Bargain getaways to make the most of your time off
Time Out staff
A hop... Kick back in Goa The smallest state in India would make for an unforgettable Eid break and offers so much in the way of culture and natural beauty. During your trip, you can check out colonial Portuguese ruins and the Anjuna flea market. The five-star Taj Exotica Hotel is offering a Spa Sojourn package for a minimum stay of two nights, which includes breakfast, a spa meal and a free treatment. From INR22,2200 (Dhs1,609) per night double occupancy. Valid until September 30, 2012. www.tajhotels.com (800 035 702 467).
A skip... Sri Lankan temples NKAR tours are offering an eight-day Eid holiday, tailored towards Middle Eastern families, which includes stop-offs at Nuwara Eliya (the city of lights) in the mountains and the city of Kandy, which is considered the cultural capital of the island. The trip also includes a visit to Dambulla, in the centre of the island, which is famous for its cave temple complexes, the largest in Sri Landka, where you’ll find over 100 Buddha statues. From USD345 (Dhs1,267) for two people (includes accommodation and breakfast in standard hotels). Valid until October 31, 2012. www.srilankaholiday.travel (+941 12 564 584).
Underwater adventure Lovers of all things scuba can head out to the shipwrecks and reefs in the crystal clear waters of the Indian Ocean. Within easy reach of the Maldives’ top dive sites, the Centara Grand Island Resort & Spa Maldives is a four-star destination that appeals to both couples and families. Stay for three nights and pay for just two. Dhs3,615 per person. Valid until August 31, 2012. Luxuryhotels@dnata.com (04 316 6666).
A jump... Bangkok Eid offer With its bustling markets, legendary street food and world famous nightlife, Bangkok is a truly multicultural melting pot. A place that’s as fast paced as it is frantic; it’s difficult not to be drawn in. The Dusit Thani Bangkok, boasting views over Lumpini Park, is offering a deal for customers travelling from the Middle East, where they can enjoy a discount of 20 percent. From USD240 (Dhs882) per night (including breakfast and a bottle of bubbly on arrival). Valid until August 31, 2012. www.dusit.com (+66 2200 9000).
Escape to the Eternal City Discover the Renaissance beauty of Italy’s capital with a stay at the Gran Meliá Rome. The Vatican and St Peter’s Basilica are right on your doorstep, so there’ll be plenty of opportunities to explore one of the world’s most romantic cities on foot. This package includes dinner for two and continental breakfast. From Dhs1,596 per night. Valid until September 9, 2012. email@example.com (+39 06 925 901).
Get active this Eid Go skiing If Dubai’s indoor ski dome just isn’t cutting it anymore, head south to Thredbo, Australia. On Snow Reservations have packages available, with accommodation at the Alpine Apartments (based on six sharing) including free lift passes. Prices start at Dhs1,102 per person. This trip is valid from August 19 to September 1. Qatar Airways (www.qatarairways.com) flies return to Sydney for Dhs7,020. www.onsnow.com.au or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Go on safari Head to Kenya, where you can get up close and personal to some of the country’s most stunning wildlife at Amboseli National Park, situated near Mount Kilamkanjaro. Salem Travel offer six-day trips, which are full board at the Amboseli Sopa Lodge, a game drive, a visit to the stunning Lake Elmentaita and a trip to Masai Mara. They will also organise your flight from Abu Dhabi as well. The price of the safari is Dhs5,660 per person based on two sharing. It’s Dhs4,250 if you’re in a party of six. Salem Travel www.salemtravelagency.com (02 621 3777)
Try off roading A 4X4 isn’t just for loading up with shopping at the mall: they’re actually pretty handy in the desert. Arabian Adventures run a half-day Sand Trax trip, where you can fly around sand dunes and windblown trails. It’ll cost you Dhs795. They also arrange hot air balloon rides. Corniche Road, Al Markaziyah, www.arabian-adventures.com (02 691 1711).
Head out on a trek Head for Hatta on the border of Oman and the Al Hagar mountains for a morning’s hiking across the mountain range and rocky paths, water streams and crystal clear pools. The walk takes place at the highest mountain range in the eastern Arabian peninsula. The drive home on this all-day trip includes a stop to take a ride on a camel and costs Dhs550 for adults, Dhs450 for kids. Emirates Adventures, Salam Street, behind National Bank Of Abu Dhabi, wwweatours.ae (02 644 5117).