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6 incredible vacation ideas

Here are a few bucket list destinations, as presented by Time Out

Don't spend those precious holidays spreadeagle on your sofa, no matter how lusciously comfy it is. Because world, oyster, you. Here’s a range of dreamy getaways for whatever trip takes your fancy. Read on, and then get booking!

Skiing escape: Niseko, Japan
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Skiing escape: Niseko, Japan

Blessed with 12- to 16-metres of quality snow annually and a long ski season, Niseko is globally recognised as one of the world’s best skiing destinations. The famed Hokkaido snow is perfect for on- and off-piste runs, with a range of slopes ideal for anyone, whether you’re a beginner or a pro. Base yourself near Hirafu, the largest village in the area, and lap up all the fun of being in the ski fields – from the excellent runs to the increasingly hip and happening eating and drinking scene.

Where to stay

Youtei Tracks, a modern and swanky series of boutique apartments managed by HT Holidays, with that special snow-lodge feel, just metres from the glorious lifts.
191-50 Aza Yamada, Kutchan-Cho, Hokkaido, Japan (+81 1362 33503). From $325 a night (excluding taxes and charges).

Get there

Thai Airways flies direct to New Chitose Airport in Sapporo, from $700 return.

Beach paradise: Marmaris, Turkey
Photo: Axel Kull
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Beach paradise: Marmaris, Turkey

Fancy a European beach break but want to stay away from the crowds? Perhaps Marmaris, the gorgeous port town on the Turkish south coast, is your answer. As picturesque and unspoilt as you’ll find on the Mediterranean, the Turkish Riviera offers not just powdery sands and relaxing indulgence but a raft of aquatic activities, too. Set sail on a gulet, the traditional Turkish wooden boat, and experience the rocky coastline’s magnificent turquoise coves, or windsurf in either the tranquil bays or vigorous sea winds. It’s just like a classic European beach vacation, without the crowds.

Where to stay

D-Hotel Maris, an exclusive resort with a gorgeous view of the Mediterranean and Aegean Sea.
Hisaronu Koyu, Marmaris, Turkey (+90 252 441 2000. From $375 a night (including taxes and charges).

Get there

Turkish Airlines flies direct to Dalaman Airport from Changi, at $2,100 return.

Historic heritage: Yadz, Iran
Photo: Dreamstime
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Historic heritage: Yadz, Iran

Forget the zeitgeist and air of malicious mystery that is associated with Iran – there has never been a better time to visit. And the city that sums up the incredible history of Iran is Yadz, an ancient site famous for its handicrafts in silk, confectionery and 3,000 years’ worth of Persian historical architecture. Marvel at the 12th century Jameh Mosque, still in use today, and roam the Old City, recognised as one of the oldest towns on Earth and an incredible historical journey few places today can rival.

Where to stay

Mehr Traditional Hotel, a 250-year-old diamond in the rough, with elaborate rooms, great food and an excellent rooftop view.
Lard e Keyvan, Yazd, Iran (+98 351 630 0600). From $50 a night (including taxes).

Get there

Take Qatar Airways to Tehran from $1,400 return, then board an Amesan Airlines plane to Yazd from $50 one-way.

Jungle experience: Tambopata, Southern Peru
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Jungle experience: Tambopata, Southern Peru

Boasting 819 hectares of rainforest with diverse ecosystems and biodiversity, this lowland rainforest is a prime choice for wildlife spotters – it’s also home to the friendly Huarayos tribe who hunt, fish and forage with visitors.

Where to stay

Inkaterra Hacienda Concepcion, a luxury jungle lodge on the doorstep to one of the Amazon’s most beautifully diverse pockets. This resort can only be accessed via a 45-minute boat ride.
+51 1 610 0400. From $472 for a two-night stay (including taxes and charges).

Get there

KLM flies to Lima, Peru for $2,600 return. Then take a Star Peru flight to Puerto Maldonado for $280 return.

Adventure time: Bolaven Plateau, Laos
Photo: Dreamstime
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Adventure time: Bolaven Plateau, Laos

Placed 1,300 metres above sea level, inside an ancient volcano, the Bolaven Plateau in southern Laos is a hotspot for adrenaline junkies. Also famed for producing some of the world’s best coffee, the plateau – which is just outside the city of Pakse – features a myriad options for the adventurous, including vast waterfalls and trails. Do the Bolaven Plateau Loop, a dusty and adventurous ride from Pakse to Paksong, on foot or quad-bike, and take in the impressive Tat Katamtok. Or for those who’d rather get wet, row by Tad Fane, the tallest waterfall in Laos.

Where to stay

Sinouk Coffee Resort, a comfortable and rustic resort with a botanical garden.
Lakkhao Village, Paksong- Thatheng Rd (+020 2229 5899. From $53 a night (excluding taxes and charges).

Get there

Multiple airlines necessary – your best bet is a flight to Ho Chi Minh City and then another one to Pakse. Get tickets on Jetstar and Lao Airlines for about $700 combined.

City break: Shenzhen, China
Photo: Dreamstime
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City break: Shenzhen, China

You might know it as a place to get knock-off bags, but Shenzhen today is fast establishing a reputation as a place of eclectic delights with a prominent cultural presence. Check out OCT East, a theme park that recreates European townships, grab a drink around the chic Coco Park F&B enclave, or find some respite in Shenzhen Lizhi Gongyuan Park.

Where to stay

The Ritz-Carlton Shenzhen, a luxurious base for food, drink, business and fun.
116 Fuhua San Rd, Futian, Shenzhen (+86 755 2222 2222). From $430 a night (excluding taxes and charges).

Get there

Xiamen Airlines takes you there from $540 return.

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