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Cathy Winston
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Cathy Winston

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    Singles holidays in May

    By Cathy Winston, Editor of 101 Singles Holidays

    May sees the start of the summer season across Europe with the added bonus that if you travel outside school holidays, you can still find discounts and quieter destinations along with the good weather. Now’s the time to indulge your interests too, whether that’s walking, diving, cycling, personal development or culture.

    From sunshine breaks in the Mediterranean to the scenery and capitals of northern Europe, you needn’t travel far for a great holiday this month. Here are the destinations I recommend for a singles holiday in May.

    Singles holidays in MayGEMI

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    EuropeShort haulActivity holidaysLong haulBody and soul

    European sun

    Turkey and Greece top the list this month. How about a hotel where all your fellow guests are solo travellers? Friendship Travel‘s house parties in Greece are all about making new friends as you relax in the sun, with laid-back escapes to Rhodes and Zante for the chance to unwind with a ready-made group of fellow singles.

    Or choose your perfect Greek island for the perfect singles break. CorfuSantorini and Zakynthos are all among the choices from specialists Solos Holidays so you can guarantee there are no single supplements and you’ll be surrounded by like-minded travellers. If you’d prefer your own company, there’s no enforced socialising though.

    For a slightly different way to experience the region, I’d recommend an archaeology tour to really get under the skin of the culture. Peter Sommer Travels has expert guides as well as gulet cruise trips if you’d rather see sea as well as land – try the Cruising to the Cyclades holiday or Walking and cruising West Lycia in Turkey this month.

    Or board one of the luxurious all-inclusive barges from European Waterways. Discover the wonders of Venice before sailing further through Italy, with no solo supplement on some dates.

    If you prefer to stay on dry land, it’s a wonderful time of year to join one of Explore’s small group tours in Portugal. Their best seller is this full-on one-week Highlights of Portugal trip taking in Lisbon, Sintra, Coimbra, Porto and the Douro Valley.

    If relaxation is what tops the bill, there are a string of Algarve hotels with no single supplement – try the clifftop Baia Crystal Beach or the Baia Grande Hotel which both have a solo travellers’ table in its restaurant.

    And you can find singles-only getaways in Spain as well with Travel One – sunshine is guaranteed in Lanzarote or head to Calpe on the Costa Blanca.

    Temple of AthenaSt Basil's CathedralSt Petersburg channelBalmoral

    Short haul holidays in May

    It’s not just sun that’s on offer in May. Now the harsh winters of northern Europe are over, it’s the perfect time to discover Russia and the Baltic states. Join a singles-only tour to see St Petersburg with Cox & Kings, staying in luxurious hotels along the way.

    Or make the most of your time and discover several countries on a cruise. Baltic and Northern Europe specialist Fred. Olsen has no single supplements on selected dates, with departures to Norway’s fjords and the Baltic capitals this month. Following more formal cruise traditions, solo travellers are paired together for dinner while the cruise line also provides companions for shore excursions. See the latest deals.

    If you fancy something closer to home, St Hilda Sea Adventures has a string of short cruises around the islands off Scotland’s west coast. Book early and you can get the double cabin on board Seahorse II for no single supplement.

    There’s art, history and stunning scenery right on our own doorstep too. Expert guides and no single supplements on selected dates make Martin Randall Travel popular with solo travellers, with escorted themed tours including a walk along Hadrian’s Wall. Or you could discover Norman and Plantagenet history in Normandy with The Cultural Travel Company.

    If music is your passion, Kirker Holidays has trips across Europe including Music Festivals in Mallorca and Leipzig among others, as well as in the UK.

    Single parents can also find some great short breaks over the bank holiday weekend and half-term. Cosy up in a barn in the Lake District or check in to Center Parcs Whinfell Forest on a trip with Single with Kids, while there’s also the chance to stay on a working farm in Italy at Gelindo dei Magredi with Single Parents on Holiday.

    And if you want guaranteed heat without a long flight, explore the fascinating sites of Egypt and Jordan on a tour combining both – there’s no compulsory single supplement on the Road to Jordan itinerary from On The Go Tours, and you’ll get sun without the worst of the summer’s heat.

    Kerala tea plantationsPrize givingCycling in ItalyLearn to dive

    Activity holidays for singles

    May is a great month for an activity holiday – across most of Europe the weather is excellent, but it’s not too hot or crowded. Even better, prices are much lower than in high season.

    For golfers without a handicap, Solo Holidays has a golf weekend in Shopshire or enjoy a week’s golfing in Corfu.

    If you enjoy cycling, make the most of the May sunshine in the UK on a group cycling tour in EnglandScotland or Wales. Whatever your proficiency on two wheels, you can get out into the countryside with a string of cycling breaks from Saddle Skedaddle, including mountain biking in the Lake District, a road cycling trip in north Wales and a chance to explore the beautiful countryside of the Chilterns.

    Or the UK walking breaks from Ramblers Holidays are hugely popular with solo travellers. It has its own property, Hassness Country House, on the shores of Lake Buttermere which has a house party atmosphere and where singles pay only a £5 nightly supplement for a single room. Several of its popular trips have no single supplement at all including the Welsh border and Guernsey. See more solo holidays in the UK.

    On the Greek island of Crete, the singles-only Mistral Hotel has its own house party atmosphere with no room supplements, and offers a walkers’ week and a culture & spring flowers week, both in May.

    The ski season may be over, but the start of summer is a perfect time to relax and walk in Europe’s lakes and mountains. Inghams Holidays has negotiated no single supplements at many hotels in resorts including Alpbach in Austria, and Interlaken in Switzerland.

    It’s also a great time to see Italy on foot, including a Trails and Truffles trip from Solos Holidays, exclusively for singles.

    And for those who want to get their health and fitness back on track, how about a detox retreat in one of Europe’s most picturesque locations such as Tuscany or a chateau in south-western France.

    Look further afield and there’s less discovered Europe to explore as well – this solos-only tour Highlights of Georgia and Armenia gives an insight into two little-visited but fascinating countries, including Armenia’s mountain scenery.

    And for the chance to trek further off the beaten track, who wouldn’t be tempted by Ethiopia’s mountains. This Lalibela and Gheralta Mountains tour from YellowWood Adventures takes you to rock-hewn churches as well as discovering life in local villages.

    The wide sandy beachEntertainment on tapMachu Picchu groupOne of our Alcion groups

    Long haul singles holidays in May

    Officially, May marks the start of the rainy season in the Caribbean, but travel early in the month and you can find lower prices sometimes without seeing a single drop.

    At the beachfront Breathless Punta Cana, the chances are you’ll be having too much fun to care even if there’s a cloud or two anyway. The five-star adults-only resort has 11 restaurants, activities including diving , mixology, dance and zumba, as well as swimming pools, sea and sunbathing. There’s even a resort app letting solo travellers get to know their fellow guests via a chatroom before meeting up, as well as low or no single supplements.

    Or discover the fabulous snorkelling and diving of the Maldives, where the corals and electric brights of the fish are as beautiful as the palm-fringed white sands around the peaceful lagoons. Solo travellers will love the four-star Bandos Island Resort, where between May and October, Barefoot Traveller has negotiated a singles rate of £1,495 for seven nights B&B with flights.

    American Sky has a great range of solo holidays in the USA – many of its guests travel alone and it has a room-share option. Among its most popular trips in May is this tour of the Wild West, including some of America’s magnificent national parks. On the East Coast, the Historic Highlights tour takes in Washington DC, Williamsburg, Gettysburg, Philadelphia and Shenandoah National Park over the course of a week.

    If you’ve always dreamed of riding horses in the Wild West, check out these ranch holidays in Colorado, Montana, Idaho and Wyoming. Choose between a luxury resort ranch and a small working ranch where you can take part in cattle drives and sleep in a swag under the stars.

    Or look north to Canada, where Saga has a Highlights of Eastern Canada tour exclusively for solo travellers aged over 50, stopping in Toronto, Montreal, Quebec City and visiting Niagara Falls.

    It’s a great time of year to visit Peru too with non-stop BA flights. Check out this range of escorted tours with Cox & Kings which runs singles-only tours and encourages solo travellers to join its other groups.

    There are some great escapes to Asia this month as well. It’s one of the driest months in Bali, and shoulder season keeps prices low – especially thanks to a range of hotels with no single supplement.

    In China, you can join a group trip with On The Go Tours where you’ll meet other solo travellers (and have an experienced guide to show you around). This nine-day Great Wall & Warriors is packed with highlights.

    Or these small group tours of Japan are ideal for singles, with some promising no room supplement. One of the best is a 13-night Japan Unmasked tour that includes the cities of Tokyo, Kyoto and Hiroshima, travel by Bullet Train and visits to mountain villages, gardens, temples, castles and hot springs.

    And don’t forget Africa – with the end of the annual migration in the Serengeti, it could be a great month to see some of the continent’s fabulous wildlife before relaxing on a beach in Zanzibar with a safari and beach escape.

    Infinity PoolAromastone Massage therapyWalking in TurkeyBeachfront

    Solo travel for body and soul

    For solo travellers who’d like more from their holiday than a tan, you’ll have plenty of choice from personal development holidays, including extra pampering at The BodyHoliday in St Lucia – solo traveller heaven. No single supplements, a relaxed atmosphere and all-inclusive food and activities, so you can try yoga, archery and tennis, as well as tailored treatments at the wellness centre.

    At Cortijo Romero in the beautiful mountains of Las Alpujarras in Andalucia, choose from a variety of courses, including wellbeing, walking, yoga and tai chi, not to mention photography.

    Skyros has been running personal development holidays for nearly 40 years and offers short breaks at their own four-star country house, The Grange, on the Isle of Wight where you either stay on a B&B basis or join one of their courses.

     

    * The May Bank Holidays in 2019 are: Monday 6 May and Monday 27 May (Spring Bank Holiday).

    Last updated: 28 November 2018

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