Christmas calls for all the cosy feels, from the food we eat to the clothes we wear, even spilling into the way we socialise. Sure, mulled wine is lovely, cosy evenings by the fire, a dream and we all know winter fashion trumps that of its warmer counterpart by miles but come January our love of all things cosy may start to fall away with daydreams of tropical retreats and some vitamin D swiftly taking their place.
As I sit here with two pairs of socks on, listening to the rain hammering down on the windows and watching as the wind threatens to snap every tree branch in its wake, a tropical winter getaway doesn’t seem like such a bad idea.
In anticipation of the true winter chill about to set in, we set out on a search to find the dreamiest, warmest destinations for a winter escape to sunnier states.
The good news is that Bali is hot all year round. Although November – April is considered it’s rainiest time of year (conveniently cutting the cost for winter sun dwellers) even when it does rain, it does so in short, tropical bursts.
Whether in the mood to sight see and take in the mesmerising patterns of surrounding rice fields or kick back and relax on the pristine beaches and crystal clear waters, Bali ticks all of the boxes as an idyllic destination for some winter sun.
Described as the ultimate Mexican beach experience, Tulum is sure to help thaw out any memory of cold winter temperatures back home in no time. Sun worshippers can enjoy relaxing on the beach while scuba diving and surf opportunities are aplenty for those looking for a little more adventure. With a something for everything, design aficionados and foodies will be drawn in for the boutique hotels and hip restaurants throughout the Mexican oasis.
If it’s a little luxury you’re after, Dubai is the one for you this winter. Spotless beaches, impeccable service and only a seven hour flight from the UK, Dubai has all you could ever need for a winter getaway. Soak up some culture in downtown Dubai where you’ll find glittering jewels, pots and spices galore among all of the other offerings of Dubai’s impressive Old Souk. Shop ’til you drop in Dubai’s massive shopping malls and marvel at the seven star hotels. Take time out to explore the desert based adventures before slowing down the pace with an afternoon spent bronzing by the pool.
Phuket stands as the biggest travel destination in Thailand which means it encapsulates both the good and the bad sides of tourism in Thailand. Currently, Thailand’s tourist industry makes up almost a fifth of its economy. You may have heard horror stories of rowdy bars and overcrowded beaches – hardly synonymous with a relaxing holiday designed to escape the stresses of home – but scratch below the surface and you’ll have your eyes opened to a whole other side of the island, one that remains unspoiled by mass tourism. Suddenly it’s goodbye to battling for a sun lounger and hello to traditional Thai experiences, secret beaches and settling into the very best hotels that the island has to offer.
Admittedly, a trip usually planned much further in advance than reacting to a particularly wintery day at home but nonetheless a popular spot for topping up the vitamin D levels during the winter months. Undoubtedly, a surfer’s paradise, Sydney also serves as a design and style hub, particularly in the neighbourhoods of Bondi and Cremorne where you can get your shopping fix while relaxing far from home.