We’ve done our fair share of ‘off the beaten track’ trips before we had our child and after. You do feel like you need another vacation after returning from some of these trips especially when you add a child to the mix or decide to go multi city.
Our first holiday last year was driven by the desire to relax and be ‘stress free’. I’d signed up to Travelzoo
using a different email and looked at advertised deals. I was enticed by a particular resort in Rhodes
. I’d researched the tour operator (JetLine
) and read mixed reviews.
I chose to take a chance based on the location I wanted to visit, the proximity of the hotel from the airport (under 30 minutes), the fact it was a beach front property, and we could get into town easily with public transport or taxi if necessary. There were also shops just outside the hotel if we needed anything. It met my requirements of deciding which hotel to stay in.
I can’t fault the service we received from JetLine, questions were answered promptly and all booking information was provided swiftly.
Tip: Research your hotel choice on multiple platforms. Don’t rely on adverts.
Inclusive or Self catering?
It’s important you know what makes your dream holiday a success or not. My partner ‘hated’ the idea of ‘all inclusive’, but had never booked one. His ideal holiday is a multi city trip connected by local trains and buses, staying in apartments (space) not using any guide books, and having the freedom to meet locals, avoid tourists (funny right considering we are tourists in the scenario) and find all the places locals eat and ‘off the beaten track’. His worst case scenario is lying on a beach all day. My ideal scenario.
The first time this happened for him was in Split
when we left our apartment in the morning, found the beach recommended by our host that locals went to which was barely populated and before we knew it, it was late afternoon and a perfect day spent. We didn’t get to see the Old Town as this was a short stop before heading to Zagreb
and onto Slovenia
(do try and visit before the secrets out) but we spent quality time relaxing in the heat and cooling off in the sea.
Compromise is the most important thing to remember when you are traveling with another person. The above scenario was my version of a ‘good holiday’, great would be a beach scenario, with private transfers between airport, hotel and excursions, limitless cocktails by the beach, in a great hotel. I found a close match at Grecotel Lux Me Rhodos
. From arrival to departure the staff were friendly, they were professional and helpful. I believe the resort is being refurbished (change of ownership) as some people report modern rooms whereas others report dated rooms in need of TLC. Our bathroom could have been updated but nothing to complain about.
Greece has been on a list for many years and after my trip to Rhodes I’m certain this may very well be another regular destination. There was a hotel a few doors down from this resort with a water park and I’d love to visit when my child is older. There are many islands to visit, each with a different vibe. One thing to be said about Greece is it’s expensive. All my research indicated with its precarious economy, the tourism industry is one of the countries highest earners and a popular destination. You pay a premium for this especially during peak seasons.
I decided to visit and do so in a financially savvy way, the option to go all inclusive met this criteria. I’d done this previously in Cancun
and had the very best holiday. I’ll say a week at an all inclusive is all you need. Beyond that I’d imagine you’d get bored with the food and routine.
When to go:
We went during shoulder season early May. The resort had just opened, I believe there were between 200-300 guests and the staff we spoke to said that was the best time to visit. The staff were still ‘fresh’ and you could easily get a spot by the beach or pool. Meal times weren’t packed and the food was good (it could have been hotter) with a different main dish in the main restaurant (buffet style) or reservations at the two onsite restaurants, in summer there is a taverna with authentic Greek food by the beach / pool this was closed during our stay though we could get pancakes, ice cream and drinks at the bar.
The weather was just right meaning we could go out with a light cardigan in the morning and evenings. We spent most days by the beach and would move to the pool in the afternoon. We checked the same resort a month later and prices had more than doubled for a five night trip.