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Top 9 trips to take... for a short break

Maximise your precious holiday days with these trips that are short on time but big on adventure

Take a short break to Kenya... Yes really! (iStock)

1. Italy: Set sail along the Amalfi

Take a glamorous glide along Italy’s Amalfi Coast on Intrepid Travel’s Sail Italy: Procida to Amalfi trip. Wander the pastel-hued streets of Procida, discover the Castello  Aragonese fortress, taste the culinary delights of Naples, explore the ancient ruins of Pompeii and admire the views of blue waters and lemon groves from the cliff tops. If you’re feeling inquisitive, the skipper will teach you the ropes; if not, simply lay back, relax and watch the world float past.

Who: Intrepid Travel
When: weekly, Jun-Sept 2013
How long: 4 days
How much: from £440 (excl flights)

2. Finland: Look for the bear necessities

If you go down to the woods today – on Wildlife Worldwide’s Brown Bears in Finland trip – you’re sure of a big surprise... Based in Martinselkonen Nature Reserve (one of the best places in Europe to see brown bears), you’ll spend one night in a lodge and two in a hide, watching bears forage. There are also birds to spot: look for rare species such as the Siberian jay and rustic bunting.

Who: Wildlife Worldwide
When: tailormade, May-Aug 2013
How long: 4 days
How much: from £945 (incl flights)

3. Iceland: Walk your way

If the article in our April issue inspired you to explore Iceland on foot, take up the challenge set by Discover the World. Inspired by new book, Summit: 100 Mountain Hikes in Iceland (£18), Discover the World is inviting you to Pick Your Peak – and it will design a trip, just for you. For an active short break, head to the south coast for hikes around troublesome Eyja allajökull and the Myrdalsjökull ice cap, and walks through Thórsmörk, a beautiful area of birch valleys, gorges and mountains.

Who: Discover the World
When: year round; best Jun-Sept 2013
How long: 4 nights
How much: from £561 (incl flights)

4. Sweden: Kayak and wild camp

Paddle away from it all in idyllic Kosterhavet Marine National Park, on Nature Travels’ Sea Kayaking in the Koster, Fjällbacka and Weather Islands trip. This three-day guided kayaking jaunt, accessible from Gothenburg, is a great intro, taking in sunny, sheltered archipelagos, and wild camping on your own island too.

Who: Nature Travels
When: 5 Jul, 2, 9, 23 Aug 2013
How long: 3 days
How much: from £420 (excl flights)

5. Denmark: Appreciate art with experts

The Copenhagen: Danish Art & Design trip – one of Cox & Kings’ Royal Academy of Arts tours – explores the cool capital’s galleries and museums with an expert historian. There’s a canal tour and private drinks in the magical Tivoli Gardens, too.

Who: Cox & Kings
When: 1 Aug 2013
How long: 4 days
How much: from £1,195 (incl flights)

6. Ireland: Head high and wild

Hike epic, empty expanses on Wilderness Ireland’s High Points of Connemara Wilderness Walking trip. Summit Croagh Patrick, Ireland’s holiest mountain; tackle Mweelrea – the highest peak in west Ireland; and explore ancient archaeology on Inishbofin, just offshore.

Who: Wilderness Ireland
When: 19 Jun, 14 Aug 2013
How long: 4 nights
How much: from €920 (excl flights)

7. Kenya: Have a long weekend lion-in

Forget the DIY – spend your Sundays in Kenya on Exodus’s Masai Mara Long Weekend. Overnight flights and a minimal time difference mean you can make the most of your stay in one of the world’s most iconic game reserves.

Who: Exodus
When: weekly, Jun 2013-Feb 2014
How long: 6 days
How much: from £1,949 (incl flights)

8. Serbia & Montenegro: Hop aboard

Ride Tito’s Blue Train with Explore Montenegro. Trundle from Belgrade, via forests and mountains, to the labyrinthine streets of Kotor in Montenegro. You’ll have time to explore each town, but the highlight is the historic train ride between them.

Who: Explore Montenegro
When: 29 May, 26 Jun, 4 & 18 Sept, 2 Oct 2013
How long: 6 days
How much: from £899 (incl flights)

9. Croatia: Do the truffle shuffle

It’s little surprise that truffles – the rock stars of the fungus world – have their own festival. G Adventure’s Croatia Truffle Festival trip pays homage to the tasty tuber, journeying from the isle of Cres and along the Adriatic Coast, partaking in a truffle hunt and celebrating at Livade’s foodie fiesta.

Who: G Adventures
When: 23 Oct 2013
How long: 5 days
How much: from £549 (excl flights)

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