Last-minute sunshine getaways for Christmas

Want to get away to the sun this Christmas? Ciara McDonnell has all the last-minute deals.

Last-minute sunshine getaways for Christmas

Want to get away to the sun this Christmas? Ciara McDonnell has all the last-minute deals.


Db San Antonio Hotel and Spa in the heart of Qawra in Malta is an ideal hotel for those making their first trip to this gorgeous island.

The newly refurbished hotel is bright and clean and has a fully-equipped fitness centre and spa, as well as a packed entertainment schedule.

Rooms are bright and airy, opening up onto a balcony or terrace overlooking St Paul’s Bay.

An all-inclusive hotel, there are six restaurants to choose from with one adults-only bar and restaurant.

Sunsearch Holidays depart Cork for Malta on December 22 for seven nights on an all-inclusive basis. Prices start from €769 per person sharing.


The Fariones Playa Suite hotel in Puerto Del Carmen have long been one of the most popular destinations for those looking to combine the convenience of a self-catering apartment with the facilities of a luxury hotel.

Situated right on Playa Grande beach, this resort has modern, spacious apartments and access to all the facilities at the Fariones Sports Centre, just minutes’ walk away from the complex.

Sunway fly from Cork on 21st of December, staying at the Fariones Playa Suite hotel for seven nights. Prices start at €1,384 per person sharing.

Three-star Cinco Plaza

Apartments in Puerto Del Carmen are a brilliant venue for young families who wish to spend Christmas in the sun.

With two pools, a kid’s pool and a splash park to choose from, you’ll be hard pressed to get the children into the kid’s club (but there is one just in case).

Puerto Del Carmen
Puerto Del Carmen

An easy ten-minute stroll will bring you to a gorgeous blue flag beach.

TUI are departing Cork for Cinco Plaza on December 19 for seven nights from €1049 per person sharing and a family of two adults and one child from €2779.


Catalonia Punta Del Rey is a gorgeous all-inclusive resort on Tenerife’s north east coast in the town of Las Caletillas.

On the property, there are two swimming pools, one adults-only, and three restaurants to choose from.

Bedrooms are swish and modern, and it’s worth upgrading to a premium room to avail of in-room tea and coffee making facilities.

There are black sand beaches within walking distance, and lots of sightseeing opportunities nearby. TUI are heading to Tenerife from Cork on December 20 for seven nights at Catalonia Punta Del Rey.

A week will cost from €1039 per person sharing or from €3029 based on a family of two adults and one child.

The Sandos San Blas Hotel Nature Resort

Golf at Golf del Sur may be a mouthful to say, but this incredible eco-friendly hotel is well worth the effort.

This innovative complex includes a 5* hotel with direct access to both the sea and the resort’s own nature reserve.

Designed to blend into the landscape and reduce the environmental impact, this resort still packs a punch with eight outdoor pools, a nearby golf course, onsite climbing wall, four bars and two restaurants.

Accommodation is luxurious and food is extremely good. Sunway are flying from Cork to Tenerife on December 20 to stay at the Sandos San Blas Hotel for seven nights on an all-inclusive basis.

Prices start at €1,613.22 per person sharing.

Costa Del Sol

For families who require action and activity during their Christmas break, then maybe consider the Myramar Fuengirola Hotel and Apartments, right next door to the huge Parque Miramar shopping centre.

At the complex, there are indoor and outdoor pools as well as a playground and a hotel-run kid’s club.

Apartments are cosy and spacious with heating during the winter months should the temperature drop unexpectedly.

TUI leave Cork for Myramar on December 24 for 7 nights, costing from €819 per person sharing or from €2,219 for a family of two adults and one child.

Melia Benidorm

In the heart of the stunning Rincon de Loiz, the Melia Benidorm feels both a part of the action and an oasis away from the busy resort proper.

Set in gorgeous grounds of lush gardens, rooms here are modern and luxurious, decorated in calming neutrals. The hotel has all the facilities you could want, from a hot tub to a playground.

The nearest golf course is a ten-minute drive away and spa treatments can be booked through the hotel’s leisure centre.

Sunsearch Holidays depart Cork for the Melia Benidorm on December 22 for seven nights on a half board basis. Prices start from €749 per person sharing, taking one piece of hand luggage.


Flying from Cork, Austria is the best bet when it comes to hitting the slopes this Christmas.

Topflight have two great deals leaving Cork on December 21, covering two price points.

Families or groups on a budget will love the three-star Hotel Austria in Söll. This resort has a lively après ski culture and is a ten-minute walk to the gondola, so maybe not so great for the smallest of children.

Rooms are spacious and well equipped with balconies overlooking the mountain. Seven nights including flights and transfers on a bed and breakfast basis costs from €729 per person sharing.

Stay in luxury at the four-star Boutique Hotel Bruggwirt in St. Johann in Tirol.

This elegant family-run hotel combines old school alpine charm with modern décor; think faux fur cushions and modern prints on the walls.

It has a playroom and sauna and guests have access to a local swimming complex just 300 metres from the hotel.

For added ease, guests are picked up directly outside the hotel and dropped to the slopes. Seven nights including flights on a half board basis costs from €949 per person sharing.

The Knunbauer Apartments in Austria’s Mayrhofen Valley, offer an ideal base for your family ski holiday, located just 50 metres from the resort centre and with the ski bus stopping just steps from your door.

These self-catering apartments are ideal for families who want the freedom to cook during their holiday, and are decked out with flat screen televisions, modern bathrooms and access to a storage room for wet skis.

Direct Ski fly from Cork on December 21 staying at The Knunbauer Apartments for seven nights from €649 per person based on four people sharing.

Far Flung

Make like Simon Cowell and head to Barbados for your festive feasting this year.

The Bougainvillea Barbados features stunningly refurbished suites, which are huge and decked out with all the amenities a would-be celebrity could possibly want.

The resort has a brand-new spa, so you’ll want to book in a massage before heading down to the white sandy beach and posing up a storm.

This resort is really close to lively St Lawrence Gap and within shimmying distance of the famous ‘Fish Fry’ at Oistin, so if people watching is on your radar, then you’re in good company.

Tropical Sky depart from Dublin on the week commencing December 23 for seven nights in a luxury studio on a room only basis. Prices start from €2,359 pp.

Spa in Maldives

If you are in the market for a holiday of a lifetime, then consider Centara Ras Fushi Resort.

This adult-only resort is set on a small island in the Maldives, just a 25- minute speedboat ride from Male.

You’ll stay in your own private villa, set in the middle of the ocean, kitted out with all mod cons and some even have an outdoor hot tub.

This all- inclusive resort has six excellent restaurants and a huge range of water sports on offer.

You’ll swim, and eat, and then swim up to the bar for a cocktail. Bliss.

Tropical Sky depart Dublin for Maldives on the week commencing December 23 to stay at Centara Ras Fushi on an all-inclusive basis for seven nights.

Prices start from € 4,209 per person sharing.

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