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Politics: A Reason to Holiday?

With campaign season in full flow we look at why you should get away from all the mayhem and discover the politics of elsewhere. Our three favourite examples feature.

Policies, manifestos, debates and analysis. Just a few of the dreaded words for those who find all of the election hype 'a bit much'. You've got promises flying at you from every direction, all different and all coming from a select few who somehow seem remarkably samey. It can be boring and tedious, but it is undoubtedly important. The question is: Is politics enough to drive us away for a holiday?

Lego Leaders
A delightful Lego depiction of the leaders debate. (Image: Cavendish Press)

It's an interesting proposition. For starters, if you're like most, you've already made your mind up about who you're voting for. What difference can the next 24 days make? You can vote by post anyway, so what does it matter? You also won't have to pretend that you believe a word that any of the party leaders say, which is a bonus. What is more, the Easter holidays are finally over and the kids and teachers are back at school. Did someone say morning rush?

So that all sounds appealing. Entertain us, if you will, when we say that you also might go away for almost the opposite reason. No, we're not saying a holiday could be the perfect time to toil through each party's manifesto, playing them off against each other. Rather, how about a holiday to uncover the politics of another country? To learn about their history, their people and what shaped their country to be as it is today. After all, Downing Street is really popular with tourists.

South Africa

Home to one of the most iconic political figures ever, South Africa is an excellent destination to get your political fix. Nelson Mandela's legacy is clear for all to see and a great way to learn about the great man, and his incredible life, from the ground floor up. A trip to Robben Island is a must. Now a natural heritage site, the prison is a unique indicator of the sacrifices Mandela and others made on South Africa's road to democracy. 

Mandela

Staying in Cape Town, City Hall marks where Mandela addressed the public in 1990, following his release from prison. It is a spot that many come to recount the momentous occasion and share their memories of it. Naturally, visit to Parliament is also recommended, as is a trip to the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront, where monuments of all four of South Africa's Nobel Peace Price laureates stand tall: Albert Lutuli, Desmond Tutu, F. W. de Klerk and, of course, Nelson Mandela. 

Tie in the politics of Cape Town with one of our packages here.

China

Based in the very heart of Beijing, the Forbidden City should be your first port of call, having been home to over 20 of the emperors of the Ming and Qing dynasties. It was built to symbolise the power given to the emperors by God and at over 175 acres, you get a sense of how powerful this was perceived to be.

T Square

Adjacent to this you'll find the iconic Tiananmen Square which famously staged the mass protests in 1989. This pro-democracy movement ended in June that year, with the declaration of martial law by the government and the shooting of many civilians. The square attracts thousands of tourists every day and hosts the marvellous museum of China and the memorial hall of Chairman Mao. Arrive before sunrise to see the raising of the Chinese flag. The ceremony is conducted by the guard of honour and is certainly worth the wake up call.

Give China your vote here.

Greece

Naturally, Greece's ancient wonders will be on your to-do list for your visit here and with many of them carrying religious importance, so too do they carry a degree of political significance. This is never more true than with the iconic Parthenon of Athens. A temple dedicated to the goddess Athena, the Parthenon is also regarded as a symbol of Athenian democracy, the first known of it's type in the world. So too is it a reminder of the Persian and Ottoman conquests and their lasting impact on the civilization. 

S Square

For more recent agendas, head to Syntagma Square which has housed the Greek Parliament since the 1930s. Whilst the square itself, and the nearby Royal Palace, carry historical significance, the square helps to provide a real insight into the current issues surrounding Greece and it's economy. Recently the square was occupied by in excess of 10,000 people until the inception of the unity government currently in place.

If Greece can count on your support, click here.

So, you see? Politics needn't be something to be afraid of (at least on holiday anyway!). All you need to know is that our policies are focused on finding you the best holiday destinations every time.


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