Tag Archives: Cyprus

What’s the best winter sun destination this year?

My central heating has just gone on which means two things. One, my next gas bill will make me cry and two, I want a holiday somewhere warm and sunny. Last winter we had our first foreign family holiday and my 6 year old has been virtually begging us to go away for some winter sun and it is oh so tempting.

Last year we went to Mallorca which was great for us. It was a fairly short flight and we were blessed with lots of winter sun to warm our bones. I think we’d all be happy to go back and that would be the easy option, but where could we go that was still a short-ish flight, still sunny and still within our budget?

Sol Katmandu Hotel, Majorca with Jet2Holidays

I’ve picked out some of my favourite winter sun destinations available on Holiday Gems this year…

We love Cyprus. We went several times before we had our son and they were some of the best holidays we’ve ever had. Lots of sunshine, some history, some culture, lots of great food and good wine. Pretty much perfect. We will definitely go back, but we might leave that until he’s a bit older.

The Canaries are real wish list stuff for me. I’ve wanted to go for years but we’ve never quite managed it. The islands are the perfect place for a family holiday, a couples break or just to grab some much needed winter sun.

Cape Verde
It’s a bit further than I’d normally choose to go, but these laid back islands are perfect for a beach break. With year round sunshine and decent temperatures even in the depths of winter, Cape Verde might be just the ticket to pull us out of the doldrums this winter.

I’ve wanted to visit Croatia since my brother went and fell for its stunning good looks. With beautiful beaches, spectacular cultural landmarks and a fine selection of resorts Croatia is high on my list, especially as it’s pretty good value to holiday there too.

I’m not sure where we will choose, that will have to go to a family vote. But I can see the Canaries in our future, fingers crossed!

This is a collaborative post.

Summer Cocktail Recipe: Refreshing Gin Fizz

In 2007 we went on our first summer beach holiday as a couple, we were going to a wedding in Cyprus and we booked a lovely hotel in Protaras. At first we were a bit taken aback by all the cheesy bars, but we soon learned to embrace them and their cheap cocktails. Quickly I discovered the most popular cocktail in the resort – the Gin Fizz. It wasn’t hard to see why this was so popular, not only was it delicious but it was really refreshing, which is what you need on a sultry summer evening.

gin fizz recipe

I was recently sent a bottle of PLj to try, it is 100% lemon juice, unsweetened, nothing added and it’s a really handy way of having fresh lemon juice whenever you need it. My first port of call was to add a dash to a cool glass of soda water, it was sharp and refreshing, but it was crying out to be made into a Gin Fizz.

gin fizz recipe

After a good deal of wholly scientific experimentation (hic), here’s my recipe. It’s incredibly simple and was very reminiscent of hot summer evenings in Cyprus –

Gin Fizz Recipe

2 shots of gin
1/2 shot PLj lemon juice
1 heaped teaspoon of icing sugar
Soda water
A slice of lemon

1. In a cocktail shaker (or a jug with a whisk if you discover your cocktail shaker has been packed away in the loft) put your gin, PLj lemon juice, the sugar and a few cubes of ice and shake like billy-o. Check it to see if it’s sweet enough for you, you can always add more sugar if you want to.
2. Pour into a tall glass filled with ice and top with soda water. Stir and then garnish with a slice of lemon, and perhaps a spring of mint if you have it.

I love a Gin Fizz, it’s one of my guilty pleasures on a summer evening. Delicious!

Summer Cocktail Recipe: Refreshing Gin Fizz