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10 Healthy Holiday Ideas For Summer 2013

  

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Taking a holiday allows yourself to relax and enjoy the freedom from your daily responsibilities at the office and at home, a change of scenery to recharge your batteries. A holiday not only allows you to explore the world, but also bring unforgettable memories, which are good for the soul and can be cherished for a lifetime.

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A Daily Mail article published this week stated “Going on holiday not only makes you feel good while you're there - you reap the health benefits for months, new research shows. Jetting off to exotic destinations such as the Maldives cuts your blood pressure, helps you sleep better and bounce back from stress, it found. The benefits last at least a fortnight longer than the vacation and can be felt for months in some cases it is claimed.”

A NHS Choices article was published the following day later stating ‘Health benefits of holidays 'exaggerated' but concluded ‘The bottom line is that this experiment contributes very little to scientific research, but does reinforce the commonsense view that a holiday is generally a good thing, whether you are whisked away to a luxury hotel in exotic climes or a seaside chalet in Skeggy.’

Relaxing by the pool, swimming, biking, catching up on some sleep, recharge those batteries are all good for the mind, body and soul. Many people swim on holiday, whether it’s in the sea snorkelling or surfing or in your hotel swimming pool which all have excellent cardiovascular benefits. Swimming for just 1 hour can comfortably burn up 750 calories. If you're out in the sunshine then your body will be making vitamin D, essential for strong bones. Rutgers University in the US reports that doing ‘novel things’ boosts brain levels of dopamine, flooding the pleasure centres of the brain. Snorkel, scuba, or shopping somewhere new - it all counts!

All this activity on holiday also increases the positive benefits that sleep brings. Regular exercise enables you to fall asleep faster and remain in a deep sleep for longer allowing time for your muscles to repair themselves and, let's face it, there's nothing quite like the great feeling of waking up in the morning feeling refreshed.

Here we provide 10 holiday ideas that combine a healthy dose of exercise with relaxation:

1. English Canal Boat Holiday - UK

Many people appreciate the peaceful, tranquillity and independence of “getting away from it all” offered by an English canal boat holiday from a company like Anglo Welsh. Enjoy the lazy days drifting along the maze of serene waterways and explore some of Britain’s unspoiled and most beautiful countryside, offering an insight to English industrial heritage and a retreat for wildlife. This is a holiday that is perfect for the whole family, young and old. Children love the adventure of living and travelling on a boat and the adults enjoy the quality time spent with their family in tranquil surroundings. The canals offer the chance to relax, sight see and also perhaps do a spot of city shopping. Stop off at a canal-side pub for some home cooked food or take a long walk in the fresh English countryside. The beauty of canal boat holidays is they don’t require waiting around at airports, being stuck in motorway traffic or cooped in a hotel room – you are being active outside in the fresh countryside air.

2. Winter Walking Holiday - Scottish Highlands

Active holiday breaks in the Scottish Highlands during winter months typically involve multiple layers of jackets, harnesses, crampons, and ice axes. However, its wilderness area located at the north of Kintail, allows visitors to experience the beauty and magic of the Scottish Highlands without actually climbing them. It offers an easy to manage and all-level walking adventure for anybody of reasonable fitness, taking the glen rambles, coastal hikes, and night strolling to view the northern lights.

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3. Rejuvenating holiday retreats - Fairfield House, Somerset

The eco-friendly Fairfield House is especially designed for meditation, nutrition, mindfulness, and simple getaways. This holistic venue offers organic and vegetarian dining and a wide variety of retreats such as the relaxing yoga session, meditation, and long walks.

4. Complete revitalisation holiday - Dewsall Court, Herefordshire

Spend a holiday weekend in Dewsall Court, a 10 bedroom country house and enjoy the sound therapy, nutritional therapy, and hearty walks on its surrounding countryside.

5. Nordic walking holiday - Peak District

The Peak District comes with modified ski poles, which allow the Nordic walkers to effectively use their upper bodies, burning more calories and minimising the stress on the joints. Also, the new Nordic walking holiday provides beautiful scenery of the Peak District’s national park and a four-star hotel accommodation for those who just want to relax.

6. Adventure weekend holiday - Preseli Venture, Pembrokeshire

Experience the adrenaline cocktail holiday adventure in this five-star eco-lodge located on the coast area of the Pembrokeshire. It offers numerous outdoor pursuits, which include kayaking, surfing, hiking, and home-cooked meals to keep you well fuelled.

7. Horse riding holiday – Castle Leslie Estate, County Monaghan

Enjoy a horse riding getaway break at Castle Leslie Estate, county Monaghan. It offers beginner’s lessons, which will eventually progress into a solo horse ride around the 1,000 acres property.

8. Mountain Biking Holiday – Caban Coch, Powys

Enjoy a mountain biking break at Caban Coch, Powys. It offers miles of private cycle trails right from your doorstep. This tranquil two-person cabin, with wood-burning stove and wet room, is used to be a hay trailer. Besides the mountain biking opportunities, it also offers a wide variety of hiking options.

9. Spa Escape Holiday – Marrakech, Morocco

Located in the outskirts of Marrakech, Morocco, the modern Sirayane is a boutique and health retreat hotel that offers a wide variety of wellness packages including hammam massage, oriental massage. It is also equipped with a heated outdoor pool and jogging and walking tracks.

10. Cross-country Skiing holiday – Switzerland

Learn the classic cross-country skiing in the Obergoms Valley, Swiss Alps. Its Chamonix-based tracks and trails are rolling rather than steep for a fairly relaxed and enjoyable pace of skiing.

With so must choice of holidays, it’s often a difficult task to pick the right one for you. Whether you want to lose a few pounds, increase your fitness levels, have some peaceful alone time, spend time in the great outdoors, de-stress and relax with friends and family, these 10 holiday ideas will provide all of these and memories that will last a lifetime.

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