With travel opening up once again around the world, winter sun getaways might be back on for the start of 2022.
Considering the 2020 and 2021 we’ve all had, it makes perfect sense to seek out some warm weather and some sunny beaches. as the temperature drops in the UK.
Or you might be looking for something a bit more high-energy, be it a bustling capital city or a far-flung country – with temperatures averaging somewhere between 1°C and 7°C in the UK in January, it’s a good time to seek out some hotter climes.
And if you’re also looking to shake those post-Christmas blues, the start of the New Year is a great time to get away.
So, where in the world should you jet off to in January 2022?
Of course nothing in the travel world is certain – things remain unpredictable and could change at any time – but assuming we can all get away from some winter sun, consider some of these destinations…
Where is hot in January?
Antigua and Barbuda
Sunshine hours: Nine hours
Flight time: Eight hours, 35 minutes
While January might be the coldest month of the year in Antigua, the average temperature still clocks it at around 26°C – making it a good deal warmer than these shores.
If you do decide to venture there, you’ll find more than your fair share of great beaches – including the famous Pink Sand beach in Barbuda, where the sand really is a rosy hue due to the amount of coral reefs nearby.
You’ll also find the sea is an average temperature of 27°C at that time of year – which makes it perfect for swimming.
Cape Town (South Africa)
Sunshine hours: 10 hours
Flight time: 11 hours 30 mins
While January might be freezing in the UK, in South Africa it’s summer – making it an ideal time to visit the vibrant city of Cape Town.
The city has more than its fair share of sights – you can chill out on Boulders Beach and visit its penguin colony as well as taking a trip to the world-famous Table Mountain – the cable car service will allow you to experience breathaking views of the city from its 3,500 foot high summit.
At the time of writing, there was still a curfew in place from midnight until 4am, meaning that most non-essential businesses currently close by 11pm – but the city remains a great option for those looking for a winter getaway.
Sunshine hours: 8 hours
Flight time: 8 hours 50 minutes
The Caribbean island of St Lucia enjoys great weather all round, but with average temperatures over 80 degrees fahrenheit in January, it’s the perfect time to visit.
As well as the beaches – among them Anse Chastenet Beach, known for its snorkelling – you can explore the Pitons, the two volcanic mountains which overlook the island, either on foot or by boat, and swim in the surrounding waterfalls.
And don’t forget to stop by Soufriere, the island’s original capital, with its botanic gardens and souvenir shopping in the Old Town.
Abu Dhabi (UAE)
Sunshine hours: 8.5 hours
Flight time: 6 hours 50 minutes
Dubai might be a good bet for those looking to grab some winter sun, but Abu Dhabi – the capital of the UAE – also has plenty to offer, and with January being its coldest month (but with temperatures still in the 70s), it’s a popular time to visit.
As well as its beaches, you can check out its many imposing and iconic attractions – including the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque and the Emirates Palace – or take yourself bargain hunting at one of the city’s many shopping malls.
Sunshine hours: 8 hours
Flight time: 6 hours
Another place whose coldest month is in January but still offers temperatures in the mid-70s, the West African nation of Cape Verde is a great choice for those looking for a beach break, with the island of Sal – and its Santa Maria Beach – offering plenty of opportunities for snorkelling and diving.
Kitesurfing is another activity to try – with the winds on the coastlines of Sal and Boa Vista making the conditions perfect for it.
The town of Santa Maria on the island of Sal is also a picturesque spot to visit if you want a break from the beach, offering pretty pastel coloured buildings and some of the archipelago’s best bars and restaurants.
Temperature: 25 °C
Sunshine hours:10 hours
Flight time: 9 hours
The US is reopening its borders to fully-vaccinated UK travellers from November – meaning that Miami in Florida, which enjoys hot and sunny weather pretty much all year round – could be an option for a winter getaway.
It’s a great choice for those who want to combine a sunseeking break with a dash of big city life – you can combine chilling on Miami Beach with checking out the city’s museums and attractions.
And don’t forget to visit the Art Deco district of South Beach, with its quirky, fashionable bars and restaurants.
Temperature: 27 °C
Sunshine hours:8 hours
Flight time: 14 hours
From the beginning of November the country will once again be open to fully vaccinated tourists from the UK, making it another great winter sun option.Thailand is a go-to destination for hot weather when it’s cold here, but if it’s beaches you’re after then you’ve got over 30 on Phuket to choose from.
As well as topping up your tan and indulging in a spot of snorkelling, the island also has plenty of other sights to keep you busy – visit the capital, Phuket Town, with its brightly-coloured buildings or take a trip to ‘James Bond Island’ – aka Koh Tapu, where The Man With The Golden Gun was filmed.
And when the sun goes down, don’t forget to pay a visit to one of the night markets, or check out Bangla Road, which is famous for its restaurants and bars.
Temperature: 32 °C
Sunshine hours:9 hours
Flight time: 9 hours 30 minutes
India’s pretty hot all round in January, but Goa offers a great mix of laid-back beaches and tourist hotspots. As well as sunbathing and indulging in everything from water skiing to scuba diving, you can also visit historical temples and sites including the Basilica of Bom Jesus, housing the mummy of 16th Century Missionary St Francis Xavier.
And don’t forget to check out one of the local dolphin safaris – head out into the Arabian sea on one of the tours early in the morning for a chance of seeing our aquatic friends up close.
Temperature: 26 °C
Sunshine hours: 6 hours
Flight time: 13 hours 25 minutes
The Far East has no shortage of balmy temperatures at the start of the year – and Singapore is another great place to visit, with the country reopening for fully vaccinated travellers from the UK as of mid-October.
As well as the sights on the mainland – including the Marina Bay sands and the Botanic Gardens – take a trip out to Sentosa, an island resort with a 2km long sheltered beach as well as the Universal Studios Singapore theme park.
And back on the mainland, don’t forget to stop for a Singapore Sling at the place where it was created, the world-famous Raffles Hotel.
For cooler temperatures, check out Europe
While Europe may not be the warmest place to jet away to in January, there are still some parts of the continent that will get you warmer temperatures than the UK if you fancy a city break. Such as:
- Portugal – average temperature 15°C
- Malta – average temperature 16°C
- Cyprus – average temperature 17°C
- Canary Islands – average temperature 20°C
Keep in mind
While a January 2022 break seems far enough away to ensure Covid travel measures are a thing of the past – that might not be the case.
All the destinations on this list are visitable at the time of writing, but you should keep in mind that countries can be added to the red list at short notice, and that if a country changes colour while you’re already there, you’ll be subject to quarantine rules.
It’s wise to keep a close eye on the country’s individual entry requirements – which will be subject to change. Some countries may only require a negative test while others may require travellers to be fully vaccinated, with unvaccinated passengers having to quarantine on arrival.
Before you book, it’s advisable to check the Foreign Office Travel Advice to ensure the place you plan to visit is open to UK tourists, and what the conditions of entry might be.
You should also ensure you have top-tier travel insurance in place that will cover you in the event you test positive while you are abroad and may need to extend your stay or seek medical treatment.
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