Lounging on the side of the beach, cocktail in hand, blazing sun overhead — life doesn’t get much better than that, does it? Taking a time out for yourself this summer might very well be on your growing list of things to do, but when life catches up with you and deadlines loom ahead, vacations can take a serious hit. But it doesn’t have to be an either/or choice. Lacking the time to really treat yourself this summer? Vacationing can be a whirlwind affair and still leave you feeling refreshed, invigorated, and ready to take on the world. These sunny destinations are tailor-made for a whistle–stop tour, giving you the local lowdown in the flashiest of flashes!
On the hunt for a little sun, sand, and surf? Corsica is your pick of the pack. Boasting brilliant white beaches and the clearest morning light you’ve ever seen, the French island is a genuine wonderland. While you might want to hire a car in order to check out everything the island has to offer, you’d do just as well to pick your spot on the beach and set up shop for a couple of days. Porto-Vecchio has a set of stunning beaches just waiting to be lounged upon, and with a string of Michelin-starred restaurants in the nearby vicinity, you’ll be set for your stay.
Can’t get enough of that island life? Mallorca should be high on your summer hit list. Once a resort for locals, Mallorca has since had something of a makeover, and now it’s renowned for its five star hotels and chic sundowner spots. The height of summer is Mallorca’s busiest time, so try heading to the island in May or June for soaring temperatures and emptier beaches. If you really want to get away from it all, you can set your sights on the relatively unknown town of Sóller. A port town, Sóller is seriously laid back, giving you the perfect opportunity to recharge your batteries.
As well as hosting its own string of balmy beaches, Tunis is a seriously culture-rich spot, and if you’re clever about it, you can fit in a whole lot of history during your time in the city. While places like Medina and Carthage are must-visits, you might also want to give Nouvelle Ville a visit, not least for its wide, tree-shaded boulevards. Of course, the Bardo Museum is Tunis’ shining light, and boasting a killer collection of Roman mosaics, it’s not hard to see why.
What’s summer without a little Sicilian charm? Luxurious and historical, Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean sea and boasts a remarkable collection of ancient ruins. Brilliant beaches give way to mountainous island villages, which in turn act as a backdrop to incredible Doric ruins. From the exceptional eats to the stunning coastal views, Sicily is an island that lends itself both to the short and the long hauls; you might love it so much that you won’t ever want to leave.
Lisbon is a place about which anyone worth their salt would wax lyrical, and when it comes to short stays, it performs perfectly. Portugal’s capital is the place in which to spend a foodie weekend, and whether you’re trying out a traditional Pastel de Nata at Manteigaria, or taking a table at Kanazawa, you’re bound to come away satisfied. Of course, the architecture and coastal walks aren’t all that bad either, taking you to parts of the city that you might not have otherwise experienced. One thing’s for sure: Lisbon is a city made for walking, and no matter if you’ve got one day or five, you’re guaranteed some stellar sights.