Christian singles: It's time to get a summer break sorted

Still haven't made a decision about what to do with your free time this year? It's not too late (or too soon) to investigate your options, book some time off work and start counting down the weeks. Whether you're looking for the excitement of a busy Christian conference, the tranquillity of a Christian retreat, the spiritual journeying of a pilgrimage, or the adventure of volunteering, there are enough choices to suit both the personality and the purse. If you're single and prefer to travel as part of a group there are some fascinating options. Are you looking for somewhere to relax for a few days in a Christian setting with your children? Are you looking for new Christian friendships and/or possible romance? Would treating yourself to a lovely break later in the year be a loving act of self-kindness this Valentine's Day?

Capernwray Hall hosts a one-parent family holiday during the last week of August. The holiday includes 'a full programme for parents who care for the day-to-day needs of their children on their own.' It provides all the meals and has a good mixture of interesting activities for all ages. Bible teaching sessions are also a feature of this holiday. A mooch around its website, which provides very clear information, reveals that Capernwray Hall is currently offering a ladies' weekend and a men's weekend. It does not have any single rooms but several of the breaks, including a five-day hiking holiday, while not described as being specifically for singles is said to be for 'adults'. Surrounded by 127 acres of forest, parkland, lake and gardens Capernwray is located in the north west of England not far from the town of Carnforth, Lancashire.

CapernwrayCapernwray Hall offers holidays for one-parent families.

Richmond Holidays offers a wide range of holidays in a variety of stunning locations designed for the solo traveller. Breaks are categorised by age bracket and themed weeks. For example travellers over 50 can indulge in a week of dancing, photography and creativity, Greek culture, French culture, walking or spiritual refreshment. 18-25s can partake in bike rides, watersports and campfire worship sessions.

Friends First offers a 'Singles Christian Dating Summer Holiday' for five nights in a rather splendid Georgian mansion. Sidholme Hotel is located in the quaint seaside town of Sidmouth, Devon, on the south coast of England. I adore the Devon coast and enjoyed a glorious break there last year, which included lunch in Sidmouth and a very pleasant walk along the beach.

Oak Hall is a Christian holiday company which offers a wide range of holidays and expeditions aimed at people in their twenties and thirties. It say:s 'Many guests come on their own and soon find themselves part of a friendly crowd. We will make suitable arrangements for the rooming.' I actually found it quite difficult to find information specifically about single travellers on their website. However they do have a good reputation and seem to have a vast array of options. A direct enquiry to request a brochure might prove to be more fruitful than searching their website.

Worldwide Christian Travel has specialised in organising tours, mainly to the Holy Land for over 50 years. It has an ongoing programme of guided international tours accompanied by high-profile guides. Trips take in the Holy land, Israel, Turkey, Cypress, and if you're feeling especially flushed there's an exciting cruise to discover Egypt and the Nile. Its website is clear and easy to navigate and includes the following reassurance for singles: 'As a single Christian joining one of our Christian travel groups you will be made to feel most welcome. We can put you in touch with the group leader who will be more than willing to answer any questions and talk you through the itinerary.'

The Christian Singles Fellowship features three holidays on its website which have been organised specifically for Christians who are unmarried, divorced or widowed. They take place in spring, summer and autumn in an established UK hotel. The first is at Rydall Hall, Ambleside located in the English Lake District. The second is at Brunell Manor located in South Devon. The third is at The Briery located in lkley, North Yorkshire. The Christian Singles Fellowship says the holidays are 'designed to provide fun, fellowship and relaxation in a Christian context for single Christians. Not all single Christians are actively seeking a marriage partner! At Christian Singles Fellowship, being single is recognized and valued.'

Val Fraser is an author and journalist. Follow her on Twitter @ValFraserAuthor.

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