It’s that time of year again. The Christmas adverts are starting to play on television, the leaves are starting to fall from the trees, and while many people are looking forward to the cold weather and the excitement that Christmas brings, there are many of us that are dreading the winter months to come.

Winter means cold. It means rainy days where you get soaked through from head to toe. It means harsh winds, icy roads, dark days and frozen fingers. Sure, winter can be a lot of fun, but it can also be very, very depressing. If you are not ready to swap your summer dresses for your winter coats just yet, then have a look at taking a winter holiday. While half the world is digging up their fur coats and settling down next to a warm fire, the other half is putting on their swimsuits and heading out to the beach.

If the thought of winter is already bringing you down then plan ahead. Book a trip now, and when you are wrapped up in your warm layers just daydream about the beautifully warm country that you will be visiting when winter has taken it’s toll on you. So, where should you go to escape the cold and find the sun?

NB: The average temperatures indicated are during the November-February period.

Mexico

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Average Temperature: 25 degrees Celsius

Just above Belize is Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula. On the Atlantic Coast, this place is a beautiful mixture of modern and ancient cultures. The seas are green, the sun is beaming and you can take a cultural break exploring ancient temples or party it up on the beach with fashion-conscious locals. The best time of year to visit is during the harsh winter of the Northern Hemisphere. Be prepared for sand between your toes and sun on your skin.

Cyprus

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Average Temperature: 15 degrees Celsius

Whilst the sea may be a little chilly, the island will be full of sunshine and definitely a lot warmer than most of the Northern Hemisphere. Perfect for shorter breaks, Cyprus is not too far away, only a four hour journey from the UK. Winter is perfect T-shirt weather, and you will avoid all of the tourists as there will be hardly anyone around.

India

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Average Temperature: 27 degrees Celsius

India is a dream holiday. Full of colour, culture and vibrance India appears on many bucket lists. When many people imagine India they picture staying in a dusty, poor city, but it does not have to be so. Holiday is Goa over the winter period, and stay in the Otter Creek Tents. The tents were created by fashion photographer Denzil Sequeria who transformed four historic beach houses into luxury hideaways. The Otter Creek Tents sit on a white sand beach, with a saltwater creek and have an excellent restaurant.

Cambodia

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Average Temperature: 26 degrees Celsius

An hour from the chaotic Sihanoukville is Koh Rong. This island is so underdeveloped that there is no electricity or water mains. This is the perfect place for a break not only from the weather, but also from the trials and tribulations of modern day life. Koh Rong is the second largest island, and you can stay in a treehouse on a tropical beach. The bungalows situated high in the trees have balconies equipped with hammocks and beautiful sea views. You may even get a visit from a monkey!

Queensland

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Average Temperature: 30 degrees Celsius

Australia is an obvious choice for a winter sun holiday. Whilst up in the Northern Hemisphere we are freezing our socks off, Aussies are getting used to a summer season with temperatures that we could never dream of reaching. Anywhere in Queensland is a beautiful place for a holiday. Queensland has balmy weather, beautiful coastline and a lot of culture. You can snorkel or dive in the Great Barrier Reef, sail in the Whitsundays and trek in ancient rainforest at Daintree. The seas are as warm as a cosy bath, and the coast is a feast for the eyes.

Bali

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Average Temperature: 27 degrees Celsius

Although another long haul destination, Bali is excellent value. It is the most beautiful of Indonesia’s Islands, and more and more tourists are flocking to see it’s beauty. Come to Bali for a beautiful beach holiday, where you can swim in crystal clear waters and spend your days relaxing in spas or sunbathing on the sand. Treat yourself to tasty Indonesian food and an incredible sea view this winter.

St Lucia

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Average Temperature: 26 degrees Celsius

St Lucia is one of the more glamorous islands of the Caribbean. The island is home to volcanic mountains and incredible beaches. You could stay in a luxury resort, or spend some time living in a little fishing village. Trek through the rain forest and visit the waterfalls, or go diving among the reef. A world away from snow and sleet!

Barbados

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Average Temperature: 26 degrees Celsius

Ah, Barbados. You do not need me to explain why this island has made the winter sun list. This Caribbean Island is so full of life and culture that not only will you be experiencing a different climate, you will be experiencing a different world. Take part in some typical Bajan customs such as afternoon tea and cricket, ride the reggae bus into the town or go scuba diving in the reef. Who knows, maybe you will even bump into Rihanna on the beach!

Cuba

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Average Temperature: 23 degrees Celsius

Cuba is an intriguing place to visit. It seems stuck in the past, as it has not yet quite come in to the 21st century. Go and experience some Latin American Heritage and culture whilst you drink rum and smoke smooth cigars. If that’s not your thing then relax on one of the infamous white sand beaches or hike along the rolling hills.

The Canaries

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Average Temperature: 20 degrees Celsius

The Canary Islands, whilst they may not be too hot during the winter months, will provide a nice break from some of the more harsh conditions of the Northern Hemisphere. Just a short flight away, you could visit one of the more well known destinations such as Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote and Fuerteventura or go to one of the smaller, less visited and less spoilt islands- La Palma, La Gomera and El Hierro. Great for a quick break you can enjoy warmer temperatures and beautiful landscapes.

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