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Sure, there’s something kind of romantic about crunching those crispy fallen leaves. And Halloween can be all kinds of ghoulish fun. But the arrival of autumn is awful news if you like your weather served warm and sunny. Luckily if you’re willing to take a short flight, there are plenty of places where you can sit down and soak up some rays. 

Portugal

The Algarve

Average daytime temperature: 23°C | Average daily hours of sunshine: 7 | Average flight time: 3 hours

Compared to the summer months, hiking the Algarve’s beautiful coastal scenery is way less stifling in the pleasant October sunshine. And after you’ve worked up your appetite, the phenomenal seafood of Faro’s restaurants awaits to recharge your batteries. And let’s not forget the beaches of Lagos, which are among the most beautiful stretches of sand in Europe.

>> Portugal travel insurance

Turkey

Antalya & the Turquoise Coast

Average daytime temperature: 26°C | Average daily hours of sunshine: 8 | Average flight time: 4 hours

They say this is Turkey at its most beautiful: a Mediterranean paradise of white sands and - as the name suggests - turquoise seas. And with the mercury regularly creeping past the 25°C mark in October, you’ll want plenty of sun cream. It’s a beach-lover’s wonderland. But step away from the shores and you will be rewarded with ancient cities, ornate tombs and deserted ruins. Spellbinding.

Spain

Costa de la Luz

Average daytime temperature: 24°C | Average daily hours of sunshine: 7 | Average flight time: 3 hours

With 300 days of sunshine per year, the skies are almost always blue in Costa de la Luz - the coast of light. This portion of south-west Spain oozes charm and feels pleasingly authentic. Wander aimlessly through centuries of history in the old cobbled streets of Cádiz. Sip sherry in Jérez - part of the official sherry triangle - in the shadow of imposing Medieval buildings. Or journey along the coast to the unspoilt golden-sanded beaches Zahara, Bolonia and Valdevaqueros and gaze across the Atlantic to the coast of North Africa.

>> Spain travel insurance

Cyprus

Average daytime temperature: 25°C | Average daily hours of sunshine: 8 | Average flight time: 5 hours

A rich history, fabulous food - moussaka anyone? - and beautiful beaches make Cyprus a perennial favourite among sun-seeking travel-lovers. From the fabled nightlife of Ayia Napa to the serenity and scenery of the Troodos Mountains, what Cyprus lacks in size it more than makes up for with variety.

Gran Canaria

Maspalomas

Average daytime temperature: 25°C | Average daily hours of sunshine: 7 | Average flight time: 4 hours

Waiting just a short flight from the UK is Maspalomas, where you will find the Canary Islands’ most fabulous beach. It’s backed by a huge dune system - complete with the azure waters of La Charca lagoon - that’s teeming with plovers, snipes, herons and other birdlife. It can get pretty touristy. But if you’re looking for no-fuss sun, sand and good restaurants, you will leave happy.

>> Spain travel insurance

Greece

Rhodes

Average daytime temperature: 24°C | Average daily hours of sunshine: 8 | Average flight time: 4 hours

There’s much more to Rhodes than its stunning beaches - though you’ll find plenty to choose from. Journey back through Byzantian history as you take in the sandstone architecture of the walled old town - rightfully awarded World Heritage status. Or take in the wooded valleys and frondescent forests scattered across the island’s interior.

>> Greece travel insurance

Malta

Average daytime temperature: 24°C | Average daily hours of sunshine: 7 | Average flight time: 3 hours

The crystal clear seas that lap the Maltese coast make it a popular snorkelling and diving destination. But the real pull of Malta is its 7,000 year history. Home to the greatest density of historic sites in the world - including some of the oldest human-built structures in the world - you’ll soon see why Malta is only half-jokingly referred to as a giant open air museum. Add to that a taste for Mediterranean cuisine and a selection of rugged sandy beaches and Malta becomes hard to resist.

Morocco

Marrakech

Average daytime temperature: 27°C | Average daily hours of sunshine: 8 | Average flight time: 4 hours

Africa may not feel like a short hop away, but you can make the journey from UK departure lounge to Morocco arrivals in less than four hours. And with temperatures in excess of 26°C in October, you’ll be wanting to snaffle your ice cream as quickly as possible. Marrakech is a cultural melting pot, with marvels around every corner. Food - the famous souks are a must - fashion and ancient architecture combine to create a strikingly colourful cultural tapestry. Intoxicating.

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