Holidays should be the time of ultimate relaxation. An opportunity to unwind, untangle and give in to all of those urges to do absolutely nothing for long, languid stretches. But all too often, they can ramp up the stress levels so considerably that you’ll be laying by the side of the pool wishing you were in the office, with bucket list entries looming, local lingo to learn, a cleaner to avoid and much more besides. That’s not how a vacation should be. Instead, try these; our 4 IDEAL ideas for a stress free holiday.

KEEP DECISIONS TO A MINIMUM

Decisions, decisions. Nope, when on holiday, we like to keep those to a minimum, thank you very much. The only choice we care to be presented with is whether it’s a gin’n’tonic or a gin’n’juice. That’s all. Let’s accept it – whisper it, even – but sometimes, it’s nice to simply be herded, catered for and looked after. This is where the much maligned all inclusive and package deals really come into their own. Simply pay a fixed fee, leave your brain on the plane and the paradox of choice at home. Lovely.

GO ON A RIVER CRUISE

Just as a broad, everything-arranged holiday can be very relaxing indeed, so can one which is super specific. Similarly to a package holiday, the decision making is largely out of your hands, but in contrast, it’s because the choices are minimal. As such, if you’re looking for a stress-free booking and travel experience, then going on a relaxing river cruise may be for you. Not only will you be surrounded by the soothing calm of nature, but you’ll be able to leave your holiday in the capable hands of the captain, who’ll be following a pre-decided itinerary, leaving you time to instead spend your trip enjoying the facilities that the cruise has to offer.

FIND INNER PEACE AT A YOGA RETREAT

Hey you! Yes, you; the leaner-inner, eye squinter and shoulder huncher. Straighten up your back, adopt a safe reading distance, release the tension in your neck, drop those shoulders, and read on; this one’s for you.

Indeed, yoga is the modern definition of unwinding, physically and metaphorically, don’t you think? So, why not consider basing a whole holiday around the spiritual, super relaxing practice. This could be as far flung as the home of yoga, India, or as close as, well, your own home. Which brings us to…

KEEP IT LOCAL

Getting on a plane can be stressful. Learning a new language can be time consuming. Adapting your gut to a new cuisine can take the length of a holiday. A different climate can knock the stuffing out of you. Basically, with all the pitfalls and hurdles in your way when going abroad, there really is no shame in embracing a good ol’ fashioned staycation. It seems crazy that are so many of us who have conquered far flung corners of the globe but are yet to place a flag further north than Watford. So, instead of putting yourself through the stress of travelling a long distance to land in an unfamiliar country, keep things local.

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Rachel is the beauty and fashion director at IDEAL. She loves trying new products and is an avid fan of London's fashion, from the high end to the high street.