Lifestyle, The Wondering Traveller

Hate the cold? Here’s 5 winter vacation destinations to escape to

 

Winter can be a cold and bitter pill to swallow.

No matter how good you look in a scarf and trench coat, and how tasty Pret a Manger’s soups can be… the novelty of it all wears off fast. There’s only so many dark mornings and icy rain falls you can endure before your morale starts to take a hit.

But there is some solace out there (and allow us to deliberately misquote for this) because: “Winter, is a choice”.

Yes, it is.

Right now, somewhere in this big wide world; someone is commuting to work on a motor boat dressed only in a polo and shorts… and he’s looking quite happy and smug.

Don’t hate him, because you could be doing the same.

One of the many perks of living on planet earth is that you can enjoy two summers in one year. All you have to do is cross the equator and just like that, it’s sunscreen and sunglasses time again.

So if you want to leave that trench coat in the cupboard and escape winter for a few weeks (don’t worry, it can wait) you can jump on plane and head to one of these 5 destinations where there’s still plenty of sun to enjoy. 

 

 

Bora Bora

Four Seasons Bora Bora 1

Thousands of years ago, a lonely volcano out in the Pacific Ocean (presumably fed up with an existence on the ocean floor) broke out from the depths in an explosion of magma and fire and rose to see the world.

In the sizzling wake of its destruction, was the Bora Bora, an island spanning only 29.3 km surrounded by the clear waters of a lagoon and barrier reef. Proof that sometimes, beauty can indeed come from chaos.

Bora Bora, is one of French Polynesia’s more dramatic landscapes and just namedropping it will get honeymooners dreamy eyed. But even if you’re long past tying the knot or have no intention to, the island’s excellent year round weather and impressive list of outdoor activities makes it a top choice winter vacation destination for everyone. 

Two of the best resorts on the island are the Four Seasons and the St Regis. Both offer the typical overwater villas now synonymous with the island and the finest luxury experience this side of paradise. For more information, click here.

St Regis Bora Bora 1

St Regis Bora Bora

Four Seasons Bora Bora rooms

Four Seasons Bora Bora

Four Seasons Bora Bora Rooms 2

Four Seasons Bora Bora

St Regis Bora Bora Resort 3

St Regis Bora Bora

St Regis Bora Bora 5

St Regis Bora Bora

 

 

Sydney

Sydney Skyline

Sydney’s skyscrapers, traffic, and a vibrant nightclub circuit don’t peg it as the ideal winter vacation destination for relaxation. But pass up on it, and you’ll be doing your travel plans a great disservice.

After all, there’s a reason why it ranks amongst the most liveable cities in the world year after year.

Built around the world’s largest natural harbor and with plenty of green spaces to unwind in, Sydney offers a taste of urban living down under that’s so good you might want to make it permanent.

A vibrant art scene? Check. A cosmopolitan culture? Check. High-end boutiques and cuisine? Check. Great coffee? Absolutely! Sydney can hold its own with the West’s biggest cities, but what makes it really stand out, is how much nature and outdoor activities are within arms reach.

Even if you’re at the heart of the CBD, you’re only 7km away from the world famous breaks of Bondi beach, and the Royal National Park – which is a surprising 15,000 acres of pristine bushland – is less than an hour away. If you’ve never been before, you’re in for an urban getaway with a difference.

If you do decide to go, our hotel of choice is the Langham hotel. Literally within minutes of the iconic Sydney Opera House, museums, and the Royal Botanic Gardens; a stay at the Langham is the perfect way to acquaint yourself with this vibrant urban center. 

Langham Sydney lounge

Langham Sydney Lounge

Langham Sydney - Winter vacation destinations

Langham Sydney swimming pool

Langham Sydney Room- Winter vacation destinations

Deluxe Room

 

Mexico – San José del Cabo

Las Ventantas Al Paraiso- Winter vacation destination

Las Ventanas Al Paraiso

With excellent weather all year round, Mexico’s San José del Cabo is always a great place to travel.

But when you’re suntanning, and everyone back home is cranking up the thermostat… you can’t deny that it just feels a tad better. Too bad a lot of people have the same idea.

Winter in Europe and America translates into the peak season in San José del Cabo and the popular winter destination tends to get crowded very quickly.  So, if you’re after a bit of tranquility, choosing one of the most exclusive hotels in the area is your best bet.

But don’t let the crowds bother you, this is without a doubt one of the best times to visit because peak season (December – April) is the time for whale watching.

The last stop on their long trip from the Antarctic, the warm waters of the Baja Peninsula is the perfect breeding environment for these gentle giants and seeing them break the surface of the water from one of the many viewing spots or out at sea is pure bucket list material.

For art lovers, San José del Cabo’s “Art Walk” (November-June) is an invitation to discover contemporary art while soaking in the town’s unique bohemian atmosphere.

Located in the narrow streets leading to the del Cabo’s main plaza, the Gallery District’s art stores remain open until 9pm, while live music from the plaza – and cheery light headed tourists, locals, and artists fresh from a trip to the tequila bars – helps create a unique vibe. Definitely one of the best places to spend the winter.

 Las Ventantas Al Paraiso- Winter vacation destination

Las Ventanas Al Paraiso

Las Ventantas Al Paraiso 3

Las Ventanas Al Paraiso

One&Only Palmilla- Winter vacation destination

One&Only Palmilla

One&Only Palmilla-

One&Only Palmilla

 

Seychelles

You knew this one was coming right? This tropical paradise is an excellent winter vacation destination for those who want to escape the cold. We mean… just look at it.

IMG1-Anse-Coco (1)

The archipelago enjoys excellent weather all year round, and, since it’s an exclusive touristic destination with less than 100,000 residents, those pristine beaches you’re already dreaming of should be crowd free.

Speaking of beaches, not all are created equal and the Seychelles’ won the luck of the draw.

Composed of silky smooth sand, azure waters, and the vivid greens of tropical foliage, the beaches here are some of the most picturesque the Indian Ocean has to offer and it’s not uncommon to stumble upon one and be the only living soul (or close to it) there.

Indian Ocean Seychelles - Winter vacation destinations

Dubbed the “Galapagos of the Indian Ocean” the Seychelles practices a strict conservation policy which keeps most of its beaches hotel free and its ocean intact. The result is a veritable tropical Eden for you to explore.

The waters surrounding the islands are teeming with Hawkbill turtles, Manta Rays, whale sharks, and many other rare species which you can discover in temperatures that never dip below 26° (78°F). On land, the wonderment continues with giant Aldaba tortoises roaming freely, and colorful tropical birds filling the forest canopy with color and song… We’d take that over commutes in the underground and the inevitable cold tablets which follow any day.

Raffles Praslin - Winter vacation destination

Raffles Praslin

Four Seasons Resort Seychelles- Winter vacation destinations

Four Seasons Resort Seychelles

 

St Vincent & Grenadines

A glass of aged vanilla rum in your hand, the scent of coconut oil on your warm skin and acres of emerald green fields dotted with mountains and colonial buildings stretching as far as the eye can see. Welcome to the Caribbean, welcome to St Vincent & Grenadines, and welcome to a place where winter is as fictional as unicorns and elves.

Seriously, with an average temperature that rarely drops below 25°c (77°F) locals here might have heard of the concept of cold, but we doubt they’ve felt it. Especially with all that fiery rum going around.

Part of a group of 7 islands (St Vincent being the largest) St Vincent and the Grenadines offers complete seclusion to travelers willing to make the splurge and the privately owned island of Mustique, is the playground of choice. 

Ilsand of Mustique

Serviced by a private airport and home to a select few resorts and residences, the Island of Mustique is the tropical paradise you escape to when you don’t want the rest of the world to see. With a “do as you wish” policy reigning supreme, Mustique offers a rare taste of freedom free from protocol or expectations.

But don’t worry this isn’t luxury bedlam. The island is a popular family destination due to the complete safety it offers, so if you want your teenagers to let off some steam and go off your radar, it’s perfectly fine to do so.

In fact, you might encourage them to do just that.

A stay at the Cotton House hotel’s presidential suite gives you access to a private swimming pool, residence-style living, and sprawling views over the emerald waters of the Atlantic. Kids, and winter, can stay well away. 

Cotton House - Winter vacation destinations

The Cotton House – Residence

Cotton House- Sea Room View

Cotton House – Seaview rooms


Comments

  1. Dear sirs, it s always a pleasure to read about the many great hotels with good benefits that you provide . Kindly please let me know which great hotels in Dubai and London that you would recommend this coming December holidays

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