Sunday, 27 February 2011

The perfect holiday?

What makes a good holiday for you, and how do you choose it?  Or even a really good day out?

It's only reasonable for me to go first, of course, and think about what I like - and there's not one ideal.  Probably the type I'd enjoy least would be the one that Dave says he looks for - "magnificent ruggest mountains or rolling moorland."  I might have enjoyed a rustic tramp in my younger days (no, stop sniggering) but I'm afraid that the novelty would quickly wear off nowadays.  When I'm on holiday, lovely scenery is a bonus, but it's something to look at, that's all.  If I were going on a rural holiday, I'd not choose mountains or moorland.  I'd want trees and water, partly for their own sake and partly for the wildlife they attract.  And I'd sit for ages watching them.

Beach and sun holidays have never really appealed either.  Again, I'll enjoy it for a day or two, but I'm not very good in the sun anyway, lying on sand isn't that comfortable and it gets boring after a short time.

I've just been realising what a short attention span I have.  Hm.  And also that this isn't supposed to be about imperfect holidays - although now I think of it, there's another sort of holiday that hasn't appealed to me, and that is a cruise.  Most of the ladies with whom I lunch every month are the fairly well-heeled sort, retired professionals (I got in because they like me) and a number of them enjoy cruises and have asked me if I'm interested in becoming one of a party.  I've always used as an excuse that the Sage is the worst sailor ever and can become queasy crossing a deep puddle in a strong wind, but the truth is that I don't want to go.  I have a feeling that it's too sociable.  I like the freedom to poddle off on my own, not meet up with chums several times a day.  And there isn't enough time anywhere to get to know it - I like to explore cities at my own pace and make contact with local people.  I remember reading an account of a cruise that involved docking at Venice (there was a massive cruise ship blocking the view when I went there and I resented it vastly) and the writer said that the guide advised them on where was 'safe' to go shopping and eating.  Since on of the charming things about Venice is that you feel totally safe at all times, day and night, this looked like over-caution.

I'm going to have to come back to this, I've got stuff to do tonight.  But for a start on what I do like, I enjoy getting lost on foot in a city.

10 comments:

Madame DeFarge said...

Have to be doing something on holidays. Have to be walking purposefully, or sledging, or seeing something suitably historic. Can't be doing with lying around.

Alienne said...

I prefer something to do holidays as well, I was bored by the end of the week in Corfu with my youngest last year, but she loved it. I love cities, like Amsterdam, Paris and Berlin. I have just booked a 5 day trip to New York with my sister and the girls which should meet all of our holiday needs! I know what you mean about the enforced sociability of the cruise situation too. I found an element of claustrophobia on the walking holiday last year, but the scenery, the sheer niceness of most of the people and the good food made up for it - and it was only for a week. The problem with the cruises is that you only get a few hours anywhere and that is just not enough.

Dandelion said...

Well, I expect it's better than getting lost on foot in the country/mountain/moorland, etc. Much more amenable.

lom said...

Anywhere that is pretty, be it by the sea, woodland, mountains, moors, preferably out of season so that there are not many people. Lots of walks and or old buildings/museums. No noisy nightclubs/kids clubs/pubs.

Dave said...

You may recall that I walked the Pennine Way a few years ago. Walking in countryside more rugged than Norfolk, and getting away from people, is what I really enjoy.

Roses said...

Hmmm...I shall have to think about that.

I suppose I'd rather lie about at home, than lie about somewhere else and have to pay for the pleasure.

I like pottering around. When I was with the Viking, we went to Dublin and that was really good. We saw stuff together and then parted company when I wanted a snooze and he wanted to go and see things.

Ivy said...

What`s my perfect holiday? - I guess it`s one where I`ve time to do what I want to do - whether staying at home or a break away.

Walking along cliffs or sea-shore, not bustling seaside resorts though, or exploring places. My favourite holiday was a few days in York, exploring all the narrow streets and the Minster.

badgerdaddy said...

I'd never really done holidays until I got married, and as my wife and stepdaughter both like them, we go away occasionally. As we live in a landlocked county, the sea is always good.

When I'm travelling though, mostly I like to be away from people who speak English. Especially English people.

Christopher said...

I don't really know what I want. Couldn't put up with a beach holiday. Nor something terribly active. Nor a cruise. I'd really dislike that, unless it was with a few friends to places of our collective choice. Much prefer holidays with a purpose, preferably musical. And I have this inconvenient and very restrictive thing about not going to places where I can't speak the language. So maybe Norfolk is out.

luckyzmom said...

I love to float in warm water until I turn into a prune. I love to see old stuff, visit historical sites and museums. I love to be driven through scenic places, especially the deep dark woods. Some of my most memorable and enjoyable vacations were when I would fly across the country to visit my dearest friend and do all of the above and then some.