping to clear waste and toxins from under your skin and are great for puffy eyes and cellulite. The coconut and lime scrub is enriched with extra virgin Coconut Oil, Vitamin E and Sweet Almond Oil, so your skin is left soft and very hydrated, while the lime oil cleans pores, removes excess oil and dries out pimples thanks to its antibacterial properties.

Photographer: Adam Wilson shot at Packshot Factory London Model: Talitha Minnis

Pure Konjac Mini Face Puff With Added Pink Clay, £6

The Konjac Sponge is a squishy little miracle that not only gets your skin ultra-squeaky clean, but moisturises and exfoliates it as well. The 100 per cent natural sponge is made from the fibres of the Konnyaku tuber (part of the potato family) along with French clays or pure charcoal from bamboo. Konny – what you ask? The Konnyaku is a perennial plant native to Asia that grows wild at high altitiudes. It’s been used as medicine, food and in beauty products in Korea, Japan and China for more than 1,500 years. Highly prized for its health giving properties, the Konjac sponge is 97% water and pH neutral so will leave your skin fresh and balanced. The Konjac Mini Face Puff With Added Pink Clay is perfect for travellers: the mineral rich pink clay helps alleviate the effects of air conditioning, excess sun exposure and central heating. It gently purifies even the most sensitive skin and has a softening and plumping effect, improving elasticity and refreshing its appearance.

TanOrganic Self Tanning Oil, £20 (RRP £25) The world’s first and only eco-certified self-tanning brand, Tanorganic products were developed as a safer alternative to sunbeds and sun tanning. It’s a fact that self-tan, unlike other cosmetics, can stay on the skin for up to seven days, therefore you can look great on your holidays by switching to this safe tanning product. Tanorganic’s award-winning face and body oil is loaded

with a moisturising mix of aloe vera, borage seed oil, argan oil and orange peel oil and is a breeze to use. You just apply it as you would normal oil and wipe your palms with a baby wipe afterwards – forget the mitts or gloves. The oil illuminates the skin with a subtle glow that will leave people thinking you spent your holiday basking in the sun, when really you played it safe in the shade.

Retail Therapy 91

Safety & comfort To ensure a safe and comfortable journey, please be aware of the following regulations

to disembark the aircraft. Should the crew suspect that drugs have been taken on board the aircraft, they’ll advise the Captain, who may radio ahead for police to meet the aircraft on landing.



All Monarch flights are nonsmoking. Smoking is strictly prohibited and can incur a substantial fine. This includes the use of electronic cigarettes. All toilets have smoke detectors installed.


Alcohol is available for your enjoyment. Alcohol consumed at altitude has an increased effect and for this reason, cabin crew have a duty of care to control the amount of alcohol consumed by any customer. Cabin crew are authorised to refuse the sale of alcohol to anyone who appears intoxicated. Alcohol not purchased on board may not be consumed on the aircraft.


Customers showing symptoms of being under the influence of nonmedically prescribed drugs will not be permitted to travel and may be asked


As a courtesy to fellow customers, we ask that you behave responsibly and adhere to all safety regulations. The Captain has authority to refuse boarding or offload anyone whose behaviour could endanger the aircraft or any person or property on board. The same applies to any customer who obstructs the crew in their duties, fails to comply with instructions from crew, or behaves in a manner to which other customers may reasonably object. The company will take the necessary measures to prevent such conduct, including the restraint of customers.


Mobile phones may be used in ‘flight mode’ for the duration of your flight – but calls are not permitted while on the aircraft.


Portable electronic devices (PEDs) such as tablets, MP3 players, laptops, CD players and portable electronic games may be used in-flight and, with the

exception of laptops, during take off and landing. Devices must be operated in ‘flight mode’ once the aircraft doors are closed. During safety announcements and the preflight safety demo, please avoid using your headphones and give the crew your full attention. The Captain may restrict the use of PEDs at any time for safety reasons. To avoid risk of injury, laptops must be stowed securely in the overhead lockers for take-off and landing. Please inform the Cabin Crew immediately if your portable electronic device is damaged, hot, produces smoke, is lost in-flight or falls into the seat structure.


Should any customer require the disposal of a sharp object – such as an auto-injector or a needle/syringe – please ask a member of the crew. A sharps box is available on board.

What do you think?

At Monarch, we pride ourselves on the service we offer our customers, but we also like to hear what you think, whether it’s good, bad or indifferent. Please fill in our Customer Satisfaction Survey which you will receive on your return via a ‘welcome home’ email and help us make your next Monarch experience even more enjoyable.

Gets A Tasty Upgrade


ou may have noticed a little change on your Monarch flight – our onboard menu has had a tasty upgrade for the new season. Being major foodies, we know that getting your flight off to a good start means getting a mouthful of the best flavours. So we asked our very own customers to

monarch In-flight food and wine

u n e M r e m m u S Monarch’s

shape our new in-flight offering. We conducted a survey with more than 600,000 of you to ask what you want to eat when you fly with us. We also wanted to get a better idea of which of our meals are already getting the thumbs up, knowing that our customers’ happiness – and stomachs – are at the heart of Monarch’s services.

In-flight food and wine 93

‘At Monarch we like to put our customers at the heart of everything we do,’ explains Monarch’s Chief Commercial Officer Ian Chambers. ‘So it was very important to let them tell us what they wanted to see in our latest on-board product range and food and drink menu. ‘We’ve run customer tasting sessions, inflight wine tasting and even asked our customer panel to help us pick our latest menu. This all means it should really hit the spot with customers.’ Results from our survey showed that over 64% of respondents had bought hot food on a Monarch flight, meaning that our Hot Breakfast and Pasta Pomodori have stayed firmly put – you can breathe a sigh of relief... Bacon Paninis were also at the top of the list when it came to which in-flight sandwich our respondents preferred, with the Ham & Cheese and Cheese & Tomato Toasties coming in at a close second and third place – they also secured their place on the new menu. When asked what filling was most preferred for a chicken sandwich, more than half of respondents opted for roast chicken with coleslaw. So our new Roast Chicken & Coleslaw sub roll is taking off with us on the menu for summer. Another new addition is the Mature Cheddar with Apple & Tomato Chutney Sandwich, as the majority of people opted for chutney as their perfect accompaniment to a cheesy snack.


Dietary requirements are a priority for Monarch, with 19% of respondents ticking this this box as important. A newly developed Gluten Free Feel Good Box is available for sale and a brand new vegetarian Mediterranean Snack Box joins our best-selling Ploughman’s Box. The trusty kosher Salmon Bagel, served on our Israel routes will also be staying. Having the chance to get to know our customers’ palettes a little better was a great way to shape our new summer menu and, let’s face it, there’s never a bad time for a bit of a foodie chat. Look out for our gorgeous new menu card onboard showcasing our delicious menu and lots of money saving meal deals available on all Monarch flights* ■

*Fresh food is subject to availability.

for sunny days

Do you know that wine really does taste different in the air? The dryness of the air and the low pressure in the airplane combine to reduce your ability to taste salty and sweet by about 30 per cent. And sound can also have an impact – a recent study found that loud noise, like that of an airplane, can affect taste as well, making some flavours more intense, and dulling others, like sweetness. So when we wanted to build a new summer wine menu, we knew we’d have to choose the wines while we were in the air. Knowing that there could be no better taste-testers than our very own customers, we had the very ‘difficult’ job of hosting an onboard wine tasting back in December. Our outbound flight from Manchester to Faro gave customers a chance to try out three red wines. We tasted a Shiraz Cabernet, a Cabernet Sauvignon and a Merlot. The best of the bunch was the elegant and well balanced Spanish Merlot by Contenda, scoring an impressive 16 out of 20 in the voting. It has complex aromas of plum and black cherries. One taster said ‘it was easy to drink and fruity on the nose’. Needless to say, it has joined our inflight menu. On the inbound flight, it was time to open the white wine, bringing home a little bit of the holiday spirit for those on their return journey. We tried a Chenin Blanc, a Sauvignon Blanc and a Chardonnay. The whites were harder for our customers to choose between and we had a tie-break between two. The one chosen to go onboard is the Contenda Sauvignon Blanc which has intense aromas of citrus and exotic fruit such as pineapple, with subtle herbs. It has a fresh, fruity and lively taste and we couldn’t wait for it to join our summer range.  Not forgetting our Rosé lovers, the fresh and fruity Donna Lorenza Pinot Grigio Blush has also joined the range. It’s fresh and fruity on the palate with hints of pear and citrus, as well as strawberries.   The wine tasting was a great way to engage our customers and glean opinions making sure our selection of wines on board are tailored to you. A big thank you to everyone who took part. 

Made from grapes grown in Spain’s Valdepenas region. A bright, clean straw-yellow colour with greenish highlights. Characteristic of Sauvignon Blanc are the soft aromas of pear, cut grass and just a hint of gooseberry. In the mouth the wine is clean and fresh with the taste of 3/5 2.5/5 crisp citrus and ripe tropical fruits with a refreshing, persistent finish.

monarch In-flight food and wine

New wines

2016 Sauvignon Blanc, Contenda

2016 Merlot, Contenda, Castilla-La Mancha, Spain

From the Castilla-La Mancha region, known as Spain’s big vineyard, this 100% unoaked Merlot is a red wine drinkers dream. The colour is dark and promising. The nose is dominated by the mouthwatering aromas of black cherries, plums, blackcurrants and a hint of spice. In 3/5 3.5/5 the mouth, the wine is bursting with soft red fruits that melt into your tongue. The finish is long and satisfying.

2015 Pinot Grigio Blush, Donna Lorenza, Italy

Pinot Grigio, an offshoot of Pinot Noir, is principally known for white wines produced in Italy. The skin of this grape ranges from grey/blue to a brownish/pink colour and has enough colour to allow the winemakers to produce rosé and even light red wines. This example, from the Veneto region, close to Venice, is a pretty, light, coral pink colour. The nose shows sweet wild red berry aromas with hints of wild raspberry and strawberry and citrus notes. In the mouth, the 4/5 3/5 wine is pleasingly soft and fruity with wild raspberry dominating. It has gentle acidity and a long aftertaste with a refreshing finish.

In-flight food and wine 95

where we go Flying to great holiday destinations from five UK bases Eilat

(fly to Ovda) Eilat is a modern city sitting proudly on the northern edge of the tranquil Red Sea, a shimmering oasis in the Negev desert. But it is no mirage and offers an abundance of fascinating activities for the most curious traveller. Whether you are looking for exciting family activities or recharging your batteries, Eilat is the perfect spot to take a dive, a fun jeep tour, a blood-pumping hike or a short cruise on the Red Sea. See our full destination guide on page 38


With architectural gems, flourishing street art, eyecatching museums and a lively restaurant scene, Zagreb is a wonderful melting pot of old and new. Croatia’s capital is stubbornly laid-back and made for leisurely strolls, with architectural gems lurking at every corner. Lush parks and semi-wild green stretches snake around the city’s heart, giving way to sun-kissed café terraces that demand to be visited. See our full destination guide on page 42 Almeria The Capital of the province that shares its name, Almería and its nearby coast is perhaps the last section of Spain’s Mediterranean shore where you can have a beach to yourself. The city seamlessly blends the ancient with the modern and offers a plethora of cultural experiences. From the Moorish castle that dominates its skyline to its Arab baths, Almería offers much to travellers seeking an authentic Spanish experience. See our full destination guide on page 32


This vertiginous island in the midst of the Atlantic is a dramatic subtropical outcrop, where towering cliffs dwarf tall palms and unspoilt beaches lead out to a playground for surfers and scuba divers. Explore the island beyond the capital, Funchal, and you’ll find gardens galore, the plant life oversized and oversaturated, beaches that cling to the base of soaring cliffs and craggy mountains that pierce the clouds. Madeira is unlike anywhere else on earth. See our full destination guide on page 21


Faro welcomes hundreds of travellers through its airport every day. Sadly, comparatively few see the city as they head straight out to a resort elsewhere in the region. It’s a shame, for there are plenty of reasons to linger in this port town. The historical old town, Cidade Velha, is everything picture-perfect about Portugal: whitewashed two-storey buildings, cobbled laneways and storks nesting atop lampposts. See our full destination guide on page 26

Book now at 96





route map



































our destinations


United kingdom


Birmingham  BHX  Leeds Bradford  LBA  London Gatwick  LGW  London Luton  LTN  Manchester  MAN


Innsbruck BHX,  LGW, MAN  Salzburg  BHX


Dubrovnik  BHX, LGW , man Split BHX Zagreb  LGW, MAN 


Larnaca  BHX, LBA, LGW, LTN  Paphos  BHX, LGW 


Grenoble  BHX, LGW, MAN  Lyon  LGW  Nice  BHX 

Kittila BHX,  LGW, MAN 

Friedrichshafen  LGW 

Gibraltar  BHX, LGW, LTN, MAN 


Heraklion  BHX  Preveza  BHX, LGW, MAN  Rhodes  BHX, LGW, MAN 


Eilat (Ovda airport)  LTN  Tel Aviv  LTN, MAN 


Naples  BHX, LBA, LTN, MAN  Rome  BHX, LTN  Turin  BHX, LGW, MAN  Venice  BHX, LGW, MAN  Verona  MAN 


Faro  ALL  Lisbon  BHX, LGW, MAN  Madeira  BHX, LGW, MAN  Porto  Bhx, LTN, MAN 


Alicante  ALL  Almeria  LGW, MAN  Barcelona  BHX, LBA, LGW, MAN  Fuerteventura  BHX, MAN  Gran Canaria  BHX, LGW, MAN  Ibiza  BHX, LGW, MAN  Lanzarote  BHX, LGW, LTN, MAN  Madrid  BHX  Majorca  ALL  Málaga  ALL  Menorca  ALL  Tenerife  ALL  Valencia BHX 


Stockholm  BHX, LTN, MAN 

Switzerland Geneva  LGW


Antalya LGW Dalaman  ALL 

Route map 97

Hero monarch

Every issue we go behind the scenes to introduce you to the people that make Monarch special. Based at Monarch’s Luton offices, Ben Leonard is one of our Customer Services Operations Advisors

Tell us a bit about yourself...

I’m Bedfordshire, born and bred. I always wanted to work in aviation. Most kids wanted to be a pilot but I wanted to be an air traffic controller. I’ve ended up as a private pilot and have held my licence for three years. After I left school, I went straight to college to study travel and tourism. I’ve worked at Monarch pretty much since I finished.

What do you love the most about your job?

The aviation industry is always evolving and no two days are the same. Some days I will be assisting customers on the phone or via social media; others, I will be ensuring we have the tools we need to assist customers. I love the buzz of working in an airline – being my passion, I was set on this industry.

When did your passion for aviation start?

What are the challenges?

Why did you choose Monarch customer services?

What’s your favourite destination?

It started with my grandad who used to take me to Luton Airport to watch the aircraft. A few years ago, I started combining both of my Grandad’s hobbies: aviation and photography.

The sense of achievement you feel after you have helped a customer is great. I’ve always liked the livery on Monarch’s aircraft – having seen it so often when plane spotting at Luton. I think that planted a seed...


Some of the smaller challenges we face come from external factors that impact our flying programme, like the weather and air traffic control. Other challenges are incidents at our destinations like the events in Sharm el Sheikh and Tunisia. We look at the situation and quickly decide what actions need to take place.

Palma, Majorca. There is just something for everyone. I’ve had some great family holidays in the north of the island, as well as a recent (wonderful) day trip spent exploring the area around the cathedral and marina.

Reasons to book with us... Flights | Holidays | City Breaks | Book now at

23kg £59 Deposit Baggage

Included on all beach holidays


Low deposit on all holidays

All holidays ATOL protected


Credit card fees

Service Rating:

94% of customers love our service

ABTA No.V0531

£59 Deposit

Fly with the world’s most punctual low cost carrier

94% of customers rated our service as good or excellent on during January 2017. 0% fees on credit card bookings. Baggage not included on City Breaks or flight only sales. Any baggage allowance will be confirmed at time of booking, see for details. Deposit payable at time of booking plus all appropriate insurance premiums if applicable. If booking within 10 weeks of departure the full holiday payment will be required. Monarch named world’s most punctual low cost carrier according to OAG’s Punctuality League 2016. Flights are sold by Monarch Airlines Limited. Package Holidays & City Breaks are sold by Monarch Holidays Limited under ATOL number 2275. All of the Package Holidays & City Breaks sold by Monarch Holidays are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. ATOL protection does not apply to flight only bookings sold by Monarch Airlines Limited or other travel services. Please ask us to confirm what protection may apply to your booking. If you do not receive an ATOL Certificate then the booking will not be ATOL protected. If you do receive an ATOL Certificate but all the parts of your trip are not listed on it, those parts will not be ATOL protected. Please see our booking conditions for information, or for more information about financial protection & the ATOL Certificate go to:

Take even more at no extra cost 23kg baggage on all beach holidays All holidays ATOL protected


Book now at

Credit Card Fees

Terms & conditions apply. Baggage not included on City Breaks or flight only sales. Any baggage allowance will be confirmed at time of booking, see for details. Flights are sold by Monarch Airlines Limited. Package Holidays & City Breaks are sold by Monarch Holidays Limited under ATOL number 2275. All of the Package Holidays & City Breaks sold by Monarch Holidays are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. ATOL protection does not apply to flight only bookings sold by Monarch Airlines Limited or other travel services. Please ask us to confirm what protection may apply to your booking. If you do not receive an ATOL Certificate then the booking will not be ATOL protected. If you do receive an ATOL Certificate but all the parts of your trip are not listed on it, those parts will not be ATOL protected. Please see our booking conditions for information, or for more information about financial protection & the ATOL Certificate go to: ABTA No.V0531

Monarch Passport Summer 2017  

The one-stop resource for Monarch customers and travel enthusiasts who crave tips, news and information about the exciting destinations that...

Monarch Passport Summer 2017  

The one-stop resource for Monarch customers and travel enthusiasts who crave tips, news and information about the exciting destinations that...