Plus: Miami’s hot new hotel; the most romantic table in Cumbria; Belarus waives visas; VAT boost for Argentina trips
Meet a gorilla — and the travel eds
Albert, the animatronic gorilla, will be one of the many attractions at next week’s Destinations: The Holiday & Travel Show — as well as travel editors from The Times, The Sunday Times and The Sunday Times Travel Magazine. Go there for holiday ideas and inspiration from travel companies, tourist boards and experts from the Masta health clinic. The show is at London Olympia from February 2 to 5. Times readers can get free tickets using the code DE6R, but there is a £1.50 booking fee per ticket. Otherwise, entry is £11 when bought in advance (destinationsshow.com).
Belarus waives visas
It will be easier to visit Belarus after February 12 because UK citizens will no longer need visas for stays of up to five days. Discover Minsk the medieval town of Mir and other sights on a short group tour with Regent Holidays (020 7666 1244, regent-holidays.co.uk) from June 21 to 25, costing from £795pp, including flights and four nights’ B&B. There’s another bonus — there is no single supplement for solo travellers.
Most romantic table in Cumbria
If you are looking for Britain’s most romantic dining room, take a look at Hallin View, a cosy cabin set over Ullswater with views across the lake to Hallin Fell. Converted from part of Sharrow Bay hotel’s lakeside terrace, it has stone walls, oak floors and a wood-burning stove. An evening for two with champagne and a five-course dinner costs from £350 (sharrowbay.co.uk).
Hot hotel in Miami
For the latest hotel in Miami, check out the Plymouth, which has just reopened in South Beach’s Collins Park after a facelift by Fernando Santangelo, the man behind Chateau Marmont in Hollywood. The art deco Plymouth has a private beach, cool contemporary rooms and the Blue Ribbon Sushi Bar & Grill. Rooms cost from $250 (£200) a night (theplymouth.com).
Cheaper stays in Argentina
You’ll get cheaper hotel stays in Argentina from this month, with the South American country cutting its 21 per cent VAT for foreign tourists. The policy has knocked £200 off the cost of an 11-night private tour with Cox & Kings, which now costs from £3,195pp including flights, transfers, excursions and B&B (coxandkings.co.uk).