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IF YOU are fed up of spending your precious holidays dealing with your toddler’s tears, or teenage sulks and demands, you are not alone – the traditional family holiday is fast disappearing. Recent research shows that more than 50 per cent of couples have left their children at home while they go away.
The study found that adults increasingly want peace and quiet rather than quality time with their children. More than 1,000 couples in Britain with children under 16 were quizzed on their holiday habits and 27 per cent said they regularly left their youngsters in the care of trusted adults when they went on holiday. A further 24 per cent said they occasionally left the children behind when taking a break abroad.
The most popular excuse for leaving children at home, cited by 23 per cent of respondents, was to have some time away from the chores of being a parent. A further 19 per cent went on holiday without children to rekindle some romance in their relationship. Seventeen per cent said their children did not want to go on holiday with them and 14 per cent said it was too expensive to take the family on every holiday. The survey found that grandparents, aunts and uncles were usually the ones left holding the baby.
As this survey shows parents are certainly not afraid of leaving their kids behind and enjoying some peace and quiet or a bit of romance, here are some ‘adults only’ holiday options.
For peace and quiet you can’t beat the Cape Verde islands, which bask in the sun just off the coast of Africa.
The islands are still unspoilt by mass tourism and retain a raw natural beauty that will take your breath away. There are impressive mountains and volcanoes to explore, delicious seafood feasts to enjoy and fantastic local musicians to entertain you. Secondly, a trip to Cape Verde takes just three-and-a-half hours flying time from Lisbon. And, if that isn’t enough, the fabulous beaches, unique culture and laid-back atmosphere are surprisingly affordable.
Shopaholics will love the mysterious and bountiful medinas of Marrakech. Backed by the snow capped High Atlas Mountains, Morocco’s ‘Pink City’ is famous for its languid, lush and occasionally even lascivious lifestyle. The sophisticated jet set moved in around 30 years ago when French couturier, Yves Saint Laurent, bought a villa in Marrakech. Nowadays, P Diddy, Jean Paul Gaultier and Richard Branson are among the high rollers that own a plush Riad, (typical Moroccan villas) and the city has grown to cater to all manner of tastes and pockets – with shopping, food and nightlife that are sure to impress.
If you enjoy a dram, why not consider a trip to the Scottish Highlands. The scenery is spectacular, with mountains, tumbling rivers and peaceful lochs scattered with magical islands. The Highlands are an ideal holiday destination for bon vivants – you’ll find castles, museums, steam trains, boat trips and, of course, whisky! “The proper drinking of Scotch whisky is more than indulgence; it is a toast to a civilisation,” wrote David Daiches, in his book Scotch Whisky – definitely an adults only pastime!