What makes a good holiday?

Published on 
3 min, 441 words

Categories: life

We are not a family that likes to just sit on the beach. We may spend a little time doing that - everyone needs to relax - but we tend to prefer doing and seeing things.

When we go on holiday is it better to go somewhere new or visit somewhere we have previously visited and liked? Some people like to go back to the same place over and over again but we have a preference to visit new places. There are some exceptions to this.

Every year or two we try to visit Australia as my in-laws live in Sydney. We have also taken the kids to Florida a couple of times. Outside that we tend to favour new experiences and new places.

We were on holiday in Newquay a couple of years ago. I woke up thinking about what makes some holidays stand out more than others. Up until that point the holiday had been okay but not great - partly as we were all recovering from colds.

I determined that it comes down to three things: people, places and actions. If you have an extreme of one of these then it creates a reaction and in turn a memory. So, if you have great people then you remember it because of them - alternatively the same can happen if there are dreadful people. If somewhere you go stands out for some reason then it will also be memorable - good or bad; and the same with something you do or if something happens.

Taking a step back, it could be rephrased as "who", "where" and "what". This can then be extended to include two more aspects: "when" and "why". It could stand out due to when it happens - an unusual time of the day or year or maybe a special occasion. There could also be a "why" that is important - the reason for doing the holiday or activity.

When you look through these lenses you can see why some holidays stand out more than others - they tended to be at one end of one or more of these axes. A walking holiday in Bulgaria was memorable for me because of the other people I met on the trip. The trip to the west coast of America was memorable because of the places I saw and the activities I did. The trip to Newquay I mentioned at the beginning became memorable when we did more new things and visited places we hadn't been to before on a previous trip to Cornwall.

This can also be applied to life - look for ways to push the boundaries on these axes to create those memories.