We all know that when this month rolls around everybody is about ready for a mid-winter pick-me-up. With the holiday season and new year’s celebrations a distant, blurry memory, this is the time when we start to fantasize about that winter getaway to refresh our perspectives, and our scenery. Whether it’s snow, sun or an exotic location on the other side of the globe, make a plan for that escape – and help get to that winter finish line!
Snow lovers rejoice! If there ever was a time to hit the slopes in Lake Tahoe, this year is definitely it. With record breaking amounts of snowfall in this area, where the Sierra Nevada mountain range intersects California and Nevada, Lake Tahoe is the definition of a winter wonderland. Straddling both states and sitting on the largest alpine lake in North America, this ideal winter destination is an outdoor adventure lover’s dream come true. From Northstar California to Diamond Peak, Heavenly Mountain, Homewood Mountain or Kirkwood Mountain, there are over 22,000 acres of skiing and snowboarding trails and nine world-class ski resorts to choose from. But Lake Tahoe isn’t all about nature; there are also casinos on the Nevada side if you’re feeling lucky, and plenty of shopping, art galleries, movie theatres, cultural events and exclusive spa and wellness centres to really relax and unwind. So what are you waiting for?
Where to stay in Lake Tahoe
This island nation just south of India may seem like a bit of a trek to get to, but once there you’re sure to fall in love with this wonderful, diverse country. Boasting some of the best surfing and beaches in the world, its distinct and wild landscape ranges from dark sandy beaches giving way to the deep hues of the Indian Ocean, to dense, lush tangles of rainforests, desert planes and glowing green hills blanketed in bountiful tea farms. For those who want to explore the country’s history and culture, there are eight (!) Unesco World Heritage landmarks including The Sacred City of Anuradhapura, The Cave Temples of Dambulla and The Sinharaja Forest Reserve. And if you’re looking to get in touch with your wilder side, safari tours of Sri Lanka’s many national parks with get you up close and personal with the local fauna including elephants, leopards and water buffalo. From fabulous curries to spectacular sights, now is the perfect time to explore this affordable, uncrowded and incredible country.
Where to stay in Sri Lanka
There’s a lot more to Jamaica than just beautiful beaches, Red Stripe beer and Bob Marley. A vibrant, bustling, cultural Caribbean hub, the island has a strong identity and incredible energy that keeps visitors coming back for more. With the very cosmopolitan capital city of Kingston at the heart of the nation, the food, music, art and fashion scenes are making this gorgeous vacation spot irresistible to a whole new generation of young, inquisitive and attentive travellers. Jamaica’s folk music past and reggae roots are contributing to the current contemporary dancehall movement creating a thriving new music scene perfect for those who like to hit the dance floor or are up for a dusk till dawn bumping street party. Then there’s the food: Creole inspired, there is no comparison to experiencing the real flavours of Jamaica on Jamaican soil – jerk chicken anyone? From the island’s world-famous spicy rub to curried goat, oxtail stews or fried fish with spicy vinegar and scotch-bonnet peppers, there’s a lot to discover, and of course you can wash it all down with some local rum or ice cold beer. So even though there’s coral reefs and hidden coves, stretches of white sand and sparkling water, your visit to Jamaica should take you beyond the beach.
Where to stay in Jamaica
Surfing? Check. Sun? Check. Some of the best Mexican food in the U.S.? Check. As if we needed more reasons to love this hip, Southern California city, here are a couple more to get those travel juices flowing. For those who like the outdoors, hiking is a great San Diegan pastime and making your way to the secluded Black’s Beach, or to the challenging but infamous Potato Chip Rock are two treks definitely worth the effort. Then there’s whale watching. San Diego is the spot to catch all sorts of whales and sea creatures migrating up and down the Pacific coastline and there are plenty of boat tours to get a better look. For a view of a lifetime, take in the golden sunset at Sunset Cliffs and if you’re lucky, you’ll see some dolphins splashing around in the distance. If you’re a lover of craft beer (America’s new favorite pastime), head to the very cool, former industrial neighbourhood of North Park and discover how the microbrew culture in San Diego has hit new heights. For those who would rather hit that warm SoCal water, La Jolla Shores, a long stretch of sand-bottom beach with friendly waves and a good selection of surf shops, offer lessons and rentals. And finally, who can resist the San Diego zoo, home to the pandas and one of the largest, and most beautiful zoos in the world. Need we say more?
Where to stay in San Diego