6 of the Best Spring Destinations
Whether you’re interested in sport, music, nature or cultural activities, we’ve scoured the world for the best places to visit during the spring months and compiled a program of some of the greatest events and festivals to explore. Click through for six compelling reasons to book yourself a trip, enjoy everything that the season has to offer and shake off those winter blues.
Traditionally a season of rebirth, spring is the ideal time to embrace a little wanderlust and shake off the the icy grip of winter. It’s a season to embrace the warmer weather and longer days but most of all it’s one of the best times to set forth and explore the world. We count down some of the best places to head this spring and the best reasons to go there.
South By Southwest Festival
March 7 – 16, 2014
First held in 1987, South by Southwest has now grown to become one of the most important musical events on the calendar for the United States and indeed the world. A music lover’s paradise, more than 2000 ‘official’ performers and bands flock to the city from more than 55 countries to play in more than 100 venues across the city. It’s easy to see why thousands descend on this city, transforming it into a sprawling metropolis dedicated solely to music as artists and bands play on every street corner, packed venue and bar they can find. With such a smorgasbord of options to choose from, it’s easy to see why South by Southwest is on the must do list for any serious music lover.
Where to stay
Unless you have friends or family in the city, you’re going to have a tough time finding accommodation in Austin over this week. As soon as the first hotels become available they are fully booked within hours, and if you’re looking to source anything near downtown you needed to be booking it nine months ago.
Holi Festival of Colours
The ending of winter is cause to celebrate in India and they certainly know how to paint the town red — and green and orange and pink and purple. The festival celebrates the coming of spring and the triumph of good over evil, and to commemorate the occasion, children roam the street armed with bags of richly coloured food dyes, dousing passersby with technicolour cloudbursts. Indeed, the streets are alive in a surrealist’s fantasy, a riot of colour and affirmation of life.
As the capital and heart of the country, Delhi is a rowdy affair and one of the most lively places to experience Holi, with children through to the elderly joining the celebration. Experiencing Holi in Delhi, or indeed anywhere in India, is truly a one of a kind celebration that will not soon be forgotten.
Where to stay
As the whole city celebrates with equal fervour, you can stay almost anywhere in this sprawling metropolis and find a place to experience the madness of Holi. For a truly authentic experience, BnB New Delhi offers a homestay experience and has cosy rooms, freshly made local delicacies and of course access to local knowledge on the best places to celebrate.
Cherry Blossom Festival
March – April
Generally a quiet, sleepy town, Kakunodate is situated at the east of the Akita prefecture. During the Cherry Blossom Festival thousands of people flock to the area to witness the signature plant of Japan, the cherry blossoms, blooming and blanketing the countryside in a soft colourful splendour.
Whilst the exact dates that the blossoms erupt into colour can vary due to seasonality, they are generally in full bloom by early April. From then, the area is awash with colour, and nature lovers come to enjoy the warmer weather, spectacular scenery and fabled Japanese hospitality. Be sure to take a wander through the samurai district, home to some of the best examples of samurai architecture in the country.
Where to Stay
The Tamachi Bukeyashiki Hotel is located in central Kakunodate and its structure blends in seamlessly with the atmosphere of Kakunodate. With its comfortable rooms, dark wooden beams, traditional features and paper lanterns, its easy to imagine what life was like a few centuries ago in this ancient village.
The French Open
May 25 – June 8
One of the pre-eminent Grand Slam tournaments in the world and the only major to be played on clay, the French Open is one of sports’ great spectacles. The characteristics of clay court and five-set men’s singles matches without a tiebreak in the final set means that the French Open is one of the most demanding tennis tournaments in the world, and has been the backdrop to some spectacular matches and upsets over the years.
The tournament lasts for two weeks, so visitors can watch the action unfold on the tennis court or wander the sprawling streets of this majestic city. Traipse through the seemingly endless gardens, wander the tree lined alleys, lounge in the cafes and explore the galleries that Paris is famed for.
Where to stay
The attentive staff, beautiful rooms and superb attention to detail has made Jays Paris a favourite for business and leisure travellers alike. Best of all, the location in the Golden Triangle means that all of Paris’s most popular attractions, like Avenue des Champs Elysées and the Eiffel Tower are a short stroll away.
National Park Week
April 19 – 26
Yosemite National Park
A protected national park since 1864, Yosemite is recognized for its enormous sequoias, spectacular granite cliffs, waterfalls and biodiversity. With 1,600 miles of streams and 800 miles of trails, visitors can enjoy a wealth of nature to explore on their own terms.
By spring the bitter cold of northern California has subsided and the hiking trails – once covered with snow – have thawed, making way for the amazing waterfalls Yosemite is renowned for. The national park is truly worth a visit at any time of year, but during National Park Week the regular entrance fee is waived to sweeten the deal. Ride a horse or pack mule across Yosemite’s high country, take to the trails on a mountain bike, enjoy an afternoon fishing or simply revel in the majesty of nature and spectacular views on a hike along one of the many trails. The options are endless.
Where to stay
The Evergreen Lodge is nestled in the woods bordering Yosemite National Park and is equipped with a wealth of amenities to make your stay enjoyable. The spacious cabins are fully equipped with modern amenities but have a quaint rustic charm about them, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in nature.