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Holidays are 'essential' for hard-working Brits

Holidays in Spain and other popular destinations are more important than ever, with Britons working increasingly long hours and enjoying less leisure time, it has been claimed.

Paul Havenhand, marketing director for insurance specialist Towergate Bakers, said that holidays were still viewed as important, despite the credit crunch.

Britons work longer hours than the majority of their European counterparts, while at the same time enjoying fewer bank holidays and days off, he said.

"A week or two away from our normally hectic lives whether it be in the UK or further afield is still seen as an important way to re-charge our batteries," he added.

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Enjoy a 'spa circuit' at La Manga

Forget about exercise circuits, holidaymakers travelling to La Manga now have the opportunity to indulge and enjoy a relaxing spa circuit.

There are two different circuit options available, with each lasting around three hours and featuring a number of relaxing treatments.

Visitors arriving at the spa are taken on an introductory tour of the facilities, before unwinding in a soothing sea salt and camomile hydrotherapy bath.

Other treatments involved in the circuits include massage, a therapeutic wrap and either a refresher facial or light manicure.

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Spain is a 'ideal' golf destination

With world-class courses, excellent transport links and warm weather all year round, it's little wonder that golf holidays in Spain are so popular.

According to the BBC's Spain Magazine, the country is a fantastic destination for golf enthusiasts and is home to some of Europe's finest courses.

"It might not be much fun nipping out for 18 holes on a wet and windy spring Saturday in Minehead or Manchester or Muirfield, but it's a different story in Spain," the publication noted.

The south of Spain basks in sunshine for most of the year and is well-served by a number of UK airlines including bmibaby, Ryanair and British Airways.

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Low-fare flights to Spain prove popular

An increasing number of people are opting to book their flights to Spain with low-fare carriers, rather than traditional airlines, it has been revealed.

During the month of September alone, more than six million people travelled through Spain's airports, the Costa Blanca News reports.

Of those travelling, more than 50 per cent flew with budget carriers, representing a 5.3 per cent increase on the same period in 2007.

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Costa Blanca resort 'should be World Heritage Site'

The Costa Blanca resort of Benidorm should be made into a World Heritage Site, one academic has claimed.

Professor Philippe Duhamel, an expert from the University of Angers in France, described Benidorm as the "Dubai of Europe" and claimed that the resort had a "unique collection" of skyscrapers, with buildings of major cultural importance.

"For many years everybody spoke badly of Benidorm, but with time it has gained value, as has happened in other examples of architectural world heritage," he told the Telegraph.

In Mr Duhamel's opinion, some of the architectural highlights include the Gran Bali Hotel and the 55-storey Torre Intempo, which is currently under condtruction.

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Mobile phrasebooks 'are the future'

Audio phrasebooks, which can be downloaded on mobile phones and MP3 players, are a useful way for holidaymakers to overcome language barriers, it has been claimed.

Bas Jaburg, technical officer at phrasebook developer Steape, said that audio phrasebooks were the ideal companion for those taking holidays in Spain and other foreign destinations.

"The actual benefit here [over a phrasebook] is that you can actually hear the phrase so the people will definitely understand what you are saying. [It has] translation and phonetics, so you could teach yourself a little bit," he explained.

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The lap of luxury at La Manga's Peninsular Club

Those who really want to enjoy themselves in style at La Manga can do so by joining the Peninsular Club.

Members of this institution can enjoy the luxurious accommodation, swimming pools, fine views and a few games of tennis in the sun, all in the heart of the La Manga resort, where the nearest golf course is never far away, unlike the cold winter days back home.

With warm waters off the coast, members of the club can enjoy sailing and may appreciate why the club was featured on the BBC programme Here Comes the Sun.

Membership of the club exists as an alternative to investing in buying a property outright, although membership lasts until 2040, providing plenty of opportunities to enjoy everything La Manga has to offer.

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La Manga visitors offered 'Freedom of Choice'

La Manga resort has launched its own Freedom of Choice package, offering visitors a wide variety of ways to enjoy themselves.

The package of over 30 options offers those staying at the resort the chance to pick and choose their favoured activities, shaping their holiday around just what things they like to do.

Such activities can be anything from tennis and golf to spa treatments and excursions.

Features included in the package include deluxe accommodation in the five-star Hyatt hotel, daily breakfast and the use of the indoor swimming pool, sauna, steam room and fitness centre at Spa La Manga Club.

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Murcia Open Tennis returns

Those who fancy seeing and playing a bit of tennis in lovely warm conditions can do so in La Manga in December.

While northern Europe shivers, those who come down to Spain to enjoy the mild winter weather can immerse themselves in the sixth Murcia Open Tennis Tournament, which will take place in the resort's 28-court Tennis centre and feature a wide range of age groups, starting with the over-35s and going up to the over 75s.

An official ITF seniors tournament with ranking points and prize money, the event will feature both singles and doubles tennis.

When not enjoying the whacking of yellow balls around indoors, sport lovers at the La Manga resort can enjoy playing with balls of all sizes, shapes and colours.

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Over 50s book holidays to Spain online

An increasing number of over 50s are opting to book their holidays online, it has been revealed.

Research carried out by Alliance and Leicester found that more over 50s than ever are using the internet to organise their flights to Spain and other destinations.

Of those surveyed, 41 per cent said they booked their holidays online, with one in five people staying in touch with friends by using social networking sites such as Facebook.

Commenting on the findings, Emma Walkley, current account manager at Alliance and Leicester, said: "Many of the over 50s now choose to engage in the social side of the internet and also have the confidence to organise many aspects of their life online.

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