Holiday ideas for March

Whereas spring has already well and truly arrived in southern Europe by March, it is still very much winter further north, so take your pick of snowy mountains or warmer climes.

Let us inspire you...

  • Jersey lies just 14 miles off the French coast, so it stands to reason that it is sunnier than any other part of the British Isles. Besides the prospect of some early spring sunshine as you explore the sandy bays and panoramic headlands, March is a lovely time for a walking holiday in Jersey – spring arrives early here, bringing verdant hedges and colourful wild flowers.

    Image © Stuart Abraham Jersey Photos
  • Cycling around Sicily’s south-east corner, you’ll be forgiven for thinking your rented bike is in fact some form of time-travelling machine, transporting you to a Bronze Age settlement, a Greek temple, a Roman amphitheatre, an ancient necropolis, a medieval town which survived the earthquake of 1693, and Baroque towns fully deserving of their World Heritage Site status. In March, ahead of the main season, you can enjoy these architectural and historical gems in all their glory, with the added bonus of spring flowers adding colour to the scenery.
  • The limestone mountains of the Grazalema Natural Park is southern Spain at its wildest and most remote – so much so that you can often walk all day along the drovers’ roads and other ancient trails without seeing another soul. The brilliant white towns (pueblos blancos) for which Andalucía is famous stand out against the surprisingly green landscape. In March, yellow is added to the palette of colours in the scenery as the gorse bushes coating the slopes burst into flower.
  • With its benign Mediterranean climate, spring arrives early in Mallorca. Travel at the start of March and you’ll hopefully catch the end of the almond blossom – there are so many almond groves in central Mallorca that whole swathes of countryside seem covered in pink and white candy floss. This, and plentiful sunshine, make for relaxed days of cycling along quiet lanes, exploring the island’s lesser-known side, where a patchwork of ancient farms, apricot and cherry orchards, and slowly turning windmills lies between the sand dunes of the south and the rocky coves of the north-east.
  • Visit Lisbon, Coimbra and Porto, or Seville, Córdoba and Granada in March, and you’ll not only avoid the crowds (provided you don’t travel at Easter), but also summer’s excessive heat. Other reasons to travel in March include the orange blossom which scents the air in Seville, and the backdrop of snowy mountains enhancing the views of Granada’s fabulous Alhambra. You’ll gain a good feel for these captivating cities on our rail holidays – our self-guided walking tours lead you to all the main sights as well as plenty of hidden treasures.
  • Temperature-wise, it may feel like spring all year round on Fuerteventura, but the best time to visit is springtime proper. Between February and April, flowers flourish across the starkly beautiful rolling desert landscapes that are the colour of burnt amber. The island, the very first of the Canary Islands to be formed some 20 million years ago, has a more African feel than the rest of the archipelago, and therein lies much of its charm.
  • The snow lingers in central Norway until at least mid-April, so conditions throughout March are very reliable. Sjusjøen is a paradise for cross-country skiers, with literally hundreds of kilometres of trails for all levels, including beginners. On paper, Spidsbergseter – a superb choice for first-timers and improvers – has a smaller network, but because of its layout, with criss-crossing trails, you can make up many different routes. Geilo, too, boasts an excellent cross-country domain, though it is also a good choice for downhill skiing, if that is your passion.
  • For less emphasis on skiing, why not head to Hindsæter and its cosy, eponymous hotel? This being Norway, where cross-country skiing is a national pastime, we do include an introductory lesson in this most satisfying of winter sports, but the holiday is about so much more. Enjoy two guided snowshoe excursions – one in search of elk and another after nightfall to look at the stars – and, best of all, a guided walk through a canyon, passing beneath huge icicles, into ice ‘caves’ and behind frozen waterfalls.
    (Image © Mountains of Norway)

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