It’s the same every year: once the Christmas festivities have died down and the New Year’s hangover has finally cleared, it’s time to brace ourselves for a gloomy January. (Featured image is by Ronnie Macdonald) But the New Year doesn’t have to be all that gloomy, and many people take the opportunity to give themselves a fresh start with a New Year’s resolution or two. Research has found that nearly half of us make New Year’s resolutions, and while some may have already failed, lots of people will use the chance to make their lives better. Research by comparison website GoCompare has revealed what the most popular resolutions are for 2013, with all the usual suspects making an appearance. Health and wellbeing are once again top priorities with getting more exercise and losing weight ranking first and second respectively. Other popular choices are hardly surprising in the current climate, such as getting on top of finances and looking for a new job. Sticking to a New Year’s resolution can be tricky, but if you’re planning a getaway to beat the January blues why not combine the two? Here are some of the best breaks for sticking to those challenging resolutions.
Getting fit Everyone has to start somewhere when it comes to getting fit. There are plenty of holiday options to kick your body into action and put you on the road to fitness. One of the best, and by far the most fun, is a ski holiday. Skiing involves a lot of hard exercise, and many people come back from a week on the slopes aching all over. Skiing involves a lot of all-round fitness, but is particularly tough on the legs, so try to go running or walking as much as possible in the weeks leading up to your holiday. Your legs will appreciate it when you’re on the mountain and you’ll get into the habit of exercising regularly.
Healthy eating After the extreme gluttony of Christmas, it’s little wonder that so many of us are keen to start the New Year with a healthy eating plan. If eating healthily is your New Year’s resolution, why not head abroad and learn from the experts? Italy has some of the world’s best cuisine, using fresh and healthy ingredients to create delicious dishes. If you’re planning a gastronomic getaway, why not head to the Abruzzo region in central Italy? Seafood features heavily in all the traditional dishes of the region.
Save money For many of us, January is a good opportunity to get on top of our finances and try and cut back on expenditure – especially after the expense of Christmas. But if you simply cannot resist a January getaway (and let’s face it, many of us can’t), there are great savings to be made on trips abroad this month. Research by the Post Office has found that Egypt offers the best value for money in January, thanks to low-cost package holidays and the strength of the pound.
Take up a hobby Whether it’s joining a sports team, starting a dance class or something more obscure, taking up a new hobby is a great idea for a New Year’s resolution. Activity holidays are a great way to sample a wide range of hobbies, and try your hand at everything from yoga to sailing. This type of holiday is best left until temperatures pick up a little, especially in Europe, but once it’s a little warmer you can’t go wrong with Portugal. Offering excellent beaches for surfing and sailing, stunning wine valleys and plenty of secluded yoga retreats, this beautiful country has something for everyone.
Spend time with family According to research, spending more time with family is a top New Year’s resolution for more than a fifth of us – so why not start planning that family holiday now? January sales aren’t confined to high street shops; many holiday companies are offering discounts on summer holidays at the moment. Keycamp and Eurocamp offer some of the lowest prices for summer holidays, and are perfect for families with young children. Read about Parental Piggyback holidays, one of our travel trends for 2013.