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10 short-haul destinations to catch the last of the summer sun

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With the crisper mornings and cooler nights, there is no denying that summer has come to a close. If you’re still looking to soak up the sun, but don’t want the long flight time, here are ten destinations in Europe and North Africa, all with temperature highs of 25C+ in the autumn months.

Dubrovnik, Croatia

High autumn temperature: 25C       

        

Hot weather aside, there are plenty of reasons to put Dubrovnik on your autumn holiday wish list; it’s the perfect time of year for Croatian pancakes filled with Dubrovnik’s bitter orange jam, the Botanical Garden on Lokrum celebrates its birthday on the 23rd October and the ferry prices (and tourist crowds) dramatically lower when you visit the car-free island of Lopud, home to one of Croatia’s best beaches, the Sunj.

Costa Azul, Portugal

High autumn temperature: 27C

If you want lazy days at the beach as well as an injection of exciting city life, head to Costa Azul this autumn. Base yourself across the River Tagus in a Costa Azul villa for easy access to the long golden beaches of Portugal’s west coast, with the cosmopolitan lure of Lisbon just an hour’s drive away. In Lisbon, jump on tram no. 28 to explore the cobbled streets of the Alfama neighbourhood or hop on to the Santa Justa lift for views over the Baixa towards St. George’s Castle. 

Marrakech, Morocco

High autumn temperature: 26C – 30C+

Morocco is brilliant for an exotic short haul holiday. Even in the autumn months temperatures can reach the low 30s, and as well as plenty of sunshine, the country offers an exciting new culture to explore - all under a four hour flight away. Stay in Marrakech’s stunning riad hotels, gorgeous hideaways that are right in the hustle and bustle of it all.

La Gomera, Spain

High autumn temperature: 27C

Off the coast of Africa, La Gomera is one of the lesser known Canary Islands. Without an airport (visitors need to take a ferry), La Gomera has missed out on the tourist developments that have overwhelmed other Canary Islands like Lanzarote and Tenerife. Its eco-system is unique, with volcanic black sand beaches around the coast and tropical jungle at the centre. Thanks to warm Saharan winds the weather is warm all year around, allowing visitors to soak up the sun by the pool or explore the diverse landscapes. As La Gomera is so relatively untouched by mass tourism, there are few hotels; stay at a privately owned villa, like Parque Mirador, for a truly peaceful and immersive Spanish holiday.

Sardinia, Italy

High autumn temperature: 27C

 

This Italian island has a very different feel to the mainland, with a slower pace of life, but it still retains an independent character.The beaches are dazzling and the food and wine is world famous. Even in October, temperature highs are in the mid-20s, a lovely climate for walking the white sand beaches in Palau. Explore the natural wonder of the stalagmites in Neptune’s Cave before relaxing over wonderfully fresh Catalan inspired seafood dishes in the town of Alghero.

Cyprus

High autumn temperature: 33C

 

Thanks to Aiya Napa, Cyprus has inherited a reputation for being a party island, but once the off-peak season rolls in the Mediterranean island is a gorgeous retreat, filled with historical and cultural wonders. Even in the heart of party town Aiya Napa you’ll find a 15th century chapel carved from a sandstone cave as well as the Thalassa Museum of the Sea.

Mallorca, Spain

High autumn temperature: 26C

 

Autumn visitors to Mallorca will see the island at its best. With the summer tourists gone, Mallorca has the breathing space it needs to show visitors how beautiful it really is. From quiet villages tucked into the hills (like Deia) through to the cultural and lively towns, this Mediterranean island is full of surprises. Art lovers should check out the capital city Palma, which has great examples of ancient Arabic architecture in its old quarter as well as a collection of contemporary museums.

Kas, Turkey

High autumn temperature: 29C

 

Based at the foothills of the Taurus Mountains, the coastal town of Kas has some of the most dramatic scenery in all of Turkey. As well as enjoying wonderful beach weather in the autumn months, Kas has plenty of cultural attractions to explore; visit the Old Amphitheatre at night to see it beautifully lit up, take a trip to the ruins of Xanthos and Patara beach and even visit a new country in a day with a 20 minute boat trip to the Greek Island of Meis.

Puglia, Italy

High autumn temperature: 25C

 

Autumn is one of the best times of year to visit the flatlands of Puglia. The warm weather is ideal for exploring the different landscapes of the region, from the last surviving woods of the Foresta Umbra in the north, to the conical stone houses of Trulli Country in the south. For a proper Italian holiday, stay in the traditional Trullodell’Anfora, complete with private pool and trullo-style shower room.

Santorini, Greece

High autumn temperature: 26C

 

A classic choice for couples, Santorini is one of the most appealing Greek Islands, due to its deep azure seas, stark white dome villages and its glorious weather. The cliff top town of Thira commands one of the best views over the lagoon and it’s winding whitewashed houses and chapels beg to be explored.

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