Pierre & Vacances (0870 0267 145; pv-holidays.com) makes its debut in the Canary Islands this summer, at Majanicho on the north coast of Fuerteventura. Origo Mare is typical of P&V's cut-above holiday village, with 323 houses, sleeping two to seven, smartly laid out around a sequence of oases, each with a communal pool. There's also a huge waterpark, as well as two restaurants, three bars, shops, an 18-hole mini-golf course, paddle, tennis, and petanque courts, plus a gym and kids' clubs for three- to 18-year-olds. A week costs from €875 (£719) per person, based on four sharing a studio. Excludes flights.
Kate Simon finds some extremely appealing getaway ideas
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Float down the Rhine in Germany on a 10-day cruise on the MS Algeria with Shearings (0844 824 6351; shearings.com). You can admire the Unesco-listed Rhine Gorge from the comfort of the boat. The journey includes excursions such as wine-tasting in Boppard, a walking tour of Koblenz and a trip to the castle at Lahnstein. The price of £879pp, based on two sharing, includes return coach travel from regional stops around England, a week's full-board cruise and two nights' half-board hotel accommodation en route.
Take your pick of seven new properties on the Greek Islands available through Ionian Villas (01935 477196; ionian-villas.co.uk). "Artist's Villa" on Paxos, built in 2011, has three bedrooms and sits on a hilltop surrounded by olive groves overlooking Gaios port. It costs from £1,330 for a week's rental. Meanwhile, two-bedroom "Morpheus", a newly completed property on Antipaxos, is one of only four villas with swimming pools that are available to rent on the island. It costs from £1,120 for a week, including rental of a Suzuki 4x4. International travel costs are not included.
Freewheel along the Via Francigena in Italy, an old pilgrimage route to Rome, on a 172-mile tour that links Parma and Lucca. Let an E-bike take the strain, firing up its electric engine when you need a little help on those hills. The week's tour costs £641pp, based on two sharing, through Freedom Treks (01273 224066; freedomtreks.co.uk), including B&B, two dinners, luggage transfers and route maps. International travel costs extra.
Explore the coral beaches and white-sand shores of Connemara in Ireland on a new sea-kayaking adventure. The guided ocean trek is based on the tales of Granuaile, a 16th-century Gaelic pirate queen. It traces her route along the Atlantic coast from Connemara to Achill Island, staying at waterfront B&Bs along the way. The price is €1,250 (£1,058)pp, based on two sharing, with Wilderness Ireland (01479 420020; wildernessireland.com), including six nights' B&B, some meals, equipment hire and the services of a guide. Travel to Connemara costs extra. Departs 1 June and 7 September.
Let Kate Simon be your guide to a great escape.
They're the new 'relaxing escape' – the chance to learn a skill, practise a hobby or start a life-changing project. Kate Simon finds ways to make the most of your time off
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