The arrival of March typically sees the beginning of spring, the start of longer and lighter evenings and it’s only natural that we start dreaming about our next holiday. In fact, March can be an excellent time of the year to travel, particularly if you’re looking at short flights and destinations closer to home because the temperatures in Europe start to climb.
If you’re in need of some inspiration, here’s a selection of some of the best holiday destinations in March.
Crete is the largest of the Greek islands and actually one of the biggest in the Mediterranean, so there’s plenty to see, do and experience. Visiting the island in March means holidaymakers will miss the busiest season in terms of tourist numbers but will still enjoy a sunny climate; Crete is said to have one of the earliest springs in the Med.
At this time of year, Crete will be a good deal quieter. Visitors will certainly be spoilt for choice when it comes to resorts. There are over 600 miles of coastline around Crete, meaning an abundance of top class beaches. The Heraklion area is popular. Headlined by towns including Hersonissos and Malia – which definitely gets lively with party goers during the peak summer season – it’s the biggest city on Crete. For a smaller town feel, try picturesque Chania, which is notable for its old port, harbour and ancient buildings.
The beauty of Crete is that it’s perfectly located for some superb excursions – fancy a boat trip to Santorini?
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If it’s a long haul beach destination you’re looking for, Mexico always scores highly and Cancun is undoubtedly one of its star locations. Cancun is really an all year-round holiday destination, but March is arguably the prime time to visit as the late summer period can sometimes bring storms, while April has always been hugely popular for US students celebrating Spring Break. March, then, delivers plenty of sunshine and a slightly calmer atmosphere.
What does Cancun do well? Frankly, just about everything. Here you’ll find gorgeous white sandy beaches stretching for miles – sunbathers and watersports enthusiasts will be delighted! – as well as luxurious hotels, spas and busy bars and clubs. However, the city itself provides a taste of the ‘real’ Mexico, with colourful markets and food stalls. The Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza are a couple of hours’ drive away, too. A combination of paradise and culture, Cancun has it all.
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COSTA DEL SOL
There are any number of delightful resorts in the Costa del Sol, which translates to ‘the sunshine coast’. On the edge of southern Spain, this is a region that experiences year-round sun – up to eight hours a day in spring – so the weather should be pretty good in March. Whatever kind of holiday you’re looking for can be catered for in the Costa del Sol. For an early beach break full of fun, try Torremolinos, which is packed with bars, restaurants and shops, and boasts four beaches – Playa de la Carihuela is the largest. It’s an ideal spot for a family holiday, as is its next door neighbour, Benalmadena.
Couples will love Marbella, which is unashamedly glamorous and glitzy, thanks to the likes of Puerto Banus and the Golden Mile. However, the old town offers a change in pace and surroundings, with whitewashed buildings, old churches, and castle ruins.
Nerja and Fuengirola are other excellent resorts; it’s no surprise that fans of the Costa del Sol consider this to be the best place to go on holiday in March or at any other time of the year!
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Menorca – sometimes also called Minorca – is frequently and unfairly overshadowed by its better known neighbours in Spain’s Balearic Islands, Ibiza and Mallorca (the fourth member is Formentera) but that shouldn’t detract from its quality as a top-class holiday destination. By March, the temperature is starting to warm up with around 12 hours of sun a day so it’s the perfect opportunity for a laidback break.
The island is considered relatively unspoilt still, making it particularly family friendly or especially suitable for couples hoping for a peaceful, romantic holiday. The numerous beaches – there are said to be 46 – are superb while the capital, Mahon, and the older town of Ciutadella are both excellent destinations. Ciutadella has a wonderful old port and harbour, fringed with bars and restaurants, and attractive Gothic and Baroque architecture; Mahon has similarly striking buildings and a livelier nightlife. Beaches are within a short distance. So, for either a city break or longer holiday, Menorca is definitely among the best holiday locations in March.
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For a show-stopping holiday in March it doesn’t get much better than a visit to Orlando. The flight time from Ireland is certainly on the longer side at an average of around nine hours but it’s worth it if you’re planning a longer holiday. In March, the weather is just about spot on; a warm climate but outside the traditional rainy season. Of course, Orlando is famed for its theme parks with not just Walt Disney World Resort but also SeaWorld Orlando and Universal Orlando Resort, among others. If you’re holidaying as a family, a trip to Orlando has the potential to be unforgettable.
But this is a location which is more than a huge playground. There are endless other attractions, from watching NBA side the Orlando Magic in action – the season runs until June – to playing golf at any of its world-class courses, seeking bargains at shopping malls and touring the wild Everglades swamps in sight of alligators. Don’t forget that the vibrant city of Miami is just a short hop away.
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