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Holiday Hotspots: Where To Go This Summer

Summer’s here and we’re all looking forward to getting away for some fun, sun, culture and relaxation. Last week we looked at some amazing destinations on British shores, and now it’s time for some inspirational overseas suggestions that you may not have already considered. The list includes some fantastic up-and-coming destinations for you to holiday in 2014.

La Maremma, Italy

Based in the idyllic Tuscany area, La Maremma is an authentic, rugged area of protected coastline from Capalbio to Cecina. Although not as a popular as Forte dei Marmi – Tuscany’s most fashionable resort – La Maremma is certainly heading in the right direction with some memorable openings such as the opulent L’Andana Hotel in Castiglione della Pescaia, Leonardo Ferragamo’s marina in Puntone and the £6.7m winery at the Rocca di Frassinello Vinyard

A timeless region with a clear ancient heritage, La Maremma has been home to the Etruscans and the Romans who have left behind important archaeological traces of early towns, towers, castles and walls.

Austin, Texas, USA

The secret is out, Austin is currently the hippest place in the US and everyone who visits the self-acclaimed ‘live music capital of the world’ leaves with lasting memories. With a gig scene bursting at the seams, flourishing multi-cultural restaurants and unique culture, Austin is a must if you’re in Texas.

Boasting a smorgasbord of blossoming wineries and vineyards, art museums, sports, tours and food festivals - not to mention the health resort and über-trendy Mexican hotel in the pipeline - you can certainly see why Austin is the place to be.

Alberta, Canada

Alberta only comes in at a lowly third on Canada's UK visitors’ lists; however, with the introduction of the state-of-the-art Glacier Skywalk on the Iceland Parkway, this could all change. The horseshoe-shaped, glass viewing walkway takes visitors 280m above the Sunwapta Valley with unrivalled views of stunning waterfalls, forests and mountains – a perfect blend of spectacular scenery and adrenalin-pumping excitement.

Alberta’s international gateway cities of Edmonton and Calgary offer superb urban experiences with opulent accommodation, fine dining, luxury shopping and a vibrant cultural scene. If you decide to visit during the winter you can juxtapose your trip in Alberta’s winter wonderland and partake in dog sledding, northern lights viewings and, of course, world class, white knuckle snow sports on Canada’s revered powdered slopes.

Canberra, Australia

As the subject of a tricky pub quiz question, Canberra, the capital of Australia, offers fantastic lodgings, top restaurants, luxury shopping and has pledged a committed focus on culture and art to reinvigorate the relatively diminutive city. The brand new Hotel Hotel was introduced to promote local artistes by showcasing their handmade furniture, bush-inspired artwork and soft furnishings decorated with aboriginal patterns.

The National Museum of Australia has also received a facelift with an impressively striking geometric cafe extension, highlighting the area’s flourishing design fraternity. Here you’ll find an eclectic mix of Australiana from the unusually oversized heart of legendary racehorse Phar Lap and the Holden Prototype No.1 car. As you can imagine, Canberra is home to a plethora of boutique wineries where you can meet the proprietors, discuss wines and enjoy an afternoon tipple.

Alagoas, Brazil

Images of Christ The Redeemer, Copa Cabana Beach and Sugar Loaf Mountain are splashed around the world’s TV screens, newspapers and websites due to the Brazil World Cup 2014. However, the real Brazil can be found in its jungles and coastlines of the relatively unexplored state of Alagoas.

Boasting stunning beaches and astonishing seafood, Alagoas is renowned for captivating reefs and enthralling networks of lakes and lagoons. With more people paying attention to the previously unpopular state, Alagoas has ensured tourists are catered for with highly rated hotels and restaurants that make use of the area’s natural larder.