The end of August means back to work for many, however, you don’t have to say goodbye to summer by enjoying a September holiday in certain sunny holiday destinations across Europe. With hot yet not stifling temperatures and fewer crowds, it can be the best time of the year to travel. Here are some of our favorite – and sublimely sunny – spots.

Greek Isles

The end of summer is an excellent time to go to the Greek Isles with hot weather carrying over into September is still hot and virtually no clouds in the sky. The southerly islands of the Dodecanese and the Cyclades experience gorgeous weather even into October. Across the whole archipelago there are also many fewer tourists, leaving the beaches and café terraces for savvy late summer/early autumn travelers. However, be sure to check the ferry schedules as their frequency can decrease dramatically after the high season – not that being “stranded” on a fabulously sunny island would be all that sorrowful! You could always extend your stay at one of our experts outstanding villas or avoid the issue of getting around altogether by hiring out your own private yacht.

Where to Stay in the Greek Isles.

Amalfi Coast

With Italian and other European holidayers back at work, you’ll almost have this legendary coastline all to yourself. Enjoy balmy days in the low 20s c (low 70s f) as you amble through the narrow streets of colorful villages, take to the waters on a boat ride out to enchanting Capri or simply sit on the terrace at your private villa sipping some crisp prosecco, bathed in mellow sun and refreshed by the gentle sea breeze.

Where to Stay on the Amalfi Coast.


This small archipelago boasts some of the Mediterranean’s best September temperatures (around 27°c / 81°f), making it ideal for those craving the heat. This under the radar destination is perfect for anyone seeking a great cultural and gastronomic getaway. You can have an even more authentic experience by holidaying on the lesser know of its two islands, Gozo, where you might be only one of the few travelers wandering through its charming villages. You can also admire its spectacular coastline boating, diving, snorkeling or swimming.

Where to Stay in Malta.


With warm late summer days averaging 26°c / 79°f, Majorca provides posh appeal draped in divine sunshine. The largest of Spain’s Balearic Islands, it features excellent dining, breathtaking sandy beaches, and seductive secret coves. Dating back to Roman times, its stylish and attractive capital city of Palma has a wide range of fabulous fine and casual dining, excellent boutiques and lively bars. Anchor your yacht in the bay or retreat from the buzz of town to the privacy of an exquisite private villa overlooking its captivating turquoise waters.

Where to Stay in Majorca.

The Western Algarve

Bordered by one of Europe’s most beguiling coastlines of jagged low white cliffs and dreamy coves, the Western Algarve draws those looking for a relaxed luxurious escape surrounded by exceptional beauty and enveloped by warm temperatures through early autumn. Base yourself in a sleek clifftop villa and spend your days lapping up the sunshine next to a marvelous infinity pool, stroll through quaint whitewashed fishing villages or devour succulent seafood on a terrace overlooking the sparkling Atlantic Ocean.

Where to Stay in the Western Algarve.

Saint Tropez

This chic seaside spot in the South of France isn’t only glitz and glamour. The village itself is immensely charming and September visitors can observe more of its true local life as most of the tourist mobs have gone home, also leaving you to savour sparsely populated beaches and lovely mid 20s c (mid 70s f) temperatures. At the end of September, the town plays host to the Regatta Les Voiles de St Tropez, when over 300 sailing yachts from across the world converge to compete in a week of racing and festivities, a must attend event for sailing enthusiasts or avid people watchers.

Where to Stay in Saint Tropez.


Summer extends far into September on this captivating Italian island – a destination for those in the know, where you you can cruise through its aquamarine waters on a luxurious speedboat, zoom past its ravishing, rugged landscape in a red Ferrari and dine on incredibly fabulous Mediterranean cuisine in its lovely seaside ports. The more adventurous can spend their days hiking along its coastal paths or kayaking around its sublime beaches while those in need of some rest and relaxing can savor the island’s splendor right from their terrace of one of the island’s impressive villas, like the Villa Paradiso by Villas and Apartments Abroad.

Located on the waterfront at Portisco Bay, the Villa Paradiso was designed by the famous Italian architect, Ferdinando Fagnola. The gorgeous contemporary and ultra comfortable villa was built into the hillside and is surrounded by a beautifully manicured one-hectare estate. It has two spacious living rooms, seven bedrooms, a gym, a panoramic swimming pool and is equipped with the latest high tech devices. What’s more, since the end of the season is approaching, you may be able to have a fantastic luxury getaway to this divine island at a discounted price.

“This is the time to grab the opportunity to afford you a longer lasting summer holiday at stunning villas that would otherwise not have been possible if you tried booking a month ago,” explains Sylvia Delvaille Jones, director of Villas and Apartments Abroad. “ The villa owners around Europe that we work closely with are willing to listen to negotiate a better rate for our last minute clients.”

To learn more about this magnificent villa, or others available in some of Europe’s best destinations in late summer and early fall, contact Sylvia at Villas and Apartments Abroad here.


As the cradle of western civilization, many travelers come to Greece with the aim of discovering some of its exceptional cultural heritage. There are a myriad of incredible historic sites and museums to choose from, that said, many of these can be overrun in peak season. The crowds, coupled with the intense summer heat, can make you wish you had stay on the country’s equally spectacular beaches. However, there are places where you can experience the best of both worlds by visiting some lesser-known sites (perhaps in the company of an archaeologist?) then retreat to the peace of your private seaside villa. Our experts at White Key Villas and Five Star Greece reveal their favorite places to explore the secrets of the ancient world below.

Sanctuary of Apollo, Despotiko Island. Photo Credit: Greek Ministry of Culture

The Sanctuary of Apollo, Despotiko

Located on the islet of Despotiko, a few minutes’ boat ride from the chic Cycladic island of Antiparos, is the site of the recently excavated Sanctuary of Apollo and Artemis, a hidden gem recommended by our local Greece experts. According to Ileana von Hirsch of Five Star Greece, Antiparos is the “insider Greek island where the likes of Tom Hanks and low-key jet-setters kick off their shoes and go barefoot here in the summer.” You too can add in some archaeological adventures to your relaxed glamour holiday.

Dating from the 6th century BCE, this sanctuary is the largest archaic cult site in the Cyclades, second only to Delos, which is itself the largest of its kind in the world. Starting in 1997, ongoing excavations have brought to light the remains of what was an important centre of worship. The site has more than 20 buildings, including a Doric temple, as well as hundreds of statues, clay vessels, figurines, ivory buckles, swords, vases— coming from across the Mediterranean.

“This fabulous excursion combines the joys of private boat ride with the unique opportunity to observe excavation and restoration work and meet the archaeologists responsible for the site,” explains Elena Fotiadi of White Key Villas. “You will have the rare chance to witness the discovery of ancient artefacts while experiencing a pristine Cycladic island with some great beaches, idyllic, bathed in warm sunlight, and surrounded by the sparkling blue waters of the Aegean Sea.”

Where to Stay in Antiparos

 Antiparos 13B

Designed by well-known Greek architect Dimitris Rizos, this stunning pair of villas by Five Star Greece lay hidden on a private road at the edge of a sublime south-facing peninsula of Antiparos.

Comfortably accommodating up to 20 people, or alternatively, as two completely separate and private villas, each villa has its own adjoining guest house. Built in 2007, the complex is set within gorgeous gardens conceived by eminent French landscape architect Philippe Niez. Guests can relax under the shady pergolas covering lovely outdoor and entertaining spaces which border a large pool shared by both houses. A short 10-minute walk down a path leads to a small secluded sandy beach.

The villas are perfect for family holidays and large family reunions. Guests can either take both five-bedroom homes together, or the Pool House on its own with exclusive use of the pool.

Enjoy a posh and peaceful holiday in Antiparos with some archaeological adventures with Five Star Greece here.

Villa Melissa

This vast, recently renovated 11-bedroom Mediterranean-style property is undoubtedly among the island’s few, very exclusive estates and features extreme privacy and exceptional vistas of the sea and islands, available through White Key Villas.

Its white-washed silhouette sunbathes on an elevated seafront plot of 12,000 square meters, which grants it a supremely calm setting. Its size and location are complemented by breathtaking views, graceful indoor and outdoor living, a fabulous infinity pool area and access to a semi-private beach with a pergola and sunloungers.

The bedrooms, which can accommodate 18 to 21 guests, are ideally spread out over the complex. Most include en-suite baths and private entrances and four are located in an adjacent guest cottage.

The large swimming pool area with daybeds and a lounge also includes a bar and external shower. The buildings are surrounded and linked by arched courtyards and beautiful terraces with various seating and dining areas as well as a barbeque.

Bring your family or friends together for an laidback luxury getaway to Greece with White Key villas at this link.

Antiparos MS

This fresh and chic seven-bedroom waterfront home, available through Five Star Greece, is set in a picturesque location facing northeast across to Paros and the colorful kite-surfers of Pounda club.

It consists of a main house, with the pool stretching in front of it, and two guest homes to the rear. It can sleep up to 12 in its seven bedrooms, making it an excellent fit for a group of friends or two families traveling together. The interiors are decorated in white and with light primary colour accents and the whole property benefits from A/C and mosquito netting at doors and windows. There is a large, comfortable living room with an open plan kitchen beckoning guests to gather around meals.

Lovely Apantima Beach and Beach Club are found at the end of the garden and the sparkling sea is directly in front. There is a path to some steps down to a private sea-entry point. The port is a mere eight minute drive away and other conveniences are within easy reach.

Start designing your relaxing Greek culture and beach escape by reaching out to Five Star Greece here.

Corinth, Peloponnese

White Key Villas offer their guests staying in the Peloponnese and Porto Heli a rare opportunity to go behind the scenes at a working excavation with one of the most respected institutions in the field, the Corinth Excavation Tour is a must for archaeology enthusiasts and anyone looking for an extraordinary cultural experience in Greece. Elena Fotiadi tells us more about this unique site and experience:

“Inhabited for over 8000 years, Corinth has played a key role in the region over the course of Greek history. One of the great city-states of antiquity and a major center of silk production during the Byzantine Era, it was coveted by various Crusader States and the Ottoman Empire, who fought over it for over four hundred years. As a result of its tumultuous history, Corinth now boasts impressive archaeological sites that yield exquisite cultural artefacts.

“More than just a tour, this is an extraordinary opportunity to explore the ruins of Ancient Corinth, visit a working excavation, and experience the wonder of archaeology first-hand! In partnership with the American School of Classical Studies of Athens (ASCSA) this is a unique tour offering unprecedented access to the site and the work of this internationally renowned organization: The Corinth Excavation Tour features a number of ASCSA field experts and archaeologists, who will introduce you to the excavation site and to various key concepts and modern techniques of archaeological excavation, giving you unique insight into the science—and art—of archaeology.”

Participation in these excavations tours is available only during specific periods throughout the year and should be prearranged through White Key Villas. Contact them here for further information.

Where to Stay near Corinth

Villa Yria

Your majestic experience discovering Greece’s ancient ruins can be accentuated by staying this splendid villa which appears to have been washed up ashore like a hero in a Greek legend. Bordering quaint coastal fishing villages, you’ll enter another dimension arriving at this spacious beachfront estate.

The large 4.5-acre property, available through White Key Villas, includes a main building, a chic aristocratic house from the sixties and three newly built, stylish and fully independent suites. The villa’s pool extends between the front patio and the beach, acting as a natural extension of the sea. Its charming Mediterranean garden further highlights the scenery and provides the estate with privacy, shade and wonderful summery aromas.

This villa has a postmodern glamour with the combination of the stylish retro decor of the main building and the contemporary aesthetics of the newly added suites. Floor-to-ceiling windows cast gorgeous natural lighting on its carefully selected furniture, paintings and objets d’art. There is a graceful flow between the interior and exterior living spaces, with the pool area in the front, presided over by an impressive gazebo.

Enjoy the pleasures of privacy, direct access to a sandy beach, an amazing pool and a magical garden at the Villa Yria by contacting White Key villas at this link.

One of the best ways to gain insight into the culture of a country is through its gastronomy, which is best done by visiting a local farmers’ market. This is especially enjoyable if you’re staying in an apartment or villa rental, where you can savor your delicious wares back at your home away from home. From the South of France to the peaks of the Swiss Alps and from the Greek islands to the British Isles, here’s our pick of some of the top markets across Europe.


Marché Saxe-Breteuil – Paris, France

Shopping at the market is still very much a custom in France and the capital city is no exception. With more than 80 outdoor markets across Paris on any given day (except Mondays) you’ll find a market in almost every neighborhood. Not all markets are the same, however, and that which pops up every Thursday and Saturday morning along Avenue de Saxe, in the chic 7th arrondissement, stands out for both its excellent stalls and its exceptional views of the Eiffel Tower and the Invalides. On display is a wide array of France’s finest produce, cheeses, charcuterie and other gastronomic products which extol l’art de vivre à la francaise.

Where to stay in Paris.


Marché d’Apt – Provence, France

Many of the towns of Provence feature lovely markets, and you’ll experience one of the most authentic in the picturesque medieval town of Apt. Labeled as a “marché d’exception,” it’s one of the top markets in all of France as well as one of the oldest, dating back to at least the 12th century. Every Saturday morning the main square and the surrounding cobblestone streets fill with up to 350 stalls abundant in provencal olives, fragrant lavender, juicy peaches, local handicrafts and much more.

Where to stay in the South of France.

Valencia Central Market

Mercado Central – Valencia, Spain

The Boqueria in Barcelona and San Miguel in Madrid generally steal the spotlight when talking about Spanish markets, However, Valencia’s Mercado Central brings together the best of the country’s gastronomy without throngs of tourists. Upon entering the building, you’ll be struck with awe at the shimmering structure of iron and glass completed in 1914. Enjoy the sights and sounds as you stroll amidst towers of fresh and dried fruits, pots of piping hot paella, hanging Iberian hams and a careful selection of the freshest catches of the day caught right off the city’s coast.

Where to stay in Spain.

Testaccio Market

Mercato Testaccio – Rome, Italy

Most visitors to Rome browse the stalls of the popular Campo dei Fiori, however, for a genuine market experience in Rome, make your way to the Mercato Testaccio. Found close to Piramide subway station south of the Colosseum, the local market may now be found in a newly constructed building, but it still remains a true neighborhood market. Here you’ll find grandmothers picking out fresh ingredients for that day’s meals, see fresh pasta being made before your eyes, oggle the variety of seasonal artichokes or tomatoes, and hopefully leave with some delicious snacks for a picnic lunch down on the nearby Tiber river.

Where to stay in Rome.

Naples Market Pignasecca

Mercato della Pignasecca – Naples, Italy

Naples is all about food, so it isn’t surprising that the city has over 60 markets. The oldest is along via della Pignasecca and offers the best window into a true Napoletana mercato. Located just north of the Toledo subway station, this daily farmers’ market is popular with locals. Walk the crowded lanes to take in the colorful sights of seasonal fruits, bins upon bins of fresh fish (Naples is a port city after all), small production buffalo mozzarella and more varieties of tomatoes than you could ever imagine.

Where to stay in Naples and the Amalfi Coast.

Greek Market Fish

Laiki Rhodes Town – Rhodes, Greece

Most towns across mainland Greece and the surrounding islands have a weekly or bi-weekly laiki; genuine farmers’ markets. These were first established in 1929 in an effort by the government to protect farmers, eliminating the middleman so they could sell directly to customers. If you’re holidaying in the Dodecanese or visiting the archaeological sites on Rhodes, you can find some delicious local food – and escape the crowds – at the laiki in Rhodes Town. Held every Wednesday and Saturday, you’ll be tempted by the boisterous vendors hawking homemade dolmades, straight off the boat seafood, bunches of gorgeous grapes and blocks of fabulous feta.

Where to stay in Greece.


Schrannenmarkt – Salzburg, Austria

The charming city of Salzburg hosts one of the country’s liveliest markets, the Schrannenmarkt, showcasing the finest in Austrian fresh produce, culinary specialties and traditional handicrafts. Located in the Old Town opposite St. Andräkirche church, this weekly market has been held every Thursday from 5:00am to 1:00pm since 1906 (or on Wednesday if Thursday is a holiday). As you amble through the 190 stalls, be sure to sample goods like brezen (pretzels), Bauernkrapfen, a round local pastry often topped with apricot preserves, handmade sausages and potent cheese.

Where to stay in Austria.

swiss cheese

Farmers’ Market – Brig, Switzerland

The quaint Swiss town of Brig, nestled high in the Alps in the Canton Valais, is abuzz on Saturday mornings with its weekly farmers’ market. Take a break from skiing or hiking in the mountains to rub shoulders with the townsfolk as they shop for organic seasonal vegetables, sausage and meats and, of course, swiss cheese. If your timing is right, you may be lucky enough to also take in the annual mid-August Swiss Food Festival held in neighboring Zermatt. The resort is a food lover’s paradise with fabulous restaurants including two Michelin stars, Zermatt and 238 points in the Gault Millau guide, making it the top food destination of the Alps.

Where to stay in the Swiss Alps.

Broadway Market London

Broadway Market – London, England

Taste your way around the world at the cosmopolitan Broadway Market which takes place on Saturdays in Hackney, a beautiful and vibrant part of East London. Reach it by meandering along the lovely Regent’s Canal, minding bikes and buggies, and looking out for ducklings and terrapins as you go. Arriving at the market, pick up a coffee from the Climpson & Son’s stand to accompany your stroll and search. Bop along to the second-hand vinyl and buskers, appreciate the aromas wafting from the food stalls cooking up global cuisine, nibble on the free samples, rummage through vintage clothes, treat yourself to handcrafted jewelry from indie designers, peruse book stalls and try out organic toiletries. Once you’ve tasted the olive oils, hummus and pesto, gnocchi and sweet treats, make the tough decision on what to choose for your breakfast or lunch. Take your picnic to London Fields and devour, along with some of the best people watching you will find in the capital.

Where to stay in London.


Farmers’ Market in Castle Terrace – Edinburgh, Scotland

Few markets have such a pretty setting as the Edinburgh Farmers’ Market found on Saturdays in Castle Terrace with the impressive backdrop of the emblematic Edinburgh Castle. Opened in 2000, the market has flourished to become one of the best in the UK and is the holder of numerous accolades. It has over 50 stalls, most of which are run by farmers who produce what they sell. Tantalize your tastebuds with some artisanal chutneys, organic tayberries, craft beer or perhaps some haggis!
Where to stay in Scotland.

Irish bread market stand

Milk Market – Limerick, Ireland

The bounty of the green fields of Ireland are honored at the 150+ farmers’ markets across the country. If you’re staying in the countryside you’ll probably stumble upon your village’s weekly market, or make your way to the historic city of Limerick, home to the fabulous Milk Market. Fortunately, there’s much more on offer here than dairy products as its name implies! Founded in 1852 and restored in the early 1990s, the Friday to Sunday market has exceptionally high quality products from sausages to seaweed and soda bread to shortbread cookies, and yes, there is some excellent fresh milk, cheese and creamy butter.

Where to stay in Ireland.

Pascha, otherwise known as Easter, is the most important festival of the Orthodox Church and the Greeks take it very seriously. Their truly unique Easter celebrations are expressed through deeply rooted traditions, wonderful local rituals and festivities throughout the country. These, coupled with the glories of spring, make it the perfect time of year to visit Greece. How can you join in on the festivities? We head to the Greek Isles to find out.