Whether it’s an idyllic beach retreat, a cultural discovery or an exotic adventure, sunshine can still be found around the world.
“It was a disappointing summer weather-wise this year and many holidaymakers chose to stay at home and not miss out on events like the Diamond Jubilee and the Olympics. This means that the thought of sun-drenched lands has never been more appealing; and it’s definitely not too late to book a flight to escape the icy conditions,” says Oonagh Shiel, Travel Expert at Cheapflights.co.uk.
Cheapflights’ team of experts has put together their selection of some of the best value winter sun destinations in 2013.
The Sunshine State lives up to its name even in the winter months, boasting the highest average January temperatures in the United States. There is no shortage of action-packed activities to ensure a fun family holiday, from theme parks in Orlando to water sports in Cape Coral. St. Petersburg on Florida’s Gulf Coast holds the Guinness World Record for the most consecutive days of sunshine, while the Florida Keys has a subtropical climate and far fewer rain showers than in the summer.
Only four hours away, Tenerife is conveniently close for Brits in need of a quick fix of sunshine over the winter months. Even in January, the temperature will normally reach 20 degrees c at sea level, so days can be spent relaxing on the golden beaches. Away from the seaside, the mild winter climate provides pleasant conditions for exploring the national park or taking in breath-taking views from the top of Mount Teide, Tenerife’s volcano.
With extensive coastlines, luscious forests and a rich Native American heritage, Mexico has something to keep every tourist entertained. Adventure seekers can trek through tropical forests in Chiapas, while those in need of rest can laze on the white sand beaches of Cancun. History lovers will head to the Mayan ruins in Yucatan, also home to the colonial city of Merida. The variety of accommodation options available makes Mexico a great value winter sun destination, from five-star luxury beach resorts to the more authentic haciendas in the less developed south.
Just north of the Equator in the Indian Ocean, the group of 1,200 islands that make up the Maldives is a winter sun paradise. The flight is almost fourteen hours, so it’s a significant distance from the UK, but this makes the archipelago the place to escape from the world and forget the bleak midwinter days at home. The islands’ resorts offer comprehensive rest and relaxation experiences, with unspoilt white sand beaches, swaying palms and deep-blue lagoons. For the more active holidaymaker, snorkelling, diving and surfing are on your doorstep, and there’s also a rich cultural heritage to discover.
An overnight flight in both directions and a time difference of just one hour mean there’s no jet lag when travelling to South Africa. In fact, sun worshippers could make Cape Town the destination for a long weekend. Holidaymakers with more time to spend in the Rainbow Nation can combine a cultural city break with a wildlife safari, a tour of the celebrated vineyards — and a beach retreat along the country’s stunning coastline.
Skygate began the sourcing of complex air-travel data in 1992, whilst Cheapflights pioneered the online comparison of flight deals for users in 1996 and momondo launched meta-search in the Nordic countries from 2006.
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