Interrailing in Europe
TEENAGE KICKS Interrailing is a rite of passage before the serious
business of getting a job begins, and calls to mind bone-shaking journeys on
OH GROW UP! Two words: Posh Interrailing. We’re talking first-class
travel, real beds in fab hostels and good food. That’s more like it! Snap up
a multi-country InterRail Pass with Rail Europe and hop between stops. How
about the Eurostar to Paris, a sleeper train to Venice, dining out in
Florence, partying in Berlin, then soaking up some culture in Seville? As
for where to bed down, hostels have entered an age of chic. Our picks
include JETpak Flashpacker in Berlin (Jetpak.de,
from £14.50 a night, with big-screen films, free broadband and wi-fi); Oops!
Hostel in Paris (from £20, with cool decor, and balconies); and Plus
from £14 for ace views and an indoor pool).
MAKE IT HAPPEN An InterRail Global Flexi pass (either first or second
class) is valid for travel in up to 30 countries and enables travel in a 10
to 22-day period. For example, travel for five days within a 10-day period
in first class costs £389 (adults aged 26 and over, Raileurope.co.uk).
Book hostels through HostelBookers (HostelBookers.com).
The Gold Coast, Australia
TEENAGE KICKS Surfers Paradise in Queensland is full of teens during
“schoolies week” in November, when they hit the rides at Adrenalin Park (Funtime.com.au).
Their fave? The Vomatron – ewww!
OH GROW UP! The town boasts boho cafes, try Bumbles (Bumblescafe.com),
amazing restaurants – foodies love Absynthe (Absynthe.com.au), ace beaches
and boutiques such as Bojangles (Bojanglesfashion.com)
– pick up maxi dresses at a snip.
MAKE IT HAPPEN Destinology (Destinology.co.uk)
has 10 nights at Holiday Inn Surfers Paradise, including return Singapore
Airlines flights from London to Brisbane from £1,565 per person, valid
September 10-30. Return Airtrain (Airtrain.com.au)
transfers from Brisbane airport to Surfers Paradise cost £32.
TEENAGE KICKS This gap year pit-stop used to involve carrying a 20-ton
backpack, sniggering at ladyboys in Patong and sharing a dirty room.
OH GROW UP! Phuket has soooo much more to offer – sheer limestone
cliffs jutting out over emerald-green waters at Phang Nga Bay, which
featured in James Bond flick The Man With The Golden Gun – speedboat tours
cost £62 (Phuket-travel.com).
Cultural treats include Wat Chalong Buddhist temple and away from the main
drag are divine, cheap-as resorts such as the Evason Phuket (Sixsenses.com),
with a spa and private pools.
MAKE IT HAPPEN Kuoni (www.Kuoni.co.uk)
has seven nights B&B at Evason Phuket, including return flights with
Thai Airways plus transfers, from £952 per person in October 2011.
TEENAGE KICKS Freezing in the sea, clubbing, and holing up in B&Bs
when it (inevitably) rained.
OH GROW UP! Enjoy Newquay’s sleek hotels and restaurants. Head to the
beach at Watergate Bay, and dine at Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen Cornwall (Fifteencornwall.co.uk)
– you could bump into the likes of Kelly Brook, who’s been on gal pal
surfing trips there.
MAKE IT HAPPEN Doubles at eco hotel Scarlet (Scarlethotel.co.uk)
cost from £180 a night. We heart the wood-fired hot tub.
TEENAGE KICKS As fresh-faced (read: spotty) teens we turned lobster
red, and ran riot at all-night foam parties.
OH GROW UP! There’s no need to mingle with the Ibiza Uncovered crew on
your trip. Skip San Antonio and head for Ibiza Town, which is full of
chi-chi shops. Chill on beaches like Cala Xarraca, a sweeping bay with
gin-clear water. Then dine at hip Bedouin-style lounge and restaurant KM5 (Km5lounge.com).
Afterwards, relive your youth at super-club Pacha, with mega-star DJs such
as Erick Morillo. The super-glam Ushuaïa Ibiza Beach Hotel in Playa d’en
Bossa has swim-up rooms, a sushi joint and top DJs spinning poolside.
MAKE IT HAPPEN Thomas Cook Ultimate Style (Thomascookstyle.com)
offers seven nights B&B at Ushuaïa Ibiza Beach Hotel based on two
sharing, including return flights and transfers, departing from London
Gatwick on September 18 from £810 per person.
PHOTOGRAPHY: AXIOM, CORBIS, 4CORNERS, GETTY IMAGES