Colors: Yellow Color
Colors: Yellow Color

With guaranteed sun, authentic Arabian culture, luxury indulgence and adventure activities abound, it's no surprise that Ras Al Khaimah, the UAE's northernmost emirate, continues to grow as a premier tourism destination. Riding that momentum, Ras Al Khaimah will continue to rise in the minds of discerning travellers, thanks to ongoing development of new tourism attractions and a full calendar of events. Read on to discover what's new and hot in the destination for 2017 and beyond:

Brits are going crazy for staycations according to Sykes Cottages, who have announced a 32% increase on domestic holiday bookings in January 2017 versus last year. The Lake District in particular is proving popular with customers, with bookings up 67%. Wales is following closely with a 40% increase. Graham Donoghue, CEO at Sykes Cottages said: “We're seeing holidays in the UK fly off the shelf this January with greater demand than ever before."

Tenerife's highly-anticipated and famous Carnival is to take on a Caribbean theme in 2017. Buccaneer hats, feathered parrots, eyepatches and any pirate related items will all be welcome as the Canary Island pays tribute to all things Caribbean, with the main event scheduled between 19th February to 5th March. The Santa Cruz Carnival is the island's largest and most anticipated festival, attracting hundreds of thousands of people to Tenerife's capital city every year.

The opening of international flights to Gan airport, adjacent to Addu township in the south of the Maldives, has opened a new era for the region – providing an alternative transportation offering that can save travellers valuable vacation time. 
On 1 December SriLankan Airlines started flying from Colombo to the upgraded Gan airport, formerly a UK Royal Air Force refilling base until 1976 when it became a domestic airport. SriLankan Airlines now departs Colombo for Gan four times a week using a 150-seat Airbus 320.

The holiday gives guests the opportunity to uncover a niche destination, which is quietly upgrading its infrastructure and slowly revealing its charms. The holiday begins with an overnight stop in San Pedro Sula before travelling to the quaint colonial town of Copán Ruinas near the Guatemalan border the next day. Over the next two days guests will explore the forest-shrouded Mayan temples at Copán and enjoy a guided visit to a coffee plantation.

Banish the winter blues, embrace the fresh air and explore 17 new walking routes on the nation's tranquil waterways this winter. The Canal & River Trust, working with the Royal Geographical Society and iFootpath, has created a host of easy to access walks that reveal the hidden history, architecture, wildlife and colourful narrowboats of our canals and rivers amidst relaxing views of the water.

With the Arctic Circle a far cry from most peoples' reach of places to visit, it may come as a surprise that another great place to catch nature's very own theatrical performance is along the northern reaches of Scotland. Bunk Campers, Scotland's largest campervan rental company, offer a practical and budget alternative for enthusiasts wanting to experience the Northern Lights.

The Rock of Gibraltar is a true gem for holidaymakers this year. Set in the heart of the Mediterranean, it is just 2.5 hours from home while its sterling currency guarantees that there will be no costly conversion rate in your holiday planning.  The Rock's VAT free status means plenty of tempting shopping in the Main Street shopping district. Familiar high street retailers are interspersed with small shops offering a broad selection of goods, including a wide range of popular cosmetic and perfumery brands at agreeable prices.

Marrakech is set to become an even more fashionable destination in 2017 with a new museum dedicated to Yves Saint Laurent's personal collection slated to open later this year in the Jardin Majorelle, one of Africa's most visited gardens. Just three hours' flight from the UK, Marrakech is the perfect romantic city break destination for a full-on sensory experience.

Brightening the grey winter season, the inaugural WOW Northern Lights Run will see the streets of Reykjavik lit up in a spectrum of colour as hundreds put on their running shoes on 4 February 2017. Sponsored bv WOW air, Iceland's only low-cost airline, this spectacular new sporting event, marked by the natural phenomenon of the polar lights, is part of the Reykjavík Winter Light Festival and the WOW Reykjavík International Games.

A privately-owned Cornish coastal retreat tucked away in a tranquil corner of South East Cornwall, the Talland Bay Hotel, is set to steal the limelight in 2017 having scooped a bumper bundle of awards. Recent accolades include taking Silver in the 'Small Hotel of the Year' category at the Cornwall Tourism Awards 2016/17 and Gold in the Taste of the West Awards. This is in addition to being awarded four Stars and two Rosettes from The AA, with head chef Nick Hawke having his sights firmly set on achieving a third.

Mawimbi Villa, an authentic oceanfront retreat on the east coast of Tanzania, launches this month. The exclusive villa overlooks Ushongo, an unspoilt curve of palm-fringed beach rated among the top secret beaches of the world. Offering sweeping vistas across the Indian Ocean, a secluded private pool and the azure ocean mere steps away, Mawimbi is the perfect place to unwind in an unspoilt setting.

The medieval castle in Trujillo has become one of the latest filming locations for the award-winning fantasy drama series Game of Thrones. The castle, which was built between the 9th and 12th centuries, was used recently as a backdrop for the forthcoming seventh season which is due to be released next summer. Trujillo Villas Espana, which have three restored villas next to the castle and one property in the town's main square, are including entrance to the castle in all rental bookings for 2017.

St. Lucia's longest-running dive operation, Scuba St. Lucia, has received the PADI Green Star Award for its dedication to conservation. Founded in 1981, Scuba St. Lucia is located at the water's edge of the 600-acre Anse Chastanet and Jade Mountain resorts. Consistently voted among the top hotels in the Caribbean by leading travel authorities, both hotels were designed with a commitment to sustainability and environmental preservation.

Vogue Magazine has named Trinidad and Tobago one of the 10 Hottest Travel Destinations of 2017. The US-based international fashion and lifestyle magazine published the article written by Jen Murphy on its website on December 30th 2016. The article lauded the destination’s “mix of wild nature and distinct culture,” calling it a “refreshing alternative to the typical Caribbean beach vacation.”

On the back of a year which saw Cologne Bonn Airport record more than double the European average in passenger growth traffic, the German airport has kick-started 2017 with the announcement of its first new airline partner of the year. Launching its inaugural route from Cologne Bonn, Stobart Air, operated by Flybe will be commencing a six times weekly service to London Southend from 1 May.