Winter vacations promise a well-needed escape, whether it’s from a holiday-hectic December, a bitter January, or a drab February. There something about the season that awakens a person’s wanderlust, driving countless people north for the wintery ski slopes or south for the summery skies and warm-weather beaches.
Winter, in part because of the cluster of holidays as well as school vacations, is as much of a peak travel window as mid-spring and high summer. Prices rise according, and precipitously around popular winter breaks including Christmas Day, New Year’s Day, and the weekends neighboring Martin Luther King Jr. Day and Presidents Day. But travelers who are willing and able to depart around these popular dates can find serious savings. Travel + Leisure can help navigate the ski slopes of the world’s best mountains, the sandy shores of its warmest climes, and everything in between.
Popular winter holiday destinations are often examples of extremes: snowshoeing through Vermont, paddling through Puerto Rico’s Bioluminescent Bay, skiing outside Québec City, or hiking St. Lucia’s striking, rainforest-covered Gros Piton mountain. However, travelers don’t necessarily have to choose between hot and cold. Cities like New Orleans or Palm Springs offer a creative, temperate alternative. California’s Sonoma Valley is a cool, laid-back substitute to Napa—with wine that’s just as good. New York City, whose attractions are primarily indoors, offers the same wealth of cultural activities all year round.
Whether you are looking for the perfect family cruise in the Caribbean, a snowy retreat to the slopes of Colorado, a sweater-weather jaunt to Austin’s South Congress Street, or a week exploring southern Spain, T+L can help find the best deals and most engaging destinations for everyone with the winter travel itch. Check in often for the most up-to-date information, news, and recommendations.