If the prospect of chilly days and a lack of sun have tipped you over the edge, it’s time to wave it all goodbye and head off to sunnier climes. While the rain may be pouring down in the UK, somewhere not too far away there’s sun, sea, and sand. Top up your Vitamin D levels, grab yourself a tan, and put a smile back on your face. We’ve picked out some of the best places to catch some rays when summer back home is well and truly over, or you can discover winter sun destinations from Holiday Hypermarket, or one of the other main holiday websites.
With temperatures hitting the 20°C mark even in January, Tenerife – and any of the other Canary Islands for that matter – make a wise choice for a spot of winter sun. When you holiday ‘off peak’ you’ll also be able to bag yourself some serious accommodation bargains, too. Tenerife is just under five hours from the UK by plane and offers resorts to suit everyone. From all-inclusive hotels where you needn’t step foot outside the complex, to little fishing villages with sandy bays, this island is a firm favourite with Brits seeking some winter sun. For added thrills, check out Siam Park – one of the world’s best water parks. If getting back to nature is more your scene, Teide National Park makes for great day hikes.
Lanzarote boasts 300 days of sun every year, so if you’re hankering after warmer weather, this is the place to come. In winter, the temperatures rarely dip below 16°C so pack your swimwear and get ready to enjoy. In terms of places to stay, you’ve got loads to choose from. If you’re here to party you might want to stay in Puerto del Carmen which is well known for its nightlife. If a quieter, family vibe, is more your style, Costa Teguise with its water park and nearby aquarium should be on your wishlist. And if you’re here with small kids, make sure you check out the beach at Playa Jablillo – shallow waters make it great for paddling. Lanzarote’s beaches range from dark volcanic numbers to golden curves, so compile a list and work your way around your favourites.
If you’re happy to head a little further afield to make sure you get as much sun as possible while everyone else is freezing back at home, it’s time to go to Jamaica. The flight takes a little over 10 hours but once there, you’re practically guaranteed sun. Temperatures here range from around 22°C to 31°C all year round. However you can get tropical downpours in the wetter months of October, November, May and June so stick to the darkest days of the UK winter and you should be fine. As you’d expect, Jamaica has a host of beautiful beaches, but the prettiest has to be Frenchman’s Cove on Port Antonio.
The best time to travel to Mexico is exactly the time of year when the UK is seriously lacking in sunshine hours – so it’s a great option for winter sun. Travel between December and March and you’ll avoid the wet season and make the most of the warm, drier climate. Discover ancient Mayan ruins, paradise beaches, and fantastic nightlife in this country that’s a little over 12 hours by plane from London. Visit Cancun on the Yucatán Peninsula for coconut groves and blissful beaches. Head a little further south from Cancun and you’ll find Riviera Maya – for more vanilla-white beaches, luxury hotels, and turquoise water.
Cape Verde is the least well known of our best winter sun destinations, but don’t let that put you off. This cluster of 10 islands is about six hours by plane from the UK and enjoys sun that rarely dips below 20°C all year round. The islands of Sal and Boa Vista offer the driest weather so head there if you want to be sure to avoid any rain. On Sal you’ll find the gorgeous Santa Maria Beach. It’s a long stretch of golden sand and during the winter months it’s a great spot for kiteboarding and windsurfing. Meanwhile on Boa Vista you’ve got Santa Monica Beach – a 9km swathe of golden sand that’s among the best in Cape Verde.
Winter doesn’t have to be all short days and dark nights. Dig out your travel bag from the back of your wardrobe, pull out that bikini, and fish out your passport from the filing cabinet – there’s sun to be had if you’re prepared to travel.
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