3 Destinations to Escape the Cold this Winter

We all want to get  away to warmer climates in winter, but outside the summer tourist season, you might not know where to go. European favorites like Italy, Spain, and Portugal get cold in the winter months too, so this is the time to travel further afield. Here are three great destinations for a winter break:

1.      Mexico

For a sun soaked haven where you can forget the stress of work and home, look no further than Mexico’s Caribbean coast. Stunning beaches, aquatic attractions, historical sites – this part of Mexico has it all.

Riviera Maya is a gorgeous stretch of coast on Mexico’s easternmost edge. With more to do than you’ll ever be able to pack into one trip, it has every reason to be one of the go-to areas in Mexico for sun-seekers. In Tulum, you can visit fascinating Mayan ruins and get a glimpse ancient history. Or, if vibrant bars and restaurants are more your thing, head for up-and-coming Playa del Carmen.

For something entirely different, head north of Riviera Maya to Cancun. Off the coast of this buzzing city, far beneath the breaking waves, is an underwater museum. MUSA is an artificial reef made up of over 400 intriguing sculptures. Join a tour with a diving company in Cancun, and you’re in for a truly unique experience.

Image by Marcin Chady used under Creative Commons license CC by 2.0.

2.      Cuba

Eclectic and energetic, Cuba is a destination that promises adventure. Wherever you go, you’ll be greeted by a lively, friendly atmosphere that you can’t help but fall in love with. Best of all, you can reap the benefits of a Caribbean climate. Temperatures here rarely drop below 20 degrees Celsius, and winter is the driest season.

No trip to Cuba is complete without a visit to the capital. In Havana’s patchwork streets, you’ll get a sense of the country’s diverse history in the colourful blend of architectural styles. Dance and music are a huge part of Cuban culture, and Havana is the best place to experience this. Visit on weekend, and join in with the Saturday Rumba, where locals and visitors alike take to Calzada Street to dance.

Once you’ve finished sightseeing and you’re ready to relax, Cuba has plenty of beach destinations to choose from. Varadero is a favourite. Located on the Hicacos Peninsula, this resort boasts 20km of pristine golden sand for lounging and clear waters for swimming.

Image by Bryan Ledgard used under Creative Commons license CC by 2.0.

3.      Canary Islands

If you want warm weather without travelling quite so far, the Canary Islands promise beach weather even in the depths of winter. Each island has its own appeal, but there is definitely one to fulfil your holiday needs.

Fuerteventura lies across the water from the Western Sahara, and like its desert neighbour, it has no shortage of sand, and seven Blue Flag beaches to its name. The golden sands around Correlajo, in the north, are some of the most popular with visitors.

For a trip that will make you feel like you’ve been transported to Mars, visit Lanzarote and explore the lunar landscape. The island is home to one of the longest lava tunnels in the world, and in Timanfaya National Park, you can see the impressive Fire Mountains for yourself.

Image by Son of Groucho used under Creative Commons license CC by 2.0.

Where would you like to go on your winter escape? Share your thoughts in the comments!

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I'm a life-long travel junkie journalist who works hard to find adventure in everyday life after two years of travel and expat living.

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