ENJOY A ROMANTIC HOT-AIR BALLOON RIDE OVER PALMA, MALLORCA Just a short hop from the UK, the Balearic Island of Mallorca offers an ideal romantic escape with crystal clear waters, striking landscapes and excellent restaurants. For a dramatic bird's eye view, Mallorca Ballooning (www.mallorcaballooning.com) offers a range of unique hot-air balloon rides from a height of up to 500 metres above sea level (from £141 per person).
The capital, Palma, is the ideal base from which to explore the island with a selection of great boutique hotels, a labyrinthine of narrow lanes and striking architecture in the Old Town, palm-lined wide boulevards and a pretty harbour.
Stay at the brand new 5 star Hotel Summum (www.hotelsummum.com) - a quaint oasis in the heart of the city. Located in a former 16th century Mallorcan palace just minutes from Palma's main boulevard Paseo del Borne, Hotel Summum is an 18-room property boasting an onsite French restaurant "Equus", a bar with an outside patio, a wellness and massage area, heated swimming pool and sauna, and a small rooftop with a plunge pool and panoramic rooftop views.
A room only double room is available from £186 and return flights with Ryanair from London Stansted to Palma are around £60 per person www.ryanair.com.
EXPLORE MALTA'S ROMANTIC HOT-SPOTS
Malta offers many romantic settings, from the Upper Barrakka Gardens with one of the greatest views on the island to the Blue Lagoon and the legendary gardens of Attard where loved-up couples can stroll through avenues lined with towering trees. Located on the water's edge with beautiful views of the picturesque seaside town of St Julian's and Spinola Bay, the Cavalieri Art Hotel offers a contemporary yet relaxing environment to spend Valentine's Day.
Alpharooms (www.alpharooms.com / 0114 407 0241) offers seven nights in Maltafrom £244 per person based on two adults sharing.
Staying at the four star Cavalieri Art Hotel on a bed and breakfast basis, flying from Gatwick on 13 February 2017.
A ROMANTIC BUT COOL CULTURAL BREAK IN MADRID
With an unrivalled late nightlife, Madrid is also a perfect backdrop for romantics with a hip bar, café and restaurant culture.
Stay in Madrid's most romantic hotel – The Only YOU Boutique (www.onlyyouhotels.com). This former 19th century palace boasts arched windows, Juliette balconies, window shutters and awnings, but has thoroughly modern comforts and cool interiors designed by Lázaro Rosa-Violán.
Located within the fashionable Chueca district, full of quirky music and bookshops, restaurants and bars, it is also just a two minute stroll from the San Anton Food Market. Spread across three floors, stalls showcase Spanish cuisine and street food on the lower floors while upstairs boasts a wine bar and lounge to enjoy a romantic drink and the spoils from the market.
Only YOU Boutique is also just a short walk from Madrid's famous Golden Triangle of Art and opening the day before Valentine's Day, the 'Sorolla and Fashion' exhibition at the Thyssen Museum exhibition provides a beautiful stroll through the styles and trends of the late 19th and early 20th century from Joaquín Sorolla - Spain's finest impressionist painter. (https://www.museothyssen.org/en/exposiciones/sorolla-and-fashion).
A room-only stay at Only YOU Boutique is available from £140 per room, per night, based on two sharing and return flights with Ryanair from London Stansted to Madrid are around £65 per person www.ryanair.com.
VALENTINE'S DAY UNDER THE STARS IN THE CANARY ISLANDS
Whisk your loved one away to the idyllic island of La Palma, often referred to as 'La Isla Bonita' to experience a romantic break under world renowned starry skies. As an official UNESCO Starlight Reserve, the islands natural beauty is the perfect backdrop for couples to enjoy a unique and mesmerizing Valentine's experience.
La Palma boasts numerous observations points across the island, one of which makes La Palma the perfect place to combine a night of cheese and wine, with the starry night sky. Spend your Valentines night at the Teneguía wine cellar to learn about the way in which the distinctive Palmerian night sky helped to produce the famed Malvasía wine of the region. You can not only enjoy the uniqueness of the regional wine, but also enjoy the mesmerising view of the moon and stars through a telescope.
Direct flights to La Palma are available with easyJet from £60 return departing from London Gatwick. For more information please visit https://www.easyjet.com/en
ENJOY AN INTIMATE GETAWAY AT THE GRAN HOTEL ATLANTIS BAHIA REAL IN FUERTEVENTURA
The picturesque island of Fuerteventura in the Canarian archipelago is home to the luxurious property, Gran Hotel Atlantis Bahia Real. Surrounded by turquoise waters, and the soft white sand dunes of Corralejo Natural Dune Park, the hotel is set in an idyllic location for couples to enjoy a romantic break away in the sun.
Couples can pamper themselves with the extensive facilities on offer at the property, including six exquisite restaurants, four swimming pools, a nostalgic piano bar and a modern cocktail bar at the Coco Beach Lounge & Club which provides Balinese-style sunbeds overlooking the blue toned waters surrounding the neighbouring islands of Los Lobos and Lanzarote. For that touch of romance, couples can indulge in the islands most luxurious spa facilities, which offer a range of couples' treatments at one of the largest hotel spas in Europe comprising 3.000 m2 or enjoy candlelight dinners at La Cupula run by Michelin star chef Carles Gaig for the perfect end to the night.
Teletext Holidays (teletextholidays.co.uk) offers seven nights in Corralejo, Fuerteventura from £730 per person based on two adults sharing. Staying at the five-star Gran Hotel Atlantis Bahia Real Grand Luxe on a bed and breakfast basis, flying from London Luton on 13 February 2018
A FAIRY-TALE VALENTINES AT EFTELING IN THE NETHERLANDS
Efteling is a fairy-tale theme park in the Netherlands, packed with rides, attractions and shows that are largely inspired by the fantastical and romantic stories from Brother's Grimm and Hans Christian Anderson. Its location, hidden among woodland and lush forests and cloaked in a magical and nostalgic atmosphere, makes it an enchanting place to spend Valentine's Day as a couple. In the Fairytale Forest, there are attractions that illustrate popular and lesser-known love stories, such as Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and Guinevere's Bridal Gown, with some attractions dating back to 1952 when the park first opened. Other dreamy rides that couples can enjoy together include Gondoletta – a gentle boat trip on the park's central lake, Droomvlucht – where unicorns and forest animals come to life in an enchanted forest, and Symbolica: Palace of Fantasy – Efteling's newest ride that discovers the secret corridors of a magical palace.
To complete the fairytale theme, couples can stay in one of the themed suites at the Efteling Hotel. The Excellence Suite is the hotel's most luxurious suite, for two people, featuring a grand double bed, sitting area, a two-person Jacuzzi, large rain shower, and inclusive mini-bar. The Excellence Suite is available from €481 per night based on 2 adults sharing and includes breakfast and two days entry to the park. www.efteling.com/en/hotel/theme-suites/excellence-suite
Return flights with EasyJet from London Gatwick to Amsterdam are priced around £60. www.easyjet.com
DISCOVER A ROMANTIC BREAK ON GUERNSEY'S COASTLINE
For a Valentine's break a little closer to home, Guernsey is an ideal hassle-free romantic getaway – the island seems a world away from the hustle and bustle of life on mainland UK, despite being relatively close in both distance and travel time.
One of the most romantic spots on the island is the southern bay of Moulin Huet - a beautifully tranquil piece of coastline that inspired Renoir with some of his finest paintings. Next to Moulin Huet is Petit Port, an idyllic, sandy and secluded bay which is where two characters from the bestselling novel 'The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society' first met. The love story is being made into a film, set for release on 20 April 2018, and follows life in Guernsey during the island's German occupation in World War 2.
The Bella Luce, www.bellalucehotel.com sitting in a quaint village among tranquil green lanes, is just a stone's throw from the island's southern coast and the romantic spots around Moulin Huet and Petit Port. It is a 12th century manor house that epitomises understated luxury and classic elegance.
Channel Islands Direct offers a three-night break at the Bella Luce from £235pp by sea from Poole or £299pp by air from London Gatwick, Bristol or Southampton. The offer includes a three-course meal and a gin experience with tastings. It is based on two adults sharing and is valid for travel from February 1st - March 30th 2018. www.channelislandsdirect.co.uk/the_islands/guernsey / 08444 937 486. www.visitguernsey.com