HOW TO AVOID SKIING THIS FEBRUARY BREAK…
by Sarah Scaddan
I have started a faction called MADASS (middle aged dames against social skiing) and you are most welcome to join. To be a member you have to a) hate skiing, b) openly yawn if someone starts discussing where the best off-piste powder is, and c) never, ever use the word ‘gnarly’.
I’ve also come up with the perfect alternative to skiing – a great list of fab holidays in sunnier climes. No skiing, no shame! Book a holiday in the sun and you won’t ever have to explain yourself again.
Keen to join MADASS? Follow these steps:
Turn up in Geneva having never skied. Pretend you’d really like to but it’s hard with the kids being so little blah blah blah. Then after much pressure, and when the kids are around 4 years old and turning into copies of Lindsay Vonns, you give it a go.
As you predicted, it is petrifying, cold, exhausting and you are not gifted.
As the pressure mounts from the skiing masses, you desperately plot to avoid skiing and buy yourself a puppy which can’t possibly be left along. You tell yourself and anyone that will listen, that ‘extreme dogwalking’ is a new alpine sport.
No more games. When anyone asks ‘Where do you ski?’, you answer ‘I don’t’, and watch their faces contort. You could say, ‘I’m all for global warming’ and get a less severe response. But you simply don’t care as you have embraced the February vacation!
WHERE TO GO FOR A NON-SKIING HOLIDAY IN FEBRUARY
Here are four options with seats still available on direct flights, and (almost) guaranteed sunnier climes.
EGYPT, CAIRO OR MARSAN ALAM
In under four hours, you could be in Cairo where the average daily maximum temperature is 20.5 degrees, perfect weather to check out the pyramids or enjoy a Nile cruise sans sweat. Egypt Air fly four times a week.
If you could bear to add a few more hours to your flying time, Swiss Air fly to Marsa Alam on the Red Sea. Here the average max. temperature is 25.1 degrees. How very perfect. There is a wide range of large resorts to choose from as well as some smaller diving lodges.
There are many sides to Tenerife. There is this side:
But also there is this side:
Not to mention this side:
The North of the Island is especially beautiful, with blueflag beaches and fantastic scenery. Delicious authentic food is readily available, if you avoid the bacon and egg cafes. The weather is hitting the 20’s in February, and to make it even more fun, it is fiesta season. Easyjet fly direct to Tenerife South.
February is the cheapest and in many ways, the nicest time to travel to Morocco. Tourist season hasn’t fully started yet and the main sites are considerably less crowded. The average daily max temperature is 22 degrees and if you are desperate to visit the Sahara Desert, This is the best month of the year to do so.
Flights are plentiful with direct services to Casablanca, Agadir and Morocco. There are no shortage of beautiful small Riads to choose from, if large hotels fill you with dread.
4. JORDAN – AQABA
Most of Jordan is still a tad chilly in February, but in Aqaba, on the shores of the Red Sea, the temperature is mild and pleasant. The average temperature is 22 degrees and the sea temperature is 21 degrees at this time of year, with little chance of rainfall. Easyjet fly direct to Aqaba with a flight time of 4 hours 40 minutes. It’s a small country so you could easily journey to the ancient city of Petra, or the pink-red sands of Wadi Rum, and get back to the hotel for an afternoon scuba dive. This is where I am spending my February break, with not a ski lift or a snow boot in sight.