Thursday, May 1, 2008

Daphne du Maurier festival, Cornwall, £316 a week at a cottage; three nights on Isle of Skye, £210; Majorca, £300 for a week; three nights in Riga, £1

British Isles

The Daphne du Maurier Festival, starting in a week's time and running until May 17, provides an extra reason to visit the charming and historic town of Fowey in Cornwall. Perched above an estuary, with elegant houses alongside stone cottages, the town welcomes guests as diverse as Lord Owen or Rick Wakeman, Pam Ayres and Brian Sewell to celebrate the work of the county's most evocative writer with talks, walks, drama, music and art. Cornish Traditional Cottages has properties for four to six available close to the town for a week from May 2/3 and 10 starting at £316, including Long Cottage on the opposite bank with harbour views. 01208 821666

Fowey Hall, the von Essen hotel next to the main festival marquee, has a special rate during the event of a room for two with B&B and a pre-event supper from £155 a night. The Old Quay House in the town centre, with views of the estuary and du Maurier's home, has rooms for two with breakfast from £145 a night. 01726 833866/ 01726 833302 (hotels); 0845 0940428 (festival tickets)

The Chichester Festival Theatre season has just begun with a lively production of Funny Girl and The Cherry Orchard to follow. Midweek breaks with B&B for two and theatre tickets start from £72 a night through Two nearby hotels of character, Bailiffscourt on the coast at Climping and the Spread Eagle at Midhurst, have midweek rates of dinner, B&B for £99 and £85 a person a night. 01243 775888 (visit chichester); 01903 723511/ 01730 816911 (hotels)

Outlook by name, outlook by nature sums up a period property with a circular lounge, two bedrooms and bathrooms in the Victorian resort of Saltburn-by-the-Sea, north Yorkshire. It is on offer for a week from May 10 with Yorkshire Cottages for £440 with no charge for pets. 01228 406701

Fresh fish from local waters and game from the hills are on the menu at Ullinish Country Lodge, dating back 300 years in a quiet corner of the Isle of Skye. Short breaks are on offer for the next week with dinner, B&B for three nights from £210. 01470 572214

Enjoy the late May Bank Holiday week cycling along the lanes of north Norfolk, or walking along the beach to the crab fishing village of Overstrand, while staying at Poppyland Holiday Cottages. A home for four is £575 for a week from May 23. 01263 577473

Short haul

A week on the small, delightful, pine-covered and shingle-beach Greek island of Skopelos is on offer for £155 with Olympic Holidays. The package includes a flight from Gatwick on May 9, ferry transfers and self-catering at Julie Studios, near Skopelos Town. 0844 4994448

Libra Holidays is marking the launch of a new Friday flight to the Egyptian resort of Hurghada from Birmingham with discounted deals. Prices start at £348 with B&B for a week from May 9 and rise to £473 for the late May Bank Holiday week. 0871 2267825

Savings of between 25 and 40 per cent are available on properties near the north coast of Majorca in the next three weeks with Best Villas Pollensa. A simple villa for six with a pool is £300 for a week from May 10 or 17 and a stylishly converted old house for eight with a large pool is £600 for a week from Saturday and May 10. Flights extra. 0844 5611217

If you missed last year's events to mark the 90th anniversary of the Battle of Passchendaele, a new exhibition opening today in Ypres offers a further chance to examine the conflict and how it was perceived on all sides. VFB Holidays has three-day breaks in the town, rebuilt almost as it was before the war, from £141 with B&B, tickets to Man-Culture-War at Flanders Fields Museum and Channel crossings. 01452 716831

A week on Madeira for £369 is available with Atlantic Holidays. Fly from Gatwick on May 12 for B&B at the three-star Hotel Dom Pedro Garajau with a pool in a residential area on a protected coast six miles (9.5km) from Funchal. 01242 361888

The Latvian capital, Riga, is an increasingly popular short break destination and Cities Direct has a deal starting on a Sunday. Three nights' B&B at a five-star hotel a short walk from the Old Town, costs £199, flying from Bristol on May 18. 01242 536900

Long haul

Fly from Manchester to Orlando on May 18 and Travel City Direct offers a choice of two-week bargain breaks. A fortnight at Days Inn, International Drive, handy for all the city's theme parks, stats at £369, based on four sharing and with car hire; a two-centre holiday in Orlando and St Petersburg starts at £389 and the flight plus car hire only is £279. Prices are with third-party car insurance. 0871 9112415

Another good deal from Manchester is to Bali: a week from May 11 for £655. The offer with Hayes & Jarvis includes a Singapore Airlines' flight and a room at the three-star Bali Rani Resort, with a large landscaped pool, bars and restaurants in Tuban, south of the lively town of Kuta. 0871 6640246

All prices are per person and based on two travelling together and sharing a room, unless stated otherwise.