13 FEB 2015 - BY JOSEPH TYSON
Why not take a break yourself this half term and book a last-minute holiday? The kids will be kept occupied, you can take time off and still enjoy a vacation yourself and you don't have to break the bank.
Here are a few ideas for last-minute holidays this half term.
You don't have to go abroad for a fantastic city break, especially when you have London on your doorstep. Once you get to the capital, there are so many free attractions to see and do, you can keep well within your budget.
Let the kids blow off some steam by running around Hyde Park before you head to Westminster to see Big Ben and the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace. In the evening, treat the children (and yourselves) to the Lion King by grabbing some tickets. The kids will be enthralled by the costumes and their favourite characters while you may find yourself getting caught up in the singing!
If the Lion King isn't your thing, there are plenty of other fun shows on in London available for young children.
If you fancy lazing on the beach this half term, why not seek out some February sun? You don't have to go to other side of the world to find it. The Canary Islands are a great choice for a half term holiday as temperatures here regularly tip the 20s during this time of year.
Keep it cheap by exploring the wonderful natural surroundings of these islands as well as having a few lazy days by the pool or on the beach. Hike to Spain's highest mountain in Tenerife at the Teide National Park or step foot onto an alien landscape in Lanzarote's Timanfaya National Park - the kids will love exploring these intriguing places, and so will you!
Many operators will be offering package deals in the likes of Tenerife so again you can save a little when you book. The later you leave booking something, the better chance you have of grabbing a bargain. It all depends on whether you are willing to take the risk.
Portugal's Algarve region is another similar area where you can spend a few sunny days this February. While not as hot as the Canaries, it will still offer you better weather than at home!
Although this type of trip will undoubtedly set you back a little more, a ski trip in February half term doesn't have to cost the earth.
Many operators offer cheaper package deals designed for families and can be a great place to get a bargain.
Alternatively, you can look in lesser-known places like Sestriere, Italy, Avajan, French Pyrénées or Pamporovo, Bulgaria (Bulgaria is known to provide skiing holidays at a fraction of the cost of popular Alps resorts).
If you know any other families who are avid skiers, see if you can borrow equipment from them - it will save you buying or renting it when you get out there!
Wherever you live, keep it low-cost and take a short break close to home in February. If you are in the UK, why not drive over to the Pembrokeshire Coast in Wales? The views are stunning and there are plenty of wonderful coves to explore and trails to trek.
If it's too wet for the coast, rent a cottage in the countryside, strap the bikes on the roof rack and spend a few days exploring places closer to home.
There are so many options for a holiday in the February half term, you just have to be a bit creative to save money!