Travel News

The best holidays to book for July 2024, from Italian lakes to Devon escapes

Simon Calder’s Travel

With the general election taking place on 4 July, you’ve got plenty of opportunities afterwards to take a summer holiday before schools break up later in the month and prices start to shoot through the roof.

With the British spring doing its usual stop-start thing, you might want to look further afield for some summertime sunshine and warmth.

Spend a week in one of Italy’s quieter and lesser-known lakes in an elegant waterside hotel, or escape to a Greek island and feast on grilled meats by the Ionian Sea. Hole up in a Turkish bolthole overlooking the Aegean, or follow in the BBC’s Race Across the World’s footsteps in Malaysia.

Stay closer to home with hikes in the Lake District or spend days on sandy beaches in North Devon. Whatever type of holiday you’re planning in July, some of these ideas will inspire you.

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Leave the crowded shores of Garda and Como for Lake Orta
Leave the crowded shores of Garda and Como for Lake Orta (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

While Lakes Como, Garda and Maggiore draw the crowds, head instead to little and less-known Lake Orta. Stay at the Hotel Giardinetto in the village of Pettenasco and soak up the romance of being right on the lake, with its own private boat and landing stage. There’s also an outdoor pool to go with a pretty restaurant terrace. Citalia has a five-night break at the Hotel Giardinetto departing 5 July from £878pp, including flights and transfers; half-board is also available.


Paxos is perfect for sun-drenched stays on the Ionian
Paxos is perfect for sun-drenched stays on the Ionian (Getty Images)

Enjoy lovely views of Gaios, the diminutive capital of equally tiny Paxos, from one of the Theodora Apartments run by Sunvil. Each apartment comes with a double bedroom and a balcony or patio looking out over the Ionian Sea, while to the rear is a relaxing shared garden with a swimming pool. The village centre is only a few hundred yards away. Seven nights’ self-catering from 8 July costs from £699pp, including flights and transfers.

Lake District

Break in your walking boots from Buttermere
Break in your walking boots from Buttermere (Getty Images)

Hassness Country House on the shore of Buttermere makes an idyllic setting for this self-guided walking holiday offered by Ramble Worldwide. Choose from a selection of Lakeland hikes, including walking from Buttermere to Rannerdale Knotts and to Haystacks from Honister, as well as around Crummock Water and through Borrowdale. A three-night self-guided…

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