With 7 miles of gorgeous white sandy beaches, a vibrant nightlife and 2,000 acres of parks and gardens, Bournemouth certainly has a lot to offer on paper.
However I still feel as though it’s a hidden gem in terms of UK breaks and it’s one that holds a rather special place in my heart.
Because five years ago, I arrived in the coastal town as a nervous student, my belongings all packaged up in boxes, a new duvet set still in its wrappings and a place on Bournemouth University’s prestigious Multimedia Journalism course.
St Lucia is the Caribbean island synonymous with romance, crystal blue water and stunning mountainous backdrops – so when I mentioned to friends and family that I was heading there for a week of sun, sea and sand – there were plenty of excited responses.
But it was only upon arrival onto the island, that I truly caught a glimpse of what was in store for us.
The warm hospitality of the local people, the relaxed and carefree attitude that extends across the island and the breath-taking views around every corner.
Sandals is the brand synonymous with luxury, honeymoons and romance.
So when I was invited on a group trip a couple of weeks ago, alongside fellow bloggers, I couldn’t quite believe it.
Little old me, who hadn’t ever stayed in a hotel back before I started this blog, was being sent to stay at a five star luxury resort with all inclusive activities, food and fun.
Er. Pinch me, please.
I’ll be totally honest with you, until a trip to Madeira was suggested to me a couple of months ago, I hadn’t heard too much about the Portuguese Island.
When I mentioned the upcoming trip to my parents, they agreed it was a place synonymous with the older generation or those who want a quiet holiday.
So it’s safe to say I didn’t really know what to expect, other than no wild parties.
But after a 4 hour flight, we touched down in Funchal and were instantly pleasantly surprised.