WE ALL enjoy discovering new places and for customers of low fares airline Thomsonfly.com, the world really is your oyster. By flying from Faro into either Coventry, Bournemouth or Doncaster, you can take another Thomsonfly.com flight from the same airport and visit a huge variety of different places across Europe and beyond. Here we look at four quite different, but very special places you may like to consider spending some time in.
Pisa – the springboard to Tuscany
An enchanting city filled with resplendent medieval buildings, Pisa is renowned as the home of the famous Leaning Tower. This medieval bell tower is truly one of the world’s must see sights and its angle-defying incline has long been the subject of fascination and incredulity from visitors each year.
Alongside the Tower stands Pisa’s magnificent Duomo di Santa Maria Assunta. Enter this cathedral’s vast five-nave interior and see the colossal statue of Christ and an enormous hanging candelabrum, which is said to have sparked Galileo’s theories on pendulum motion. With its spiky Gothic pinnacles, Pisa’s Baptistry is also well worth a look – its great carved pulpit is a masterpiece of medieval sculpture.
While Pisa itself makes for a fascinating break, it’s also the portal to the picturesque region of Tuscany, which as well as being famous for its wonderful food, boasts one of the most evocative landscapes in the world.
Palma – Majorca’s colourful capital
Palma is the chic island capital, a vibrant city with a lively buzz. Set around a horseshoe bay, sheltering a harbour bustling with luxury yachts and cruise liners, Palma boasts a magnificent Gothic cathedral which dominates the city skyline. Below the cathedral you will find a labyrinthine old town studded with outstanding architecture, authentic restaurants and bars, stylish shops and fascinating museums. And the place to have a cocktail is Abaco, an amazing bar strewn with an abundance of fruit and flowers – an experience not to be missed.
For something a little different, you can enjoy the Soller Railway, a vintage train which takes you on a 17-mile scenic journey through the Majorcan countryside between Palma and Soller, a charming Mediterranean village on the northwestern coast. The journey winds its way through 13 mountain tunnels before reaching its destination. Once at Soller, the 5km journey to the Port de Soller is made in 1930s former San Francisco trams. There you can visit the pastry shops or tapas bars before taking in the stunning views on the way back.
Jersey – hidden delights on your doorstep
Just 14 miles from the French coast, Jersey is the biggest Channel Island, famed for its pristine beaches, clean waters and unspoilt scenery. Enjoy a guided walk, a round of golf or learn to surf in the translucent waters that wash its shores. You could even see the island’s beautiful south coast from an all together different perspective – hurtling through the air in an adrenaline-pumping skydive!
If that sounds like too much effort, another great reason to go to Jersey is to take advantage of the VAT-free shopping. The island’s capital, St Helier, has a plethora of shops and markets on offer including jewellery shops, ideal for that holiday treat, and two famous department stores, Voisins and de Gruchy’s, both founded more than 100 years ago.
Paris – the world’s most romantic city
The very mention of Paris conjures up images of wide boulevards, pavement cafés, elegant riverside lampposts strung with twinkling fairy lights and exclusive boutiques that exude effortless style and sophistication. Arguably the world’s most romantic city, you’re sure to fall in love with Paris.
The list of what to do in Paris is endless. One of the best ways to get a different view of the city is to take one of the guided river cruises starting from Notre Dame. Once back on dry land, why not visit the incomparable Louvre (a must see for all Da Vinci Code addicts), the Musee d’Orsay featuring art from Monet, Renoir and Degas, the Bohemian area of Montmartre and the brilliant white Sacre-Coeur basilica? Of course, there’s also the Moulin Rouge, made famous by its saucy cancan shows, the sumptuous palace of Versailles and now even Mickey and Minnie in Disneyland, so you cannot fail to have a great time.
• For further information about all the places mentioned in this article and to book flights and accommodation, visit www.thomsonfly.com. Those without internet access can book by calling 214 159 122.