Where to travel in April
As blooms burst in the Northern Hemisphere, it's a great time to take in spring in Paris, enjoy mild, warm weather in Amsterdam, explore the Italian coast or make the most of Madeira’s spring flowers. Japan’s cherry blossom is also in full bloom; head to Kyoto to see the best of it. However, you’ll need to book well in advance, with prices hiked dramatically. Back in Europe, there’s excellent walking in northern Spain, while Andalucia, Portugal and shoulder-season Santorini are fantastic options.
In the USA, Florida impresses with superb weather and minimal rain. Alternatively, take in the Capital Region or make the most of the Deep South before the summer swelter kicks in. Hawaii is also especially verdant, with April marking the end of the rainy season. To the north, the warming weather in Canada means that this is a good time to see animals in Banff National Park.
As Mexico enjoys the last of its best weather, northern South America continues to come into its own. Ecuador's dry and cool Galapagos Islands are a particular highlight; the plankton that supports the wildlife here is particularly plentiful, meaning that you'll see a lot of animal activity.
But, if it's safari wildlife you want, consider a trip to KwaZulu Natal in South Africa or head to Madagascar. Here, the rains will have eased so the newly lush verdure and favourable temperatures will tempt out the lemurs. Looking to the Middle East, it’s an ideal time to visit both Oman and Jordan before the summer’s dramatic temperatures set in.
April is the time for festivals in Asia, with Thailand and Laos both celebrating New Year. The Songkran Water Festival in Thailand and Cambodia is frenetic and fun, while Myanmar's Thingyan Festival is one of the country's most important ceremonies. Lastly, although Vietnam has three different climate regions, April sees them all at their best.
For beach breaks and pure relaxation, consider the Indian Ocean islands of Mauritius and the Seychelles. Or, head to the Caribbean. As April is just prior to the rainy season, the region is quieter and there are good deals to be had after Easter ends. Jamaica, Grenada and Antigua and Barbuda are our picks. It’s also an excellent time to visit Cuba – just remember to book early.
Lastly, on the other side of the world, April is ideal for visits to Western Australia, with the whale shark season is in full swing at Ningaloo Reef. April is also an excellent time to visit New Zealand. Although it’s the start of the low season, the weather is still good and it’s less crowded.
Combine the white sands of the Tuscan coast with the Renaissance excess of Florence, enjoying stays in two of the country’s finest hotels; contrast private-beach access with Michelin-starred dining. In between, the use of a hire car will afford you the flexibility to explore the Tuscan countryside.
Famous for its friendly people, natural beauty and mild climate, Madeira is a perfect year-round destination. The island features more than 600 miles of walking trails, and while there aren't any beaches per se, there are plenty of lidos and bathing platforms offering direct sea access.
Get a taste of all that this spectacular multi-faceted country has to offer, with private tours of Tokyo, traditional ryokan stays, trips on Japan's 200mph bullet train and visits to world famous temples.
Offering superb value, this weeklong road trip will see you uncovering the Moorish wonders of southern Spain, brought to life with guided tours and stays in superb hotels. Highlights include visits to the palace-fortresses of Seville and Granada along with the Córdoba's cathedral-mosque.
– Save up to £350 pp
Book by: 31 October 2018
Journey from the the boardwalks and architectural splendours of Miami to the yawning archipelago of Florida Keys on this two-week road trip through the Sunshine State.