Look... far be it from us to peddle tired clichés about gender, but if we WERE to think stereotypically about what the ultimate men’s holiday MIGHT be, or where he MIGHT spend a flight voucher - well, these are a pretty good place to start…
A tasting trip to Tuscany is the ultimate trip for anyone who like to eat well. Italy is a renowned foodie destination, and Tuscany might just be its foodie-zenith. Tuscan food has its roots in peasant cooking, but he’ll eat like a king here. The region is known for white truffles, fine wine, pecorino cheese, superb and succulent cuts of locally reared Chianina cattle… oh, and the Lampredotto panini, which is a Florentine sandwich filled with the fourth stomach of a cow. If he’s a REAL foodie, he’ll like it.
They say golf is a good walk spoiled and if that's true, there are worse places he could spoil one than in Portugal’s sunny Algarve. This is golfer’s paradise, with multiple stunning courses available all along the coast that are pretty much guaranteed to be drenched in sunshine for the vast majority of the year. Flights to Faro will land him on the doorstep of some of the best courses in Europe, so just get him to take a look at our video guide (above) if he needs help deciding where to play.
A tasting trip to Tuscany might just be the ultimate trip if he likes to eat well. Italy is a renowned foodie destination, and Tuscany might just be its foodie-zenith. Tuscan food has its roots in peasant cooking, but he’ll eat like a king here. The region is known for white truffles, fine wine, pecorino cheese, superb and succulent cuts of locally reared Chianina cattle… oh, and the Lampredotto panini, which is a Florentine sandwich filled with the fourth stomach of a cow. If he’s a REAL foodie, he’ll like it.
If he loves all things astronomy, he should consider flying to Lourdes. About an hour’s drive from there is a town called La Mongie, where he can jump on the Pic du Midi Cable Car and make his way up to the awesome observatory that sits on top of the mountain. Up here you can wander round for a few hours, have lunch in the observatory’s restaurant, visit the planetarium and observatory museum, and of course, marvel at the absolutely incredible view over the Pyrenees. If he wants to see the stars, the Pic du Midi does an overnight experience that includes dinner, some serious star… and planet… and Milky Way gazing.
Send him to where the surf is. There are loads of great spots around Europe where you can catch (or learn to catch) waves, from Ireland’s wild west coast to the shores of Portugal and France or even the golden strands of Fuerteventura, and they all have their pros and cons depending on the season. Do a little research to figure out where conditions are best at different times of year, and make sure you take a look at the water temperature too (Surf conditions might be nice in Ireland in March, but you’ll never feel cold like it again in your life). In March? In March, Lanzarote is nice...
Travelling to see your team play in another country is part and parcel of the life of any self-respecting football fan. Also, it’s generally great craic, whether you’ve gone to see your country in the Euros or your club in the Champions League. Get your dad a voucher and he can choose the perfect game to travel to (provided he can get tickets, of course).
This was a tough call, as Europe is full to the brim (pun absolutely intended) with brewery tours, winery visits, distillery day trips and booze cruises. But… people always recommend spa days, detox retreats and the like to mums, and maybe dads need pampering too. So on that note, allow me to introduce you to the Pilsen Purkmistr Beer Spa, an hour’s drive from Prague. Pilsen is where world-famous pilsner comes from, and at the Beer Spa he can actually bathe in the stuff before havng a few pints.
If he likes nice cars, and cool roads, and driving in nice cars on really cool roads, then send him to Romania. In Romania, he will find the Transfagarasan highway. This was an essentially useless road built by Ceausescu in the early 1970s, but since then (and particularly since its appearance on Top Gear as the world’s greatest road trip) it’s found a purpose. It's now famous as Europe's most stunningly beautiful, fun, and challenging road trip destinations, and it attracts people from all over the world who want to take on its turns.