Written by Christopher Nye,
Last Modified: 21st January 2019

Where will you get the most sunbeams for your sterling? Holiday home buyers seeking maximum sunshine for minimum cost should look to the Eastern Med. Check out the Property Guides’ cost of sunshine index.


The UK suffers miserably from lack of sunshine. Even Eastbourne, which proudly calls itself the “Sunshine Coast” (yeah, right), barely has half the sunshine hours of a Mediterranean hotspot like Cyprus. You can see why holidaymakers have swapped Blackpool for property in Spain when Mallorca, just a two-hour flight away, soaks up three hours more sun each day.

It’s not just about a looking cool in a summer dress. Lack of sunshine is proven to lower people’s mood, lead to a lack of Vitamin D and generally unhealthier lives for you and your kids.

Buying a holiday home in the sun makes perfect sense, but they don’t come cheap. Or do they? In fact, holiday apartments can be surprisingly affordable, even in warm and wonderful locations.

So which holiday hotspots get you the most sunshine for your money?

We have crunched the numbers and the clear winner in our cost of sunshine index is Turkey’s Turquoise coast. Gorgeous resort towns like Bodrum and Fethiye enjoy over 2,600 hours of sunshine each year, yet with one- and two-bed apartments for just £45,000. But how do other European destinations measure up? Will you be bathing in the sun in a property on the Cote d’Azur in France, or does a home in the Algarve, Portugal have the edge?

We have taken the average 50 square metre apartment and assumed you own it for 20 years. Over that time, in the Turkish Riviera you’ll pay 85p per hour of sunshine.

Other reasonably priced rays were in Cyprus (95p per hour), Tenerife (£1.07) and Crete (£1.08). The Algarve is surprisingly inexpensive at just £1.17 per hour of sunshine.

So where were the priciest sunbeams? There’s a bit of a hike in price up to those western Mediterranean hotspots like Mallorca and Nice, costing £2.06 and £2.73 respectively.

But the worst bargain of all? In Eastbourne you’ll pay nearly £150,000 for a small holiday apartment, making each hour of sunshine £3.86!

Of course, the best news is that the sunshine won’t really cost you anything at all. Because after 20 years you should be able to sell your property for at least as much as you paid. Free sunshine? That could put a smile on your face, even in Blackpool!

How we worked out the cost of sunshine

We took the average property price per square metre, using a combination of national government, local real estate institute, EU, Rightmove Overseas and Numbeo data. We converted that for 50 square metre apartment, which would be a one- or two-bedroom apartment. We took the total sunshine hours from a variety of sources, including EU, Currentresults.com and local meteorological services. We assumed ownership of a holiday apartment for at least 20 years.

The raw data we used to calculate the cost of sunshine

Location Price 50m2 apartment Sunshine over 20 years (hours) £ per hour of sunshine
1 Turkish Riviera £44,150 52,140 85p
2 Cyprus £65,000 68,280 95p
3 Tenerife £61,250 56,990 £1.07
4 Crete £60,000 55,500 £1.08
5 Algarve £71,250 60,720 £1.17
6 Puglia £88,700 50,600 £1.75
7 Blackpool £55,350 31,340 £1.76
8 Mallorca £114,350 55,260 £2.06
9 Costa del Sol £131,600 56,300 £2.33
10 Tuscany £110,300 45,400 £2.42
11 Nice £149,000 54,480 £2.73
12 Dordogne £115,000 39,350 £2.92
13 Eastbourne £146,100 37,760 £3.86
Share This