Spending a few days or a few weeks to follow your passion or learn a new skill can transform a holiday into a life changing experience. Learning holidays are ideal for solo travellers and provide opportunities to connect with other travellers and a chance to fully immerse in a local culture.
Here are 6 ways to enjoy a more holistic holiday experience.
- LEARN FLAMENCO IN GRANADA SPAIN
Carmen de las Cuevas is a thriving flamenco school offering courses in flamenco dancing and guitar as well as in Spanish culture and language. It is situated in the stunning Albayzin area directly across from the Alhambra in Granada. Catering for all levels of dancers and guitarists from beginner upwards, participants can do a week or more of courses. As well as selecting to study dancing or guitar or language or culture there will be excursions, delicious dinners and lots of interaction with locals. Accommodation is arranged through the school and cost is very reasonable.
- TAKE COOKING CLASSES IN LE MARCHE ITALY
La Tavola Marche is a highly acclaimed cooking school and farmhouse inn offering a touch of luxury off the beaten track in the region of Le Marche. Here you can stay in superbly renovated apartments in a 300 year old farmhouse. Choose to do half and full day cooking classes on such Italian specialties as wood fired pizza or sausage making or home made pasta. Or take a 3 or 4 day cookery package and consider walking around the extensive farm, taking part in foraging for truffles when the season allows or exploring the region further, perhaps even a walk in the Appenines. Unlike cooking schools in some of Italy’s more popular regions costs at La Tavola Marche are affordable.
- PAINT ON THASSOS ISLAND GREECE
George Politis Painting Workshop takes place on the lesser known but beautiful Greek island of Thassos. In groups of up to 12 people, the art of water colour and water media will be explored. Whether a beginning or more advanced painter appropriate tuition will be offered. Field trips to idyllic locations will make painting a delight. Accommodation and daily meals with wonderful, fresh Greek food is part of the very reasonable package.
- LEARN FRENCH IN PROVENCE
CREA French language school in Provence offers courses for adults from beginner level through to advanced in an historic Monastery as shown in feature image. The setting here is in a particularly beautiful part of France with hiking trails and bicycle paths nearby. Courses can be arranged in weekly packages appropriate to the level of student. French and cuisine is also offered as a special course for passionate cooks. Gourmet meals and luxurious accommodation are all part of the package here in the heart of Provence.
- BECOME A WRITER IN RURAL ENGLAND
Arvon Foundation in the UK offers a wide variety of courses for anyone interested in writing of any kind. Hundreds of courses each for about 12 people and usually 6 days in length are offered in 3 rustic manor houses in rural England. Think roaring fires, cosy libraries, home cooked scones and lovely green countryside. Group participants have their own rooms with desks and the chance to work individually with tutors as well as in group sessions. Dinners are magnificent and cooked with great hilarity by participants each night with provided ingredients. These workshops provide an intimate setting for individuals from many parts of the world to connect, to learn and to be inspired to write.
- TAKE AN ARTIST RETREAT IN IRELAND
Anam Cara in Eyeries, Ireland,is a large and welcoming home offering tranquillity and inspiration to writers and painters. Here you can paint in the artist studio or write your memoir in a glorious setting. Sue’s lovely home has 5 comfortable and well appointed rooms each with an ensuite bathroom and desk with a glorious view. Workshops with instructors are scheduled several times a year. Otherwise guests at Anam Cara are encouraged to work on their solo projects during the day and to meet for conversation over breakfasts and gourmet dinners cooked in the home. There is also the possibility to walk around the extensive grounds with beautiful waterfalls or to venture further afield to walk the Beara Way and explore County Cork.