101 Holidays

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    Anniversary holiday ideas

    private jet holidays for anniversaries10th Anniversary holiday ideasLucknam Park

    By Mark Hodson, Sunday Times Travel Writer and Editor of 101 Holidays

    So you’ve put a lot of years into your marriage – it’s about time you treated yourselves to a special celebration.

    Whether you’re coming up to a 10-year anniversary or looking for 25th wedding anniversary holiday ideas, we’ve got some great suggestions that will make you both feel a million dollars, and help give you the motivation to carry on for the next few decades!

    The first thing to say is this is not a time for a cheap holiday. It’s better to reduce the time you spend away and crank up the luxury dial. So, for example, if your budget is limited, I would recommend you spend a night or two at a 5-star hotel rather than a week at a 3-star hotel.

    The ultimate short-and-sweet anniversary holiday treat is a short break by private jet which turns out to be surprisingly affordable, particularly if you take along a few friends or family members. You can take off from an airport close to your home, enjoy champagne and canapes on board, then land in France for a Michelin-starred lunch. Details from Jet Escapes.

    Anniversary holidays in the UK

    Anniversary holiday ideas in the UK

    Of course you don’t need to leave these shores. There are plenty of great wedding anniversary weekend breaks in the UK. If you are celebrating with a large group, you could rent out a historic house in England, Scotland or Wales with Olivers Travels, or rent a big house in the countryside. The Big Domain caters for groups of between 12 and 56.

    Another option is the Cotswolds where this collection of luxury rentals range from cosy to huge. If you like a hike, how about one of these luxury cottages in the Lake District. For something more modest, rent one of these holiday cottages on Dorset’s dramatic Jurassic Coast.

    If it’s just the two of you, go for a beautiful hotel in the countryside. We recommend Maison Talbooth, a luxurious but informal 12-room hotel for foodies in Constable country on the border of Essex and Suffolk, and the beautiful Three Choirs Vineyards in Gloucestershire, which makes its own wine.

    Other great hotels for anniversaries and special occasions include Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa near Bath, and Gilpin Lodge in the Lake District.

    In the Welsh borders, we like Pen-y-Dyffryn, a charming Georgian country house hotel set in rolling hills, and the award-winning historic Castle Hotel in the unspoilt town of Bishops Castle.

    If you’d rather do something more active and cultural, try Martin Randall which offers tours led by an expert in art, music or architecture. You could visit some of the Great Houses of England, or attend a classical music festival for example.

    For a more affordable range of art, music and history tours, take a look at The Cultural Travel Company, whether you’re interested in Cold War Berlin or Archaeology in Pompeii.

    Luxury barge, BergundyWine tours FranceVeniceWedding anniversary holidays in Europe

    Wedding anniversary holidays in Europe

    Take a short break to Nice on the Cote d’Azur, a great year-round destination with classy hotels, beautiful art museums and fascinating markets. Details from Cox & Kings. In the summer months, I recommend a luxury hotel barge in France, travelling through regions such as Burgundy, Bordeaux and the Canal du Midi. The barges sleep 4 – 20 people and include gourmet meals, fine wines, an open bar and shore excursions.

    If you want a real luxury treat, how about a journey on the Venice Simplon-Orient Express. From London you can take a four-day trip that includes the overnight train down to VeniceBudapestVerona or Vienna. There’s also a shorter trip to Paris.

    There’s also romance to be had on a river cruise in Europe on a small luxury boat motoring through idyllic countryside, visiting historic cities and cultural treasures. The Danube is the most popular river and brimming with romance.

    In Spain, try one of these wine and gastronomy breaks including a choice of walking tours and road trips along with one-day wine tours in classic destinations including Barcelona, Rioja, Andalusia and Ribera del Duero.

    Another great place for ideas is The Healthy Holiday Company’s month-by-month guide where you’ll find spa retreats, hidden beaches and charming hotels off the beaten track. For boutique hideaways in glamorous locations, also try

    Or indulge in some classic Italian hospitality of one of the country’s most stylish resort hotels. I recommend the Verdura Golf & Spa Resort, part of the Rocco Forte collection, in Sicily, and Forte Village Resort in Sardinia.

    You could get tickets to a special event in Italy such as the Carnival of Venice in February, or an open-air performance at the Verona Opera Festival during the summer. Or perhaps just indulge your senses with a short break in Paris.

    Enchanted Island Beach ResortLuxury at Enchanted Island

    Orang Utan in Borneo

    Long haul options

    You could get pampered silly on one of these luxury train journeys which combine white-glove treatment with visits to some of the world’s most iconic sights from India’s Taj Mahal to Persepolis in Iran. How about the Palace on Wheels in India or the Eastern & Oriental Express, which runs between Singapore and Bangkok.

    Treat yourselves to a dream holiday in the Seychelles perhaps staying in one of these boutique hotels or luxury resorts.

    Indonesia is a fast-growing destination for adventure and luxury. How about this private tour, Bali Highlights with Komodo Adventure.

    The island of Bermuda has a quirky colonial style combined with sensational white (and pink!) sand beaches. It works very well in our summer with direct flights and easy onward connections to New York.

    Still hungry for more ideas? Check out more great holidays for couples and Annabelle Thorpe’s selection of the best 101 Short Breaks.

    Wedding anniversaries by year

    1st wedding anniversary – Paper
    2nd wedding anniversary – Cotton
    3rd wedding anniversary – Leather
    4th wedding anniversary – Linen
    5th wedding anniversary – Wood
    6th wedding anniversary – Iron
    7th wedding anniversary – Copper
    8th wedding anniversary – Bronze
    9th wedding anniversary – Pottery
    10th wedding anniversary – Tin
    11th wedding anniversary – Steel
    12th wedding anniversary – Silk
    13th wedding anniversary – Lace
    14th wedding anniversary – Ivory
    15th wedding anniversary – Crystal
    20th wedding anniversary – China
    25th wedding anniversary – Silver
    30th wedding anniversary – Pearl
    35th wedding anniversary – Jade
    40th wedding anniversary – Ruby
    45th wedding anniversary – Sapphire
    50th wedding anniversary – Gold
    55th wedding anniversary – Emerald
    60th wedding anniversary – Diamond
    75th wedding anniversary – Platinum

    Got a “big” birthday coming up and looking for inspiration? See our guides to the best 40th, 50th and 60th birthday holidays.

    Last updated: 23 April 2018

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