A recent poll has revealed that many British holiday-goers are ashamed to admit where they are going on vacation. Many popular destinations are deemed to be too low-class by British society, including many popular areas of Spain. In fact, vacationers often lie about going on an expensive, classy trip when they actually go somewhere less expensive and common. What’s strange about all of this is that most of these locations are actually quite elegant and luxurious.
Topping the list of shameful holiday spots is Benidorm, a coastal town in the Alicante province of Spain. Far unlike many of Spain’s coastal areas, Benidorm is lined with skyscrapers. It’s often called the Manhattan of Spain. For this same reason, it’s also referred to as the 11th Belgian province.
Before tourism became a large industry in the town, it was a tiny coastal village. It began to cater to tourists, especially the British, in the 1960’s. Today it contains four-star hotels, several family theme parks and three major beaches which were granted the highest award for quality by the European Union. Benidorm also hosts the Benidorm International Song Festival, a renowned songwriting contest. Julio Iglesias became famous because of this festival.
Second on the list of shameful destinations is Tenerife, the largest of the Canary Islands. Tourism is concentrated on the southern part of the island, as it features highly-developed resort areas and a drier climate. A moratoria act passed by the Canarian Parliament keeps resort standards high by forbidding any new construction unless the hotel will be five-star quality. The Costa Adeje contains world-class entertainment centers, nine golf courses and high-end shopping centers. Though tourism is mainly an industry of the southern part of the island, the north is catching up, especially in the town Puerto de la Cruz. Somehow this town manages to be highly developed, yet retains much of its old, harbor town charm.
Other destinations that are looked down upon are party island Ibiza, holiday island Magaluf and Cyprus resort area Ayia Napa. These areas are shunned because of their associations with party-goers and the electronic music scene. Though they may not have the high-end features of Benidorm and Tenerife, they are still full of great places to visit and fabulous vistas to see. Oceanic views greet vacationers at every turn, and many of the finest clubs and restaurants of Spain and Cyprus are located in these destinations. Ayia Napa, in fact, has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, great for water skiing and scuba diving.
All of these destinations offer world-class facilities, yet they are viewed in a negative light by British vacationers. The top places to visit in the poll include Paris, New York, Portugal, Australia and Thailand.
For some reason, Benidorm and Tenerife, which originally catered to the British, don’t match up to these destinations in modern British eyes. But hot spots are cyclical, and some day soon these areas will be on the top of the British holiday destination charts. Until then, when your family asks where you’re going on holiday, proudly proclaim ‘I’m going to the coastal paradise of Benidorm!’
But there again, you might want to keep it quiet if you want to keep on good terms with the neighbours!