10 warm escapes for winter
Keen to escape the cold this winter? You may have to journey a little further from home, but beyond the gloomy cold there are sandy beaches and warm temperatures calling your name.
Pack your sunscreen, grab a few pals and plan a trip to one of our favorite sunny destinations to keep living your best summer life.
1. Miami – Florida, USA
Occupying a peninsula that stretches into the Gulf of Mexico, the winters in Florida are some of the warmest that you’ll find in the United States. Miami is a thriving coastal metropolis with a vibrant arts scene, enviable nightlife and an epic beachfront. Spend your days exploring the Everglades, challenging your friends at beach volleyball, or attending one of the many arts and music festivals that take place in the city.
2. Cape Town – South Africa
South Africa’s iconic coastal city enjoys warmth 12 months of the year, making it a great destination for any season. Climb Table Mountain (or take the cable-car to the top) for insane views over Cape Town and the sea, before decamping to one of the beaches. Boulder’s Beach even has a colony of African penguins that you can watch.
3. St Julian’s – Malta
The Mediterranean islands of Malta, just south of Italy, are a great option for a short-haul break when traveling from Europe. It might not be hot during the winter, but it’s still plenty warm enough to explore the relaxed seaside town of St Julian’s. Here you’ll find pretty architecture, historic landmarks and plenty of local restaurants, cafes and bars. Malta is also one of the best places in Europe to learn to scuba dive.
4. Playa Tamarindo – Costa Rica
Looking for adventure and relaxation? Costa Rica is known for its ‘Pura Vida’ way of life – it means to enjoy the simple things and live life to the fullest. On the country’s Pacific coast, Playa Tamarindo is a surfing paradise, with jungles and hidden waterfalls just a stone’s throw away. Between October and May, sea turtles come ashore to lay their eggs on the beaches, and it’s possible to watch this natural spectacle take place (from a safe distance, of course).
Bustling Singapore is a must-visit when you’re traveling in South East Asia – especially if you love food, as it boasts a fantastic collection of Michelin-star restaurants and delicious street food vendors. For a classic Singapore experience, walk through the impressive Gardens by the Bay, before ascending to the top of the Marina Bay Sands hotel just next door and soaking up the view from over 200 meters above the city.
6. Honolulu – Hawaii
Swap a cold winter climate for a tropical island paradise? Yes, please. Even Hawaii’s coldest months are hot and sunny, and the dynamic capital of Honolulu pairs a great food and arts scene with sweeping sandy beaches. The slightly cooler months of January and February make hiking the island’s incredible volcanic trails a less sweaty experience, too.
7. Bali – Indonesia
Indonesia is made up of 17,508 islands that sit between the Pacific and Indian oceans, and Bali is one of the most popular travel hot spots. Here you’ll find world-class scuba diving, great surfing, and very affordable food and accommodation. It’s also a spiritual center, with plenty of opportunities to try yoga, learn more about meditation and enjoy exploring traditional Balinese culture.
8. San Diego – California
Every winter, San Diego becomes one of the best places on the planet to see gray whales as they feed, raise their babies, and migrate through the warm California waters. Here you can also spend your days surfing and paddle boarding. If you prefer life on land, this vibrant city is also a great place to gorge on fresh fish tacos or start road trips along the striking coastal road.
9. Brisbane – Australia
When Europe experiences its coldest months, Australia celebrates the return of its summer. In Brisbane you’ve got everything you need for a warm getaway; a huge choice of top beaches, activities like kayaking and hiking through forested national parks with waterfalls, and a super chilled, welcoming vibe.
10. Rio de Janeiro – Brazil
Brazil’s seaside capital boasts both beautiful mountains and world-famous beaches – soak up the sun on Copacabana’s golden sands and walk the promenade at Ipanema beach. To experience Brazil’s iconic party scene, plan your visit in February when Rio makes the most of its long sunny days and hosts the biggest party in the country; Carnival!