Winter travel destinations are as sought after as ever, with frenzied searches for the most affordable option running rampant. Who wouldn’t want to ditch the misery of cold and sleet for some sunshine and relaxation elsewhere? Here are the best destinations for you this winter season.
1. The Florida Keys
When vacation comes to mind, warmth is sure to soon follow. While Florida and its sunshine make an obviously ideal getaway choice, there is so much more offered than just the opportunity for a great tan. The Florida Keys is the place to be at if you are looking for a party or outdoor adventure. With various water sports available, as well as hot tubs, swimming pools and hammocks, you will be glad to know that the resorts are affordably priced, offering great values.
2. Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico is not only one of the most affordable winter travel destinations, but also one of the most favored. While basking in the beauty of such a tropical and exotic island, you won’t believe your passport was not needed to land in such paradise. In Puerto Rico there is so much to enjoy; from the delicious and authentic cuisine that you will not find replicated anywhere else, to the beautiful pink sand beaches that glow in the night, Puerto Rico will leave you smitten. Be sure to enjoy some live music—a major representation and foundation of the culture—with musicians who play with the passion and authenticity that could only have been passed down from generation to generation. Offering budget friendly hotels, you and your family can pass the time during the day snorkeling and diving under the sun, all the while enjoying the tropical views and sights.
Panama is a winter getaway that not a lot of people have immediately on their radar. While the airfare may be the priciest part of making such a trip, once you have arrived it is nothing but smooth sailing from there on out. Unlike Cancun, Panama will not be overrun with tourists when you land, which is a breath of fresh air, especially if you are looking for a place to let loose and relax. Not only will Panama be guaranteed to offer you great weather and sunshine, the accommodations will only run you around $40 a night!
4. Las Vegas, Nevada
While an obvious and ever-popular choice all year-round, Las Vegas is the epitome of a winter getaway. What better way to vacation from the ice and snow than gambling and drinking the night away in Sin City? If you are willing to look for lodging a little ways off the Strip, than you may be pleasantly surprised to find rates for rooms under $50 a night. With the obvious choice of gambling, Vegas has tons more in entertainment and attractions to offer!
5. San Diego, California
While year-round tropical weather does not grace this location, San Diego still remains one of the most affordable winter travel destinations. Not only is San Diego affordable, but it is comfortably mild during the winter months, allowing tourists the opportunity to still beat the miserable cold from back home and maybe dip their toes in some sand. Conveniently, winter is whale migration season in the area, with tourists seizing the unique opportunity to go whale-watching while walking along one of San Diego’s beaches. If you are looking for a beach to lay low and achieve full relaxation on, then I suggest you opt for Mission Beach; if you are a surfer looking to adventure out into the elements, than La Jolla beach is where you’ll want to be—as it is reputable for its impressive waves. If you happen to be vacationing with family, another option is to purchase a combo pass to the beloved San Diego Zoo, as well as many other museums and parks within the area. The Pearl Hotel is where you’ll find one of the lowest prices for lodging, with rooms for less than $100 per night!
6. Caladesi Island, Florida
It is not surprising if you find yourself unfamiliar with Caladesi Island, as it is said to be one of America’s most top-secret islands—absent of hotels and even cars, requiring ferry trips for tourists to make their way in and out. If you happen to be a fan of shelling, Caladesi Island is rumored to have some of the best shelling on the Gulf of Mexico. With three miles of beaches and guaranteed warm weather conditions, Caladesi Island is a great option if you are looking to veer away from clogged beaches and smog. The island also features a beautiful boardwalk nature trail, as well as opportunities to try your hand at kayaking along the bay side of the island.
The Bahamas is the epitome of what people seek when in need of great winter travel destinations. In all fairness, the Bahamas has kind of got it all—warm weather, great beaches, outdoor activities, and a whole ton more. Whether you are from the east or the west coast, round trip flights will never go above $500 at the most. Even more fortunate for your wallet, once the flight is all paid for, hotels within the area start at as little as $100 a night. Whether you’re interested in trying your hand at swimming, wind-surfing, sailing, or snorkeling, The Bahamas has a spot for you.
8. Catalina Island, California
If you would like to save yourself the long trip over to the Caribbean while still partaking in activities such as snorkeling and diving, then Catalina Island is a definite option to consider! It is located about 20 miles off the Southern California Coast via a one-hour boat trip from Long Beach, and the trip is most certainly worth it. Catalina Islands waters are clear and full of life, known for its diverse array of marine life below. The island’s Lover’s Cove is impressively ranked as one of the top 10 best spots in the world for snorkeling—with sea stars, octopi, Garibaldi fish, eels, anemones, and more available to see up close and personal like never before. The Hermosa Hotel is a recommended spot to stay in, with very reasonable rates during the winter months.