ROLL WITH IT: There’s no time to relax on a theme park break to Spain
A NEW five-star all-inclusive hotel has just opened in Tenerife.
The Fantasia Bahia Principe, above, in Golf del Sur on the south coast, features a whimsical setting with a central fairytale castle and 372 rooms, including family suites and adults-only swim-up accommodation.
It offers four restaurants, six bars, two pools, kids’ and teens’ clubs, free wi-fi throughout and the castle will feature a nightly show.
Rooms start at £175 a night, based on two adults sharing. See bahia-principe.com
MY obsession with theme parks has been part of my life for as long as I can remember. On a recent trip to Pembrokeshire I insisted that we took a detour to Oakwood to ride the wooden beast that is Megafobia.
When I suggested we spend some time in Salou, my wife had visions of relaxing afternoons on the beach and little else.
Until I told her what I really had in mind. Rollercoasters, big ones!
PortAventura has been the jewel in Costa Dorada’s entertainment crown since 1995, and has grown over the years from a theme park into a fullyfledged entertainment resort.
Just a 10-minute ride from Reus Airport, the sheer scale of the place is impressive. The resort houses five hotels with a sixth Ferrari-themed option in the pipeline.
Our accommodation, The Callaghan’s, was one of the newest additions to the site, loosely linked to the park’s Western-themed Hotel Gold River.
You have to pinch yourself to realise that you aren’t actually in the middle of a cowboy film set.
From the cactus trees lining the walkways to the authentic shop fronts, it oozes period detail.
The inside of our annexe was tastefully designed, with an impressive entrance hall straight out of a Clint Eastwood movie.
HIT The Strip in fabulous Las Vegas for a three-night room-only break at the four-star Luxor Hotel and Casino.
Price from £419pp including flights from Heathrow on selected dates in February, or fly from Manchester for £439pp. Book by November 18 at travelbag.co.uk
■ Holiday Extras offers trusted parking services at all major UK airports. To book parking from £21.64 for a week, visit
HolidayExtras.com 0800 1313 777.
or call ■ TUI Airways offers return flights from 10 UK airports to Reus airport on May 17, 2019 from £185 per person including taxes and charges. Visit your local TUI holiday store or call
Car hire is also available to book through TUI from £9 a day.
0844 871 0878.
My jaw was already on the floor and we hadn’t even got near the theme park yet.
One of the real plus points of PortAventura is that everything is easily accessible. You can float around in the pool while watching riders scream on the rollercoasters.
Our first ride was my favourite. Not that I was surprised. I’d done my homework.
Stampida is a huge sprawling mass of timber, one of the world’s finest wooden rollercoasters. Any enthusiast will know that a coaster made of wood is completely different to riding a modern steel structure. There’s something about the creaking timber and the bone-shaking nature of it that just adds to the thrill. Ride it in the dark if you can, and make sure you sit on the back.
It’s not the only impressive thrill ride in the park. Shambala
FLY from Manchester to Gambia on November 21 for a week on B&B basis at the four-star Atlantic Hotel in Banjul.
Starts at £397pp, based on two sharing, saving £254 per couple. Book at olympicholidays.com or call 020 8492 6868.
Caribe Aquatic Park
Callaghan’s Hotel, left, and the Far West zone groan with period detail
Visit Sin City