PureWow logo

14 Warm Places to Visit in January

From palm springs to phuket.

Author image: Woman in blue dress with sunglasses traveling.

PureWow editors select every item that appears on this page, and the company may earn compensation through affiliate links within the story. All prices are accurate upon date of publish. You can learn more about the affiliate process here .

Collage of warm places to visit in January

January 1 may usher in a new year full of excitement and possibilities, but a few weeks in, that positive attitude quickly fades as the snow piles up . You start to find that snow angels aren’t that amusing after all, and your favorite hot cocoa would taste better if it were a piña colada and you were drinking it on a luxurious beach somewhere. As the temperatures continue to dip, you find yourself constantly staring out the window and fantasizing about going somewhere warm.

The good news is that January is a great month to travel . With the holiday rush in the rearview mirror, rates begin to drop, ushering in the ideal time to jet off to greener (and sunnier) pastures. Of course, it depends on what you're after. Lee Thompson, co-founder of global travel company Flash Pack says that for a bucket-list warm-weather trip in January, nothing beats the Serengeti. If it's about scoring an airfare deal, Becky Blaine, Newsletter Editor at The Points Guy , advises to keep an eye on flights to Hawaii as airfare drops to draw visitors back to support the economy post-Maui fire . For the best of everything—warm temps, direct flights, beaches, culture and food—check out Curaçao. It's more of a hidden gem (at least to Americans) in the Caribbean and a stay at the new, adults-only boutique Kura Botanica  (located in a UNESCO World Heritage building!) will certainly cure your winter blues. ( Check out airfare here ).

So if you’re dreaming of a winter getaway (or simply need some inspo to get you through the frosty month), here are 14 warm places to travel in January.

Where Is the Warmest Place in the U.S. in January?

The warmest spots in the U.S. overall in January are probably gonna be Hawaii or Puerto Rico. On the mainland, it's all about the Sun Belt region, spanning from Southern California to North Carolina, including cities like Miami , Fort Lauderdale, Houston , Las Vegas, L.A. , Phoenix, San Antonio and more. Blaine warns that many warm-weather U.S. destinations end up with extended high seasons into January as people look to escape cold weather and snow. Tracking airfare to certain destinations will be a good indicator of the willingness of the destination to draw in more visitors. 

10 Island Vacations You Can Take Without Leaving the Country

Street view of Cartagena

1. Cartagena, Colombia

  • Average Daily Temperature in January: 88°F
  • Recommended for: bachelor/bachelorette parties, romantic getaways
  • Best Home Rentals: Casa Charlie's Can (sleeps 7, from $653/night), Apartamento de Lujo Edificio (sleeps 4, from $90 night), House with Rooftop Pool (sleeps 8, from $225/night)
  • Best Hotels: Sofitel Legend Santa Clara Cartagena (inquire for rates), Sophia Hotel (from $161/night)

Cartagena is the epitome of a steamy escape with lots of choices at your fingertips . January delivers tropical temperatures, minimal humidity and the lowest chance of precipitation. You’ll certainly appreciate the gentle breeze while walking around this picturesque port. This UNESCO-listed old town is an Insta-worthy maze of cobblestone lanes, Spanish colonial buildings with balconies covered in bougainvillea and glorious churches that dominate the tree-lined plazas. When it comes to tasty eats, find your way to a palettas , a fruity and refreshing mid-afternoon snack. You gotta try pescado frito (fried fish) with green plantains and coconut rice. For the best beaches in the area, book a day trip to the magical Islas del Rosario .

Flamingos in clear waters of Aruba

  • Average Daily Temperature in January: 86°F
  • Recommended for: flying out of JFK or Newark, water activities, beach vibes
  • Best Home Rentals: Dalia's Paradise Home (sleeps 4, from $133/night), Beach White Villa (sleeps 2, from $210/night), Airstream with Pool and Views (sleeps 4, from $358/night)
  • Best Hotels: The Ritz-Carlton Aruba (from $699/night), Courtyard by Marriott Aruba Resort (from $316/night)

Aruba , the happy island 48 miles west of Curaçao, welcomes hordes of repeat travelers—especially in the winter when consistently warm weather, endless sunshine and cooling trade winds sure beat the forecast in most of the U.S.—and with nonstop flights out of JFK and Newark daily means Aruba’s famed sandy beaches and rum punch are only a direct flight away. According to travel writer Dan Koday, along with overall chill-meets-luxe vibe of the island, the water activities are a main attraction: "[Whether] it’s windsurfing, riding Jet Skis, snorkeling, cruising on a catamaran or scuba diving. In fact, you’d be missing out if you have your PADI certification and left without exploring the many shipwrecks in Aruba’s waters: the  Antilla ,  Debbie II  and  Jane  wrecks, plus an  airplane wreck site  with not one but two submerged planes (they were intentionally sunk to form an artificial reef)." On land, Koday recommends renting an ATV to see the island—especially the rugged, arid  Arikok National Park . But whatever you do, he tells us, "be sure to try  pastechis  (local empanadas) pretty much anywhere you find them." Think: flaky pastry and gooey cheese.

Mountain and palm trees in Palm Springs California at sunset.

3. Palm Springs, California

  • Average Daily Temperature in January: 71°F
  • Recommended for: domestic travel, architecture buffs, mild weather
  • Best Home Rentals: The BANK (sleeps 6, from $762/night), Alexander Butterfly Home (sleeps 6, from $593/night), Guest House (sleeps 2, from $183/night)
  • Best Hotels: Sands Hotel (inquire for rates), Kimpton Rowan Palm Spring s (from $635/night)

Sunshine. Highs in the low 70s. Yeah, January in Palm Springs is total perfection. The hip Sonoran Desert oasis is known for its mid-century design cred, iconic architecture and salacious tales from Tinseltown’s golden age. That raises the question of where you’re going to stay. Whether you’re a fan of retro glamor or contemporary aesthetics, stylish hotels abound. We also love the idea of renting a fabulous house erected in the famous neighborhood Elvis and Priscilla honeymooned. Of course, a pool and jacuzzi are non-negotiables regardless of where you shack up. Round out your itinerary by doing a historical walking tour to see where the Rat Pack used to party, snapping (mandatory) pics under luscious palm trees, indulging in spa treatments, shopping for vintage treasures and communing with nature on a day trip to Joshua Tree National Park .

A fancy hut on aqua clear waters in Cancun Mexican

4. Cancun, Mexico

  • Average Daily Temperature in January: 82°F
  • Recommended for: easy international travel, resorts, family getaways, romantic getaways, group trips
  • Best Home Rentals: Zen & Cozy Condo (sleeps 3, from $38/night), Beachfront Condo (sleeps 4, from $141/night)
  • Best Hotels: Garza Blanca Cancun (from $419/night), Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach Cancun (from $413/night)

It’s all about sun and fun in Cancun. And it truly has activities for all types of travelers—from hard-partying college students and bachelorette parties to honeymooners and families . In fact, PureWow Editor in Chief, Jillian Quint, brought her 5 and 7-year-olds to the all-inclusive Garza Blanca and was quite surprised by how both family-friendly and luxe it still felt: "Dare I say, it reaffirmed my commitment to family travel," she wrote on her stay. Nonetheless, you’ll undoubtedly spend the bulk of your trip on the beach (hello, Playa Delfines). For a dose of culture, head over to the Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza and if you’re on the market for some adventure, take up some whale shark snorkeling courtesy of Ocean Tours . Have a hankering for authentic Mexican food? TripAdvisor reviewers rave about El Rinconcito de Puebla and Los Caporales .

Rice fields of Chiang Mai Thailand

5. Chiang Mai, Thailand

  • Average Daily Temperature in January: 85°F
  • Recommended for: solo travel , romantic getaway, culture, sightseeing
  • Best Home Rentals: Treehouse (sleeps 4, from $192/night), Hern's Artistic Studio (sleeps 2, from $96/night), Quiet Cottage (sleeps 2, from $80/night)
  • Best Hotels: Na Nirand Romantic Hotel (from $374/night), The Inside House (from $104/night)

According to Lee Thompson, co-founder of global travel company, Flash Pack, South East Asia itineraries are popular during the month of January thanks to hot temperatures. Specifically, Chiang Mai, dubbed the “Rose of the North,” is a continual reminder that there’s more to Thailand than the islands of Phuket (though we’ll get to that later) and Koh Samui. The capital of the ancient Lanna Kingdom charms tourists with its relaxed pace and rich culture. The city boasts hundreds of opulent Buddhist temples including the gilded Wat Phra Singh as well as lush rainforests, majestic mountains and elephant sanctuaries within driving distance. Since Chiang Mai has a slightly cooler climate than Bangkok, you can clock more sightseeing hours without sweating through your gauzy printed pants. Let’s be honest, it’ll still feel quite balmy.

warm places to visit in january curucao

  • Recommended for: direct flights, solo travel, romantic getaway, culture and food, water activities, beach vibes
  • Best Home Rentals: Lagun Oceansuite (sleeps 2, from $100/night), Villa atop a Hill (sleeps 6, from $221/night)
  • Best Hotels: Kura Botanica (from $229/night), Avila Beach Hotel (from $199/night),   Zoëtry Curaçao Resort & Spa  (from $624/night)

A less touristy spot than other Caribbean locales, you might consider Curaçao a hidden gem with less crowds, fewer tourist traps and lower prices. Don't worry. It's still replete with beaches, amazing food (like  goat barbecue , fried conch, Antillean ice cream, bòkel, and iguana soup) and opportunities to kick back and explore whether on ATVs or boat to visit the famous Blue Room cave . Tirzah Statia , Curaçao native and experience curator for  Curaçao Tourist Board explained to PureWow editor Taryn Pire why January was a great time to visit: “In Curaçao, winter is still summer, with temperatures averaging between 80 and 90°F [with] some rain and light winds.” In fact, many find the constant wind or breeze we experience here like “the cherry on the cake.” Weather aside, Delta will add direct flights from Atlanta to the island in winter 2024 adding to the convenience of a winter island getaway. (Direct flights are already available from NYC, Newark, Charlotte, Miami, Toronto and Montreal). Unique in its identity amid the many more Americanized Caribbean destinations, during Pire's own visit to Curaçao , she felt almost immediately in the thick of local culture, passing local watering holes and lively neighborhoods.

Herd of wildebeast at sunrise in the Serengeti

7. Serengeti National Park, Tanzania

  • Average Daily Temperature in January: highs in the 80s, lows in the low 70s to upper 50s
  • Recommended for: Big Five safaris, international travel, bucket-list travel
  • Best Hotels: Four Seasons Safari Lodge (inquire for rates), Lake Manyara Serena Safari Lodge (from $376/night), Seronera Wildlife Lodge (from $282/night)

Says Flash Pack Co-Founder Thompson: "For January, I would choose an epic, bucket-list adventure." Specifically, the travel expert is talking about a unique roaming safari in Tanzania (a group tour built of solo travelers), since dry season in the Serengeti means great viewing for the great wildebeest migration. Serengeti National Park , a World Heritage Site, teems with wildlife, including lions, leopards, cheetahs and more. Amazingly, though a safari can seem far-flung and out of reach, accommodations are available at every point. Meet ya near the lions?

Historic duomo and colored buildings in Campeche Mexico

8. Campeche, Mexico

  • Average Daily Temperature in January: 82°F Recommended for: culture, families, romantic getaways, great rates
  • Best House Rentals: Casa Boutique Onelia (sleeps 6, from $157/night), Tiny Home (sleeps 4, from $110/night) Best Hotels: Hacienda Campeche (from $250/night), Hotel Boutique Casa Don Gustavo (from $176/night)

The Yucatan Peninsula shines as a hotbed of tourism thanks to Cancún, Playa del Carmen and Tulum . But you likely haven’t heard of Campeche. (That’s OK, we didn’t know much about it either until recently.) This less-frequented port city oozes charm and heritage. Mild weather makes January the perfect month to visit since you’ll want to spend time exploring the cobblestone streets, sherbet-hued colonial buildings, UNESCO-listed walled historic center and hilltop fortresses. The waterfront promenade is a lovely spot for a morning jog or a sunset stroll. Embark on an artisan, culinary and archeological tour or explore the historical artifacts in Edzna .

warm places to visit in january phuket

9. Phuket, Thailand

  • Recommended for: backpackers, families, romantic getaways, beach vibes, affordable accommodations
  • Best House Rentals: Hebe Haven (sleeps 8, from $214/night), Kathu Villa (sleeps 2, from $165/night)
  • Best Hotels: myPatong Social Hostel (from $18/night) Renaissance Phuket Resort & Spa (from $152/night), Trisara (from $591/night)

From backpackers and spring breakers to honeymooners and celebs, everyone loves Phuket. It’ll downright blow you away with its white sands, swaying palm trees and turquoise tides, but the stunning scenery is hardly the only draw. Thailand’s biggest island also has legendary nightlife, delicious local eats, Buddhist temples, fabled diving sites and hundreds of hotels. Despite its status as a full-fledged tourism darling and January being the preeminent time to visit, you can still score legit deals. At the time of this writing, a deluxe room at the Renaissance Phuket Resort & Spa —an attractive oceanfront property with swish decor and stellar service—will run you $150 per night, for example. Couples in the mood for romance will fall hard for Trisara , which woos with its Michelin-starred restaurant, plush spa and private beach. It’s on the pricier side but definitely worth it for an unforgettable anniversary trip or a splurge-worthy international getaway. On the opposite end of the spectrum, hostels in the lively town of Patong start at $8.

warm places to visit in january big island hawaii

10. Big Island, Hawaii

  • Average Daily Temperature in January: 81°F
  • Recommended for: airfare deals, outdoor and water activities, resorts, families, romantic getaways
  • Best House Rentals: Volcano Cottage (sleeps 2, from $129/night), Pele's Eye Tiny Home (sleeps 2, from $97/night), Hawaiian Treehouse (sleeps 2, from $182/night)
  • Best Hotels: Fairmont Orchid (from $520/night), Kings' Land by Hilton Grand Vacations (from $359/night)

When asked where she'd personally travel in January, Becky Blaine, Newsletter Editor at TPG, said that for a mix of activity and relaxation, Hawaii is a great option: "There are so many airfare deals right now to draw visitors back and support the economy after the wildfires in Maui, " she expands. The Big Island earns our vote as the picture-perfect place to kick off your adventures in the Aloha State . Blessed with an unimaginably diverse landscape, this tropical paradise is teeming with hiking trails, waterfalls, giant lava rocks and jaw-dropping shores in colors you’ve never imagined. On the southernmost tip, Papakolea Beach displays dazzling green sand as a result of a mineral called olivine. Basalt gives Punaluʻu Beach its black hue. Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park is truly unlike anywhere else on the planet. You can also swim alongside gentle manta rays with massive 16-foot wingspans. If you’re into java, be sure to book a Kona coffee tour ! January falls within the rainy season for Hawaii, but the upside is that everything looks so green, and the flowers are blooming. Plus, it’s not too humid. Rates tend to be on the higher side at the beginning of January, but by the middle of the month prices drop back down to average.

warm places to visit in january costa rica

11. Costa Rica

  • Recommended for: culture, resorts, romantic getaways, eco-lodging, wildlife and beach vibes
  • Best House Rentals: Jaguar Chalet (sleeps 3, from $185/night), Beachfront Bungalow (sleeps 4, from $420/night), Treetop Hideaway (sleeps 2, $143/night)
  • Best Hotels: Oxygen Jungle Villas (from $251/night), Maquenque Eco-Lodge (from $101/night)

Keep the excitement of the holidays going by escaping the frightful winter weather and trading it for sunny Costa Rica. "I think Central and South American locations can be overlooked," says Blaine. "Don’t be afraid of the language barrier—many resorts have English-speaking staff and offer guided tours and great recommendations to explore local culture." Plus, January is the perfect time to visit this Central American country because it’s just after the holiday rush and it’s the first month of the dry season. That means you can expect smaller crowds and picture-perfect weather when you embark on wildlife tours at the Cabo Blanco Nature Reserve , Hacienda Barú National Wildlife Refuge or the Curi Cancha Wildlife Refuge . Costa Rica is also nestled between the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea which means countless blue water beaches to just relax and unwind at—try Playa Conchal or Manuel Antonio Beach to start.

Boats on the sand of Cape Verde in Africa

12. Cape Verde, Africa

  • Average Daily Temperature in January: 74°F
  • Recommended for: mild temperatures, adventure, solo travel, buddy trip, beach vibes
  • Best House Rentals: Nature Lodge (sleeps 2, from $132/night), House on the Sea (sleeps 4, from $64/night)
  • Best Hotels: Hilton Cabo Verde Sal Resort (from $198/night), Hotel Riu Palace Santa Maria (inquire for rates), Morabeza (from $124/night)

Sure, it’s not nearly as hot as, say, Colombia, but the cool January temperatures in Cape Verde make it so it’s not too cold that you don’t want to go outside, and it’s not so hot that your afternoon adventure is ruined by your desire to get to an AC ASAP. This island off the coast of west Africa has a lot to offer for snowbirds escaping the harsh winters. And as Thompson points out, "For January, I would choose an epic, bucket-list adventure." And adventures this African spot has to offer: go on an excursion and get a different view of the Island of Sal courtesy of Zipline Cabo Verde , and those who like to keep things more grounded can still get their adrenaline pumping while on a 4WD Buggy Island Adventure .

A funky sign pointing in all directions on Grand Cayman

13. Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands

  • Average Daily Temperature in January: 84°F
  • Recommended for: beach vibes, water activities, families, romantic getaways, culture, foodies
  • Best House Rentals: Luxury Cottage (sleeps 4, from $280/night), West Bay Townhouse (sleeps 6, from $180/night)
  • Best Hotels: The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman (from $769/night), Westin Grand Cayman Seven Mile Beach Club & Resort (from $539/night), Sunshine Suites (from $209/night)

Known for calm waters, coral reefs teeming with marine life and most famously the spectacular beauty of Seven Mile Beach, Grand Cayman is the quintessential Caribbean getaway. Catching rays, snorkeling, stand-up paddle boarding in a bioluminescent bay and fishing are among the most popular pastimes. Need a break from the sun? Head over to George Town to watch the massive cruise ships dock in the port. The capital is also home to the ruins of a colonial-era fort and the Cayman Islands National Museum . Foodies won’t want to pass up the return of the Cayman Cookout (January 10 to 14, 2024). Held at The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman , the mouthwatering event brings together leading chefs, sommeliers and spirit aficionados from all over the world. Past headliner chefs include Emeril Lagasse, Deedee Niyomkul, Éric Ripert​ and ​José Andrés—just to name a few.

Nassau, Bahamas has an average temperature of 79 degrees Fahrenheit in January.

14. Nassau, Bahamas

  • Average Daily Temperature in January: 79°F
  • Recommended for: beach vibes, water activities, families, romantic getaways, groups, culture, foodies
  • Best House Rentals: Boho Guesthouse (sleeps 2, from $101/night), Oceanfront Villa (sleeps 16, from $600/night)
  • Best Hotels: Goldwyn Resort & Residences (from $520/night), Margaritaville Beach Resort Nassau (from $234/night)

Nothing compares to the sweet island breeze, vivid coral reefs and soft and silky sand in the Bahamas. Specifically in Nassau, the capital, which is also one of the most popular cruise ship stops and home to the beloved The Atlantis Resort . (You know, the humungous hotel that Michael Jackson frequented, which now has a suite named after the king of pop ). A seven-day trip for two people can cost as high as $3,000, but you can get day passes starting at $135 to enjoy all that the resort has to offer (including swimming with dolphins, a 30-minute lazy river and water slides, to name a few), if you decide to stay somewhere else. Then you can go into town to shop and eat with tourists and locals alike.

10 Relaxing Vacations in the U.S. to Help You De-Stress

headshot 2

Freelance PureWow Editor


Executive Editor, Frazzled Mom, Bravo-Holic

Why you should trust us, more stories you'll love.

Protect Your Trip »

Best places to visit in january 2024.

January is an ideal time to travel for those needing to escape winter's chill. While travel deals may be limited during this time, you will skirt humidity and the rainy season in popular warm weather destinations. And if you're one for embracing the season's snowy offerings, this is the perfect time to take advantage of the powder in mountainous regions north of the equator. U.S. News weighed these factors and more across an array of different destinations – from the rugged to the refined – to come up with the best places to visit in January. Vote for your favorite destinations below to have a say in next year's list. 

Argentine Patagonia

Railay beach, st. kitts & nevis, british virgin islands, hawai'i volcanoes national park, serengeti national park.

warm places to visit end of january

As January brings some of the warmest temperatures and the most daylight hours of the year to Argentine Patagonia, it's no surprise that this is one of the most popular months to visit. Conditions will be ideal for kayaking or rafting on the glacier-fed lakes of the Lake District, located in the northern part of Patagonia, or taking a boat cruise to Perito Moreno Glacier in Los Glaciares National Park. Plus, the weather will be warm enough (though still brisk) for a trip to Ushuaia, the southernmost city in the world and an excellent base for hiking in Tierra del Fuego.

warm places to visit end of january

If sun, sand and a little adventure are requirements for your post-holiday escape, Railay Beach is a great place to spend your next vacation. January is one of the driest months of the year on this Thai peninsula, so you're likely to encounter sun-soaked days of beaching and kayaking while taking in views of the iconic limestone cliffs. If you're up for more action, this area is known for its rock climbing, and you'll also find several caves and lagoons to explore. Just be sure to book early as accommodations can fill up quickly during the dry season.

warm places to visit end of january

Venture to this Swiss ski town during the winter months for a scenic getaway. One of Zermatt's most impressive sights is its world-renowned Matterhorn. For breathtaking views, take a cable car to Matterhorn Glacier Paradise, Europe’s highest mountain station. Here, travelers can explore the attraction’s Glacier Palace, an enchanting attraction with ice tunnels and ever-changing ice sculptures. Adrenaline junkies can also gaze at this jaw-dropping natural wonder during a helicopter tour, or they can try hiking or skiing one of the area's 37 other mountains. Zermatt itself is car-free, but visitors can get around on foot or bike, or by using the town's electric vehicles.

warm places to visit end of january

Come January, nothing sounds better than tropical weather and some of the best beaches in the Caribbean . But once you arrive, you'll find that these islands have even more to offer. This two-island nation boasts prime sailing conditions, blue waters perfect for snorkeling and lush forests and volcanoes for those who prefer to explore on land. Plus, if you're ringing in the new year here, you'll catch the closing events for the islands' biggest festival – the St. Kitts and Nevis National Carnival. Deemed Sugar Mas by the locals, this cultural celebration makes this one of the sweetest times of year to visit.

warm places to visit end of january

Those looking to get away from chilly winter weather should consider a relaxing getaway to the British Virgin Islands. Average temperatures hover between the high 70s and low 80s this time of year, making it easy to enjoy the many outdoor activities that the four main islands have to offer. With ferries regularly traveling to and from the various islands, visitors can sunbathe on the sandy shores of Cane Garden Bay on the capital island of Tortola one day and explore The Baths on Virgin Gorda the next.

warm places to visit end of january

Home to two of the world's most active volcanoes, Mauna Loa and Kilauea, Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park appeals to adventurous travelers. Hike or drive along Crater Rim Drive to see stunning views of the Kilauea caldera, or attend an educational ranger program to learn more about the park's history. January is Volcano Awareness Month on the Big Island, and the park holds several events during this time to promote the understanding and respect of volcanoes. Keep in mind, certain areas of the park may be closed due to seismic activity, so check the park website prior to arrival.

warm places to visit end of january

An African safari may not be the first destination you think of when planning a winter getaway, but a trip to Tanzania's Serengeti National Park should be on your radar. January is one of the best times to travel here, as it is when numerous wildebeest breed during their Great Migration throughout the park. To catch a glimpse of this can't-miss natural phenomenon, which is one of the largest herd movements in the world, base yourself in Southern Serengeti or the northern part of the adjacent Ngorongoro Conservation Area.

warm places to visit end of january

If your heart is set on a winter wonderland, Whistler is the spot for you. This Canadian ski destination averages around 80 inches of snowfall in January, so you're bound to have some fresh powder when you hit the slopes, snowmobile or snowshoe. You'll also have plenty of opportunity to embrace the elements while you ice skate at the Village at Whistler Olympic Plaza or ice fish on serene lakes. When you're ready to warm up, enjoy Whistler's après-ski scene with craft beer at a pub, or cozy up by the fire at one of the area's iconic chalets.

warm places to visit end of january

Take a trip Down Under for an unforgettable outdoor adventure. In January, this Australian island offers its warmest weather of the year – average highs sit in the low 70s – thanks to its location in the Southern Hemisphere. Much of Tasmania is protected in national parks and wildlife reserves, offering nature lovers plenty of opportunities to hike, camp and spot wildlife. Travelers can also head to the capital city of Hobart to explore its food and wine offerings or visit the Mona, a unique underground art museum with its own brewery, winery and restaurant.

warm places to visit end of january

Boasting the world's tallest building (Burj Khalifa), the world's largest shopping center (the Dubai Mall) and the world's longest urban zip line (the XLine Dubai), this United Arab Emirates city has plenty to offer travelers come January. Average temperatures this time of year hover around the mid-70s, which is ideal for lounging on popular La Mer beach, strolling through the whimsical Dubai Miracle Garden or floating down Dubai Creek on a water taxi (called an abra). If you need to get out of the sun, consider touring the ornate Jumeirah Mosque or observing marine life at the Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo.

warm places to visit end of january

Located in the Andalusian region of southern Spain, Seville boasts a number of can't-miss attractions (think: the Real Alcázar and Plaza de España). You'll also want to save time for a leisurely stroll down the winding streets of Barrio Santa Cruz, Seville's former Jewish quarter. Although weather this time of year is chilly for Spain (temperatures typically hover in the 50s and 60s), this is still much warmer than many other European destinations. Plus, travelers who visit in early January will be able to experience Three Kings Day, a celebration commemorating the day that the three wise men visited baby Jesus.

warm places to visit end of january

January is one of the driest times of the year in this tropical Central American country. That means it's much easier to enjoy Costa Rica's vast array of outdoor offerings and wildlife-viewing opportunities, such as the Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve and the Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge. What's more, a number of culturally significant festivals take place in January, including the Palmares Fiestas, which features everything from bullfights to outdoor concerts. Looking to catch some waves? This is also a great time of year to go surfing in Costa Rica, especially for beginners.

warm places to visit end of january

If you're seeking a cheap tropical vacation that's closer to home, Cancún is just south enough to offer an easily accessible warm weather getaway. Though January is one of the coolest months in this Mexican city, average temperatures typically remain in the high 70s and low 80s, and there is minimal humidity, which makes this a perfect time to visit. Just be prepared for others to have the same idea and book your trip early. When you're not defrosting on the beach, you can fill your days with a number of day trips and tours to must-visit ruins, nature reserves and nearby islands.

warm places to visit end of january

Tulum, Mexico, is an excellent destination for travelers who want to unwind after the busy holiday season. Visitors can relax post-Christmas by visiting one of the city's many yoga and wellness centers. More adventurous vacationers will enjoy exploring Tulum's ancient Mayan ruins, which are some of the best-preserved ruins in Mexico. Those who'd rather swim and soak up some sun can venture to one of the city's cenotes (sinkholes that are filled with water) or a beautiful white sand beach like Playa Paraíso.

warm places to visit end of january

Affectionately nicknamed "The Pink City" thanks to its blush-colored sandstone buildings – which were painted pink in 1876 as a welcome to Prince Albert, the Prince of Wales – Jaipur is ideal for a January vacation. In contrast to this Indian city's sweltering summer temperatures, which frequently reach the triple digits, January enjoys comfortable weather in the mid-70s. Take advantage of the mild conditions by joining a guided walking or biking tour, where you'll get an in-depth look into the city's rich history and culture. Other can't-miss activities include exploring Jaipur's magnificent palaces, from the iconic Hawa Mahal to the sprawling Amber Palace.

Vote to Add these Destinations to the Rankings

warm places to visit end of january

San Miguel de Allende

warm places to visit end of january

Death Valley National Park

warm places to visit end of january

Anna Maria Island

You may be interested in.

warm places to visit end of january

Best Places to Visit in December 2024

warm places to visit end of january

Best Places to Visit in February 2024

warm places to visit end of january

Best Places to Visit in Winter

warm places to visit end of january

Best Cheap Winter Vacations

warm places to visit end of january

Best Winter Family Vacations

warm places to visit end of january

Best Ski Vacations in the World

If you make a purchase from our site, we may earn a commission. This does not affect the quality or independence of our editorial content.


The 50 Best Hotels in the USA 2024

Christina Maggitas February 6, 2024

warm places to visit end of january

The 32 Most Famous Landmarks in the World

Gwen Pratesi|Timothy J. Forster February 1, 2024

warm places to visit end of january

9 Top All-Inclusive Resorts in Florida for 2024

Gwen Pratesi|Amanda Norcross January 5, 2024

warm places to visit end of january

24 Top All-Inclusive Resorts in the U.S. for 2024

Erin Evans January 4, 2024

warm places to visit end of january

26 Top Adults-Only All-Inclusive Resorts for 2024

Zach Watson December 28, 2023

warm places to visit end of january

Solo Vacations: The 36 Best Places to Travel Alone in 2024

Lyn Mettler|Erin Vasta December 22, 2023

warm places to visit end of january

26 Cheap Beach Vacations for Travelers on a Budget

Kyle McCarthy|Sharael Kolberg December 4, 2023

warm places to visit end of january

The 50 Most Beautiful White Sand Beaches in the World

Holly Johnson December 1, 2023

warm places to visit end of january

The 26 Best Zoos in the U.S.

Rachael Hood November 16, 2023

warm places to visit end of january

44 Cheap Tropical Vacations That Feel Expensive

Holly Johnson|Alissa Grisler November 10, 2023

warm places to visit end of january

  • Travel recommendations
  • The taste of travel
  • Tips & tricks
  • Travel experiences


The 10 best warm places to visit in January

warm places to visit end of january

Already wary of that New Year chill ? Now is the time to plan which warm places to visit in January and get the best travel deals . The good news is, you don’t have to travel too far to find warm vacation spots. You just need to know where to look.

On the mainland, it’s the Sun Belt that offers the warmest places in the US in January. California and Florida do the heavy lifting, but Texas also has its fair share of sun. And don’t forget the Caribbean, where peak season brings high temperatures (and high prices). For a wild and warm destination, my pick is Central America as it enters its dry season. Read on for the best warm places to visit in January.

Two horses work together, pulling a load along a charming street, while a row of colourful houses lines the vibrant thoroughfare.

Where is it warm in January?

  • Puerto Rico
  • Saint Lucia
  • Sarasota, Florida
  • San Luis Obispo, California
  • South Padre Island, Texas
  • Palm Springs, California
  • Malibu, California

Best warm places to visit in January in the Caribbean

two Rastaman with Fruits at a stall in Papine, Kingston

  • Average temperature: 77°F
  • Average hours of daily sun: 9 hours

What better way to start the new year than on a warm Jamaican beach, rum punch in hand? January is actually Jamaica’s coolest month with the average temperature dropping to a still balmy 77°F.

Base yourself in Montego Bay . It may be the tourist center, but with that comes white-sand beaches, inland mountain and forest adventures, laid-back towns, and that infamous ‘no problem’ vibe. To the east at Plantation Cove, the Rebel Salute festival celebrates all things reggae on the 19th and 20th.

Of the many resorts, my pick is the Grand Palladium Resort and Spa . A sprawling all-inclusive resort, it offers private beaches and one of Jamaica’s biggest pools, complete with a wet bar. In Cockpit Country Park, sail a bamboo raft down the Martha Brae through dense tropical forests. Take sundowners at Rick’s Cafe on the cliffs of Negril and watch spectacular high-divers take the plunge into bath-warm waters below.

2. Puerto Rico

A man skillfully surfs on the wavy beach by the lush island.

  • Average hours of daily sun: 8 hours

Puerto Rico in January is a hotspot for fun and warm weather. And if you’re an American citizen you don’t even need a passport to get there . Basking in daytime temperatures lingering in the low 80s, the capital San Juan sparkles, and nowhere more so than the Old Town. 

Already colorful and atmospheric, it goes into overdrive in January with the week-long Fiestas de la Calle San Sebastián . From the 18th-24th, hundreds of artists and musicians and thousands of visitors flood the streets in huge extravagant parades. The balmy evening temperatures ensure the party continues late into the night, every night.

Thankfully, San Juan also offers beaches tailormade for recovery. Get away from the crowds at Blue Flag beach Balneario de Carolina and laze under palm and almond trees. For city chic and convenience, Condado Beach is just minutes from the Old Town. While you’re there take a kayak trip into neighboring Condado Lagoon and keep an eye out for its resident manatees.

3. Saint Lucia

A person jumps from a rope swing into the water as a group of people watch from a concrete pier.

  • Average temperature: 79°F

A country of unbridled nature, St Lucia is for me the most beautiful of all the Caribbean islands . That landscape of greens, more than three-quarters of which is rainforest, comes from St Lucia’s impressive rainfall. January, however, is dry season when the rains thin and the sun shines. It’s the best time to take advantage of the island’s many natural assets before February brings peak season crowds. 

The sensible thing to do is hit the beach. Sugar Beach , part of the Viceroy resort , is the island’s most famed and spectacular. Set between the twin Piton Mountains, its white sands are imported in place of the original gray. Save yourself the long walk and resort charges to access it by visiting on a boat trip. My personal pick is Anse Mamin Beach , a dreamy curve of palm-fringed seclusion that’s hard to get to but worth the effort.

It would be criminal to come to St Lucia and miss out on its adventures. Hike Gros Piton , a moderately easy climb, with spectacular views. Zipline through the canopies of Babonneau Rainforest to be at one with the hummingbirds. Or slow things down with a rainforest aerial tram tour. Ascending from the heat of the lowlands to the ecological park in the forest reserve is something you’ll never forget.

Best warm places to visit in January in the US

4. sarasota, florida.

A lifeguard tower next to a yellow surfboard on a white beach with people lounging on sunbeds and umbrellas.

  • Average temperature: 61°F
  • Average hours of daily sun: 11 hours

The default go-to for warm places in the US in January, Florida is home to beautiful beaches and buzzing cities. On its Gulf Coast, Sarasota flies more under the radar than its neighbors Tampa, Miami, and West Palm Beach . That’s not to say it offers any less in terms of natural beauty, city glitz, and sophistication. Indeed, it’s one of Florida’s most scenic areas .

January sees average temperatures in the low 60s. Highs tend to sit in the mid-70s though, making it warm enough to enjoy many outdoor attractions including the lush habitats of nearby Myakka River State Park. Bring binoculars to spot limpkins and ospreys soaring through the skies above and alligators and turtles slinking through the waters below.

Sarasota city is also a cultural hub ; the 66-acre Ringling Museum Complex is its crowning glory. Now Florida’s state art museum, it’s a showcase for railroad magnate John Ringling’s extensive art collection including the Circus Museum and his extravagant Venetian Gothic home, Cà d’Zan.

5. San Luis Obispo, California

A massive rock in the centre of a bay near a coastal village as seen from sloping hills covered in greenery.

  • Average temperature: 53°F
  • Average hours of daily sun: 10 hours

With its Mediterranean climate and lazy, low-key vibe, San Luis Obispo is a California dream in January. Roughly equidistant between the city giants of LA and San Francisco , it couldn’t be more removed from either. That location also makes it a perfect launch point into the wild wonders of Big Sur .

Mild January temperatures make the beaches and trails of nearby Montaña de Oro State Park ripe for exploration. Appetite earned, visit SLO’s downtown to celebrate restaurant month in its many quirky eateries. Find yourself there on a Thursday and the farmer’s market brings live music, barbecues, and a party atmosphere to Higuera Street.

Tranquil and historic, Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa is the heart of downtown. Stroll the peaceful gardens and beautifully preserved but unassuming church for insight into its Chumash tribal and Spanish colonial identity. At the other end of the cultural spectrum, Bubblegum Alley is a 15-foot-high, 70-foot-long repository of chewed gum . Something of a tourism icon, its millions of pieces of gum are every bit as disgusting as you might imagine.

6. South Padre Island, Texas

A young child stands on the shore as waves crash around them.

South Padre Island is so popular with tourists escaping cold winter climes that it has spawned its own nickname for them. Winter Texans , as they’re known, have long enjoyed its subtropical climate and diverse wildlife habitats. Its geography is a prime reason for this climatic oddity. A long, narrow barrier island close to the Mexican border, it’s a haven of remote beaches, placid waters, and outdoor adventures . 

Visit Laguna Madre aboard a kayak or SUP to get in amongst its abundant sea life. Join a fishing cruise into the Gulf of Mexico or a dolphin boat tour for a less strenuous aquatic adventure. For pure exhilaration, a horseback ride along the seemingly endless Seashell Beach is hard to top.

South Padre Island is also renowned as a twitcher’s dream. The SPI Birding and Nature Center is a 50-acre paradise of boardwalks, bird blinds, and watchtowers dedicated to avian study. Perfectly positioned along the Mississippi and Central migratory flyways , some 500 bird species regularly flock to its shores. The visitor center and exhibit hall are a deep well of birding insight. Keep an eye out for the useful blackboard out front that lists recent sightings.

7. Palm Springs, California

A landscaped roadway bordered by green lawns and towering palm trees.

  • Average temperature: 58°F

Cold nights bring Palm Springs’ average January temperatures down into the chilly sub-60s. Daytime temperatures, however, hover around the 70 mark – much more amenable to a warm vacation spot in January. Add the Californian sun and things really start to heat up.

Retro chic Palm Springs is hot in every way, a benchmark of Californian cool . It went from a ’60s Rat Pack hangout to an ’80s retirement town before being reborn in the ’90s. Today its iconic mid-century architecture – stylish hotels and eye-popping private homes – has become a hipster magnet. It’s also a beacon for the LGBTQI+ community.

January is peak season, so expect buzzing crowds across the city. Nowhere is that truer than at marquee events like the International Film Festival and American Express Golf Tournament . For something different, try the historical walking tour that peels back the modern facade to showcase the city’s true glamor.

For walking with a little more strain, hikers should head out into the spectacular surrounding desert landscapes . Coachella Valley (so much more than a music festival), Joshua Tree National Park, Indian and Tahquitz Canyons are all extraordinary.

8. Malibu, California

A woman dressed in casual attire gracefully stands on the shore of a rocky beach, embracing the beauty of nature's rugged landscape.

  • Average temperature: 46°F

California’s location on the Sun Belt makes it an oasis among the warmest places in the US in January. Malibu and the Pacific Palisades are particularly lovely, although chilly evening temperatures make it appear far colder than it is. Daytime temperatures usually sit in the 60s and rain is rare .

While it doesn’t deliver the glitz of summer, January is when Malibu’s epic coastline really comes into its own . Surfers flock to the winter swells at aptly named Malibu Surfrider Beach. Yet there’s so much more to Malibu than this one spot that indelibly links it to its surfing reputation.

With 27 miles of stunning coves, caves, and cliffs to discover, January is my favorite time for crowd-free coastal walks. It’s also the height of the whale-watching season. Keep one eye on the ocean as you walk for tell-tale plumes from the blowholes of passing pods. Premium viewing spots are from Point Dume and El Matador state beaches .

Turn your gaze inland for views of the astonishing Getty Villa . Almost as spectacular as nature’s show, it is perched on an ocean-view hillside; a showcase of Greek and Roman art. 

Best warm places to visit in January in Central America

Colourful wooden houses raised on stilts over the sandy ground.

  • Average temperature: 71°F

If it’s true winter warmth you seek, head south. January is the start of the dry season in Belize . Daytime temperatures linger in the low 80s and the humidity falls. 

For clear, dry and sunny days head to the Cayes – 450-plus gorgeous islands scattered offshore. Indulge in long, luxurious beach days at 5-star resorts , lounge on palm-fringed beaches, and swim and snorkel magical reefs. For diving, the Belize Barrier Reef is one of the Caribbean’s great dive sites. Further offshore the world-famous Big Blue Hole yawns into the depths, where water turns from luminescent blue to ink black.

I’ve always loved the Placencia peninsula to the south for its raw, unadulterated beauty. Be wary of swimming in the lagoon though. It may be home to friendly manatees but lurking in the depths you’ll also encounter toothier, less trustworthy saltwater crocs.

For a tropical climate, the lesser-populated Toledo District is a great choice. Lush and exotic, you’ll find quiet ancient Mayan ruins among the tropical jungle highlands. Typically, the crowds head for big-name ruins elsewhere at Altun Ha, Xunantunich and Caracol. But in Nim Li Punit you’ll find space to explore a classic period site complete with ruined pyramids and stone tombs.

10. Nicaragua

Avenida del Mar in San Juan del Sur, one of the top surfing destinations in Central America

Several hundred miles south, Nicaragua is blessed with awesome January weather. Less rough and ready than Belize, yet less touristy than its southern neighbor Costa Rica, Nicaragua has it all. 

Untamed beaches fringe the Caribbean Sea to the north and the Pacific Ocean to the south. Some of Central America’s best surf spots adorn the latter, groomed in January by offshore winds and almost no rain. The prime surf town is San Juan del Sur , but in truth, it’s more about the partying than the surfing. 

Better to head north past the waves of Playa Maderas and stay at Morgan’s Rock Hacienda overlooking Playa Ocotal . A gorgeous and wildly romantic eco-lodge, it puts you in the heart of the area’s extraordinarily biodiverse rainforest.

Got a taste for surfing? Try it inland on the slopes of one of Nicaragua’s landscape-defining volcanoes. Still on the Pacific coast, head north to buzzing León and brace yourself for the nearby Cerro Negro volcano. Rent a specially adapted board and hit speeds of 60mph as you fly down black ash waves. For an added thrill, that ominous sound you can hear is likely the still-active volcano rumbling beneath your feet.

How these destinations were chosen

These destinations were chosen using a combination of data and personal experience. The criteria used to decide destinations are as follows:

  • Temperature and hours of sun: Weather data is pulled from a third-party site, Weatherbase. Temperatures and hours of sun are daily averages.
  • Personal experience: Our expert travel writers travel year-round, often chasing the sun. To enhance KAYAK data and add a more personal approach to these articles writers are encouraged to include destinations based on experience.
  • A mix of short-haul and long-haul: To ensure a balanced list a mix of short and long-haul destinations are included. This is to help make sure everyone finds what they’re looking for, whether that is a tropical paradise or a nearby sunny staycation.

Discover more of the best places to travel in winter

A building with light green exterior walls and white arched mouldings around its windows and doorway.

If it’s not just warm places to visit you’re looking for, January has some epic vacation destinations worldwide as well as winter destinations in the US . If your January trip is just an extension of the holiday season , take a look at my picks for the best places to visit in December and where is warm in December. Or if you’re planning ahead, check out where is hot in February,

For other inspiration, KAYAK Explore and travel guides bring the world to you. And for great value bookings, KAYAK is where you’ll find flights , trains , car rental and accommodation .

About the author

warm places to visit end of january

Explore more articles

warm places to visit end of january

  • How we work
  • Hotel owners
  • Advertise with us
  • Airline fees
  • Low fare tips
  • Badges & Certificates
  • Terms & Conditions

California consumers have the right to opt out of the sale * of their personal information. For more information on how we securely process personal information, please see our Privacy Policy .

Do not sell my info ON

* The definition of "sale" under the California Consumer Privacy Act is applicable only to California consumers.

  • Search Please fill out this field.
  • Manage Your Subscription
  • Give a Gift Subscription
  • Sweepstakes
  • Winter Vacations

10 Best Warm Places to Travel to This Winter

Escape the chill in these warm-weather destinations.

warm places to visit end of january

Sure, the winter months have their perks – skiing, sledding, snowman building, and of course the holidays. But the cold! Oh, the cold. It digs deep under your skin, straight to your bones, chilling everything from your toes to your chattering teeth. Fortunately, several year-round, warm-weather destinations can offer a much-needed respite from the frigid air.

From island getaways to sizzling cities, here are 10 of the best warm places to visit this winter.

Ambergris Caye, Belize 

Taylor McIntyre/Travel + Leisure

With direct flights from several U.S. cities (including New York, Chicago, Houston, Atlanta, and Miami), getting to the Central American nation of Belize is easier than you think. The country's interior is filled with lush, verdant landscapes home to monkeys and even a few rare jaguars, but the real star is the coast. To experience the white-sand beaches at their best, make your way to Ambergris Caye. Belize's largest island is known for its water sports, including diving and snorkeling around the nearby Belize Barrier Reef. For a luxe visit, book a few nights at Alaia Belize , which not only provides easy access to the beach, but also has a swimming pool suspended six stories above the main access corridor, with portholes in the bottom that offer aerial views of the property.

Mexico City 

Jorge Castro/Travel + Leisure

Though winter in CDMX won't have the tropical heat you might expect from Mexico — temperatures tend to top out in the low 70s this time of year — it still provides a balmy alternative to snowy U.S. locales. The capital is flush with cultural attractions , including first-rate museums (like the stunning Museo Frida Kahlo ), incredible shopping at both high-end stores and local markets, and some of the best restaurants in the world (we're looking at you, Pujol ). Make Las Alcobas your home base. The luxury hotel offers lavish guest rooms and a tranquil spa in which to relax after a day of urban exploration.

Key West, Florida

Key West is a true delight in the winter months, as the average high temperature never really falls below 75 degrees. It's the perfect place for fruity cocktails on the sand, sunset strolls down lively shopping streets, and slice after slice of tangy Key lime pie. Make the most of your time here by booking a stay at the historic Casa Marina Key West , which recently underwent an extensive renovation. Through the hotel, you can book local food tours, golf outings, and sailboat cruises, or you can simply sit by the pool and soak in the Florida Keys sun.

Rangiroa, French Polynesia

Though more than a hundred islands comprise French Polynesia , just a handful (think Bora Bora and Moorea) get most of the attention. If you prefer somewhere a little less crowded, try the quiet, sparsely developed atoll of Rangiroa. Located about an hour's flight from Tahiti , it has pristine beaches and a massive lagoon brimming with sea life. Book the Hotel Kia Ora Resort & Spa , which boasts stunning overwater bungalows and villas with private plunge pools.

Panama Highlands

Panama is another destination with splendid coastlines, but its interior shouldn't be overlooked, especially for a winter vacation. Temperatures in the country's highlands sit in the 60s and 70s year round, creating ideal conditions for outdoor adventures. Visitor-favorite activities here include bird-watching and, for more adventurous types, criss-crossing the verdant mountains via the famous hanging bridges of Boquete. The region also has a stellar coffee scene worth exploring. Book a stay at The Haven , an adults-only wellness hotel that'll help you get on a coffee tour as soon as you land.

If you're seeking an African safari this winter without the crowds of a classic destination like Kenya, try the less-traveled terrain of Namibia . This nation on Africa's southwest coast offers seclusion, otherworldly landscapes, and near-guaranteed warm weather. It's also the perfect place to see animals like lions, elephants, leopards, and rhinos in their natural environment. There are several outfitters in the area, but Natural Selection is top-notch. It has numerous camps to choose from, including the famed Shipwreck Lodge on the Skeleton Coast.

San Juan, Puerto Rico

If you want to mix some time under the sun with some cultural enrichment, look no further than San Juan. The capital of Puerto Rico has long stretches of white-sand beaches, plus historical attractions like the Castillo San Felipe del Morro. Visitors will also find lots of delicious spots to eat (make reservations at Cocina Abierta ). In San Juan, it's best to go boutique, so check into the O:LV Fifty Five hotel, which features a rooftop bar and pool offering the best views in town.

When the first cold snap hits, book your flight to Dubai . This desert oasis offers not just warm weather but a mind-boggling array of things to do, from swimming in the Persian Gulf to shopping at some of the world's most luxurious stores and dining at multiple Michelin-starred restaurants. (Don't forget to visit the tallest building in the world while you're here, via an elevator that travels at an ear-popping 30 feet per second.) Try Atlantis, The Palm for your overnight stays — it's a veritable playground for those looking to indulge in the finer things in life.

Winter happens to be the best time to visit Bangkok . The weather is balmy year-round thanks to Thailand's tropical location, but the winter months offer slightly more comfortable temperatures, with highs rarely exceeding 90 degrees.

To get the most out of this massive city, it's best to book a lengthy visit or get a guide — there are tons of tour options on sites like Airbnb Experiences that focus on food, culture, and photography. Don't miss out on the city's canals, either, which you can tour on a long-tail boat. Make your home base the Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok , a long-running honoree in Travel + Leisure 's World's Best Awards.

The Bahamas

Sometimes, you just need to get away and not think about a single thing. And that's exactly what you can do in the Bahamas , an island chain that's just a three-hour flight from New York City. There are a number of beautiful destinations to see here, and many of the archipelago's inhabited islands are home to all-inclusive resorts that are ideal for families, couples, and even solo travelers.


25 AMAZING Warm Places to Visit in January [USA Edition]

If you are looking for warm places to visit in USA in January, you have come to the right place.

January is one of the coldest months in the USA. Much of the United States is usually ravished by high winds, freezing temperatures, and sometimes even snow or blizzard.

To escape the winter depression, many Americans look for warm winter vacations where they can tip their toes in sand, go swimming or just feel the tips of their fingers again.

Below we have compiled some of the warmest places to visit in January, including cities, states, and National Parks!

Warm Cities to Visit in January

Los angeles, california.


  • Known for: Hollywood, beautiful beaches, theme parks, attractions
  • Average Temperature in January: 68°F highs, 48°F lows

Los Angeles is known as the ‘city of angels’ and is home to beautiful beaches, fantastic theme parks, and fiery sunsets. It’s also famous for the Hollywood element, glitz & glamour, and of course, plenty of celebrities.

Many people flock to Los Angeles for its warm winter temperatures during this time of year, but precipitation levels are still relatively high. The average is around 67mm of rainfall. 

You’ll have no problems putting together a jam-packed Los Angeles Itinerary  in January though, as there is so much to do here! 

Some of the most popular attractions include:

  • Hollywood Sign
  • Universal Studios
  • Hollywood Walk of Fame
  • Santa Monica

Traveling to Los Angeles at this time of year also allows you to enjoy LA’s Chinese New Year Festival, the Kingdom Day Parade, the Rose Bowl Parade and you can even ice skate on Pershing Square.

January is a great time to visit LA as you can avoid the stifling summer temperatures and the huge queues normally found at attractions. It’s also great to go whale watching, as gray whales can be spotted on their migration route. To get the best experience of visiting LA in January, it’s important to pack a raincoat and purchase an all-inclusive city pass to save on attraction costs.

Palm Springs, California


  • Known For: Fabulous resorts with swimming pools, golf courses, mid-century modern homes, and proximity to the California desert
  • Average Temperature in January: 71 ℉ highs, 45 ℉ lows

If you are looking for places to escape the winter in January, consider Palm Springs, in Southern California!

Among the many things to do in Palm Springs , touring its mid-century modern architecture is a must. Rent a bike and do a self-guided tour of the most famous buildings and neighborhoods!

Known as the gateway to the California desert, Palm Springs is famous for its resorts and golf courses, as well as the variety of outdoor activities available for you to enjoy.

January is a great month to hike in Palm Springs. Try trails at the San Jacinto and Santa Rosa National Monument, or hike to oases in the Indian Canyons. The Coachella Valley Preserve offers many trails as well, some popular for birdwatching and wildlife viewing.

Of course, you have to enjoy the pool on a Palm Springs vacation, whether you book a vacation rental with a private pool and views of the mountains, or you enjoy a pool at your resort.

Play a round of golf, enjoy fine food and drinks in downtown Palm Springs, and schedule a spa day for that perfect California winter vacation.

Daytime highs in Palm Springs in January are generally in the low 70s, perfect for enjoying the outdoors. Nighttime lows are usually in the mid-40s, so you’ll need a light jacket if you plan to be out and about early or late in the day.

Only two days of rain on average are expected in January in Palm Springs, so you will very likely enjoy bright sunny days on your vacation!

San Juan, Puerto Rico

San Juan Puerto Rico January

  • Known For: Beautiful weather year-round, rum distilleries, historic forts
  • Average Temperature in January:  low 80s ℉ highs, mid-70s ℉ lows

San Juan, Puerto Rico is an excellent January destination.  This United States territory is located in the Caribbean and enjoys gorgeous tropical weather year-round, so it is a great place to visit to escape cold winter weather. 

January is actually one of the less rainy months of the year, averaging about 4.4 inches of rainfall.

There are many fantastic things to do in San Juan . Its historic city center, Old San Juan, is an amazing place to explore. 

Puerto Rico’s Spanish colonial heritage is evident in its many beautiful plazas and fountains. San Juan’s historic defenses – its city walls and the fortresses of El Morro and Castillo de San Cristóbal – are honored as a UNESCO World Heritage Site .

Puerto Rico is known for its rum production, and if you’d like to sample their libations directly from the source, you can tour the distilleries.  Some distilleries are located in San Juan, but to tour the famous Casa Bacardi, you’ll need to take a trip across the harbor to the main part of the island.

If you visit San Juan in January, you’ll get to experience part of Puerto Rico’s grand holiday season, which extends all the way into the middle of the month. 

Celebrations end with Las Fiestas de la Calle San Sebastián . This multi-day festival features music and performers and fills the plazas and streets of Old San Juan.

Austin, Texas


  • Known For: “The Live Music Capital of the World”
  • Average Temperature in January:  62°F highs, 43°F lows

In the city of Austin, Texas, you will not run short of fun things to do with amazing outdoor adventures, unique boutiques and restaurants, and a fantastic music scene. If you book a trip to Austin, you will only wish you stayed longer!

The first week of January is called “Free Week” when hundreds of Austin venues participate in providing live music at no charge.  This Austin music tradition has been around for almost twenty years. Music lovers come far and wide to hear some of their favorite acts and partake in this fun-filled environment.

Those that want to lose a few extra pounds after the holidays, come to Austin for the 3M Half Marathon in January.  Here you will run past some of the most well-known locations in Austin.  This 13.1-mile course is known to be one of the fastest in the county with mostly downhill running.

You could spend your entire trip in Austin’s downtown.

Some of the key spots are:

  • Texas State Capitol
  • Congress Avenue Bridge
  • Sixth Street
  • SoCo District

While Austin is largely known for its eclectic downtown scene, you will want to make time to see some of the hill country. 

Take a scenic drive through Tarrytown and eat at one of the great waterfront dining restaurants on Lake Austin.  Before heading back downtown, make a stop at Mount Bonnell to see some of the most stunning views of Austin, along with the iconic 360 bridge!

Tucson, Arizona


  • Known for:  Sonoran Desert
  • Average temperature in January: 66 °F highs, 41 °F lows

Tucson, Arizona is known for its hot, dry climate in summer, but in January the cool weather and sunny skies make it the ideal hiking destination.

Saguaro National Park offers a number of great trails through the Sonoran desert with breathtaking views of the mountains and desert scenery. You may also catch a glimpse of native wildlife like jackrabbits, wrens, and woodpeckers, and the desert’s signature flora: the saguaro cactus.

Or, for a little more information on this Arizona landmark , the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum offers the history, flora, and fauna of the desert all in one place.

Across its 98 acres, the Desert Museum contains a zoo with 230 species, a botanical garden, two restaurants, an aquarium, and a history museum all rolled into one!

Check out the Raptor Free Flight, a must-see presentation where native raptors fly right by the crowd, and swing by the Packrat Playhouse if you have kids.

If you’re visiting towards the end of the month, you can catch the Tucson Gem, Mineral, and Fossil Showcase just as it starts up on January 28th. The exhibition has over 48 locations across the city, all with gorgeous gems, jewelry, and fossils.

The most popular showcases are the Tucson Gem & Mineral Show at the Tucson Convention Center, The JOGS Tucson Gem, and Jewelry Show at the Tucson Expo Center, and the massive Gem Show at Kino Sports Complex.

Snag a one-of-a-kind glittering necklace for $5 or purchase a rare, crystallized rock for $200,000 (or simply admire these incredible gems). If you are in town for the showcase, be sure to book well in advance to secure a hotel room in the city.

Coming from out of town? No problem! While there is an airport in Tucson, it’s often easier (and significantly cheaper) to fly into Phoenix, then take a bus to Tucson – while admiring the desert view, of course. 

Temecula, California


  • Known for: Wineries 
  • Average temperature in January: 70°F highs, 48 °F lows

Temecula, California, is a fabulous warm winter vacation to enjoy when you’re ready to escape the rainy, snowy weather at home and relax in Southern California’s Wine Country!

Temecula enjoys an average high temperature of 70 ° F and only four days of precipitation in January, so you can plan to spend plenty of time outdoors. 

Temecula is located just a one-hour drive northeast of San Diego and is well-known for its fabulous local wineries and vineyards.

One of the best things to do in Temecula, California, in January (and at all times of the year!) is to visit some of the best wineries in Temecula , such as Wilson Creek Winery, Leoness Cellars, and Baily Vineyard & Winery.

Since there are close to 50 wineries in Temecula, you’ll have no trouble finding one that suits your taste! 

After exploring the wineries, head into Old Town Temecula to explore some of the local shops and restaurants in the “Old West” inspired town.

You can enjoy brunch at 1909 Temecula or Public House or an upscale dinner at The Goat & Vine. You can also learn line dancing and how to country two-step at Temecula Stampede—the largest country-western music venue on the West Coast. 

If you’d like to plan a memorable activity during your trip to Temecula in January, consider a hot air balloon ride or horseback ride through the scenic wine country. Since the weather will be sunny but not sweltering hot, winter is one of the best times to enjoy these popular activities in Temecula. 

Destin, Florida

Destin Florida January

  • Known for: “World’s Luckiest Fishing Village”
  • Average temperature in January: 60°F highs, 48 °F lows

January is one of the dry months in Destin, with rain only being an average of just over 4 inches for the month. The summer months typically get much more rain. 

Every January is the 30A Songwriters Festival in nearby Santa Rosa Beach with artists coming from all over the world, including big names. 

Other things to do in Destin include:

  • HarborWalk Village
  • Crab Island
  • Destin Commons

HarborWalk Village is on the Destin Harbor and is filled with shops, restaurants, and plenty of activities, such as axe throwing, mini-golf, and a mirror maze.

Crab Island is a popular sandbar just across from the Marler Bridge, where boaters come and hang out, listen to music, play games, and have drinks.  It’s about 2-4 feet of water in this area. Expect January to be slow as Crab Island doesn’t pick up until March and April. 

Destin Commons is an outdoor shopping outlet with over a hundred stores and restaurants. 

Don’t forget to dress warm as although winters are mostly mild, they can get a bit cold. If you need some indoor activities to do in Destin, you’re in luck!

You can visit Uncle Buck’s Fish Bowl & Restaurant for some bowling.  Wild Willy’s Adventure Zone and Fat Daddy’s are arcades that are fun to play some games at. 

The Boardwalk of Okaloosa Island has an indoor center with shops and restaurants.  

If you’re looking to avoid the heat and summer crowds, visiting Destin in January is a great choice!   

San Diego, California

San Diego January

•       Known for: San Diego Zoo, San Diego Safari Park, SeaWorld and LEGOLAND •       Average temperature in January: around 66 °F highs, 50 °F lows

Located at California’s southernmost gateway, the city of San Diego is a great place to visit in January thanks to its warm weather, beautiful sceneries, and lively atmosphere.

From San Diego Zoo to SeaWorld and LEGOLAND, there are plenty of family-friendly attractions in San Diego , as well as plenty of things to do in Little Italy San Diego and the historic Gaslamp Quarter for the adults. As you walk around these vibrant neighborhoods, you will find excellent restaurants and bars as well as unique stores, shops, and galleries.

If you visit in early January, you may still be able to catch a glimpse of the beautiful Christmas tree at Piazza Della Famiglia.

Every Saturday, there’s a farmer’s market from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm along West Date Street that offers local produce, arts, and crafts. There are also plenty of stalls that serve the locals’ favorite food such as tacos, pizzas, and French baked goods, so don’t worry about coming to the market hungry.

One thing you should keep in mind is that even though the temperature in January is warm and it barely ever rains in San Diego, it does get windy and chilly at night so it’s best to bring a light jacket with you!”

Orlando, Florida


  • Known for: Theme parks 
  • Average temperature in January: 69 °F high, 52 °F lows

With its theme parks and waterparks, Orlando in Florida is a fun destination for small kids and big kids all year round. However, if you visit during summer or big US holidays, you will be elbowing your way through crowds and waiting in line for most of the day. Mid-January is a great time to visit as schools are back, resulting in fewer people lining up for rides. In addition, temperatures are cooler, making getting around the parks by foot a less sweaty affair! Some hotels drop their prices in January, which is a bonus if you want to visit  Orlando on a budget!  Pro-tip, always remember to look out for the additional resort fees when choosing your accommodation. Also, be cautious of the Walt Disney World hotel shuttle bus times because they tend to return early in winter. If you plan to rely on the shuttle bus, you may miss the fireworks at Disney’s Magic Kingdom. Cons aside, if you visit Disney and Universal Studios after the Christmas holidays in January, you will most likely have the chance to get around the rides twice, giving you lots of bang for your buck. Average high temperatures tend to be around 69°F, and it is cooler at night, so be prepared and pack a light jacket or sweatshirt.

Clearwater, Florida


Suggested by Merry Allison of Virginia Vacation Guide

  • Known for: Beautiful beaches and sunsets, water activities, dolphin sightings
  • Average temperature in January: 70 °F high, 50 °F lows

Nestled on the gulf coast and featuring one of the best beaches in the state of Florida, Clearwater is an excellent destination in January.

The average January temperature ranges from 50 to 70, though temperatures will occasionally dip a little lower. This can make ocean swimming a bit less inviting, however, there is still a wide range of activities to enjoy in the town. 

In late January, the annual RunClearwater event takes place, which features a 5k, half marathon, marathon, and ultra-marathon course. The courses begin and end at lovely Sand Key Park, and feature beautiful views of the Gulf of Mexico, Intracoastal, and Clearwater Beach. 

Sunsets at Pier 60 is one of the most famous events in Clearwater. It occurs year-round from two hours before sunset to two hours after sunset, and it features performers, art booths, park rides, and more, all set before the backdrop of perfect sunsets at Clearwater Beach over the Gulf of Mexico. 

Clearwater is also famous for its water activities. You can rent jet skis or take a boat ride for an up-close encounter with the many dolphins who make Clearwater their home. You can also book a sunset dinner cruise, or even book a voyage on a pirate ship. 

Another major attraction in Clearwater is the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, which focuses on the rescue, rehabilitation, and release of injured marine animals around Clearwater, including dolphins, sea turtles, sharks, and otters. 

Clearwater is conveniently located near Tampa and St. Petersburg. All of these features make Clearwater a perfect destination for a January vacation.

Miami, Florida


Suggested By Kate of Kate Abroad

  • Known For: Beaches, art and food.
  • Average temperature in January: 73°F highs, 63°F lows.

Miami is such a colorful city and its vibrancy is in no way dimmed by mid-winter. The arts district is an absolute must-see, especially the Wynwood Walls, the downtown spot full of abstract murals. Just make sure to get there early to get photos without crowds.

When in Miami, the beach is an absolute must-do. South Beach is the most famous of them all but there are plenty of other beaches in and around Miami that are just as beautiful, all you need to do is walk or drive up or down the coast a bit.

Finally, you can’t go to Miami without experiencing the Cuban culture. Miami is incredibly diverse but the Cuban culture is one of the biggest drawcards for visitors. The best way is to go exploring in Little Havana, find a cafe and order the first thing on the menu.

Winters in January are mild with average temperatures but the humidity levels are still very high. There is definitely no snow in Miami and even rain is somewhat rare as it rains an average of 7 days. If you’re interested in outdoor activities, January is definitely the most pleasant time of year.

Some of the top events in Miami in January include:

  • South Beach Jazz Festival
  • Art Deco Weekend
  • Dr. Martin Luther King Jr Day Parade

San Antonio, Texas


Suggested by Kyle Kroeger of  ViaTravelers

  • Known For: The Alamo, San Antonio River Walk, San Antonio Spurs, and rodeos
  • Average Temperature in January: 64° F highs, 40 °F lows

San Antonio is a popular tourist destination due to its rich history and culture. There are many things to see and do in San Antonio, from visiting the Alamo to exploring the Riverwalk. There are also a variety of restaurants and bars in the city, and plenty of shopping options. 

San Antonio is a great place to visit year-round, but the best time to visit is in January when you can escape the cold (if that’s where you are coming from). Also, during this time it’s non-peak tourism, which gives you a chance to see the sights on your time and schedule.

If you are a basketball fan, January is a great time to visit to see the legendary San Antonio Spurs play (or play against your favorite team).

Not a basketball fan? San Antonio is extremely well-known for its rodeos. There are rodeo spots located all around the city with the biggest venue right next to where the Spurs play. 

San Antonio in January can be a great time to visit but it’s also a city with a variable winter climate so to prepare for a trip to make the most of your visit make sure you dress in layers or bring flexible clothing. The weather can be unpredictable, so it’s best to be prepared. 

Don’t miss the River Walk or the Alamo. Both of these are a must-see when visiting San Antonio. If you are traveling with kids, there are a ton of great activities such as Six Flags theme park, SeaWorld, and an amazing botanical garden. 

New Orleans, Louisiana

New Orleans January

  • Known for: Mardi Gras celebrations, rich food, distinctive music
  • Average temperature in January: 64° F highs, 44 °F lows

New Orleans is one of the most unique warm January destinations in the USA. While there aren’t any soft sand beaches or glistening Caribbean waters, visitors can enjoy a dynamic city that is rich in culture and food.

The most famous thing about New Orleans has to be Mardi Gras, a celebration season before the fasting of Lent. The celebrations and festivities begin after Christian feasts of the Epiphany , which is 12 days after Christmas. From then until Shrove Tuesday, the city is filled with music, parades, feast, and excitement!

Make sure you take some time to explore the French Quarter, one of the most historic neighborhoods in New Orleans. Located on the banks of the Mississippi River, this is where the French first settled in New Orleans.

In the French Quarter, you’ll find charming colonial buildings that take you back in time. Paired with an array of modern entertainment such as bars and nightclubs, New Orleans really has it all.

And if that hasn’t convinced you yet, New Orleans food is unique in every way. It’s a fusion between American, French, Spanish, Italian, West Indian, and Mexican flavors, surely something that will spice up your January vacation.

South Padre Island, Texas

South Padre Island January

  • Known for: Incredible beaches and lovely warm temperatures year-round. 
  • Average temperature in January: 69° F highs, 55 °F lows

Looking for a nice warm place to visit this January in the USA? If so then look no further than South Padre Island in Texas. 

After all, it makes for an enchanting, mild, and altogether affordable getaway off the coast of Southern Texas. 

In fact, this barrier island sits in the Gulf of Mexico and is known for magical weather in January, which includes just three days of rain per month. 

Plus, January is the low season. Therefore, you’ll get affordable prices on hotels and can enjoy deep discounts on flights to Brownsville International Airport. 

Then, upon arrival, check into one of the area’s many amazing hotels like the Hilton Garden Inn which is a fabulous beachfront property.

Now, when you’re settled in, explore some of the best things to do in South Padre Island , like The Padre Island National Seashore.

It’s a stunning park with 65 miles of unspoiled coastline that is home to the largest undeveloped barrier island in the world.

Yes, it costs $10 per car to enter but it’s well worth it to pitch a tent at Bird Island Basin Beach and drive out onto the clean and pristine Malaquite Beach. 

Then, continue your trip with a stop at the Sealife Nature Center where you can do an eco-friendly dolphin cruise before visiting rescued animals like Domino the sea turtle, in addition to tortoises, iguanas, and more. 

Next, ascend the historic Port Isabel Lighthouse, which was initially constructed in 1865 and is the only lighthouse that you can actually climb to the top of in Texas. 

Afterward, visit the South Padre Island Birding and Nature Center, where you can ascend a 5-story watchtower to get unparalleled views of the area and the migratory birds found here. 

Warm Islands to Visit in January

Oahu, hawaii.


  • Known for: Waikiki Beach, North Shore surfing scene, Pearl Harbor, spectacular hikes, shopping and nightlife.
  • Average temperature in January: 79°F highs, 68°F lows.

Since most tourists wrap up their vacation after the first week of January, the crowds on Oahu are noticeably lower.

The mild temperatures on the island are warm enough to spend time on Waikiki or Lanikai beach and cool enough to enjoy outdoor adventures and sightseeing activities. And after the December rains, Oahu’s scenery is at its best.

The ultimate way to experience this lush decor is by visiting one of the verdant botanical gardens dotted with fragrant flowers or by  hiking your way to a secluded waterfall .  Occasional showers may occur but they don’t tend to last longer than 15 minutes and often results in a beautiful rainbow.

In January, you’ll stand a better chance of visiting Pearl Harbor without the crowds than you would during the busy summer months. Note that some attractions, such as the popular Hanauma Bay snorkeling site and Diamond Head State Park, require advance reservations throughout the year.

A day trip to the world-renowned surfing hotspot located on the North Shore Oahu is a must any time of the year but especially in January. That’s when the waves are at their best and when most surfing tournaments take place.

Another seasonal activity that you can’t miss out on is a whale-watching cruise. No better time to see these gentle giants up close as they make their way to the ‘Au’au channel between Maui and Lanai to breed and give birth to their young.

January is also a great month to visit when it comes to entertainment, thanks to the Martin Luther King Parade and the Chinese New Year Celebration.

Read More: Best Warm Places to Visit In December (USA)

Maui, Hawaii


  • Known for: Incredible beaches, the Road to Hana, Humpback whales
  • Average temperature in January: 70°F highs, 55 °F lows

There are few better places to visit in the United States in January than Maui. Within its 727 square mile footprint, Maui offers some of the world’s best surfing, epic mountain hikes, and the chance to spot some of Hawaii’s abundant wildlife.

Any Maui itinerary in January must include going on a whale watching tour- anywhere from 10,000 to 12,000 humpback whales migrate to Maui’s Auau Channel each year, from November through May, to breed and raise their calves, providing excellent opportunities to observe these acrobats of the sea.

An iconic activity in Maui is driving the Road to Hana, arguably one of the most scenic drives on the planet, where you’ll drive along a 65-mile road, snaking past countless waterfalls, oceanside overlooks, and some of the lushest rainforests on the planet.

And what’s a trip to Hawaii without attending a luau?

One of the best options for this experience on Maui is Feast by Lele- the food and dancers are phenomenal and the show highlights and thoughtfully tells a brief history of four different Polynesian cultures.

While it’s wonderful to escape the cold in Maui, come January, it’s worth noting that January does fall within the island’s rainy season, so you should be prepared for sporadic rain showers, often in the afternoon (nothing a rain jacket can’t solve!).

But not to worry- the rain showers are usually short, so you’ll be back enjoying Maui’s incredible scenery before you know it!

St Croix, USVI

St Croix USVI January

  • Known for: Tropical weather, beautiful natural beaches, snorkeling
  • Average Temperature in January: 82 °F highs, 72°F lows

St Croix is one of the best US islands to visit during January. This picturesque paradise that makes up the U.S Virgin Islands offers plenty of white-sand beaches, historical attractions, and delicious Caribbean food for travelers. 

The temperature in this part of the Caribbean is warm year-round, so visiting in January makes for a perfect winter getaway where you can enjoy warm sunny weather while hanging out at the beach and sipping on some drinks. The water is also pretty warm, so you can swim and snorkel comfortably. 

Famous beaches like Cane Bay Beach, Sandy Point Beach, and others are the perfect place to swim, snorkel, kayak, and observe marine life.

Some areas are ideal for snorkeling and watching animals like sea turtles, colorful fish, eagle rays, and much more. The waters are pretty tranquil, making them an excellent family-friendly place to visit. 

There also isn’t a lot of rain during this month either, making it ideal to avoid the tropical storms that routinely occur near the spring and summer.

With the temperature reaching an average high of 80 degrees Fahrenheit each day, you can make every day a fun day at the beach. There are also many hiking opportunities throughout the island. 

A lot of tour companies can take you on all kinds of adventurous trips, including snorkeling with sea turtles, and kayaking across the beautiful crystal clear waters. St Croix is also close to two other major islands, St Thomas and St John, which are only a ferry ride away. 

St. John, USVI


  • Known for: Virgin Islands National Park
  • Average temperature in January: 83°F highs, 74°F lows

January in St. John kicks off with the excitement of New Year’s week. During this time, visitors will see giant luxury yachts passing in the distance and docking in the bays. 

Many local bars and restaurants, like DRINK St. John and Beach Bar in Cruz Bay, throw annual New Year’s Eve parties to bring January in with a bang.

For beach lovers, the January weather is absolutely perfect, with highs in the low 80’s (°F) and a gentle breeze in the air.  The strong summer sun has let up and short, intermittent rainfall leaves Virgin Islands National Park looking green and lush. 

These are the perfect conditions for hitting up the famous North Shore Beaches, like Trunk Bay, Maho Bay and Cinnamon Bay.  Mornings on St. John, before the sun fully rise, are also perfect for hiking trails like the 2-mile coastal Ram Head Trail or the 5-mile trek down past Danish plantation ruins to Reef Bay.

As January is considered the high season in St. John, it’s imperative to book your lodging and rental car six to eight months in advance.  Be sure to also make restaurant reservations wherever you can, otherwise you might not get a table. 

For many restaurants, reservations can be made while you’re already on St. John, but places like ZoZo’s and Extra Virgin Bistro will require booking several weeks ahead. 

Key West, Florida

Key West January

  • Known for: Colonial architecture, historic sites, beautiful beaches, water sports
  • Average temperature in January: 75°F highs, 66°F lows

If you are looking for a warm winter getaway, there is no better place to visit than the island of Key West in Florida. Though it is one of the coldest months in Key West, the temperature is still more than warm enough to enjoy its outdoor activities, especially swimming in the sea and lounging on a beach.

The locals are proud to say that the only things they salt there are margaritas, not sidewalks!

One of the best things to do in Key West in January is to sample its incredible freshly-caught seafood. And in January, visitors can do just that at the annual Florida Keys Seafood Festival.

During this month, visitors can enjoy the perfect water temperature and go snorkeling. The coral reef near Key West support a wide variety of marine life!

And of course, don’t miss the historic center of Key West and the world-famous Duval Street, where you’ll find your definition of epic nightlife redefined.

If you are into literature, don’t skip the Ernest Hemingway House and Museum!

📚 Read More: Is Key West Worth Visiting: Pros and Cons!

Warm National Parks to Visit in January

Joshua tree national park.


  • Known for: Unique high desert landscape, hiking and rock climbing
  • Average temperature in January: 63 °F highs, 37 °F lows

If you’re looking for a gorgeous sunny destination this winter, look no further than Joshua Tree National Park.

Located only 2.5 hours away from Los Angeles by car, Joshua Tree is a stunning park that spans both the Mojave and Colorado Deserts. This distinctive region is filled with piles of loose boulders and unusual-looking trees that only thrive in the Southwestern United States.  

One of the best ways to explore Joshua Tree is on foot.

The park boasts miles of hiking trails for all skill levels showcasing the area’s spectacular beauty. One of the best Joshua Tree hikes is the Hidden Valley Nature Trail – a one-mile interpretive loop through a former cattle rustler’s hideout.

If you are looking to escape the crowds, select the Panorama Loop or the Willow Hole Trails instead.

Another popular activity in Joshua Tree is rock climbing.

Joshua Tree is a world-class climbing destination that is filled with thousands of boulder platforms and climbing routes. Even if you’re not formally trained as a climber, outdoor lovers of all ages can enjoy playing around on the various rock formations.

The cities near Joshua Tree are also worth checking out during your visit. The towns of Joshua Tree, Yucca Valley and Twentynine Palms are famous for attracting artists and other quirky types. To get a real sense of the region, start your tour with a visit to The Noah Purifoy Outdoor Museum or the World Famous Crochet Museum.

With high temperatures reaching 60 degrees F and minimal rainfall, Joshua Tree is a great destination for sunny weather in the month of January. Be sure to pack sunscreen and plenty of layers, however, as temperatures vary wildly and often freeze overnight. 

Death Valley National Park


  • Known for: Surreal landscapes including salt flats, sand dunes, craters, colorful mountains, and rugged canyons
  • Average temperature in January: 68 °F highs, 41 °F lows

Death Valley National Park  is one of the most unique and incredible destinations you can visit in North America.

With over 3 million acres, Death Valley is the largest national park in the US, not including the one in Alaska. Death Valley is located in the Mojave Desert along the California and Nevada border, about a 2-hour drive from Las Vegas, NV. 

Death Valley National Park is famously known for having the lowest elevation on the continent and is known for its scorching hot summers.

It is one of the hottest places on earth, with summer temperatures topping 120 degrees Fahrenheit. When planning your trip to Death Valley, it is important to consider the weather and time of year. 

January is the ideal month to visit Death Valley because the weather is comfortable, with warm sunny days and an average high temperature of 68 degrees Fahrenheit.

In January, you will have fewer crowds and cheaper accommodations inside the park as well. 

Everglades National Park

Evergaldes National Park January

  • Known for: Stunning wildlife, surreal landscape
  • Average temperature in January: 77 °F highs, 57 °F lows

Situated in the southern tip of Florida, Everglades National Park is the warmest national park in January and a perfect stop on a road trip to Key West . Nicknamed “The River of Grass”, much of the area in Everglades is a wetland, home to some of the most exotic wildlife on the planet.

In fact, the Everglades National Park earns the titles of UNESCO World Heritage Site , an International Biosphere Reserve, and a Wetland of International Importance.

January is the dry season for Everglades National Park. During this time, not only is the weather at one of its most tolerable, but the humidity is also quite low. This means that visitors won’t be destroyed by the biting bugs in Everglades.

As other parts of the world get colder, herds of migratory birds find home in the Everglades National Park for the winter, perfect for bird watchers.

As the water sources dry up during the dry season, this forces all the wildlife to congregate near the only water sources that are left, increasing the possibility of seeing a big variety of wildlife, including one of the 70 species of endangered animals there!

Warm States to Visit in January

The warm states to visit in January are Arizona, Hawaii, Florida, and Texas. These states regularly hit over 80 °F highs in January, making them the perfect winter escape destination.

Arizona January

Situated in southern United States, Arizona is one of the warmest states in January. During this time, the temperature is not too cold but warm enough to explore all the outdoor adventures Arizona is known for .

From the magical Antelope Canyon to the red-rock formations of Sedona, visitors have plenty of places to explore in the winter months such as December, January and February. The capital of Arizona, Phoenix, is bustling with activity as locals are out to enjoy the temperature weather.

Best places to visit in Arizona in January:

Hawaii January

Hawaii is perhaps the best state for a warm winter vacation. This archipelago is home to some of the world’s most unique geological features such as soaring volcanoes and endless beaches. January is also one of the high seasons for Hawaii, as many Americans are out to get away from the bitter winter.

Though busy in January, Hawaii has plenty to see and lots to do. Enjoy water sports such as surfing and snorkeling, learn about the rich Polynesian culture, go on some epic waterfall hikes, the list just goes on and on.

A vacation to Hawaii in January is going to make sure you come back with a nice tan and all your stress gone.

Best places to visit in Hawaii in January:

Florida January

January in Florida is one of the best times to visit. Not only is the weather warm and moderate, but it is also the dry season. As the December holiday season comes to an end, the crowds start to die down.

This means cheaper accommodation and a much better time at attractions such as Disneyland and Universal Studios.

Visiting Florida in January means that you can still enjoy some of its fine beaches. Head down to the Gold Coast near Miami and enjoy some of the warmest temperatures in Florida. Or, check out The Keys, Florida’s string of islands known for their tropical beaches, historic sites, and amazing water sports.

Best places to visit in Florida in January:

Texas January

The diverse landscape of Lone Star State offers visitors plenty of activities, especially during the quiet month of January. During this time, the crowd is at its lowest, which makes enjoying some of Texas’s best attractions much easier.

Head to west Texas and check out the State’s famous Big Bend National Park, where the arid landscape and impressive rock formations will amaze you. Want to enjoy some nice beaches? Head south to South Padre Island or Galveston!

Or do you just want to enjoy some activities in the city? San Antonio, Dallas, and Houston all have plenty to offer!

Best places to visit in Texas in January:

  • South Padre Island
  • San Antonio

Warm Places To Visit In January In USA Map

Above is an interactive map featuring all of the places we’ve mentioned above. With this map, you can plan your winter visit more easily based on how far each destination is from your home!

Warm Places in January FAQs

Which state in the us has the warmest weather in january.

Hawaii is the state with the hottest weather in January, but visitors will also find warm temperatures in Florida, Texas, and Arizona.

Where is a warm place to visit in January in USA?

One of the warmest places to visit in January in USA is Miami, Florida. The Everglades National Park is the warmest National Park in January!

I hope our guide on the best warm winter vacations in January will help you escape the frigid cold.

Any questions? Leave a comment!

Disclaimer: Some of the links above are affiliate links. That means if you book or make a purchase through the links, we will earn a small commission at  no extra cost to you ! The money will help run this site! Thank you !

' src=

World Traveler, Travel Blogger, Photographer


Sean is the founder of the travel blog, LivingOutLau. He has been to over 30 countries in over 5 years of travel. Every day, he is traveling and sharing his discoveries of the world through exceptional travel guides on his blog!

Leave a Comment Cancel reply

All products are independently selected by our editors. If you buy something, we may earn an affiliate commission.

The best holiday destinations in January

By Laura Fowler and Laura Chubb

21 best holiday destinations in January 2024

Christmas is over, the New Year’s hangover is lingering and workdays and school hours are back on. From 1 January, reality kicks in, so why not book a new year getaway and escape the January blues? Post-Christmas and pre-Valentines, it's cheap – snap up an off-peak season deal across the globe, from one of the best Caribbean islands to the sunny neighbourhoods of Sydney and LA . Here, we round up the best places to go on holiday in January 2023.

Temperature in January 29°C high 23°C low Season dry Travel time from UK 8 hours 45 minutes Time difference GMT 4  Its...

Barbados, Caribbean

Temperature in January: 29°C high; 23°C low Season: dry Travel time from UK: 8 hours 45 minutes Time difference: GMT -4

It’s the Caribbean island’s good-time vibes that keep regulars coming. Well, that and the pirate’s bounty of bleached-white, powdery beaches. The glam west coast might be all five-star luxury, but travel slightly south and the scene quickly skews more local. Lively town Oistins’ Friday Night Fish Fry brings the community out for an open-air party, with fresh-caught fish on the barbecue and booming reggae. Or, closer still, hit St Lawrence Gap, a strip of rambunctious rum bars. On the quieter east coast, pounding Atlantic waves draw surfers: Bathsheba is the closest Barbados gets to boho, with pro boarders and tattooed artists. In January, the dawn of dry season, it’s all appealing – drenched only in a daily average nine hours of sunshine.

Sustainable travel tip: The best way to benefit the Barbados community is to leave your hotel. Give back to the community by spending tourist dollars at Oistins Fish Fry, which benefits local businesses.

Where to stay: Cobblers Cove prides itself on being quietly elegant – an intimate, stylish country-house hotel situated on a white sand beach, with 40 spacious rooms which all open on to the luscious gardens. For more, see our picks of the best hotels in Barbados .

Temperature in January 32°C high 22°C low Season dry Travel time from UK 12 hours Time difference GMT 7  Thailand is...

Thailand, Asia

Temperature in January: 32°C high; 22°C low Season: dry Travel time from UK: 12 hours Time difference: GMT +7

Thailand is heavenly in January. Yes, it's peak season, but the mayhem of the Christmas and New Year parties are over; Bangkok is just about as pleasant as it's ever going to get, and the islands on the south-western, Andaman Coast are just lovely: Koh Phi Phi, Phuket, Koh Lanta . Over on the east side, the islands of Koh Samui, Phangan and Tao are wetter - if you're heading here, best to wait a couple of months til March ; but still, those monsoon-like rains blow in, pour themselves out, then an hour later everyone's back on the beach.

Sustainable travel tip: Thai sleeper trains are modern and comfortable, so consider an overnight rail adventure between destinations rather than internal flights. Similarly, when visiting islands, more often than not there’s a ferry option, so don’t head for the airport as a matter of course.

Where to stay: The Standard offers a peppy, high-energy experience in Bangkok’s tallest skyscraper. Families and those seeking the more serene should book into the whimsical railway-themed InterContinental Khao Yai Resort , with its charming suites all set up in vintage railway carriages, and an old-timey ticketing booth serving as a lobby. See our guide to the best hotels in Thailand for more.

Temperature in January 1°C high 10°C low Season winter Travel time from UK 1 hour 40 minutes Time difference GMT 1  With...

Val d'Isere

Temperature in January: -1°C high; -10°C low Season: winter Travel time from UK: 1 hour 40 minutes Time difference: GMT +1

With New Year crowds gone and no school holidays on the horizon, January is a fine time to hit up the best ski resorts in Europe . And not only does French ski resort Val present the most reliable powder on the continent, but this St-Tropez-on-snow is only getting splashier. The spot is home to some of the best ski hotels and chalets in the region. And if Olympic downhills and Michelin-starred restaurants aren’t doing it, there are plenty more inventive ways to get your kicks. Who’s up for a circuit of BMW’s ice track?

Sustainable travel tip: Looking to offset all that Val d’Isère excess? Eurostar runs direct trains from London St Pancras to Bourg St Maurice during ski season; local buses then make the 45-minute trip from the station to Val.

Where to stay: Le Refuge de Solaise , once a cable-car station, is now a fun-loving ski hotel with ski-in/ski-out access, marking one of France’s highest places to bed down. We also love Le Yule , located right on the edge of the front de neige and the nursery slope. The rooms are decorated in minimalist Scandinavian style with natural colours, and have balconies overlooking the piste. For a private stay, seven-room Chalet Husky has a climbing wall, infinity waterfall and space for rifle shooting and archery – perhaps not so wise after a night at Dick’s Tea Bar.

Temperature in January 14°C high 6°C low Season winter Travel time from UK 2 hours 20 minutes Time difference GMT 0  No...

Porto, Portugal

Temperature in January: 14°C high; 6°C low Season: winter Travel time from UK: 2 hours 20 minutes Time difference: GMT +0

No doubt about it, Portugal is booming. While the country’s mild winters might not be scorching, they are quieter – and prices lower than usual, in a destination already beloved for being very affordable. Porto , Lisbon’s little sister, has undergone its own creative renewal. Once-decaying medieval streets buzz with kerbside cafés and retooled townhouses, transformed into stylish hotels by local designers. The food scene is fizzing, there’s more to Porto than sandwich shops and port wine tastings, from Michelin-starred menus to relaxed, wine-focused dining. And then there’s the terraced port vineyards of the Douro Valley, 100km inland.

Sustainable travel tip: Taking the train to Portugal is a much better idea than it might sound – and it only takes 24 hours. First, catch the Eurostar from London to Paris, then the high-speed TGV to Irun in Spain’s Basque Country, followed by the overnight Sud Express to Lisbon, which has sleeper cabins with private showers, and a cafe/bar. After a sophisticated night on the rails, there’s no shortage of direct trains to Porto. Felicidades!

Where to stay: Bijou design hotel Gran Cruz House pairs sorbet-toned rooms with a couldn’t-be-better location and a standout restaurant helmed by one of Portugal’s top chefs. On Rua das Flores, the 16th century Casa da Companhia building blends modern luxury with traditional touches, and hosts regular Port bottle ‘fire openings’ where you can learn about the city’s Port culture. See our guide to the best hotels in Porto for more.

Temperature in January 23°C high 8°C low Season dry Travel time from UK 11 hours 10 minutes Time difference GMT 6  The...

Temperature in January: 23°C high; 8°C low Season: dry Travel time from UK: 11 hours 10 minutes Time difference: GMT -6

The coast of Mexico is everything the British winter is not: light, colour, exoticism; warm and spicy and exuberant. Parties on the beach, yoga under the trees, a dip in dappled-light cenotes. We fell for the cosmic vibes of Tulum , and the little barefoot island of Isla Holbox , off the tip of the Yucatán Peninsula. For the haciendas and smart resorts on the Riviera Maya; for colonial Mérida . And over on the west coast, sunny, surfy Sayulita . The weather on both Atlantic and Pacific coasts is wonderful in January: hot but not-too-hot, with barely any rain at all. Required holiday reading: The Lacuna , by Poisonwood Bible author Barbara Kingsolver.

Sustainable travel tip: Where Tulum’s not-so-green practices have made headlines, and the Riviera Maya’s resorts are all about opulence, Isla Holbox’s modus operandi is small-scale and local. The lack of paved roads all but mandates getting around by bicycle; the most convenient way to arrive is by 30-minute ferry from the mainland; restaurants, bars and stores are owned by islanders; and single-use plastics have been banned since 2018.

Where to stay: Near the powdery white sands of Xpu-Ha, the secluded jungle hideaway of Hotel Esencia is a reprieve from bustling resorts and hedonistic eco-hotels. Five minutes from Huanacaxtle Beach, Susurros del Corazón offers an all-inclusive experience with a boutique hotel feel. The newly-revamped Rancho Pescadero is a great choice for the eco-conscious, with an on-site solar farm and a clean-air waste incinerator for both the resort and the local area. See our guide to the best hotels in Mexico for more.


Rwanda, Africa

Temperature in January: 24°C high; 9°C low Season: First dry period Travel time from UK: 10 hours 40 minutes (indirect with Rwandair or Egyptair) Time difference: GMT +2

There are many reasons to go to Rwanda . Its vibrant Kigali exudes an air of positivity from its extraordinarily resilient people. In Akagera National Park, still off-radar on the safari scene, lion and black rhino have been reintroduced, and you’ll spot elephants, giraffes and zebras roaming the savannah – but no other safari tourists. Trek through ancient rainforests, babble with monkeys – colobus, baboon, chimpanzee. But it’s Rwanda’s mountain gorillas that are the blockbuster draw. Not even 100 people a day are permitted to trek, accompanied by trackers, into the Virunga cloud forest of Volcanoes National Park, for a close encounter with the critically endangered creatures – a moving, once-in-a-lifetime experience. It’s possible any time of year – whenever you can get a coveted permit – but as the first dry period, January is one of the best months for trekking.

Sustainable travel tip : The income from carefully monitored responsible tourism funds the conservation of Rwanda’s mountain gorillas.

Where to stay: Two of Africa’s most sensational lodges are found not far from Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park and the gorillas: Bisate , Wilderness Safaris’ thatched, curvaceous and exquisitely designed eco-lodge and One&Only Gorilla’s Nest .

The Japanese Alps

The Japanese Alps

Temperature in January: 3°C high; –5°C low Season: Winter Travel time from UK: 11 hours 50 minutes Time difference: GMT +9

Most tourists miss Honshu’s mountainous Nagano Prefecture, which rewards the more intrepid traveller with unique experiences in this eternally surprising land. It is home to the drama and forested beauty of the Japanese Alps; the Nakasendo Way winding through the Kiso Valley and Kiso Mountain peaks which, in January, are white with snow. In Joshinetsu National Park, the ski resort of Shiga Kogen is massive – 51 lifts and dozens of hotels – but still little-known to overseas visitors, its slopes uncluttered. Apres-ski here is all about sushi feasts and restorative bathing in the natural onsen baths… perhaps even, in Jigokudani Snow Monkey Park, surrounded by scarlet-faced macaques who wallow in the steaming pools to keep warm.

Sustainable travel tip : Stays at Zenagi support Nagano’s rural communities and the restaurant uses ingredients grown by local suppliers.

Where to stay: In Nagano’s Kiso forest – where forest bathing is said to have originated – Zenagi is a 300-year-old Kominka house, its traditional architecture offset by the exquisite modern restoration and furniture locally made by craftsfolk.


Andaman Islands

Temperature in January: 29°C high; 21°C low Season: Dry and cool Travel time from UK: 9 hours 50 minutes to Chennai; 2 hours to Havelock Time difference: GMT +5.5

A castaway fantasy of white-sand cays and lagoons of tropical blue, the Andamans are the Indian Ocean archipelago on which few have set barefoot. Surfers and backpackers seeking next-level undiscovered make the 60-hour voyage by basic boat from Kolkata or Chennai, to stay in shacks along its pristine shores. In the past decade or so, more luxurious digs have been set up: primarily the Taj Exotica , in five-star splendour on Havelock island; and the more boutique Jalakara , set up by an Englishman and his wife.

Sustainable travel tip : Experiences here are all-natural: swimming, snorkelling, surfing, nature trails and bird walks.

Where to stay: As well as Taj Exotica and Jalakara, Barefoot at Havelock is a rustic delight.

Tourist tax: These are the destinations you’ll have to pay to enter

Olivia Morelli

The 15 prettiest towns in Portugal

Mary Lussiana

The best exhibitions in London for February

Connor Sturges

The best yoga retreats in the world

Kate O'Brien


Temperature in January: 30°C high; 19°C low Season: Winter Travel time from UK: 9 hours 45 minutes Time difference: GMT -5

Winter in Jamaica – when temperatures dip to a cool 30ºC by day – is a bright and balmy affair. This vibrant island dances to its own rhythms throughout January with music festivals from reggae (St Ann’s Rebel Salute) to rock’n’roll (Peter’s Players Winterfest). Jamaica’s music scene has always been world-leading, and never more so than right now. January is also one of the loveliest times to go for peak beach weather, the sea deliciously warm for swimming; and also for hiking – to waterfalls along the One Love Trail, or up through coffee plantations to the peak of the Blue Mountains.

Sustainable travel tip : Eco-forward Stush in the Bush serves delicious, homegrown plant-based Rastafari-Ital dishes – as well as gathering rainwater for the local community and generating solar power.

Where to stay: Ian Fleming’s former home GoldenEye is now one of several Jamaica boltholes owned by Island Records boss Chris Blackwell – and remains a legend. Its history is richly storied; Island Records brought Bob Marley to the world, and GoldenEye, in turn, has brought a string of musicians to the island, who have written songs in its waterside huts.

Temperature in January 20°C high 13°C low Season winter Travel time from UK 4 hours 15 minutes Time difference GMT 0 ...

Lanzarote, Canary Islands

Temperature in January: 20°C high; 13°C low Season: winter Travel time from UK: 4 hours 15 minutes Time difference: GMT +0

It’s no secret the Canary Islands offer reliable winter sun – but it may surprise that there’s another side to Lanzarote. Skip the east coast’s gaudy mega-hotels and you’ll discover a very cool Canary. Much of the built landscape owes a debt to local architect César Manrique, who designed many of the islands must-see architectural feats: Jardín de Cactus, his magical cactus amphitheatre; or the home he designed for himself, where cave-like rooms are carved into lava bubbles (now home to the Fundacíon César Manrique). Speaking of which, the island’s volcanic landscape is its own art project. Timanfaya National Park presents a ravishing patchwork of rainbow-hued earth. If climbing a volcano doesn’t do it for you, get wet: dive underwater through the art park Museo Atlántico, or surf local favourite Famara beach, a dramatic stretch to the north.

Sustainable travel tip: There’s no slow boat to Lanzarote, but lots of budget airlines fly here – and a few are genuinely attempting to reduce emissions. EasyJet , in fact, is rather progressive as carbon-gushing corporations go.

Where to stay: Finca Malvasia is a four-apartment hotel in Lanzarote's central La Geria wine region that's packed with funky touches such as volcanic-stone walls and cactus gardens. for a private stay, bed down in one of our favourite villas in Lanzarote .

Temperature in January 20°C high 10°C low Season winter Travel time from UK 11 hours 15 minutes Time difference GMT 8 ...

Silver Lake, Los Angeles

Temperature in January: 20°C high; 10°C low Season: winter Travel time from UK: 11 hours 15 minutes Time difference: GMT -8

Now Venice has officially made the transition from edgy to upscale, where do you go in LA for more boho, less bling? Head east to Silver Lake. There might not be a beach, but the chilled neighbourhood vibe more than compensates. Houses spill down jungly hills to palm-lined boulevards jammed with vintage T-shirts and vinyl. Behold the surf shops and farmers' markets, street murals and food trucks, plus indie clubs that launched Foo Fighters and Foster The People. Think of it as an unending summer of hip, young cool – even in January. And, as with any self-respecting creative hub, it’s where food trends are born: see Trois Familia’s French-Mexican brunch, with beet-tartare tostada and churro French toast

Sustainable travel tip: LA traffic is notorious, and its subpar public transportation even more so, but you can do your bit by renting a hybrid car.

Where to stay: The Palihouse Santa Monica boutique beach lodge is in a Spanish Colonial Revival-style building, a range of suites with a home-from-home philosophy.

Temperature in January 24°C high 19°C low Season dry Travel time from UK 8 hours Time difference GMT 1  A smattering of...

Temperature in January: 24°C high; 19°C low Season: dry Travel time from UK: 8 hours Time difference: GMT -1

A smattering of volcanic islands 350 miles off the coast of Senegal, Cape Verde seems a lonely prospect at first look, out in the mid-Atlantic. But there’s a reason it’s fast become a fly-and-flop favourite: miles of uninterrupted ivory beaches, impossibly pure surf and an intriguing lunar landscape. Not to mention its consistently sunny disposition: January’s average temperature is 25˚C. And finally, there’s a lovely little eco lodge to rival the big hotels and budget guesthouses. Run entirely on renewable energy, Spinguera is a restored fishing village with its own private beach on the north coast of Boa Vista island (translation: good view). Think charming, stone-hewn villas with bright yellow shutters, fresh, white bedrooms and lantern-lit sunset suppers. You could while away every day right here. Or go island-hopping to explore more of Cape Verde’s craggy beauty: from Sal’s red deserts and salt pans to São Vicente, the heart of its colourful Afro-Portuguese culture.

Sustainable travel tip: Try exploring the islands by ferry. Some routes are more regular and reliable than others, such as São Vicente to lush and mountainous Santo Antão, and Santiago to rugged Fogo (where there’s a vineyard in a volcanic crater).

Where to stay: At Odjo d'Agua Hotel , a small, locally owned hotel with a garden, a pool, anachronistically decorated rooms (antiques and curios, fishing equipment and so on) and an open-air restaurant-bar jutting out into the sea, where you can dine as the Atlantic rollers crash past.

Temperature in January 4°C high 12°C low Season winter Travel time from UK 7 hours 20 minutes Time difference GMT 5  If...

Montreal, Canada

Temperature in January: -4°C high; -12°C low Season: winter Travel time from UK: 7 hours 20 minutes Time difference: GMT -5

If a rave in sub-zero temperatures sounds appealing, Montréal is for you. The city’s annual January Igloofest tempts parka-clad party people outside with a line-up of world-class EDM acts. Elsewhere, the French château architecture looks fabulous with frosting, and you can go snowshoeing up Mount Royal for excellent city views (it’s more of a hill, really, right in the middle of town). Mile End’s hipsters have been replaced by good-looking young families, but its food institutions remain: warm up with classic smoked-meat sandwiches at Schwartz’s Deli, or St-Viateur’s hot-out-the-oven, hand-rolled bagels (thinner and sweeter than New York ’s). For a comforting treat in the cold, poutine is considered a delicacy – try it at Au Pied de Cochon or Garnde Manger. If you need to come in from the cold, there’s the Underground City – a network of shops, museums and restaurants below downtown’s core.

Sustainable travel tip: In hip warehouse district Griffintown the Hôtel Alt Montréal , from Canadian-owned Groupe Germain, has been designed with sustainability in mind: think geothermal heating and energy-saving lighting.

Where to stay: Auberge du Vieux-Port , located on the riverfront in Vieux Montreal, has a restaurant and a rooftop terrace with views of the St-Lawrence River and the Old Port.

Temperature in January 32°C high 24°C low Season dry Travel time from UK from 12 hours 50 minutes Time difference GMT 5 ...

Temperature in January: 32°C high; 24°C low Season: dry Travel time from UK: from 12 hours 50 minutes Time difference: GMT -5

Finding a photograph-worthy beach in Panama – a compact country with two long coasts – is easy. Finding a suitably chic stay to match is more of a challenge. Maybe that’s why this gem gets overshadowed by its rowdy neighbours, Colombia and Costa Rica. But that’s all starting to change, now, thanks to the Islas Secas . On a remote, private archipelago of the same name, just 20 miles off Panama’s Pacific shore, this retreat leaves you marooned in luxury: it's home to four individually designed Casita sites and three Tented Casitas, all located on one of the islands and sleeping up to 24 guests. Expect expert-led excursions to uninhabited islands and jungles, and complete silence come nightfall. Changing gears, the Panama Jazz Festival makes January the best time to visit for a musical party. Hole up in Central America’s first W hotel , or head for the Casco Viejo . Once controlled by gangs, the capital’s old quarter is now flooded with cool new outfits revitalising crumbling colonial buildings, including romantic boutique bolthole La Concordia.

Sustainable travel tip: Billionaire conservation philanthropist Louis Bacon bought the Islas Secas archipelago on the condition that 13 of its 14 islands would remain undeveloped. The whole retreat runs on solar energy, plus all water used gets recycled. Alternatively, choose a completely untouched beach getaway: the Caribbean coast’s San Blas Islands are protected by an indigenous Panamanian tribe, the Guna. No hotels, no big-name restaurants: just simple huts and hammocks on deserted sands. Pass on flying here – you can catch a speedboat just outside Panama City.

Where to stay: Sofitel Legend Casco Viejo , the former Union Club of Panama, with its waterfront infinity pool, immersive spa program and spacious personal terraces that overlook the glittering downtown skyline. For a pretty retreat on a coffee farm in the mountain area of Boquete, Los Establos has spacious suites, great views and plenty of activities on offer.

Temperature in January 27°C high 20°C low Season summer Travel time from UK 22 hours 30 minutes Time difference GMT 10 ...

Paddington, Sydney, Australia

Temperature in January: 27°C high; 20°C low Season: summer Travel time from UK: 22 hours 30 minutes Time difference: GMT +10

If Sydney is urban done right – laid-back, cosmopolitan and perpetually beachy – then Paddington is suburban perfection. Fashionable and well-heeled, it’s got all the buzz of a central district, but with the charm of a village. Colourful Victorian terrace rows flaunting wrought-iron balconies could be Notting Hill. Main promenade Oxford Street bustles with cafés, pubs and boutiques, while back alleys are home to cool galleries, design studios and cute bars. Nicky Zimmermann started out selling her designs at Paddington’s famous Saturday markets; find her spacious store on Glenmore Road. Or join the 'Paddo' foodies at Fred’s, where chef Danielle Alvarez’s kitchen cooks farm-to-table comfort food. January is quintessential Sydney summer, with balmy temperatures, and the Sydney Festival packing the city with music and art.

Sustainable travel tip: Though Qantas conducted a successful nonstop London to Sydney research flight in late 2019 – clocking in at 19 hours and 19 minutes – it isn’t yet commercially available. Which means getting to Oz still entails a carbon-heavy indirect route. But you can choose to eat and shop sustainably while you’re there. Sydney, in fact, offers a lot of innovative ways to leave a lighter footprint, from Paddington’s zero-waste fashion boutique EkoLuv, to 'rescued food' market Oz Harvest, and sustainable seafood restaurant Love Fish, in the waterfront Barangaroo development, designed to be Australia’s first carbon-neutral precinct.

Where to stay: The Dive Hotel , a groovy family-run guesthouse in Coogee, is about 8km southeast of central Sydney. A cursory glance at the crisp cotton sheets, polished floorboards and blue-tiled bathrooms reveals that this hotel doesn't live up (or down) to its name. Over in Surry Hills, Ace Hotel pays homage to the area’s creative roots with a diverse selection of music, talks, workshops and Pride parties, including a First Nations’ artist-in-residence program showcasing works from Aboriginal and other boundary-pushing artists .

Temperature in January 30°C high 23°C low Season dry Travel time from UK 13 hours Time difference GMT 6  Warning a...

Nicaragua, Central America

Temperature in January: 30°C high; 23°C low Season: dry Travel time from UK: 13 hours Time difference: GMT -6

Warning: a youthful wanderlust may return when you read this feature about Nicaragua . Quite possibly the Central American country that has it all: tropical rainforests and untouched beaches, fringed with palms, distant cloud-capped volcanoes, and recently some extraordinarily special eco-lodges (see our sustainable travel tip). January has the double blessing of being the month with the best temperatures everywhere, and also the least rainfall (barely any at all) on Nicaragua's Pacific Coast.

Sustainable travel tip: Half the appeal of going to Nicaragua is losing yourself in the wild, and there are plenty of smart yet eco ways to do it. On the coast, Totoco Eco-Lodge is made up of private casitas, a pool and bougainvillaea-filled gardens but also has compost loos and works with solar power and recycled water; even your morning coffee is sourced from a neighbouring finca. Jungle-clad Jicaro Island Lodge is built from reclaimed mahogany and cedar wood, while idyllic seaside farmhouse Morgan’s Rock grows all its own food.

Where to stay: Los Patios Hotel , a five-bedroom gem with an indoor-outdoor approach to living, with scrubbed, Scandi-style interiors and open-air spaces designed for chilling out.

Temperature in January 30°C high 24°C low Season summer Travel time from UK 12 hours 40 minutes Time difference GMT 3 ...

The coast of Brazil, South America

Temperature in January: 30°C high; 24°C low Season: summer Travel time from UK: 12 hours 40 minutes Time difference: GMT -3

Worth splurging all your annual leave in January for. Spend your New Year's Eve in Rio de Janeiro or São Paulo and then stay on for a couple more weeks and head up the coast to any number of preposterously gorgeous, barefoot-n-bikini-chic beach havens. So many thousands of miles of empty, golden sand, and beautiful people drinking caipirinhas at the coolest beach parties. The kind of places that really get our travel clichés rolling. Trancoso , in Bahia, is the original and still one of the best. Surfy Itacaré, the no-car islands of Boipeba and Tinharé. Or Sao Luís and Jericoacoara, on the wild and stunning north-east coast.

Sustainable travel tip: Carbon emissions in the Amazon forest have rocketed in recent years due to a lack of enforcement of environmental protection policies. As well as a devastating increase in deforestation in the world's largest rainforest, uncontrolled wildfires have ravaged one of the most climate-important carbon sinks in a region of rich biological and cultural diversity. Give financial support by booking nature-based activities through Indigenous-owned businesses which support the forest folk on the frontlines. To reduce your own carbon footprint, choose a direct flight route, since it’s the taking off and landing parts that burn the most fossil fuels. Choosing an energy-efficient low-cost carrier also means less kerosene combusted per passenger – consider Norwegian Air, for example, from London Gatwick to Rio.

Where to stay: Uxua Casa Hotel & Spa . A ramshackle façade disguises this utterly fabulous hotel. Ten beautiful houses are set among high-growing gardens. Bathrooms have living walls of ferns, orchids and jasmine, and there's a spa and a pool lined with green aventurine stones.

Temperature in January 28°C high 20°C low Season dry Travel time from UK 16 hours 20 minutes Time difference GMT 6  It...

Belize, Central America

Temperature in January: 28°C high; 20°C low Season: dry Travel time from UK: 16 hours 20 minutes Time difference: GMT -6

It is hot and humid and it rains a lot in Belize, beset as it is by tropical storms and hurricanes. But don't let that put you off. It is the perfect Caribbean escape for those who like it rough and palm-fringed around the edges, with tropical jungly highlands, Mayan ruins and the most astoundingly beautiful beaches, just a handful of hippies and beach bums to share them with. January and February are the best months, only pleasantly hot and not too wet.

Sustainable travel tip: Those who sign up to a five-day diving trip with Much Better Adventures can be part of the conservation effort to protect the Belize Barrier Reef, spearing invasive lionfish, training in conservation work and helping with research.

Where to stay: Itz’ana , a hotel with a beautiful rattan- and plant-decorated restaurant and a bar with a great pool.

Temperature in January 26°C high 16°C low Season summer Travel time from UK 10 hours 45 minutes Time difference GMT 2 ...

South Africa

Temperature in January: 26°C high; 16°C low Season: summer Travel time from UK: 10 hours 45 minutes Time difference: GMT +2

So, so many reasons to go, but briefly: amazing food and wine , beaches, hotels. Sensational scenery, from the Garden Route and Western Cape to the Little Karoo . Completely thrilling wildlife encounters on safari, staying at the most incredible lodges; or along the coastline, in knock-out villas . January is one of the best months for all those things. Wine can be drunk all year round. And because it's in the same time zone, you don't even get jet lag once you're home again. Shame we can't say the same about hangovers.

Sustainable travel tip: When choosing a safari, make sure your money is poured back into supporting the park. The likes of Kruger and Hluhluwe-iMfolozi, where rhino poaching is rife, need these funds for anti-poaching schemes.

Where to stay: At Silo Hotel , the best hotel in Cape Town for eclectic design and wraparound views. Its compact footprint packs a punch and includes the best rooftop bar and pool in the city.

Temperature in January 6°C high 2°C low Season winter Travel time from UK 1 hours 10 minutes Time difference GMT 1  For...

Bruges, Belgium

Temperature in January: 6°C high; 2°C low Season: winter Travel time from UK: 1 hours 10 minutes Time difference: GMT +1

For snow, beer and chips. The beautiful little Belgian city is one of those rare places that is just as enticing in the bleak midwinter as in summer: pretty in the snow, 'beautiful f**king fairytale stuff', to quote the film In Bruges (which is all the research you need). And the snow is an excellent excuse for holing up somewhere, because this city also has some of the most inviting reasons to stay indoors: interesting interiors, welcoming taverns full of good cheer and much Belgian beer, antiques and junk shops to poke around, gorgeous old guesthouses on the canals, candlelit bars and restaurants, moules-frites and cream-and-kirsch-laden puddings. A long weekend is enough time to see everything and put on a stone in weight.

Sustainable travel tip: Our friends in the north have an advantage when it comes to getting to Bruges sustainably – the overnight ferry from Hull. The good news for southerners: the Eurostar travels direct from London to Brussels in just two hours, and from Brussels there are trains to Bruges every 30 minutes that take just over an hour.

Where to stay: Number 11 , three 17th-century gable houses containing four wooden-floored bedrooms which combine antique and contemporary furniture, tactile fabrics, interesting prints and fresh flowers. Go for the deluxe suite, a ground-floor apartment with its own entrance, Champagne-stocked fridge and a bathtub for two.

Temperature in January 24°C high 8°C low Season winter Travel time from UK 14 hours 25 minutes Time difference GMT 5.30 ...

Rajasthan, India

Temperature in January: 24°C high; 8°C low Season: winter Travel time from UK: 14 hours 25 minutes Time difference: GMT +5.30

India's state of princes is spectacular in January. It's pleasantly warm, the holiday crowds have vanished and you can dance through its palaces as if on your own private Bollywood set. Don't miss the jewels in its crown - pastel-hued Jaipur , turquoise-speckled Jodhpur and romantically golden Udaipur - but leave room in your itinerary for a few forgotten treasures : serene Jal Mahal or the lost city of Bhangarh. January also provides the perfect weather for an Arabian Nights-style safari in Jaisalmer, where you can traverse the desert on the back of a camel and sleep under the stars.

Sustainable travel tip: Rajasthan’s train network is excellent and largely runs on time. But reserve well in advance to secure the more comfortable cabin classes – 1AC and 2AC provide bunks with privacy curtains, towels and bedding – because they get snapped up fast. You can book through the Indian Railways site, which requires a frustrating registration process but is doable if you’re the patient type, or else use the quick and easy online agency 12go.asia .

Where to stay: Lakshaman Sagar was originally constructed in the 19th-century as a hunting lodge, and has since been converted into a luxury getaway set over 32 acres of land in Raipur. The resort features 12 villas, private dining and lounging spaces, a spa, and swimming pool.

The Boutique Adventurer: Luxury Adventure Travel Blog focussed on Emerging Destinations for those over 35

37 Warm Places to Visit in January in the USA

By: Author Amanda OBrien

Posted on Last updated: 16/02/2024

The excitement of the festive season and the first snowfall is unlike any other time of the year. But a few weeks after you’ve ushered in the new year, making snow angels and drinking hot cocoa doesn’t seem appealing anymore.

With the dipping temperature bringing in a dreary feel, you long for a warmer place.

Lucky for you, January is a great month to travel with reduced fares (when I say reduced, I mean compared to the holiday season) and plenty of warmer destinations to pick from.

Whether you long for beaches, theme parks, national parks, or resorts, here’s a list of 37 warm places to visit in January in the USA to get you away from the gloomy days.

  • 37 Warm Places to Visit in the USA in January

Table of Contents

4. Saguaro National Park

5. scottsdale, in california, 6. palm springs, 7. san diego, 8. death valley national park, 9. santa barbara, 10. los angeles, 11. santa catalina island, 13. florida keys, 15. orlando, 16. anna maria island, 18. cedar key, 19. st. augustine, 21. everglades national park, 24. big island, in south carolina, 26. charleston, 27. hilton head, 29. south padre island, 30. houston, 31. san antonio, 32. big bend national park, in u.s. virgin islands, 33. st. john, 34. st. thomas, in other states of the usa, 35. las vegas, nevada, 36. new orleans, louisiana, 37. savannah, georgia.

Average temperature: 46 – 69 degrees Fahrenheit


Phoenix is perfectly pleasant in January when much of the country is freezing. Unfortunately, hotel rates aren’t very pleasant during this time; consider booking early for a reasonable price.

Outdoors is the place to be in the Valley of the Sun, and activities are abundant for your warm escape. Go on a long hike on some of the steep hiking trails, play Top Golf in a 240-yard outfield, or shop in malls or local stores for some amazing sales and discounts.

phoenix arizona

Don’t miss out on the Zoolights in Phoenix Zoo, a popular Phoenix attraction in January and an amazing sight to behold. Equally mesmerizing is the World Lantern Festival, which has lights (obviously), global cultures, cuisines, carnival rides, and games.

Go the extra mile and take the Polar Express train tour, just like the one in the movie.

Consider staying at the Royal Palms Resort & Spa to make your visit special.

Average temperature: 34 – 58 degrees Fahrenheit

With crisp weather, sunny blue skies, and gorgeous Red Rocks, Sedona is a sight to behold in January.

airport view seonda sunset

Home to some of the Western United States’ most iconic and scenic hiking vacations, you can indulge in some daytime outdoor adventure hiking along the Soldier Pass Trail (past an enormous sinkhole), the Seven Sacred Pools, or the Devil’s Bridge.

The nights can get a bit chilly, so don’t forget to bring along a jacket.

Get your adrenaline pumping with an ATV tour, zooming across dusty backroads past endless forests and beautiful cliffs. Equally exciting is riding on a helicopter or hot air balloon over the canyons for some unforgettable views.

cathedral rock

For souvenir shopping, head to Tlaquepaque Village to find something unique and sip on warming masala chai.

With hotel prices slashed down this time of the year here, you could stay at the Sky Ranch Lodge or Enchantment Resort .

Average temperature: 42 – 65 degrees Fahrenheit

arizona sonora desert museum

Sunny Tucson is a blessing in disguise for hiking enthusiasts. The local favorites include Sabino Canyon and Mount Lemmon. For some bird watching, go towards Madera Canyon.

For soaking in nature without a trek, visit Tucson Botanical Gardens or the Saguaro National Park for some lovely desert scenery.

sabino canyon

Other fun venues include the Zoppé Family Circus, the Annual Dillinger Days at Hotel Congress (for whiskey tasting, live music, premium cigars, delicious appetizers, and more), the Tucson Museum of Art, and the Pima Air and Space Museum.

My stay recommendation is the Hotel Congress , a historic hotel with nightclubs, bars, a music venue, and a unique rock ‘n’ roll vibe.

Average temperature: 46 – 64 degrees Fahrenheit

The scenic drives and short walks among the towering cacti make Saguaro National Park a magical destination in January.

saguaro park west sunset

No trip to this place is complete without truly appreciating the forests of the Saguaro Cactus (the largest cactus in the United States). Walk the Valley View Overlook Trail to get close to these cacti, prickly pears, and ironwood trees.

saguaro national park east warm places to visit in January in the usa

Step back in time by almost a thousand years by walking the short trail to Signal Hill, where you get to see rock art (petroglyphs) drawn by the prehistoric Hohokam people. And for the best views of the park, hike to Wassen peak (an 8-mile round trip).

I can’t suggest a better place to stay than Westward Look Wyndham if you plan on staying a couple of days.

Average temperature: 42 – 68 degrees Fahrenheit

scottsdale arizona

Located in the heart of the Sonoran Desert, Scottsdale in January is about as perfect as it gets, with sunny, blue skies.

It’s the perfect time to explore the Sonoran Desert for scenic hikes, rugged off-road tours, hot air balloon flights, paddle boarding, or kayaking on the local lakes and rivers.

scottsdale arizona

You could also take a swing at desert golf in any of the 200 golf courses here (TPC Scottsdale, Troon North, Grayhawk).

One of the highlights of Arizona in January, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Arizona Marathon, runs through Tempe, Phoenix, and Scottsdale, with live performers along the route. Join in the run or be a spectator for this entertaining event.

Make your visit memorable with a stay at Andaz Scottsdale Resort & Bungalows .

Average temperature: 45 – 71 degrees Fahrenheit

The heart of the California Desert, Palm Springs, is all about its warm weather, boutique hotels, artsy stores, and trendy cafes.

One of the many festivals and events lined up in January is the Palm Springs International Film Festival. Don’t miss riding on the world’s largest rotating tram car – the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway.

palm springs

Spend a day at the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens nearby Palm Desert (a delight for adults and children alike) or take a hike in the desert (the Thousand Palms Oasis in the Coachella Valley Preserve).

If you’re an art buff, head to the Palm Springs Art Museum or tour the local architecture (dating to the middle of the 20th century) to admire the style of many homes.

palm springs

Stay at The Wescott ; it has an outdoor pool, a hot tub and a fantastic ambiance.

Average temperature: 49 – 65 degrees Fahrenheit

san diego downtown skyline

This Southern California coastal city is perfect for your January getaway. 

La Jolla Cove is the spot for the sand and sea. Another exciting place to visit is Balboa Park; it has interesting museums, promenades, and an artistic village selling local art. The San Diego Zoo is also a must.

In January, you can catch events like the San Diego Black Film Festival and the San Diego Brew Fest.

Other places worth visiting include Cabrillo National Monument, Old Town San Diego , Seaport Village, and the Gaslamp Quarter.

la jolla beach california

There is no place like Hotel del Coronado for your stay; it even appeared in the Marilyn Monroe starred 1958 movie – Some Like It Hot.

Average temperature: 40 – 67 degrees Fahrenheit

A hike or a camp in Death Valley National Park, while unimaginable at any other time of the year with its infamously high temperature, is the perfect outdoor activity in January. Don’t forget to get your sunblock and sunglasses.

death valley

The bounty of nature here is gorgeous and surreal. Check out the Ubehebe Crater and Artist’s Palette for jaw-dropping natural sights. The stunning salt flats in the Badwater basin are at the lowest point in North America.

You’ll be spellbound by the night skies coming alive with constellations, planets, and even glimpses of the International Space Station.

death valley

Catch the sunset at Zabriskie Point or visit the Mesquite Flat for a more picturesque experience.

The Ranch at Death Valley and The Inn at Death Valley are both great stays in the heart of the park.

Average temperature: 46 – 65 degrees Fahrenheit

santa barbara california

Santa Barbara is the ultimate destination for amazing sunsets, great surf, and perfect hiking weather all day.

With the fog-free coast, you can go for a Sunset Kayak Tour in Santa Barbara Harbor for a spectacular twilight sky viewing. If you’re in for some adventure, hike up to Montecito Peak, with a creek, a small waterfall, and panoramic views from the peak.

Santa Barbara happens to be a prime whale-watching destination to witness the gray whale migration between December and April every year.


It’s also the Monarch Butterfly season, and you can view several of these bright orange butterflies in their natural habitat at The Goleta Butterfly Grove. Also, drop by the Old Mission Santa Barbara and County Courthouse to witness marvelous architecture.

Stay at the Brisas Del Mar Inn at the Beach , a Mediterranean-style hotel that provides free bike rentals.

Average temperature: 48 – 68 degrees Fahrenheit

griffiths observatory los angeles

With moderate temperatures and crystal-clear blue skies, you can enjoy vibrant cultural events, world-class cuisines, and a plethora of entertainment in Los Angeles .

January is when Lunar New Year celebrations occur across the city. Indulge in authentic Asian cuisine, shop for handmade goods, and play carnival games at Monterey Park Lunar New Year Festival.

The cherry on top is a visit to Disneyland and Universal Studios Hollywood sans the three-hour lines of the peak season.


If you want to lounge around the beach, South Bay, LA, is the best place to do so. You can also bike or rollerblade down ‘the Strand’ here or play beach volleyball.

Stay at Freehand Los Angeles and enjoy the rooftop pool and bar among the many facilities.

You might enjoy reading my article on best places to visit in October in the United States.

Average temperature: 50 – 63 degrees Fahrenheit

Santa Catalina’s weather is among the many wonders of this Southern California vacation destination.

santa catalina island california

Apart from its luxurious beaches and splendid resorts, the off-peak season allows you to explore the island to your satisfaction. You can go bicycling, scuba diving, snorkeling, kayaking, fishing, or even play mini-golf here.

santa catalina island

The zipline on Catalina Island is a must-try for thrill seekers. Other adventurous activities include camping along the Trans-Catalina Trail and embarking on the Garden to Sky day hike.

Feast on some of the best seafood at Bluewater Avalon or Lobster Trap . And while you can visit this place on a day trip, if you plan to spend the night, stay at Bellanca Hotel .

Average temperature: 50 – 66 degrees Fahrenheit


There’s never a bad time to visit Malibu, and there’s no shortage of things to do here.

This beachfront city along the Pacific is a popular destination for the rich and famous. While you can stroll along the beach, you could also visit the magnificent Getty Villa to see a stunning collection of Roman and Greek art.

california sunset in malibu

You can hike and explore the craggy caves along the scenic coastline at Point Dume State Beach. Not to forget, it’s also the whale-watching season here.

Visit the Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art at Pepperdine University if it rains and you can’t go for any outdoor activities.

Make your visit memorable by staying at the Malibu Beach Inn .

Average temperature:  67 – 73 degrees Fahrenheit

key west sunset boat

You’ll never be at a loss for something to do in the Florida Keys in January.

Foodies will love sampling the world-famous, freshly caught seafood at the annual Florida Keys Seafood Festival in Key West. The Key West Food and Wine Festival is a six-day adventure for your taste buds for some great wining and dining.

There’s also the Key West Craft Show, where you can admire or purchase local art.

cruisin tikis key west sunset

If you’re keen on seeing dolphins in their natural surroundings, board Fury’s Key West Dolphin & Snorkel Tour and see these incredible marine mammals resting, playing, and feeding.

The Santa Maria Suites Resort is only a block from the Atlantic Ocean and Duval Street (with its shops, restaurants, bars, museums, and art galleries) and is a great stay.

Average temperature:  60 – 76 degrees Fahrenheit

One of the best places to visit in Florida any time of the year, Miami is all about beaches, shopping, restaurants, and more.

miami florida at sunset

Miami Beach, one of the most famous US beaches, is perfect for beach bums. Among the incredible urban parks in Miami, David T. Kennedy Park is great for a stroll and a frozen slushie from A.C.’s food truck.

Another splendid Miami destination, South Beach, has endless shopping, gorgeous art deco architecture, and epic nightlife. Don’t miss the Art Deco Walking Tour in South Beach to learn what makes the area unique.

art deco buildings miami

Stay at the Loews Miami Beach Hotel , which features a full-service spa, outdoor pool, hot tub, and city or ocean views from all rooms. 

Average temperature: 50 – 71 degrees Fahrenheit

Icon Park Orlando

When you think Orlando , you’re bound to think theme park, and there’s no time like January to go theme park-hopping.

Visit Typhoon Lagoon, SeaWorld’s Discovery Cove, and Disney’s Blizzard Beach, which are fully heated and open all year round. But, of course, there are also the ones not to be missed – SeaWorld, Universal Studios, and Disney World’s five signature theme parks.

Walt Disney World orlando

You can also explore beautiful natural outdoor spaces like Weeki Wachee Springs State Park or Wekiwa Springs State Park.

A convenient stay for Disney visitors is any of Disney World’s 32 resorts.

Average temperature: 52 – 71 degrees Fahrenheit

Nothing says Old Florida, with incredibly pristine beaches like Anna Maria Island – a perfect warm destination to visit in January. You’ve got a great getaway in January with fewer crowds and cheaper rates on beachfront vacation rentals. 

anna Maria Island

Also, it’s nearly impossible to go anywhere near Anna Maria Island without spotting a golf course. So go for some tee time at Timber Creek Golf Course, Key Royal Club Inc., or Bradenton Country Club.

From outdoor activities like bicycling, kayaking, and hiking to relaxing on Bean Point Beach to see the sunset or sunrise, you can immerse yourself in this island’s slow lifestyle the way you want to.

For the best stay on the island, go for Compass Hotel by Margaritaville Anna Maria Sound . The hotel’s highlights include a sun terrace, an outdoor pool, and fantastic seafood.

tampa bay florida

Tampa is yet another worthy destination among the many warm places to visit in Florida in January.

A smorgasbord of adventure, nature, events, and delicious eats, it is a perfect spot to have fun and relax. The clear skies and sunny weather year-round are perfect for bike rides or strolls along the well-maintained pedestrian pathway of Tampa Riverwalk.

If you’re the adventurous kind, take your pick from camping, hiking, kayaking, canoeing, or fishing in the Hillsborough River State Park. Also, don’t miss checking out the world’s first cupcake ATM of Sprinkles ; it dispenses freshly baked cupcakes and cookies 24/7.

tampa bay

Other places worth visiting here are Busch Gardens (a world-renowned amusement park), the Tampa Museum of Art, and the Tampa Electric Manatee Viewing Center.

Stay at the Hotel South Tampa & Suites and enjoy their heated outdoor pool – perfect for the January weather.

Average temperature: 47 – 64 degrees Fahrenheit

Cedar Key Sunset in florida

Cedar Key, Florida’s second oldest town, remains spared of the usual Florida crowds, making it the perfect spot to visit in January.

It’s the month of boating activities, so go for a sunset tour or a coastal island tour for splendid views. The Atsena Otie Key is an excellent place if you’re a nature or history lover, and you can get there by ferry.

cedar key

Your trip to Cedar Key is incomplete without a visit to Dock Street, the busiest area in the town, with waterfront restaurants. From Cedar Key Fishing Pier to Cedar Key Beach, Dock Street will spoil you for choice.

A unique place to stay is the Island Hotel , one of Florida’s oldest hotels (as old as 1859).

Average temperature: 46 – 66 degrees Fahrenheit

A great place to get away, no matter the time of the year, St. Augustine has fewer crowds and great deals on accommodation in January.

Casa Monica, St Augustine

Visit Anastasia State Park for a relaxing afternoon kayaking or birdwatching. It features tidal marshes, pristine white-sand beaches, and maritime hammocks spread over 1600 acres. 

If you’re among the daring visitors, take a ghost tour (St. Augustine is one of America’s most haunted cities) at the Ghosts and Gravestones or the Old Prison.

While meandering down St. George Street in the Historic District and walking past art galleries, shops, and restaurants, stop by The Hyppo for fresh, all-natural, handmade popsicles.

Castillo de San Marcos, St Augustine

January is also the time of the Nights of Lights, with string lights adorning 20 blocks of Spanish colonial architecture in the charming historic district.

As for stay, St. Francis Inn Bed & Breakfast is a great pick; their gourmet breakfast buffet tastes as tantalizing as it smells.

Average temperature: 59 – 72 degrees Fahrenheit

naples pier florida at sunset

And continuing with the list of warm places to visit in Florida is Naples, an iconic destination with lots to do.

Go sightseeing at The Baker Museum, Naples Zoo (housing the fossa seen in the movie ‘Madagascar’), and Naples Botanical Garden. Or take a day trip to Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary, which will bring you near 600-year-old trees, alligators, otters, and some beautiful, endangered birds.

naples sunset in florida

Walk the 1,000 feet expansive boardwalk of Naples Pier to soak in some stunning panoramic views. Or explore the mangrove-filled estuaries of Marco Island and the Witch Watchtower.

A decadent meal at The Turtle Club Restaurant and a stay at the Ritz Carlton make for a memorable visit. 

Average temperature: 55 – 81 degrees Fahrenheit

The third-largest national park in the continental United States, spanning 1.5 million acres of Southern Florida, Everglades National Park is also the warmest.

flamingoes in Everglades National Park Florida

There are two seasons in Everglades – wet and dry. And the dry season that runs from December to about mid-May is a great time to visit, with mild temperatures, low humidity, and the biting bugs being blessedly absent.

A visit in January to the dense tropical forests filled with mangroves, mahogany, and Gumbo Limbo trees will give you a chance to view many migratory birds and some stunning wildlife.

Everglades airboat

The River of Grass is the only place where crocodiles and alligators co-exist.

You can go sightseeing through the park by bike, car, boat, or hiking, and paddle a canoe or kayak to spend the night on a chickee, a wooden platform built above the swamp.

The park has no accommodations apart from car campgrounds or back-country camping spots (that need permits).

Average temperature: 63 – 82 degrees Fahrenheit

Kapalua Bay maui

If there’s one place that can compete with Florida as the perfect January getaway, it’s Hawaii . And Maui in Hawaii is one such popular perennial destination.

With balmy temperatures, the smallest crowds, and the lowest accommodation prices, it’s a delight to visit this tropical island paradise in January. 

From epic volcano hikes, breathtaking lush parks, and stunning beaches, it’s also the time for lovely cultural events and nature walks.

maui sunset 1

The Secret Garden of Maliko is a serene place for some quiet time and rejuvenation. And a stroll along the Wai’anapanapa State Park’s black sand beach makes for a unique experience.

Snorkeling in the Molokini Crater will give you a glimpse of the different fish and sea turtles.

The Sheraton Maui Resort and Spa on Black Rock Beach is a great place to stay.

Average temperature: 66 – 80 degrees Fahrenheit

Oahu is an excellent Hawaiian getaway in January with its picturesque beaches and bounty of events.


Try your hand at some crater climbing with the spectacular Diamond Head Crater, take a whale-watching boat tour to spot the majestic Humpback whales, and hike along the Makapu’u Point Lighthouse Trail.


Surfing lessons, a Turtle Canyons snorkeling excursion, and shopping at the Ko’Olina Artfest are other activities to look forward to in January.

The Four Seasons Resort Ko Olina is the perfect place to stay in Oahu.

Average temperature: 64 – 82 degrees Fahrenheit

big island hawaii volcano

The Big Island is one of the best places to visit in Hawaii and the USA during January. You’ll get mostly sunny weather with intermittent rain, so don’t forget to bring a light rain jacket.

Besides being the best time to see humpback whales, it’s also a great time to see the active volcanoes and smoking craters in the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

big island hawaii

To gaze at some pristine natural wonders, head to the volcanic black sand beach,  Punalu’u, where you’ll see the endangered hawksbill and green turtles. Also, add Rainbow Falls and the Chain of Craters Road (for miles of volcanic grounds) to your itinerary.

And finally, check out Papakolea Beach, at the southernmost tip, which has dazzling green sand, a sight to behold. Stay at the Royal Kona Resort ; it features a private beach area and faces the Pacific Ocean.

Average temperature: 65 – 72 degrees Fahrenheit

Another picture-perfect January destination in Hawaii, Kauai, is full of pristine bays and lush landscapes great for some sun, sand, and sea.

Kauai, Hawaii volcano

Not to forget coffee; with coffee plantations spread across the island, you can sip coffee made from the freshest roasts. For specialty coffee paired with good vibes, drop by Java Kai.

A cruise on Capt. Andy’s Cruise along the Na Pali Coast, lined with dramatic volcanos, or sunset and dinner on a yacht are things you could enjoy here.

Kauai, Hawaii

Since the rains may come and go as they please, come prepared with a flexible schedule. The Koloa Landing Resort is a magnificent stay in Kauai.

Average temperature: 44 – 57 degrees Fahrenheit

charleston south carolina waterfront

A pleasantly warm destination in South Carolina, Charleston makes a great escape from the freezing weather in January.

Visit any of the museums and landmark homes that stay open throughout the year, and walk through Charleston’s Historic District to appreciate the lovely scenery around you. Witness the world’s largest oyster festival – Lowcountry Oyster Festival, and enjoy the Charleston Restaurant Week in January.

Charleston South Carolina

Explore the charm and history of Charleston with a walking tour, ghost tour, culinary tour, and tours of the Old Jail.

Stay at the Francis Marion Hotel for unsurpassed views of the historic harbor.

Average temperature: 46 – 58 degrees Fahrenheit

Hilton Head in January is quiet and pleasant, with no crowds and low prices on accommodation and dining – the perfect combination for a January getaway.

hilton head island south carolina

A visit to Harbour Town is a mandate when you’re in Hilton Head, for its array of shops, waterfront restaurants, and a pier. Do climb up the top of the lighthouse at Harbour Town for the best views of Hilton Head and the neighboring Daufuskie Island.

With more than 15 golf courses here, you have quite good options for a game of golf. And there’s Shelter Cove for shopping, ice creams, and great local restaurants. January’s events include the Hilton Head’s Farmer’s Market on Tuesdays and Restaurant Week South Carolina.


The Sonesta Resort is a marvelous stay nestled along the coast with stunning views and verdant tropical gardens.

Average temperature: 42 – 60 degrees Fahrenheit

The Governor's Mansion in Austin landmarks in texas

Austin is a one-stop destination for music lovers, foodies, and outdoor enthusiasts in January, with its pleasant weather and an epic lineup of events.

Music lovers will love the week-long music festival, Red River Free Week, with local musicians performing hundreds of shows across the city. Kayak out onto Lady Bird Lake or climb the 102 steps to the viewpoint of Mount Bonnell at Covert Park for some great views.

austin texas

For unexpectedly chilly days, head to the Museum of Ice Cream while waiting for the sun to come out. A visit to Austin without relishing some BBQ is just unacceptable; head to Salt Lick or Agape BBQ for a meal with a country ambiance.

If you’re in for something weird, check out the Museum of the Weird for all things quirky and wacky.

The East Austin Hotel is an excellent stay in Austin.

Average temperature: 54 – 68 degrees Fahrenheit

A popular January destination for the Winter Texans (people escaping the winters of northern US states and Canada), South Padre Island in Texas is a great place for fishing and bird watching.

South Padre Island

This famous Spring Break destination barely sees any crowds in the first few weeks of the year. Laguna Madre and the Gulf of Mexico are the popular fishing spots here, and the SPI Kite Fest (on the last weekend of January) is a popular event.

South Padre Island

Isla Grand Beach Resort is a great accommodation pick, with amenities including hot tubs, two swimming pools, a nightclub, tennis courts, and sand volleyball courts.

Average temperature: 46 – 61 degrees Fahrenheit

houston texas

The most populous Texas city is a dynamic winter getaway with a mouth-watering food scene, outer-space innovation, and exciting annual events.

Sample award-winning chili at Yaga’s Chili Quest & Beer Fest, visit the NASA Space Center to learn about space science and exploration or wander through Houston Botanic Garden’s magical Lightscape on your visit.


Houston and BBQ go hand-in-hand; don’t forget to try some smoked ribs at Gatlin’s BBQ or Chicano-style BBQ at JQ’s Tex Mex BBQ.

Stay at The Lancaster , a historic luxury boutique hotel in the vibrant downtown Theater District.

Average temperature: 44 – 62 degrees Fahrenheit

A warm January destination in Texas, your first stop in San Antonio has got to be the Alamo (the famous landmark here).

san antonio river walk

The paved paths of the San Antonio Riverwalk are lined with great restaurants and unique shops. 

The charming bridges here take you to museums (like the Witte museum) or eateries (like Boudro’s). You can also grab a ticket for a river cruise and learn about the area’s history.


And there’s Restaurant Week to look forward to if you visit around the third week of the month; each establishment creates a fixed menu of its best items.

Canopy by Hilton San Antonio Riverwalk is the perfect stay for rooms overlooking the river and close to the top attractions.

Average temperature: 31 – 69 degrees Fahrenheit

big bend national park texas

Bring some sunscreen, and you’re all set for the outdoor adventures in Big Bend National Park.

Hike the Lost Mine Trail, Santa Elena Canyon, and the Boquillas Canyon Trail for magnificent views. The canyon trails are fantastic for viewing the famous Rio Grande.

big bend national park

The Balanced Rock viewpoint is a better option for a hike among rocky landscapes. However, if you wish to relax instead, a soak in the warm hot springs next to the Rio Grande will seem divine.

Stay at the only accommodation in the national park – Chisos Mountain Lodge ; it has a restaurant and an RV park.

Average temperature: 69 – 82 degrees Fahrenheit

A paradise on Earth, St. John, is where you can find a tropical national park and pristine Caribbean island landscapes.

st johns us virgin islands

As surprising as it may seem, Virgin Islands National Park covers two-thirds of the island. You can put your hiking boots on and explore flora and fauna along the Reef Bay Trail (among 20 hiking trails) or go snorkeling off Honeymoon Beach.

st johns virgin islands

The coral reefs and colorful fish in the turquoise waters are a treat to the eyes. Don’t forget to stop by the Cruz Bay Overlook or Beach Bar for an epic view of the sunset.

A stay at The Westin will give you a sunset view straight out.

Average temperature: 66 – 78 degrees Fahrenheit

Stunning views, vibrant coral reefs, crystal clear water, and warm temperatures with sunshine will greet you in St. Thomas in January.

st thomas us virgin islands

For some island adventure, go on the zipline ride at Tree Limin’ Extreme Zipline, gliding through the jungle and viewing the lush scenery. Also, head to Sapphire Beach or Coki Point Beach for world-class snorkeling.

st thomas virgin islands

If you’d like to sample some craft beers, visit the Frenchtown Brewing Company, one of only three on the island.

The Marriott Frenchman’s Cove is a popular hotel on the island for your stay here.

Average temperature: 35 – 57 degrees Fahrenheit

things to do in vegas besides gambling

You can look forward to an affordable trip to Las Vegas in January. The casinos, entertainment, and events make this a popular destination all year round, yet, the crowds thin out after New Year’s celebrations.

Plan a hike at the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, Valley of Fire, Death Valley National Park, or Grand Canyon National Park. The Bellagio fountain show and the Volcano eruption at the Mirage are some after-dark attractions.


The Sin City is best viewed when lit up, and the Big Bus Las Vegas Open Top Night Tour is a great way to see that. If time permits, catch a classic variety show like Cirque du Soleil or WOW Vegas Spectacular.

Stay at the Bellagio Resort or Hilton Grand Vacations Suites on your trip to Vegas.

Average temperature: 45 – 62 degrees Fahrenheit

New Orleans Church

Before the Mardi Gras madness begins, January is the perfect time to visit New Orleans . A highlight of the month is the annual celebration – Twelfth Night or Epiphany, marking the end of the holiday season and the start of the Carnival season.

Yet another parade – Krewe de Joan d’Arc, in the French Quarter, gives you a chance to hit the streets with your mask.

historical places in new orelans

You can even feast on the colorful King Cake at Haydel’s or La Boulangerie. Don’t forget to visit the city’s famous landmarks – Jackson Square and Bourbon Street.

The Omni Royal Gardens and The Westin New Orleans are great places to stay.

Average temperature: 43 – 58 degrees Fahrenheit

The charming city of Savannah, with its natural beauty and history, is a great place to visit in January.

Strolling through the city’s hanging Spanish moss (in Forsyth Park) and savoring the Southern cuisine are what you’ll enjoy here. 

For some outdoor recreation, Tybee Island makes a great spot, while nature lovers will enjoy birdwatching and a nature walk in Savannah National Wildlife Refuge.

History buffs will love touring the 19th-century estates converted into museums. The highlight of the month is the Martin Luther King Jr. Day Parade.

The Marshall House and DoubleTree Historic Savannah are great accommodation picks.

Once you’ve spent the first few days of the new year with your loved ones and long to get away from the gloomy weather, take your pick from the 37 warm places to visit in January in the USA. It’s a great time to travel to these places for fun, adventure, relaxation, and mostly reduced fares.

Do read into 29 Most Beautiful

I covered all of the costs involved in creating this post on warm places to visit in January in the USA. Just so you know, this post does contain some affiliate links. That means if you click through and end up making a purchase I will receive a small commission. I wanted to make sure you were aware of this.

IMG 2300 scaled

Amanda O’Brien is the creator and editor of The Boutique Adventurer. She has visited 80 countries and is a member of the British Guild of Travel Writers as well as the IFTWTA. She is passionate about wine had has just completed Level 3 of the WSET. Born in Australia, she lives in London.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed .

Like this post? Why Not Share It?

Thanks for Sharing!

The Times & The Sunday Times

  • South Africa
  • Philippines
  • South Korea
  • New Zealand
  • Dominican Republic
  • Netherlands
  • Switzerland
  • City breaks
  • Staycations
  • Best uk hotels

Where is hot in January? 15 sunny destinations

warm places to visit end of january

Richard Mellor

Tuesday October 31 2023, 09:00am

Christmas is over, but months of winter still stretch depressingly ahead. So why not treat yourself to a January break and some winter sun? That could be a tan-boosting trip to Barbados, Mexico or the Maldives. Or perhaps it’ll involve humpback whale-watching in Hawaii, a safari to see The Jungle Book ’s cast in Kenya or the chance to play Darwin by sailing around Ecuador’s Galapagos Islands. And if you prefer a shorter flight, Dubai has everything you need, while Madeira excels at easy walking and its eponymous fortified wine. There’s no shortage of hot destinations in January — here are some of the best places to visit.

Main photo: A palapa in Cancun (Getty Images)

This article contains affiliate links.

Our travel journalism is written and edited by independent experts to inform, inspire and advise our readers about the best choices for your holidays. We also feature properties and itineraries from a specially selected list of trusted operators. These buttons and adverts are clearly signposted, and provide direct links through to external sites. If you click and buy a product, we may earn revenue.

A tourist dhow on the waterways of the Jumeriah Madinat Hotel in Dubai, where it's hot in January

1. Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Average temperature 24C The glitziest, glammest Emirate effectively has two seasons: hot and hotter. Firmly part of the former, January is Dubai ’s coolest time of year — making it a fine time to visit, when temperatures are most palatable and showers rare. And, as superlative-obsessed as the city undoubtedly is, a variety of trips await below its futuristic skyscrapers. Fly-and-floppers are directed to Palm Jumeirah’s endless Arabian Gulf beaches, while activity fans can take a dune-bashing desert safari, go shark-diving or fly in a hot-air balloon. There are dinner dhow cruises for couples and waterparks for families. January is especially good in Dubai’s gigantic malls, as the month-long Shopping Festival sees many stores — and restaurants — give extensive discounts.

Book a trip

  • Best things to do in Dubai with kids

Sailing on the Caribbean Sea near St James, on the west coast of Barbados, where it's hot in January

2. Barbados

Average temperature 26C Many luxury hotels in this Caribbean stalwart don’t accept children aged under 12 during January — ideal for couples or honeymooners seeking peace and quiet. The month also brings reliable sunshine, gentle trade-wind breezes — explaining why Barbados Sailing Week takes place in January — and reduced humidity. Jet-skiing and diving over coral reefs are other popular water sports, but some visitors to Barbados understandably get no further than the west coast’s dazzling array of palm-fringed beaches and exquisite resorts. Do try to explore, though: Harrison’s Cave’s icy pools and jagged stalactites are fun to inspect, as is the capital Bridgetown’s beautiful garrison and the lively Bajan cuisine. Golf courses and gardens dot Barbados’s interior, and a fine restaurant or rum distillery is never far away.

  • Best things to do in Barbados

Seminyak Beach in Bali, where it's hot in January

3. Bali, Indonesia

Average temperature 26C New year, new you? Nowhere suits rejuvenation — or simply a jump-start to your wellness regimen — better than Bali . There are, admittedly, some downsides to visiting in January: mosquitoes (locals repel them with lemongrass tea), some brief tropical downpours and swirling seas ill-suited to diving. But those are outweighed by positives; namely a distinct lack of crowds at ancient temples or Seminyak’s chic beach clubs, otherwise sunny days and magnificent green colours at the most photogenic rice paddies. The pitter-patter of occasional rain may even add to your sense of serenity while performing yoga or meditating above a jungly river near spiritual Ubud. And added contentment should ensue from the low prices in the “Land of the Gods” at this time of year.

  • Best hotels in Bali

A humpback whale surfaces to greet people on a tour boat in Maui, Hawaii, where it's hot in January

4. Maui, Hawaii

Average temperature 22C January is mostly sunny and wonderfully warm in Hawaii . Showers do become more common, but much less so on Maui’s leeward (south and west) sides. Instead of emptying clouds, expect endless cetaceans: with pods of humpbacks passing en route to the South Pacific, that same coast’s offshore Maui Nui Basin is a mecca for thrilling whale-watching boat trips in January. The north shore, meanwhile, is prone to receiving some of the world’s biggest waves at this time of year; marvel as daredevil surfers tackle swells up to 15m high from Ho’okipa Beach Park. Back in western Maui, the towns of Kaanapali and Wailea tend to be driest and best of all for beach days.

  • Best hotels in Hawaii

Snorkelling in the Maldives, where it's hot in January

5. The Maldives

Average temperature 27C Make for the Maldives during January and you’re odds on to encounter weather’s holy trinity. As cooling northeasterly breezes escort away any treacherous clouds, blue Indian Ocean skies accompany low humidity and minimal rainfall — usually towards the 1,000-strong archipelago’s southern end. All that in turn yields the year’s clearest waters, making it the best time for unforgettable snorkelling or scuba-diving experiences. Reef sharks, dolphins, olive ridley sea turtles, Nemo-like clownfish and striped surgeonfish can all reliably be observed. For manta rays or whale sharks, the South Ari Atoll is particularly strong. Boat trips or surf safaris over the bath-warm turquoise waters also tempt guests out of their swanky overwater villas, as do fine spas, conservation activities and subterranean, aquarium-like restaurants.

  • Best overwater villas in the Maldives

A giraffe walks at sunset in the Masai Mara in Kenya, where it's hot in January

6. Kenya, Africa

Average temperature 22C The start of the year is a time of opportunity for safari-goers and honeymooners alike. January falls plum between Kenya’s “short rains” and later “long rains” seasonal periods, leaving the weather dry and clear-skied, with hot days and warm evenings — all perfect ingredients for wildlife-watching. Though you won’t encounter its famous wildebeest migration — that’s happening over in Tanzania at this time of year — the Masai Mara reserve will still bring the big five (lions, leopards, elephants, rhinos and buffalo), plus a wonderful supporting cast from giraffes to ostriches and far fewer humans. It’s also a great, high-visibility month to swim or snorkel the underrated Kenya coast, whose sandy beaches rival anywhere on the planet.

Book a tour

  • Best Kenya safaris

A colourful building and aloe vera garden in Cancun, Mexico, where it's hot in January

7. Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico

Average temperature 23C Though midway through Mexico ’s sun-soaked dry season, January’s low humidity means that you can comfortably go sightseeing between beach days. Both are a good idea during stays on the northeastern Yucatan Peninsula. Opt for the Riviera Maya coastline, and perhaps one of Playa del Carmen’s all-inclusive resorts to have the run of numerous white-sand Caribbean Sea shores plus a fish-filled reef ripe for snorkelling or diving. Cancun ’s lively nightclubs are just north, while Tulum is home both to some of Mexico’s best chefs and the well-preserved ruins of a 13th-century port city. More Mayan wonders await inland, headlined by Chichen Itza’s pyramid-style step temple, as do jungle-hugged cenotes: caves whose transparent, swimmable pools, below stalactites, were once reckoned to be passages to the underworld.

Book a stay

  • Best all-inclusive hotels in Cancun
  • Best hotels in Tulum

 The glass-bottomed observation deck at the top of Cabo Girao in Madeira, where it's hot in January

8. Madeira, Portugal

Average temperature 16C Closer to Africa than mainland Europe, this Portuguese island has a subtropical climate that guarantees longer, sunnier January days — interspersed with rainy ones — than the chilly continent. Its south and west corners tend to be warmest. Rather than a beach destination, mountainous Madeira suits hiking. Not all 20 official pequenas rutas (small routes) are strenuous, either; those following levada irrigation channels tend to be flat. Visitors will also find botanical gardens, Europe’s highest skywalk in the shape of Cabo Girao’s glass-bottomed observation deck and plenty of fortified Madeira wine. Chestnuts, in season until mid-January, inspire delicious soups and tarts in restaurants around the pleasant capital Funchal — and look out too for bolo de mel, a dark, dense cake made using molasses.

  • Best hotels in Madeira
  • Best things to do in Madeira

Bai Sao beach on Phu Quoc island in Vietnam, where it's hot in January

Average temperature 27C Vietnam is pleasantly dry and sunny all month long, and less crowded than Christmas or in spring. There’s little temperature variation across the southeast Asian country, even if its south will be slightly hotter, so try to experience as much as possible. That includes honey-coloured beaches around Da Nang, Phu Quoc and Hoi An. From pulsating Hanoi to slicker Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam’s bigger centres entertain, as does the old imperial capital of Hue. Don’t forsake the Mekong River, especially sampan (a type of narrowboat) cruises to floating markets, or Halong Bay’s scatter of islands and grottoes. Nature lovers are also directed to one of the world’s biggest caves, Hang Son Doong, and to Cat Ba National Park in search of rare golden-headed langur monkeys.

  • Best hotels in Vietnam
  • Best Vietnam itineraries

An iguana by the sea in the Galapagos Islands, where it's hot in January

10. Galapagos Islands

Average temperature 27C With their many endemic species, wildlife-viewing in Ecuador ’s isolated Galapagos Islands — 600 miles west of the South American mainland — is always astounding. January, however, is especially so due to its flurry of activity; green sea turtles start to nest, laying their eggs on beaches, iguanas’ mating season kicks off, leaving large land species and their smaller marine counterparts highly visible, and land birds perform colourful courtship rituals. It’s also the period when some penguin species are busiest. Inspiring all of that is the month’s balmy weather — especially its blue-skied mornings — as fogs and mists mostly disappear and seas become especially clear. Is the trip of a lifetime in order?

  • Best Galapagos tours

The beach at Bom Bom Resort on Principe, where it's hot in January

11. Sao Tome & Principe

Average temperature 26C Positioned 140 miles west of Gabon in mainland West Africa and straddling the equator, this two-island nation is undeservedly off-the-radar for most travellers. Sao Tome, much the bigger isle, has tourable chocolate-making factories and, below pointy Pico Cao Grande, a large, waterfall-happy nature reserve in Obo National Park. But Principe is the real gem: its jungly Unesco-protected biosphere interior, littered with old plantations dating to Portuguese colonial days, gives way to tens of castaway-style, coconut-lined and totally empty beaches; Praia Boi and the gorgeously named Praia Banana are the finest. A few seriously luxury hotels line that coast, adding spas and quality Portuguese-creole food to the mix. January is peak time for birdwatchers, with the endemic Principe sunbird a prized spot.

  • 28 alternative holiday destinations

The Perito Moreno glacier in Los Glaciares National Park, Patagonia, where it's hot in January

12. Patagonia

Average temperature 15C While “hot” is overstating it, January does herald Patagonia’s warmest climes (although its famous winds can still rear up). That makes it prime time for hiking or inspecting glaciers in this vast, wondrous region, which extends across the bottom of both Argentina and Chile — and thus peak season in terms of prices. The temperature estimated above refers to quieter northern Patagonia, where you’ll find each country’s Lake District; further south, averages dip to 13C for those trekking in Torres del Paine or Los Glaciares national parks. A less-crowded option involves driving the incredible, partially paved Carretera Austral road: lakes, jungles, glaciers, hot springs, snow-capped peaks and sweeping valleys all feature, and there are numerous detour options for activity fans.

  • Best places to visit in South America

The Chapel of St Francis Xavier in Macau, China, where it's hot in January

13. Macau, China

Average temperature 16C Macau might have a reputation for being the Vegas of the East — the city’s casino hotels dominate its skyline and offer all the outlandish attractions you’d expect, from showstopping fountains to observation wheels  — but there are surprising pockets of culture, too. Until December 1999, when it was handed back to China , Macau was a Portuguese colony for over 400 years. Remnants of this can be seen in landmarks like the ruins of St Paul’s church, or Monte Fort, which forms part of the city’s Unesco heritage site. Head to Coloane village, with its dated and distinctively European architecture, and bakery selling egg tarts, and you’ll hardly realise you’re in Asia.

Beco do Batman, or Batman Alley, in Sao Paulo, Brazil, where it's hot in January

14. Sao Paulo, Brazil

Average temperature 25C

Loud, busy and alive with Latin spirit, Sao Paulo is one of the most vibrant cities to visit in Brazil. It’s primarily known as a financial hub, but with that wealth comes world-class restaurants — among them, DOM, often considered one of the best in South America — and a busy arts schedule at the likes of Municipal Theatre of São Paulo. For locals, Parque Ibirapuera is a popular spot for its expansive green space and small collection of museums. On Sundays, Avenida Paulista is the place to be seen, with cafes, shops and restaurants that are ripe for people-watching. Don’t miss Beco do Batman, or Batman Alley, where the walls are splashed with colourful graffiti.

The V&A Waterfront in Cape Town, South Africa, where it's hot in January

15. Cape Town, South Africa

Average temperature 22C

With a pleasant dry heat tempered by the sea breeze, Cape Town is a top choice for winter sun, helped by the fact that exchange rates are extremely favourable for Brits. The V&A Waterfront, with the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa, and Bo-Kaap, with its colourful houses and Cape Malay culture, are among the top tourist draws for the city beyond Table Mountain. But it’s just a short bus ride to the city’s many beaches, or a boat ride to Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was jailed. Hire a car and fabulous day trips to the vineyards of Stellenbosch and the Cape of Good Hope are all within easy reach too.

  • Best things to do in Cape Town

Additional reporting by Qin Xie

Take me there

Looking to go somewhere hot in January? Here are the best winter sun packages from Tui and  BA Holidays .

warm places to visit end of january

She Saves She Travels

34 Best Countries to Visit in January (Perfect for Relaxation & Adventure)

Posted on Published: September 3, 2022  - Last updated: January 5, 2024

Dreaming of a January getaway? From amazing beach vacations to exploring winter wonderlands, the winter is a fantastic time to travel! So if you’ve ever wondered what are the best countries to visit in January – here’s your list.

best countries to visit in January view of longboats in Thailand on beach

This post may contain affiliate links. For more info, see my  disclosures .

Whether your idea of the best place to visit in January is to escape the cold and look for sun or the beach, or you’re wishing for snowy adventures like skiing and ice castles, this list has a little bit of everything.

Some of these destinations are in the shoulder season, so you’ll find affordable pricing, which is always a bonus, too! From experiencing destinations with tons of culture to cities with amazing food scenes, you’ll find the perfect spot for your vacation in January.

Covering countries from all over the world, this list is going to inspire you to start searching for flights! Let’s dive in!

Save money on travel with points: Check out the best credit card offers to save big money by using rewards points for flights and hotels. They’re so good; I regularly have 2-3 in my wallet and book most of my travel with points!

Map of the best countries to visit in January

From the Alps to the Caribbean and some underrated spots you haven’t thought of, this list covers a lot! Use this map as a visual to help you plan your vacation in January.

Pinch and zoom in to narrow down on a region that you’re considering, then check out the descriptions below.

Oh, and by the way, since I’m continually checking places off my travel bucket list but haven’t been everywhere yet, I’ve asked some of my fellow travel writers to help with this list. I think you’re gonna love it.😉

Best countries to visit in January

January is a fabulous time to travel! Whether you’re looking to escape the winter cold and hit the beach, you’re up for adventure in a new city, or you’re wishing for a winter wonderland to enjoy, here’s some amazing destinations.

1. Costa Rica (one of the best places to visit in January for sun)

view from above beach in Costa Rica teal water white beaches trees

Average temp:  high 78, low 64 (varied by region) Fly into:  Juan Santamaria International Airport, San Jose

If you’re looking for the best countries to visit in January, then Costa Rica absolutely needs to be on your radar! Zipline through cloud forests, watch monkeys and toucans dance around in the trees, dip your toes into luxurious sandy beaches and enjoy great food, Costa Rica has so much to offer visitors.

December through April is dry season, as it’s when you’ll see the best weather in Costa Rica. Although the temperatures vary based on which region you travel to, it’s still a great getaway than being stuck in the cold back home.

Visit the famous Arenal Volcano and enjoy the hot springs in La Fortuna. Still in the mountainous region, there are plenty of things to do in Monteverde , including ziplining and walking the suspension bridges through the cloud forests.

For a perfect beach getaway, head west to Tamarindo, where you can hit the water surfing, kayaking or stand up paddle boarding. With hotels and restaurants sprinkled throughout the beach, it’s a great spot to spend a few days.

If you’re looking for more adventure, head to Manuel Antonio National Park, where you can witness monkeys and sloths hanging about!

Be sure to spend some time at the best beaches in Manuel Antonio , including my favorite, Playa Espadilla Sur. There’s so many things to do in Manuel Antonio , you could spend an entire vacation just in this area.

Costa Rica is definitely one of the best places to visit in January for sun, and a destination you’ll love!

Recommended by me – Nikki of She Saves She Travels

Best countries to visit in January view of ski slopes and snowy mountains

Average temp:  high 37, low 27 (varies by region) Fly into:  Vienna International Airport, Schwechat

Austria is a landlocked country between Germany and Italy, located in Central Europe. The alps extend from the west to the east and create a perfect winter wonderland every year.

People come from all over the world to enjoy the warm and fun ski resort experience in the Austrian mountains. There is something for everyone, from skiing, ski touring, snowboarding, ice skating, snow walking, sledging to country cross skiing.

A mulled wine or a Jagertee warm up every cold heart! Villages and cities are decorated with wonderful lights, creating a magical dreamy environment, the perfect place for a vacation in January. This is the best time to relax body and soul in some of the most remarkable thermal baths and sauna villages in Central Europe.

Old traditions make Austria a unique place to be in January. They can still be experienced at the beginning of January, the Perchten run in the Tyrol region and the Glöckler run in Styria. The capital city Vienna, as well as other well-known cities such as Salzburg and Innsbruck, are for all those looking for classic inspiration and the vibes of a long gone empire.

Curious travelers can discover more  top places in Austria . Definitely check out Vorarlberg, a mountainous state in the west, including the charming Bregenzerwald, Austria .

The weather in Austria in January is usually between 0 and 50 Fahrenheit. The higher one travels, the colder it gets.

The best way to get to Austria is via the Vienna airport, located in the east. Other options include the Salzburg airport, Innsbruck airport or even the much larger Munich airport in Germany.

The Austria Trend Hotels provide the most comfortable and memorable stays in Austria. Budget-travelers will want to look out for homely vacation rental properties. Things can be a bit expensive in Austria in January, but your journey will be less costly than a stay in neighboring Switzerland.

Recommended by Paul of Paulmarina

3. Colombia

view of multicolored Colombia street buildings best places to visit in January

Average temp:  high 66, low 45 Fly into:  El Dorado International Airport, Bogota

The South American country of Colombia is a great destination in January – in fact, it’s one of the best weather times to visit of the entire year! In January, the sun is shining, the weather is warm (though there is a huge variety of average temperatures throughout the country), and the rain is low. 

In general, Colombia is a great place to visit, no matter the time of year. It’s a very inexpensive country to travel to, and there’s a wide variety of things to see and do. The capital city of Bogota has an old town filled with colonial architecture, cobblestoned streets, and a wide variety of historical buildings and world class museums. 

Or, you can visit the Coffee Region of Colombia, such as the little, colorful town of Salento. Here, you can visit the coffee farms of Colombia or go hiking in the Cocora Valley, a magical hike into the mountains, where you can see the famous wax palms of Colombia – the tallest palms in the world that grow up to 200 feet high!

Finally, a must visit spot in Colombia is the coastal city of Cartagena, a photogenic, absolutely gorgeous colonial walled city with colorful buildings covered in plants and flowers. 

As you travel throughout Colombia, you’ll likely take a quick plane ride between the different cities. Many people choose to start their Colombia adventure by flying into the El Dorado International Airport in Bogota, and staying in Bogota at the Magdalena Guest House is a perfectly located spot to start your exploration of this gorgeous and varied country in South America. 

Colombia is one of the best places to visit in January for sun, culture and history!

Recommended by Stephanie of The Unknown Enthusiast

4. Aruba (a favorite on this list of best countries to visit in January)

best place to vacation in January pic of white beach, rocky shore and catamaran in distance

Average temp:  high 86, low 76 Fly into:  Queen Beatrix International Airport, Oranjestad

If you’re looking for a beachy escape from the clutches of old man winter, look no further than gorgeous Aruba! January is a fantastic time to visit not only to enjoy sunny skies and 80-degree weather, but it’s also a unique place to ring in the New Year .

Typically, New Year’s Eve is kicked off with loads of fireworks throughout the city (if you were planning to sleep – good luck 😉), from large displays over the water to traditional Pagara (long strings of Chinese firecrackers) throughout the streets; there’s no end to colorful and fiery displays.

After that, the party doesn’t stop! Throughout January and into February, there are countless parades like the nighttime Torch Light Parade and other festivities in honor of Carnival . The official start of Carnival is in November, but most of the festivities happen in January and February.

Because of these fun festivities, you should expect to pay a little more for accommodations. To get the best deal, book early!

Aside from a colorful party scene, Aruba is also known for mesmerizing white sand beaches like Palm and Eagle Beach. These are 2 great spots to kick back and relax with a fruity cocktail. They’re some of the best beaches in Aruba !

After relaxing, you’ll have an endless selection of dining options, including Dutch, Asian, African and it’s even one of the most  vegan-friendly Caribbean Islands!

Aruba is one of the best beach vacations in January, and a destination you’ll love.

Recommended by Rebecca of Veggies Abroad

rocky shore of Iceland ocean on sunny day best countries to visit in January

Average temp:  high 37, low 26 (varies by region) Fly into:  Keflavík International Airport, Keflavik

If you’re looking for an epic winter adventure, consider visiting Iceland in January. 

While the days may be short here, you’ll get to enjoy Iceland’s spectacular scenery to yourself, given that the summer crowds have long departed. Better yet, you’ll likely get to see Iceland covered with glistening snow. This is a fantastic time to explore the country’s ice caves or go on a glacier hike!

People travel from all over the world to Iceland in January, given that it’s one of the absolute best months to see the spectacular Northern Lights, thanks to the long, dark nights.

You can either book a guided tour to try to find the lights or drive outside of major cities, away from light pollution, to spot them yourself. Patience is key- seeing the lights depends on whether there’s solar activity, as well as whether there’s clouds obscuring the night sky. 

Another excellent winter activity here is taking advantage of any of the geothermal hot springs you’ll find scattered throughout the country. The springs may be more natural, like the Hellulaug Hot Pool, which is just an organically-formed pool overlooking the ocean, or can be straight up swanky, like the recently opened Sky Lagoon, with an infinity pool and sauna with stunning views of Kársnes Harbour.

The easiest way to reach this tiny island country is to fly into Reykjavik’s Keflavik International Airport.  Iceland’s weather in January is cold, but not as chilly as its Northern location might suggest, thanks to the relatively warm water from the gulf stream- you can expect temperatures to generally range from 26 to 37 degrees Fahrenheit. 

So be sure to include lots of warm layers on your Iceland packing list , like a base layer, parka, and gloves so you can actually enjoy exploring Iceland’s incredible landscape.

You’ll love visiting Iceland – perhaps absolute best place to vacation in January for adventure!

Recommended by Jessica of Uprooted Traveler

6. Thailand

Average temp:  high 89, low 73 Fly into:  Suvarnabhumi Airport, Bangkok / Phuket International Airport, Phuket

Thailand is an incredible place, and one of the best countries to visit in January. With a large variety of destinations to see within Thailand, you’ll need to decide what kind of experience you want to have, and plan your vacation accordingly.

If you’re looking for beautiful temples, rich in historic architecture loaded with history, then Bangkok or Chiang Mai might be the right spot for you. Stay in the city a few days to soak in the sights. Be sure to take a food tour, and if your’e in Bangkok, visit the floating markets.

If a beach getaway is what you’re after, you have a variety of choices as well. The Phi Phi Islands offer some of the most pristine beaches in all of Thailand. Or, you can opt for Krabi, where there’s a mix of beaches and historical sights to explore.

Phuket is one of the most popular destinations in Thailand, and for good reason. With beautiful white sand beaches and plenty of amenities and accommodations, there’s something for everyone.

Take a snorkeling tour or day trip to Coral Island Phuket to see the area. And with an international airport, it’s easier to get to Phuket than some of the other islands in Thailand.

January is a fabulous time to visit Thailand because it’s the dry season. With plenty of sunshine, culture, food and activities, you’re sure to have a great time in Thailand!

7. France (one of the best places to visit in January Europe)

French Riviera in January view of flowers overlooking bay with buildings in distance

Average temp:  high 56, low 37 (varies by region) Fly into:  Aéroport Nice Côte d’Azur, Nice

The month of January is a  great time to visit France because it is less crowded. Since it’s part of the low season, hotel and flight prices are more affordable.

Outside of the capital, Strasbourg in the north is a fantastic alternative. The Cathedral, art galleries, and taverns serving hearty plates of sauerkraut and local wines await visitors to this peaceful and unhurried city.

However, the French Riviera may be the best choice for people who prefer a warmer vacation in January. Also known as La Côte d’Azur (Azure Coast), it is accessible via the Aéroport Nice Côte d’Azur which is the second busiest international airport in France next to Paris. The French Riviera is a good option for those who prefer milder temperatures. 

Visiting the French Riviera in January will show you a more laid-back side of France, free of curious tourists and offering more affordable rates. Fewer visitors mean you get a good deal in even the more expensive hotel rooms, as well as cheaper meals in the area’s top restaurants.

A highly recommended place to stay in the  Royal Antibes , a stylish modern hotel with a prime location on the beach. The price of a room with huge glass windows and great views starts at slightly over €100.

You can spend your days touring the Côte d’Azur in between taking in the breathtaking vistas of the sea and basking in the mild Mediterranean weather . Enjoy the crisp winter days hiking the French Riviera’s beautiful trails, including the spectacular route over Èze-village or the Baou above St. Jeannet, with superb views over the Var Valley.

You might also find mimosas in the village of Tanneron, which is also home to Europe’s largest mimosa forest, the Massif de Tanneron.

The town of Menton, meanwhile, is known for its beautiful gardens and well-preserved old town center. The ancient walled city of Antibes is also well worth exploring. And if you want to experience a winter vacation like celebrities, you can also explore Cannes. 

Recommended by Christine of Journey To France

Book a photo shoot: The best souvenir, booking a photo shoot while traveling preserves memories of your vacation! I love Flytographer because the photo sessions are fun, easy and affordable. you can get $25 off if you book through this link or use the code SSST.

antigua warm vacation in January white sand beach teal water blue sky

Average temp:  high 82, low 71 Fly into:  

Situated in the middle of the Leeward Islands, part of the Lesser Antilles, in the American West Indies,  Antigua is arguably one of the prettiest Caribbean islands.  

Although it is a favorite destination for honeymoons and romantic escapes, it makes a perfect vacation for any kind of traveler that is not on a budget. 

It is in fact quite an expensive destination, especially if you choose to stay at one of the beautiful Antigua all inclusive resorts on the pristine Caribbean coast, which is very much recommended if you want to enjoy the island at its best. 

Antigua and Barbuda is actually made of the 2 namesake islands and many small islets, some of which are great snorkeling spots that you can visit by joining one of the boat tours available. 

Antigua is one of the best countries to visit in January because it’s dry season with less risk of rain. So expect a lot of sunshine and blue sky. But also it’s the most expensive time of the year to travel to Antigua, for the same reason, which is something to keep in mind as well.

Antigua is renowned for its incredible beaches (they say there are 365, one for each day of the year) and spectacular landscapes. Its home to gorgeous scenery with lush hills tumbling over the white sand beaches and the turquoise Caribbean sea.

Among the things you shouldn’t miss in Antigua, besides getting pampered in your gorgeous luxury hotel, are:

  • Rent a car to explore all the spectacular beaches, including Darkwood beach, Dickenson bay and Half Moon Bay
  • Dance at the sound of calypso music at Shirley Heights on a Sunday while watching the sun going down
  • Try the local cuisine in one of the delicious restaurants on the beach
  • Take a walk around the historical site of Nelson Dockyard at English Harbour and join one of the boat tours around the island. 

If you’re traveling on a budget you can also find more modest accommodations but keep in mind that the overall cost of living in the island is high. 

Recommended by Isabella of Boundless Roads

Best place to vacation in January

Can you believe this list? And we’re just getting started! Let’s keep exploring all the amazing winter getaways!

Mexico beach with boats and palm trees

Average temp:  high 72, low 41 (varies by region) Fly into:  Benito Juárez International Airport, Mexico City

If you’re looking for a sunny getaway this January, take a trip adventuring around Mexico. As a massive country, enjoy everything from the vibrant Mexico City to the stunning cenotes of the Riviera Maya to colonial cultural towns and ancient ruins.

With its close proximity to the equator, Mexico enjoys year-round warm weather, making it the perfect place to escape the cold. One of the best months to visit the country, January is in the midst of Mexico’s dry season when temperatures are excellent and rain levels are low.

Average daytime temperature hovers between 75°F-85°F, but differs from region to region. At this time, colder winds and temperatures hit northern Mexico compared to the higher humidity in the south.

Everyone celebrates Christmas in Mexico, and even though January is a bit late for the festivities, enjoy strolling around every town decorated to the brim with holiday decor. January also signals the start of amazing festivals like Merida Fest, Fiesta Grande de Chiapa de Corzo, and Carnaval Jiutepec in Cuernavaca.

Most international flights will land you in the capital Mexico City or other popular tourist hotspots like Cancun or Cabo San Lucas. From there, a  fantastic public transportation system  can bring you to any neighboring cities and tourist attractions.

For those landing in Mexico City, book a stay in Hotel MX Centro as a starting point for your Mexico adventure!

Recommended by Catherine of Nomadicated

view of malaga Spain from above city buildings with blue sky best countries to visit in January

Average temp:  high 62, low 46 (varies by region) Fly into:  Malaga-Costa del Sol Airport, Malaga

If you are looking for a warm winter destination, the south of Spain and the Spanish islands are excellent options. Enjoy the mild temperatures and sunny days, discover beautiful landmarks and landscapes and immerse yourself in the food culture.

Travelling to the south of Spain or the Spanish islands in January is a smart choice to avoid crowds, extreme heat and high prices on flights and accommodation.

There are many incredible destinations in these parts of Spain, but a popular choice in the south of Spain is Malaga, the best destination for anyone that wants to escape the cold and rainy winter.

Many people believe that Malaga is a summer getaway, however, there are many reasons to visit Malaga in winter .

One of the reasons is the weather. Temperatures are mild and most days are sunny. The average maximum temperature in January is 16.8°C (62.24°F) which is ideal to do outdoor activities.

This time of the year is fantastic for sightseeing and exploring as the heat and humidity in the summer months don’t allow you to do so.  When visiting Malaga, you can’t miss attractions like the Alcazaba, a Moorish fortress palace, the cathedral and Picasso Museum.  

However, if you love nature, you can also enjoy going on beautiful hiking trails. One of the best places to go hiking is Montes de Malaga Nature Park. 

Another good reason to visit Malaga in January is to experience the festive period as Christmas ends on the 6th of January. If you are in the city on the 5th, don’t miss the Three Kings Parade. 

Last but not least, January is the cheapest month to visit Malaga. If you travel from a European country, you will find amazing and budget-friendly flight fares and good accommodation rates too.

The nearest airport to travel to Malaga is Malaga-Costa del Sol Airport (AGP) which is 15 minutes from the city centre, and if you are looking for a hotel, Room Mate Valeria offers beautiful and comfortable rooms at reasonable prices.

Southern Spain is a lovely winter getaway, and Spain is one of the best countries to visit in Europe in January.

Recommended by Cristina of The Little World of Travelling

Want more Spain travel inspiration? Check out a week in Mallorca – stunning!

11. Belize (another favorite for best beach vacations in January)

belize in January view of boat on the beach with colorful buildings

Average temp:  high 83, low 68 Fly into:  Goldson International Airport, Belize City

The small Central American country of Belize is a dream to visit if you’re looking for a sunny vacation in January. Offering a variety of things to do in Belize from picturesque islands to fun beach towns and ancient ruins to explore, there’s so much to experience!

January is a great time to travel to Belize because many of the holiday tourists are gone and it’s the dry season, so you’ll have gorgeous weather for exploring.

For a beach vacation, head to Ambergris Caye or Placencia. You’ll find beautiful beaches that aren’t overcrowded like they can be in Florida or other spots in the Caribbean.

If you’re looking for history and culture, head inland to San Ignacio and visit the Xunantunich Mayan Ruins . Learn the fascinating history of how the Mayans lived and operated their stone structures while climbing atop the largest in the complex, El Castillo.

Whether you’re looking for a vacation where golf cart is the preferred method to get around or you’re up for chasing waterfalls and seeing monkeys roam through the jungles, Belize has a destination perfect for you!

12. Maldives

Maldives in January beautiful beach palm tree and pier in distance over ocean

Average temp:  high 80, low 77 Fly into:  Velana International Airport, Male

If you’re thinking of starting the New Year with a bang, what better way to do this than laying on a dreamy beach, with white powdered sand and sone of the clearest water in the world? A trip to the Maldives should be on everyone’s bucket list , and January is the perfect time to do it. 

Although it’s right in the middle of the season, January is perfect for a trip to the Maldives as it’s right after the holidays and just before Valentine’s Day, so the prices are really great during these times. You can even find some  affordable water villas  if you dig enough, and you can maybe score a nice room at  this resort that I’m sure you’ve seen on Instagram already.

Getting there is easy, as there’s one main airport used as a hub, located next to the Capital city of Male. From here, you reach your resort island by either speed boat, seaplane, or a combination of the two, but this is handled by the accommodation itself so you really don’t have to worry about anything while on your trip.

And if you usually have a long list of activities to do while on vacation, you’ll have to adjust when in the Maldives: here, you can only lay on a beach or float in the water.

Of course, you can do various water activities like snorkeling, diving, or going on sunset cruises, or you can lay on a sunbed, hammock, or on a massage table, but you get the point. There’s really no better place in the world to relax than this tropical paradise!

Maldives easily earns a spot on this list of the best countries to visit in January!

Recommended by Cristina of Honest Travel Stories

13. Singapore

view of two towers lush foliage with buildings in distance best countries to visit in January Singapore

Average temp:  high 87, low 75 Fly into:  Singapore Changi Airport, Singapore

Singapore is one of the best countries to visit in January for those looking for a warm and sunny getaway. The weather is hot and humid year round but January is one of the cooler months making it a great time to visit.

The temperature will still be hot so it is best to see indoor attractions during midday and early afternoon. The evening is a great time to walk around and explore as Singapore is considered one of the safest countries in the world.

One of the top and most unique  Singapore attractions  is Gardens by the Bay, a large nature park with both outdoor and indoor gardens and conservatories. Don’t miss Supertree Grove, made up of huge tree-shaped vertical gardens, that puts on free light and music shows every night.

Another must do is to walk along the waterfront promenade while enjoying skyline views and passing by landmarks including the ArtScience Museum, Helix Bridge and the Merlion statue . Explore and dine at one of the many interesting city neighborhoods such as Kampong Glam, Little India, and Chinatown.

The beautiful Singapore Botanic Gardens is also worth visiting. R ide the cable car to Sentosa Island for family friendly attractions and beaches.

Singapore is very easy to reach by air as it is home to Changi Airport, which is considered an attraction itself. Consider staying at a hotel with a rooftop pool such as the Marina Bay Sands , the iconic hotel known for its long rooftop infinity pool.

Recommended by Matilda of The Travel Sisters

14. Switzerland

best places to visit in January Europe view of Switzerland snow with mountains in distance

Average temp:  high 38, low 28 Fly into:  Zurich International Airport, Zurich

Switzerland is definitely one of the best places to visit in Europe in January if you like snow! 

Since 60% of the country consists of the Alps, it’s designed for winter sport activities. Switzerland has an incredible number of famous ski resorts with a high amount of lifts and gondolas to take you into the beautiful winter wonderland. 

Impressive landscapes, exemplary service and snow reliability, you can expect great skiing and snowboarding in Switzerland. The Alpine country has a lot to offer when it comes to winter sports.

The mountain village of Zermatt, for example, impresses with a total of 360 kilometers (223+ miles) of slopes and over 60 lifts. It’s the largest ski area in Switzerland and one of the best ski resorts in the world.

Enjoy a little less hustle and bustle, a smaller but just as beautiful is Flumserberg  in central Switzerland or Samnaun in the east. No matter which of Switzerland’s many standout spots you choose, t raditional cheese fondue is available almost everywhere , often served in small, beautiful chalets or under open starry skies. 

South of the Alps, in Ticino, snow may not be guaranteed in January, but this region scores with the sunniest days in the country. So, if it’s raining or snowing elsewhere in the country in January, you can take a beautiful walk along Lake Lugano and enjoy the snow-covered Alpine peaks through your sunglasses in the bright and warm sun. 

Pro tip: come to Switzerland in January and bypass the school winter vacations, the country’s slopes are a little less busy. 

The biggest airport in Switzerland is Zurich and thanks to a great developed railroad network, you can reach almost any place in the country from Zurich in 3 hours. 

Recommended by Linda of Hiking the Alps

15. Guatemala (perfect for a low-key January getaway)

Best countries to visit in January- Guatemala street art murals colorful buildings with mountain in background

Average temp:  high 75, low 54 Fly into:  La Aurora International Airport, Guatemala City

Guatemala is a great vacation in January as it’s the peak dry season. Enjoy warm weather, great culture and amazing adventures.

It’s a budget destination, so your money will stretch further here than in nearby countries such as Costa Rica and Panama.

Top travel destinations in Guatemala include Antigua and Lake Atitlan. Antigua is a beautiful Spanish colonial city with many things to do. In fact, it’s one of the best tropical Christmas destinations in the Americas.

The #1 attraction near Antigua is climbing Acatenango Volcano and witnessing its’ neighbour, Fuego (Fire) Volcano, erupting every 30-40 minutes. This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience not to be missed!

A 3 hour drive from Antigua will take you to the central highlands and  Lake Atitlan . The lake is a magical place with a near-perfect mid-20s temperature (mid-70’s in Fahrenheit) all year round. Surrounded by 3 volcanoes, the views from Lake Atitlan are something special!

There are 12 towns surrounding Lake Atitlan, each offering something a little different and unique. San Pedro is a favorite for backpackers and San Marcos is a favorite for the hippy crowd. Wherever you end up visiting, travel between towns is quick and easy.

Travel between towns across the lake on little boats , known locally as Lanchas. The longest journey will be about 30 minutes and the cost less than $2.  

Free Cerveza in Santa Cruz La Laguna is an interesting place to stay. A glamping site with private eco-lodges and tee-pee style tents, there is always something going on.

Enjoy complimentary use of the facilities, such as kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding. Santa Cruz is one of the best places on the lake to swim and offers fantastic views of the volcanoes in the distance.    

Go for something a little different on your next holiday, go to Guatemala!

Recommended by Wes of Walk About Wes

ice castle sitting on snow in front of snowy trees in Canada

Average temp:  high 30, low 13 (varies by region) Fly into:  Calgary International Airport, Alberta

So many destinations in Canada turn into the most magical winter wonderland during the month of January, and are sure to cure anyone’s post-holiday blues.

One of the most exciting places to visit is the Canadian Rockies region and Banff National Park. At Lake Louise, you’ll have the chance to skate across the frozen lake with a backdrop of the snow-capped mountains.

This outdoor ice rink has even been named the world’s best by CNN ! During the month of January, the entrance to the lake is surrounded by a beautiful ice castle , which will have you feeling like you’re in a snow globe in no time.

Through most of January, Canyon Lights puts on an amazing display at the Capilano Suspension Bridge in North Vancouver. This bridge is one of the most scenic places to visit in Canada year-round, but when the bridge and surrounding park are aglow with thousands of twinkling lights, it’s even more amazing to experience. 

Heading over to the East Coast side of Canada, the best place to vacation in January is Old Quebec, a historic section of Quebec city. This area has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site , and will have you feeling you’ve been transported to Europe.

Many of the picturesque streets will still have their holiday decor and lights up through most of January, and are especially magical after a snowfall. Visitors can enjoy rides down a toboggan chute, which has been operating for the last 135 years. 

To visit Banff National Park and Lake Louise, you’ll want to fly into Calgary, and from there, you’ll need to rent a car to get around. If you want to visit Capilano Suspension Bridge’s Canyon Lights display, you can fly right into Vancouver, and rely on public transportation and ride share services to get around. Then to visit Old Quebec, the best airport to fly into is Quebec City Airport.

Canada offers a variety of experiences, and it’s definitely one of the best countries to visit in January.

Recommended by Sam of New England Wanderlust

More of the best countries to visit in January

Not even half done with the list. Do you have your January getaway picked out yet? Here’s more fabulous ideas ahead…

17. Australia

Sydney skyline view of harbor bridge and buildings in distance with blue sky one of the best countries to visit in January

Average temp:  high 79, low 66 (varies by region) Fly into:  Sydney Kingsford Smith International Airport, Sydney

One of the best countries to visit in January for sun is Australia . On the other side of the hemisphere, January is one of the warmest summer months.

Australia is an enormous country which means that temperatures can vary depending on where you go. From as warm as 89 F(32 C) degrees in Perth to as “cold” as 79 F (26 C) in Melbourne. 

Besides the sunny weather, Australia has a lot more to offer. With a 21,126 miles (34,000 KM) long coastline, you can find beautiful beaches and cliffs all around the country. This makes beach hopping and surfing 2 of the most popular things to do in the country.

Nature lovers will have no shortage of green scenery as Australia is the number one country when it comes to the most national parks worldwide (over 650). 

A good place to start your Australian vacation is Sydney. It’s home to the largest airport that has the most international flight connections. On top of that, Sydney is also just a beautiful and lively city with amazing beaches.

For outdoor lovers, its close proximity to the Blue Mountains National Park is perfect . And wine lovers will enjoy a day trip to the Hunter Valley to try some Australian wine and bring home a unique  Australian souvenir . 

For solo travelers, The Wake-Up Bondi hostel is a great place to stay. If you’re looking for a hotel, the Travelodge Hotel Sydney Martin Place is a good option too. 

Recommended by Lara of The Best Travel Gifts

best places to visit in January for sun view of the desert with pillow sand at sunset

Average temp:  high 75, low 59 Fly into:  Dubai International Airport, Dubai / Abu Dhabi International Airport, Abu Dhabi

If you’re looking to soak in the warm winter sun, then the UAE makes for an amazing destination. This Middle Eastern country is home to 7 Emirates, Dubai and Abu Dhabi being the most popular ones.

Both these glamorous Emirates have their own international airport and an array of hotels to choose from. From ultra-luxurious to boutique properties, from business hotels to glamping sites and from desert retreats to oceanfront suites, the accommodation offer is downright dazzling.

With daytime temperatures averaging 24°C or 75°F and nighttime temperatures averaging 15°C or 59°F, January is an excellent month to spend your vacation days outdoors without suffering from the scorching heat that affects the UAE most of the year .

You could choose to spend your days relaxing at a soft white sand beach, admire the view from the observation deck at the world’s tallest building, take an  adventurous desert safari from Dubai , soak up the atmosphere of the souks, visit the mesmerizing Abu Dhabi mosque , cruise the Arabian Gulf by speedboat, kayak through the mangroves or zipline between the most spectacular mountainscapes.

And fashionistas will certainly appreciate the Dubai Shopping Festival that takes place in January. So, when an action-packed winter vacation with a touch of glamour is what you’re looking for, then the UAE will not disappoint!

The UAE is one of the best places to visit in January for sun and adventure!

Recommended by Sarah of CosmopoliClan

19. Portugal

vacation in January to Portugal view of bridge pier boats street vendors

Average temp:  high 59, low 47 (varies by region) Fly into:  Francisco Sa Carneiro Airport, Porto

Portugal is a charming winter destination and is one of the top warm European places to visit in January. Portugal’s temperate climate is perfect for a wonderful vacation across the country.

Start your Portuguese adventure with the second-largest city in Portugal, Porto. It’s a city famous for its association with port wine.

From boat trips on the Douro River to discovering hidden architectural gems, there are plenty of  places to visit in Porto . The old Historic Centre of Porto, alongside the nearby Luiz I Bridge and Monastery of Serra do Pilar, are considered a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

Rumoured to be the inspiration behind the Harry Potter books, Livraria Lello is one of the most beautiful libraries in the world and one of the must-visit attractions in Porto.

Next, climb the Clerigos Tower for a stunning view over the city skyline. No visit to Porto is complete without taking a tour of its famous port wine cellars. You’ll find many of them in Gaia, on the other side of the Douro River.

Finally, head down to Matosinhos beach and Foz do Douro promenade for a day out by the beach. The closest airport to the city is the Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport, which is well-connected to the city by public transport.

You can also add the vibrant capital city of Lisbon to your holiday itinerary. Lisbon is one of Europe’s sunniest cities, having received more days of sunshine than any other European capital.

When visiting Lisbon, be sure to check out the best things to do in Almada , too. You’ll love visiting Portugal. It’s deserving of a spot on this list of best places to visit in January (Europe).

Recommended by Moumita & Sankha of Chasing the Long Road

20. USA (so many can’t miss destinations for a vacation in January)

best place to vacation in January view of bay with pier palm trees and mountains surrounding

Average temp:  high 68, low 46 (in the southern region – varies greatly throughout) Fly into:  Denver International Airport, Denver / Kahului Airport, Maui / Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport, San Juan

Similar to Canada, Mexico and Australia, the USA has a variety of climates and destinations perfect for January. And although it’s impossible to choose just one, these popular January destinations in the USA are all great for wintertime travel.

Vail or Breckenridge , Colorado offer some of the best ski resorts in the world! If you’re looking for a perfect winter getaway with fluffy white snow, consider the Rocky Mountains of Colorado.

Hawaii is an obvious choice if you’re looking for warm vacations in January in the US, since it’s average high temperatures hover around 80 degrees throughout the islands.

Watch the sunset on Haleakala in Maui , take a helicopter ride over the NaPali Coast in Kauai, visit the impressive Volcanoes National Park on the Big Island, or hike to the top of Diamond Head to overlook Waikiki Beach in Oahu. Hawaii is full of adventure!

Another hot spot for a best place to vacation in January is Puerto Rico . There’s so many things to do in Old San Juan , including visiting the 500+ year old fort, El Morro. And if you’re looking for a perfect beach, head to Flamenco Beach Puerto Rico on the nearby island of Culebra.

Without a doubt, the USA offers some spectacular January getaways!

21. El Salvador

beach in El Salvador with black sand palm trees and buildings with reflection in waves

Average temp:  high 85, low 64 Fly into:  San Salvador Monseñor Óscar Arnulfo Romero International Airport, San Luis Talpa

El Salvador is an underrated destination in Central America, and one of the best countries to visit in January. A great spot to visit in El Salvador is the town of El Tunco.

Located on the Pacific coast, El Tunco, El Salvador , is a great getaway in the middle of winter. The weather is hot and sunny, with temperatures averaging in the high 80s. January is one of the best times to visit El Tunco because it’s the middle of the dry season, so the chance of a downpour is minimal.

The best things to see and do in El Tunco involve enjoying its beautiful beaches, which are perfect for swimming and surfing. You can also sunbathe but some of the beach areas are a bit pebbly, especially right after high tide.

If you want a chill vibe, you can take some yoga classes and relax in a beach hammock. Or if you’re up for some adventure, you can explore the beach caves (low tide only) or go waterfall hiking.

There are also a number of restaurants and bars in the town. The best thing to eat in El Tunco is pupusas, the national food of El Salvador! These thick corn tortillas are filled with meat, cheese, and/or beans.

If you want to party 24/7, there are a number of party-focused hostels in town. If you want to get a good night’s sleep after going out but still be close to the action, stay at Eco del Mar Hotel .

El Tunco is easy to get to from the San Salvador airport. It’s just a short drive to the coast on well-paved highways. You can hire a driver in advance, rent a car, or just call an Uber at the airport.

If you’re looking for a fun, affordable vacation destination in January, El Tunco is definitely worth considering.

Recommended by Brodi of Our Offbeat Life

visiting belgrade serbia in the winter view of large church with snow on ground and white clouds

Average temp:  high 39, low 28 Fly into:  Nikola Tesla International Airport, Belgrade

Serbia is the best place to vacation in January if you love Christmas and lengthened holiday seasons. As a country with Christian Orthodox as its major population, Serbia celebrates Christmas on January 7th. And on top of that, in addition to the New Year on January 1st, they also celebrate Serbian New Year based on the Julian calendar on the 15th. 

The best way to visit Serbia is to fly to Nikola Tesla International Airport in Belgrade, or you can easily travel by car from  the neighboring countries in Balkan . 

Serbia is quite small, so you can easily travel from the north to the south of the country for a week or two. Depending on the location, there are many things to do in Serbia in January. From enjoying the nightlife scene in Belgrade to spending your winter wonderland in popular ski resorts like Zlatibor or Kopaonik, there is always something for everyone!

For accommodation, you can easily find budget-friendly hotels and vacation rentals in each city. If you have a little extra budget for your accommodation, take a chance to stay at the Moskva Hotel in the heart of Belgrade. One of the most important landmarks in Serbia, the hotel has become a cultural heritage in the capital city since 1968. 

Recommended by Marya of The BeauTraveler

23. Philippines

view of best places to visit in January for sun Philippines boat on blue water with rocky cliffs nearby

Average temp:   high 86, low 74 Fly into:  El Nido Lio Airport, Palawan / Puerto Princesa International Airport, Puerto Princesa

With the dry season in full swing, the Philippines is one of the best places to visit in January for sun . You can expect the weather to be hot and humid, yet there will always be a beach nearby when you feel the need to cool off.

One of the best places to visit is the island of Palawan, which has been voted to be “the most beautiful island in the world” multiple times by Travel + Leisure’s Best of Awards . 

Once you’re there, it’s easy to see why. In the northern part of the Palawan near El Nido you’ll find beautiful islands, turquoise-blue lagoons, and jagged limestone cliffs. Thus, island hopping is one of  the best things to do in Palawan !

If you don’t want to take the detour through Puerto Princesa – the capital of Palawan – you can fly to El Nido directly via Airswift from Manila. Some of the best places to stay in El Nido are Frendz Hostel and Blue Mango . 

If you’re adventurous, you can also venture out to other places on the island, like San Vicente and Port Barton. San Vicente is known for its 14-kilometer-long beach, whereas Port Barton is a small, laid-back town attracting travelers from all over the world. From here, you can hike through the jungle to get to low-key beaches and even a picturesque waterfall, kayak around the bay, or go snorkeling for sea turtles.  

As you can see, no matter where you go in Palawan, you can’t go wrong! You’ll have a wonderful vacation, perfect for a January getaway!

Recommended by Lena of Not Another Backpacker

24. Jamaica (another favorite on this list of best countries to visit in January)

jamaica shoreline view of turquoise water rocks and cliffs best countries to visit in January

Average temp:  high 83, low 74 Fly into:  Sangster International Airport, Montego Bay

One of the best beach vacations in January is Jamaica. In the middle of the Caribbean Sea, the hurricane season is over and the rush of holiday travelers is gone. However, January is one of the busiest months for visitors to the island, as many are trying to escape the winter back home.

Relax and rest in luxury at an all-inclusive resort in Montego Bay, Negril or Ocho Rios. From family friendly options to adults-only resorts, there’s something for everyone. Although, make sure to save up for it in advance, as January has some of the highest prices.

Venture off the resort on a day trip to Dunn’s River Falls, ziplining, bamboo rafting, take a sunset cruise or Blue Hole, Negril , amongst many others.

Or, rent a car and explore for yourself. Just be sure to ask your hotel which nearby areas to avoid, as there is some gang crime in Jamaica. And definitely get back before dark.

By the way, Jamaica is a great stop on some of the best young adult cruises , since it’s a destination with so much action and culture.

Whether you’re looking to sit on the beach for a week or soak in the amazing Jamaican food and culture, you’ll love a trip to this tropical paradise!

25. Morocco

Morocco best countries to visit in January view of buildings with green mossy water in foreground

Average temp:  high 66, low 45 Fly into:  Marrakesh Menara Airport, Marrakesh

January might just be the best time of year for a trip to Morocco. Avoid the hot sticky summer, avoid the busy season and make the most of the moderate temperatures in Morocco during winter. 

Marrakech, Essaouira and the Sahara Desert are just some of the destinations you’ll want to add to your Morocco itinerary.  

The beautiful chaos synonymous with Morocco is found right in the heart of the medinas of Marrakech.  And you can start your journey here with a flight into Marrakech Menara Airport.

Book the Riad Tizwa in Marrakech for a stay to remember, wander Jemaa el-Fna Square in the early evening, shop in the labyrinth of souks and stroll through the Jardin Majorelle. And be sure to dine at all the best restaurants in Marrakech while you’re in town.

But don’t forget to see what else Morocco has to offer in winter. Marrakech is the perfect base to arrange a Sahara Desert tour or a beach adventure to Essaouira. 

Book a visit to Merzouga or M’hamid, to see the rolling sand dunes of the Sahara. And on your way include a visit to Ouarzazate to admire the incredible kasbahs of this region.  The Kasbah Aït Benhaddou is possibly the most magnificent, made famous by the many movies filmed here.  

And finally, don’t miss a couple of days stay in Essaouira to finish your Moroccan adventure. This beach destination is a great little medina town that impresses all.  Book a beautiful riad  for a true Moroccan experience, ride horses on the beach, walk the ramparts and book a surf.  

Morocco vacation in January is always a good idea! 

Recommended by Sharon of My Free Range Family

Best countries to visit in January – continued

In the final stretch of this epic list! A few more fun cities and some of the best beach vacations in January yet, let’s wrap up this list with a bang!💥

reflective buildings in pond in Stockholm Sweden

Average temp:  high 33, low 26 Fly into:  Stockholm Arlanda Airport, Stockholm-Arlanda

If you’re looking for a vacation in January, then the beautiful country of Sweden is a fantastic option! With spectacular cities, unspoiled forests, and breathtaking lakes, it’s no surprise that over 7.5 million people visit every year. 

Sweden will take your breath away no matter what time of year you visit, but there’s something special about visiting in January! 

During this time of year, the ground is often covered in snow and temperatures will be well below freezing, although that’s the perfect excuse to treat yourself to a hot chocolate and a Fika!

Sweden is one of the best places to visit in January to extend that ‘festive feeling’ as many of the winter palaces might still be running, especially earlier in the month. 

Sweden’s largest airport is Stockholm Arlanda which is just 39 km (24 miles) from the capital city. This often means Stockholm is the first port of call, and you’ll find tons of fascinating things to do here – especially in January! 

First of all, you’ll have plenty of ice skating opportunities but the main spot to visit is Kungsträdgården ! Then, you can head to Hammarbybacken if you’re looking to ski or head out on a winter cruise of the archipelago! 

If you’re staying in the capital, there’s no shortage of accommodation options but one of the best hotels in the city is Radisson Blu Waterfront Hotel .

Other fantastic places to visit in Sweden during January include Swedish Lapland, Abisko National Park, Gothenburg, and Salen. 

Just keep in mind that if you’re traveling through Sweden during this time of year, you’ll need plenty of layers . You’ll also want to indulge in a warm drink at every opportunity and fill your belly with delicious Swedish meatballs!

Recommended by Jack & Abbie of A Couples Calling

27. Grenada (another awesome contender for best place to vacation in January)

best countries to visit in January beach with palm trees blue ocean white sand

Average temp:  high 86, low 74 Fly into:  Maurice Bishop International Airport, Grenada

The island of Grenada in the Caribbean is one of the best islands to visit in January. Located at the southern end of the chain of Caribbean islands, Grenada is still rooted deeply in culture and nature to experience, without a whole lot of big chain influences.

January is an amazing time to visit, as the temperature is roughly 86 degrees year round during the day, and the water stays nice and warm too! It’s the perfect getaway from the winter cold to enjoy warm water, beautiful beaches, waterfalls, a tropical climate and Caribbean culture.

The easiest way to get to Grenada is by flying into Maurice Bishop International Airport. Once you arrive, you can either grab a taxi (they look like small buses) or make your way to a shuttle if your accommodation offers transportation.

There’s a huge range of accommodation options, including many homestay options, more casual resorts, all the way to luxury all inclusives. My recommendation for an eco-friendly boutique hotel is the True Blue Bay Resort , while if you’re looking for something all inclusive, Spice Island Beach Resort .

January does fall within Grenada’s high season, so be prepared for more crowds than if you went during the rainy season (summer months).

Definitely visit one of Grenada’s Best Beaches while there, and try to take an island wide guided tour to experience waterfalls, sulphur springs, cocoa farms, local distilleries or more! Plus, the world-famous underwater attraction, snorkeling the Grenada Underwater Sculpture Park is a must-do while visiting the island.

You’ll want to stay in Grenada at least a week to experience all there is to see and do! Grenada is one of the best countries to visit in January. It’s an amazing destination with the welcoming and vibrant Caribbean culture that you don’t want to miss!

Recommended by Taylor of Tea N’ Sea Travel

28. South Africa

view of mountain ridge with town near coast perfect vacation in january

Average temp:  high 83, low 63 Fly into:  Cape Town International Airport, Cape Town

South Africa is one of the best countries in the world for a January vacation. It’s the ideal spot to take a breath and enjoy life.

January in South Africa sees the weather at its best, particularly in the western regions. Summer below the equator is in full swing, and the air is warm and dry.

However you dream of spending your time, this sizable country is teeming with great adventures and awe-inspiring beauty just for you!  Come to South Africa to see the iconic wildlife, enjoy the most picturesque road trips of your life, or explore its astounding urban highlights. 

Or try a shark-cage dive off the coast! Whichever activity you choose, your options are countless. 

If this abundance of activities doesn’t earn South Africa a vote for the best countries to visit in January, maybe this will: all of these remarkable activities are accessible from the spectacular city of Cape Town. It’s the ultimate base for your South African vacation.

January in Cape Town provides you with the opportunity to attend the Kaapse Klopse . This colorful January 2nd street festival will give you stories to tell! You can also visit famous local treasures such as Table Mountain, the V & A Waterfront, and the Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, right in Cape Town . 

The Cape Town International Airport is just 20 km from the city centre, and services airlines that connect with all parts of the world. 

Finding the best home away from home for you is as easy as amazing vacation rental options. How does a seaview apartment or a country cottage sound? It’s all waiting for you!

Recommended by DJ of Introvert with Itchy Feet

29. England

view of England stone bridge over water fountain and building on sunny day

Average temp:  high 45, low 35 (varies by region) Fly into:  London Heathrow Airport, London

England  is an underrated country to visit in January. It’s the perfect mix of winter wonderland and mild temperatures, depending on where you visit.

For example, Oxford and Birmingham typically see dustings of snow throughout January. You may even find enough snow a few days a year to build a small snowman!

But places like Brighton Beach will remain snow-less. There are even days London will be as sunny as in summer!

The mild temperatures attract visitors who are looking to escape the freezing cold of Canada or Scandinavia, but don’t want to pay the inflated prices of a beach vacation. Temperatures average 5C (41F).

Don’t forget to pack a light coat and some waterproof boots , as it can drizzle throughout January.

Luckily, the best things to do in the UK aren’t summer-based.

Having high tea in Covent Garden, touring Shakespeare’s birthplace in Stratford upon Avon, listening to live music at a pub, and enjoying British stand-up at local comedy houses are all great indoor activities to take advantage of.

There are plenty of ways to save money while still enjoying everything the country has to offer. For starters, take advantage of the many free museums and galleries.

You can also find cheap eats by avoiding tourist traps and sticking to local pubs. And finally, take advantage of the many cheap or free walking tours available in most cities.

The UK is easily accessible from anywhere in the world.

Major airports include London Heathrow (LHR) and London Gatwick (LGW). Stanstead is another option, but then you’ll need to take a long train journey. 

To get around, take trains for cheap day trips from London to places like Bath and Oxford.

Recommended by Nina of Nina Out and About

30. India (an underrated one on this guide for warm vacations in January)

bangalore palace brick and green palace with formal gardens in front India best countries to visit in January

Average temp:  high 83, low 60 (varies by region) Fly into:  Indira Gandhi International Airport, Delhi / Kempegowda International Airport Bengaluru, Bengaluru

While India may be on your travel bucket list , January is also a great time to cross it off!

January in India means it’s dry season, so you don’t need to worry about rain like you do during monsoon season. While India is a large country, narrowing down what you want to see and do will help determine what weather you’ll face and where to fly into .

The northern part of India is home to the famous Taj Mahal. Located in Agra, the Taj Mahal can be visited via day trip from Delhi. One of the new 7 wonders of the world, the Taj Mahal’s grand and impressive architecture is stunning in real life!

In southern India, the popular towns of Bengaluru (aka Bangalore) is a busy city with so many things to do. Bangalore is famous for the Lalbagh Botanical Garden, the Bengaluru Palace, Bull Temple and Cuban Park. Nearby Mysuru (aka Mysore) is a great day trip or weekend getaway from Bangalore. Be sure to watch the lighting of the Mysore Palace – stunning!

If you’re looking for a beach destination in India, Goa is the place to be. With gentle waves, swaying palm trees and beautiful, relaxing hotels, Goa is a great spot to relax and unwind in India. It’s truly a great destination, and one of the best countries to visit in January.

31. The Gambia

small boat on sandy beach in The Gambia

Average temp:  high 91, low 65 Fly into:  Banjul International Airport, Banjul

Perched on the west coast of Africa is a small but charming country known as The Gambia. The Gambia is renowned for its lengthy swathes of golden sand beaches, freshly caught fish and smiling locals.

The Gambia has 2 distinct seasons: the rainy season and the dry season. The dry season runs from November to May and is the best time to visit. The temperature at this time of year is pleasant – roughly 30 degrees Celsius (86 Fahrenheit) – and you can expect bright sunshine on most days.

January is also a great time of year to visit due to the country’s annual Banjul Demba Cultural Festival. Here, you’ll witness traditional music and dance performances in the country’s capital city.

The Gambia is a very small country and so only houses one international airport: Banjul International Airport.

Most visitors to The Gambia choose to base themselves in Serrekunda, a vibrant town set behind a glorious stretch of beach, fringed by lazy palm trees.

Serrekunda is a mere 30 minute drive from the airport. It’s easy to grab a taxi from the airport, or you can pre-arrange a taxi with your hotel or via a taxi company beforehand.

Alternatively, you can hire a car in The Gambia . I’d personally recommend pre-booking a taxi from a reputable company as some taxis at the airport are in questionable condition.

There are numerous hotels in Serrekunda for you to choose from but a personal favourite of mine is Luigi’s Complex. It has a very friendly and laid-back vibe and is only a short walk from the beach.

Recommended by Ella of Ella McKendrick

32. New Zealand (by far one of the best countries to visit in January)

New Zealand best countries to visit in January view of landscape with people repelling down cliff with valley in distance

Average temp:  high 77, low 53 (varies by region) Fly into:  Auckland International Airport, Auckland

A bucket-list destination for many, New Zealand is at the top of its game in January. This summer month brings some of the warmest temperatures in the country, delighting visitors that enjoy sunny days at the beach.

New Zealand is a surprisingly large country – a fact that many people underestimate when planning a vacation. The amount of time you have will affect the places you are able to visit, however, these are some amazing summer spots in Aotearoa.

If you’re able to include them in your itinerary, you’ll be sure to come away happy. After all, New Zealand is one of the best countries to visit in January!

Paihia is located in the Bay of Islands, and though it is beautiful at any time of year, it’s particularly vibrant during the summer season. Known for its stunning beaches, uninhabited islands, settled weather and marine life, this is a must-see in January. Kerikeri is the closest airport to Paihia, but many choose to fly into Auckland and drive up.

Moving down the North Island, the Coromandel Peninsula is another summer-time favourite for locals and visitors alike . Significant highlights include Hot Water Beach (where you can dig your own natural hot pool in the sand), Cathedral Cove and New Chums Beach, all of which are best enjoyed in the warmth of the summer season. Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga airports all service this region.

Finally, a summertime trip to Fiordland should be on your radar. Though this area experiences a lot of rain right throughout the year, this will be your best chance at seeing it on a nice day.

When the weather is still, the mirror reflection of  Milford Sound on the water really is incomparable. Queenstown is the closest airport to Milford Sound, though many choose to stay in Te Anau.

Haere mai and welcome to Aotearoa New Zealand.

Recommended by Sarah of New Zealand Travel Tips

Malta buildings with flags concrete plaza

Average temp:  high 60, low 49 Fly into:  Malta International Airport, Malta

One of the best places to visit in January for sun is the European island of Malta . Actually, Malta is made up of 3 islands, Malta, Gozo, and Comino.

Compared to other European countries,  Malta in winter  is usually very sunny and in January temperatures can go up to 20 degrees Celsius which on a sunny day feels very pleasant.

One of the best things about going in January is that fewer tourists venture to the island which is mainly considered a summer destination. But what most people fail to realize is that it is the best time for going hiking and exploring the ancient towns.

Malta has a long history, and if you get rainy or windy days it’s perfect to explore underground where you can walk through the World War Two Shelters or discover the old catacombs in Rabat. On the other hand, if the weather is nice, you can easily go for a quick dip in the crystal-clear water.

There are numerous flights connecting Malta with the rest of Europe. In addition, you can take the boat directly from Sicily in Italy.

Getting around Malta by bus is easy, it costs 1.50 Euros for a ticket that lasts you for 2 hours (including bus changes.) On top of that, they have tap and pay so there is no need for cash.

Recommended by Linn of Brainy Backpackers

34. Turks and Caicos (another favorite on this list for best beach vacations in January)

turks and caicos white sand beach teal water blue sky best countries to visit in January

Average temp:  high 82, low 74 Fly into:  Providenciales International Airport, Turks & Caicos Islands

Last but certainly not least is the dreamy island chain of Turks and Caicos. Definitely worthy of a spot on this list of the best countries to visit in January, Turks and Caicos has unbelievable white sand beaches with the most turquoise water you’ll ever see.

A beach destination with the right mix of good food and water activities, Turks and Caicos is a laid-back island chain where the term ‘island time’ could have been created.

The whimsical nature of the island is perfect for a January getaway when all that matters is what time you should re-apply your sunblock . (By the way, be sure to use ocean-safe sunblock at all times to protect marine life.)

Staying on the main island of Providenciales doesn’t have to break the bank, either. It’s possible to do Turks and Caicos on a budget , without sacrificing a good time on the island chain.

While there, be sure to visit the best beaches on Turks and Caicos . Grace Bay Beach is the most popular, but moving away from the busy tourist spot will provide you with amazing views where you *might* just be the only one there.

Enjoy a dreamy island vacation in Turks and Caicos!

vacation in January view of palapa with chairs and beach in distance

Whew! What a list! From the best beach vacations in January to frozen winter wonderlands, this was a fun guide to put together. So….are you ready to book your flights yet?

Let’s review that list one more time, in a more succinct fashion….

Best places to vacation in January

  • Switzerland
  • El Salvador
  • Philippines
  • South Africa
  • New Zealand
  • Turks and Caicos

Related content to read next: 30 Incredible Warm Winter Vacations USA (Say Goodbye to the Cold) 30 Best Countries to Visit in February (Fun Spots You Haven’t Thought Of) 35 Cheapest Beach Vacations: Swoon-worthy Destinations You Need to See 28 Underrated Travel Destinations in the US You Need to See 32 Awe-Inspiring Adventurous Bucket List Ideas You Gotta See to Believe

Find this post helpful? Save it for later or share it on social media!

34 incredible vacation spots in January view of boats on beach palm trees and boat near cliffs

Saturday 3rd of September 2022

Fabulous post Nikki! It just shows how many fantastic places there are for holidays in January. When I was younger I would have been tempted by the tropical islands... but now I have learned to ski, places like Austria and Switzerland for would be the best part - those snowy mountain views are beeeautiful!

Tuesday 6th of September 2022

Aw I love your comment, Josy! So glad you'd do a Switzerland or Austria getaway. Both looks so stunning in wintertime!

What a fantastic list! I’m lucky to live in one of the places but I’ll keep this lost for sure for winter holidays!

Ah yes Marga, I agree you're very fortunate! Glad you found some inspiration for new destination ideas, though!

Chelsea Messina

This is such a great list of places to visit in January! I have been dying to visit Costa Rica, but I live in Michigan. So I'll be ready for the Maldives by then!

Ha love it! Either of those places sound perfect during a winter in Michigan!

She Buys Travel

Warm Places to Visit in January: Best International and US Hot Spots

Lauren Harby Avatar

Lauren Harby

Snorkeling near The Cove at Atlantis Paradise Island in The Bahamas

From decking the halls to writing New Year’s resolutions that will likely be discarded faster than the spiked eggnog your uncle is throwing back at a family gathering, it’s all too easy to feel a need for escape once the holidays quiet down. For those of us who live in the chillier climes, that means dreaming about warm places to visit in January and beyond.

Take off your coat and insulated boots, as we explore some of the top-rated destinations to warm you up on a winter getaway.

The Sydney Opera House lit up at night, Best Honeymoon Destinations for October

Sydney, Australia

January is the perfect time of year to visit this iconic coastal city, as it’s the height of summer in the Southern Hemisphere.

Visitors from around the world flock to the well-loved Bondi Beach. Enjoy the warm breeze as you walk along the Sydney Harbor, taking in the beauty of the sparkling waters. Aligned along the harbor are restaurants, cafes, live music, and local joggers.

After enjoying the sights of the steel-arch bridge and the world-famous Opera House, the warmth of the sun may invite you to take part in various water sports activities, such as kayaking, snorkeling, and paddleboarding. For those looking to stay on land, they can take a leisurely stroll along the botanical gardens.

Looking for something else in Australia? Consider the North Coast and Darwin, which boasts similar great weather without the crowds.

For accommodations, consider the Four Seasons Hotel Sydney . Located in the heart of the business district, this hotel is mere steps away from the harbor.

Read More: Best Countries to Visit with Kids

Read More: Things To Do In Darwin

Bora Bora, French Polynesia

This remote tropical island, located in the South Pacific Ocean, is well-loved for its crystal clear waters, natural beauty, and nearly year-round warm weather, making it one of the best warm places to visit in January.

International visitors will arrive at Faa’a International Airport in Tahiti. From there, you’ll board a 45-minute flight to Bora Bora . Upon descent, you’ll catch a first view of the stunning white sand beaches, turquoise waters, and overwater bungalows. Fun-in-the-sun activities include snorkeling among the vibrant coral reefs, scuba-diving, and jet-skiing. This perfect destination isn’t complete without the perfect accommodation, and you’ll find there’s no shortage of luxury options on this island – check out some of the top-rated resorts here .

The city skyline of dubai, with the Burj Khalifa tower tallest of them all, is in the distance over a large expanse of water. The view is from the wooden deck of a cruise ship.

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Trade your cold nights in the snow for some warm Arabian nights in the desert. Dubai offers an array of activities to enjoy, such as shopping in some of the world’s most luxurious malls, indoor skiing, and exotic desert safaris.

Golf lovers can check out one of the world’s best golf courses,  The Dubai Creek Golf and Yacht Club.   Daredevils can hang out at the top of the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa, or zipline above the city views with Xline Dubai Marina .

Once your stomach settles from the spike of adrenaline, clean up and enjoy some of the city’s many Michelin-star restaurants. Leading luxury airline Emirates  can help you get to your destination (you’ll most likely board the iconic A380!).

Sailboat in front of sunset in Key West, Florida, a great place to visit in November

Key West, Florida

The northern parts of Florida can get a winter chill, but chances are good the frigid temperatures won’t extend as far south as the Florida Keys, home to North America’s only coral barrier reef.

Chase the sun down the 113-mile stretch of roadway, leading down to the southernmost point of the continental USA, where the Atlantic meets the Gulf of Mexico. Enjoy the many beautiful beaches along the coast, and partake in activities such as scuba diving, sunset cruising, snorkeling, and plenty of whale watching.

Hawks Cay Resort,  on Duck Key, is one of our favorite resorts. It’s the place to fulfill all of your summer-minded desires, with plenty of options for adults-only, families, and solo adventure seekers.

warm places to visit end of january

Miami, Florida

As you road trip your way up from Key West, Miami is another perfect Florida destination to check out to escape the cold shrill of winter. Enjoy the city vibes of culture, art, music, and culinary adventures in this Cuban-influenced popular destination.

Daytime activities include taking in the sun at one of the white sand beaches – we’re partial to the most famous one of all, Miami Beach.

Looking for some cultural activities? They’re everywhere in this multicultural city. Take a stroll along the strip of the Wynwood walls to admire local art galleries. If an artist is on site, you can even request an original piece, for a small commission.  In the evening, foodies can enjoy a world-class Michelin Star restaurant before taking to the city to enjoy the vibrant nightlife.

Stay in the heart of the city at Four Season Hotel Miami  or at one of these Miami hotels . And while you’re there, treat yourself to one of these luxurious Miami spas !

Boats in Phuket, Thailand, Best Honeymoon Destinations for October

Phuket, Thailand

Known for its white sand beaches, waterfalls, rich cultural scene, and nightlife, Phuket is a great destination for a warm getaway.

January is Thailand’s dry season, which means it’s a great time to enjoy the clear blue skies and warm breeze. Outdoor activities include scoping out the hiking trails along the rainforest, swimming in the blue waters, white water rafting, and catching some waves with the local surfers.

Soak in the culture by visiting the old town of Thalang Road, before taking in the famed nightlife that attracts millions of young backpackers from around the world.

As you plan your Thailand getaway, check out some of the top-rated beach resorts  here.

San Juan Resorts include the Sheraton Puerto Rico Hotel & Casino.

San Juan, Puerto Rico

With a high temperature averaging around 83 degrees in January, this iconic and historic city makes for one of the best warm places to visit, with its many sandy beaches, iconic landmarks, and national parks.

The historic district of Old San Juan provides an array of cultural and culinary adventures. Take in the sights of the 16th-century Spanish-style buildings and visit historical landmarks such as the El Morro National Monument.  Adventure seekers can take a day trip to the El Yunque rainforest and hike the trails to swim in a gorgeous waterfall.

In the evening, enjoy the warm breeze and explore the nightlife of live music, hole-in-the-wall bars, and street food.

Check out our full list of the best hotels in San Juan , or stay at one of these Puerto Rico all-inclusive resorts .

blue oceans waters in the bahamas

The Bahamas

This popular Caribbean destination packs millions of visitors each year, and for good reason. With an average high of 77 degrees in January and with peak season just behind, the Bahamas is an attractive destination for a tropical getaway for the new year.

Spread a towel on white sand beaches along crystal-clear waters, or head out snorkeling, kayaking, or parasailing. There’s also an array of opportunities to interact with friendly creatures of the sea – five of the seven species of sea turtles can be found in The Bahamas.

For a luxe resort experience, we recommend the iconic Atlantis Resort Bahamas . Before you go, be sure to read our insider tips for Atlantis .

warm places to visit end of january

Say aloha to days in the sun! With its pristine beaches, near-perfect weather, and cultural wonders, Hawaii is always a great spot for a getaway. Each of the six major islands has its own personality, from the urban bustle of Honolulu in Oahu to the lush interior of Kauai and the deserted beaches of Molokai.

While Maui continues to recover from the devastating fires that wiped out Lahaina and cost so many lives,  there are still plenty of places and reasons to visit Hawaii.

A great bonus that makes January an ideal time to travel to Hawaii  is that it’s the high season for humpback whale spotting. To catch these magnificent creatures, it’s recommended to book a tour  to maximize the sightseeing experience.

In the evening, soak in the culture by seeing a Hawaiian luau, complete with traditional food, drink, and music.

These are our favorite family-friendly Hawaiian resorts .

Leave a Reply Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

warm places to visit end of january

12 Warm Places to Visit in January (USA)

By: Author Susan Moore

Posted on Last updated: November 22, 2023

By the time winter settles into January, it’s about time for a break, right? Just about everyone has had their fill of the cold at this point. So why not escape to a place that’s warm and inviting.

Imagine yourself lounging on the warm sand, the lapping waves soothing your thoughts. And most importantly, the sun melting away all of the winter blues.

Start out the new year right with a dreamy vacation somewhere hot and sunny. This list of the best warm places to visit in January is here to help get you one step closer to making that dream a reality.

All you have to do is read through and pick the one that speaks to you.

Okay, let’s get going to someplace hot for winter vacation!

12 Best warm places to visit in January USA.

Warm Places to Visit in January in USA

At the top of this list of warm places to visit in January is, an absolute fav, Oahu, Hawaii.

The consistently beautiful weather extends into January. You’ll see temps easily in the upper 70s and possibly into the 80s.

This gorgeous weather means you’ll be enjoying everything Oahu has to offer.

In January you can go whale watching , enjoy a New Year Luau , and enjoy swimming in the ocean.

Big Island Hawaii

Keeping it going with Hawaii! Big Island is just another awesome destination in January.

Like Oahu, the daytime temps are in the upper 70s and can get into the 80s.

Swimming in the ocean is a year round activity. But you’ll also have a great chance of seeing migrating Humpback whales in January, a major plus.

For a unique Hawaii experience you can try this night manta ray snorkeling tour from Kona.

Also, if you want to do some sightseeing and don’t want to rent a car you can book a seat on the small group tour Big Island in a Day that includes waterfalls, volcanoes, and historical info (lunch included).

January is part of Hawaii’s rainy season (October through March) but it’s really not that bad. And you can usually find better rates for accommodations in January.

Rainbow falls Big Island Hawaii.

Tour around Big Island and see gorgeous waterfalls like Rainbow Falls

San Diego is a fabulous place to go just about any time of year because there’s always cool stuff to do .

Let’s be real for a second. It’s one of the warm places in January, but it’s not necessarily bathing suit weather.

But you can expect blue skies and sunshine in San Diego in January making it a great time to escape wintery weather elsewhere.

Daytime temps normally reach up into the mid-60s making it perfect to get out and see the sights.

You’ll love seeing the sea lions in La Jolla , hiking nearby coastal trails , or strolling the gardens of Balboa Park .

La Jolla Shores Beach San Diego California.

How about a January vacation to San Diego and beautiful La Jolla Shores beach?

Puerto Rico

January in Puerto Rico is the coldest month on the island. But with an average high of 83, it’s a place the rest of us are wishing to spend some time.

Pack your bathing suit because swimming and sunbathing are totally on the itinerary.

The water temps are usually in the lower 80s making Puerto Rico one of the absolute best warm places to visit in January.

You’ll have a blast checking out the impressive Castillo San Felipe del Morro and exploring the Yunque National Forest.

Boardwalk by the beach in Isabela Puerto Rico.

Sun and sand are in your future when you book a January trip to Puerto Rico

Florida Keys

With hurricane season long gone, the dry weather makes the Florida Keys one of the best January vacation spots.

Now, it is technically the coolest month in the Keys, but with temps in the 70s it’s an escape to tropical paradise for the rest of us.

With weather like this, you’ll be spending your days in the sun, enjoying the beach, and exploring downtown Key West.

For something fun why not take a snorkeling tour during the day and in the evening try the Key West  sunset sail with live music !

Kayaks on beach with palm tress in Key West.

Key West in January is a great place to chase away the winter blues!

Looking for a place that has tons of sun and mild temperatures in January? Phoenix is the place!

This city is perfectly situated in the desert with tons of outdoor adventures and urban fun.

Get into nature on the hiking trails through the Phoenix Sonoran Preserve or the Desert Botanical Garden .

If you’re looking to recharge the spas and yoga centers are ready to help you get recentered.

Traveling on a budget? Check out our list of free things to do in Phoenix .

Regardless of how you spend your time, you’ll be warmed by sunny days and temperatures in the upper 60s.

Phoenix Sonoran Preserve cholla cactus.

Take to the hiking trails at Phoenix Sonoran Preserve on your January getaway to Arizona

Why not kick off the new year Vegas-style? In January you’ll enjoy smaller crowds, lower prices, but the same level of Vegas fun.

And it isn’t just all about gambling, Las Vegas has lots of fun stuff to do besides casinos .

One of the best warm places in January, Vegas sees average high temp is 60 degrees.

This makes it really nice to explore the Strip during the day – something that’s just too uncomfortable during most of the year.

You can also get out and explore the nearby sites with some cool day trips from Vegas .

One of the most rad experiences from Vegas is the Grand Canyon deluxe helicopter tour .

At night it can get pretty chilly, reaching lows of nearly freezing. The simple cure for this is to enjoy the incredible indoor nightlife only Vegas can offer.

Eiffel Tower Las Vegas.

Reserve a window seat at the Eiffel Tower Restaurant in Las Vegas for the best views and tasty food

Santa Barbara

Sunny days and warm temperatures await in Santa Barbara.

January brings beautiful weather and temps in the mid 60s.

This makes it perfect to explore everything from the Botanical Garden to the Old Mission Santa Barbara . Don’t forget to visit Stearns Wharf too.

Read our full list of things to do in Santa Barbara .

A visit to Santa Barbara in January also means you might spot a Grey Whale as they migrate along the coast. January is also the best time to see Monarch butterflies in nearby Goleta.

Where to stay: La Playa Inn Santa Barbara is a short walk to the beach and Stearns Wharf, see photos and read reviews now .

Santa Barbara in winter remains green.

Santa Barbara is a delightful warm winter weather destination on the California coast

January is just about the best time of year to visit Tucson .

With mild day temps reaching the upper 60s during the day, you’ll find yourself outdoors exploring everything Tucson has to offer.

If it’s nature you seek, you’ll find it in Tucson. The Sonoran Desert is the perfect place to get into the great outdoors.

For a day of exploring check out the best day trips from Tucson with hiking and biking at Saguaro National Park , visit the beauty of Sabino Canyon , or learn about aviation at Pima Air and Space Museum .

You can’t beat downtown Tucson. It’s the perfect place to stroll through the shops, enjoy delicious food, and have a fun night out.

Another fun thing to do in Tucson is spend some time checking out all the amazing murals around town, there are a ton!

Goddess of Agave mural Tucson.

Tucson is a city full of gorgeous murals like the beautiful and colorful Goddess of Agave by Rock “CYFI” Martinez

Palm Springs

The weather is definitely a major reason Palm Springs is one of the best warm places to visit in January.

You can’t beat the sunshine and daily temps that reach into the 70s.

Beyond the perfect weather, this desert oasis is teeming with ways to relax and recharge.

You’ll find everything from spa resorts ready with massages and mud baths to world class golf courses. And January is the perfect time to hit the hiking trails around Palm Springs.

Spending more time in Palm Springs? Why not get out and go exploring nearby with the best day trips from Palm Springs .

For sure you’ll want to visit Joshua Tree National Park .

No matter how you choose to wind down you’ll find it in Palm Springs. Read our list of the Best Boutique Hotels in Palm Springs

A lone Joshua tree and boulders in winter at Joshua Tree National Park.

Joshua Tree National Park is an excellent winter destination for exploring gorgeous landscapes and the unique Joshua trees

US Virgin Islands

Paradise awaits in the US Virgin Islands.

No matter which one you choose, be it St. John, St. Croix, or St. Thomas, you’ll definitely melt away the winter blues.

With temperatures getting into the 80s, the US Virgin Islands is one of the hottest places to visit in January.

In the summer-like weather you’ll be putting your toes in the sand and snorkeling with the fish.

*** While Lahaina is recovering from devastating wildfires of August 2023 visitors should stay away from the area but the remainder of West Maui, Southern and Eastern Maui regions are open for tourism. Check Maui Travel Updates for more info ***

One more place in Hawaii to put on your list for a warm places to travel in January is Maui.

Because it’s whale watching season you can see whales from the shore or you can grab a seat on a whale watching tour like this eco-raft tour from Lahaina Maui for a chance to see them up close.

Warm waters around Maui will provide the perfect ocean playground for watersports like snorkeling or scuba diving.

And since January is the middle of Maui surfing season you can rent a board and catch the waves or take a surfing lesson.

Just want to chill? Spend your time on the beach watching the waves and catching some Vitamin D from the sunshine.

Stay at Hotel Wailea, Relais & Chateau for the perfect (adults only) location overlooking Maui’s southern coastline.

Outdoor adventurers should put Haleakala National Park on the to-do list and Road to Hana is a gorgeous world-famous scenic drive you won’t want to miss.

Haleakala Maui.

For extraordinary landscapes visit Haleakala National Park in Maui

Final Thoughts on Warm Places in January USA

As you can see there are some toasty places to spend your winter getaway. And they’re all right here in the beautiful USA. This list of the best January warm winter vacation destinations in the US will make sure that soon after you ring in the New Year you’ll be headed off to a better, warmer, you. Have fun!

Save it to Pinterest!

12 Best places that are warm in January in USA, including Santa Barbara, San Diego, and Big Island Hawaii.

More Travel Ideas by the Seasons

15 Best Places For Spring Break in USA

18 Places That Are Hot in February (USA Edition)

12 Places That Are Hot in February (World Edition)

15 Best Vacation Spots in February in USA

Best Places to Spend Christmas in USA

25 Places That Are Warm in December in USA

15 Best Places to Travel in December in USA

21 Best National Parks to Visit in Winter

15 Best Places to Travel in November in USA

11 Best National Parks to Visit in Fall (USA)

Jones Around The World

Best Warm Places to Visit in January | 21 Hot Weather Countries

Planning a sunny winter escape and looking for all possible warm places to visit in January? Well, you’ve come to the right place, as I’ve compiled this incredible guide to scorching destinations to keep the cold weather at bay!

January marks the peak of winter for US and European travelers. You have two options, either be all snug and cozy in your lounge near the fire or, if you think similar to me, you’re planning a mission to escape the brutally cold January weather!

Fortunately, there’s no shortage of warm places to go in January, from ethereal desert destinations to stunning beaches for all to enjoy! If you’re looking for a sun-drenched destination to enjoy, there are many to pick from.

Whether you want to make your way Down Under , book a luxurious getaway to the Maldives , or find yourself sipping on pina coladas in Central America – this list will surely give you some solid ideas!

20 Warm Places to Visit in January

Top 20 Warm Places to Visit in January

1) Tulum, Mexico

Tulum - Where is hot in January

To kickstart the list, there’s arguably no “hotter” destination to visit in January than Tulum, Mexico. It’s recently skyrocketed in popularity (largely in part to social media) and is now Mexico’s third-most visited destination!

Complete with an incredible food scene, epic nightlife, and tons of adventure – it’s ideal for warm vacations in January and offers a little something for everyone!

Tulum also has tons of history, and it’s home to the ancient Tulum Ruins, which show signs of life as far back as the 6th century! Did you know that Tulum is a walled city that was built by the Mayans? It also functioned as a vital port for the inland settlements, so it’s a place with plenty of history to explore.

January is also one of the least humid months of the year in Tulum, so it’ll feel comfortably warm without overheating. If the heat does become too much, just take a quick dip in the mesmerizing Caribbean Sea!

Tulum is also home to one of Mexico’s Music Festivals – so for the party-seekers out there, it’s simply one of the best warm-weather destinations in January! Make sure you bring along a Festival Hydration Backpack so you can stay hydrated (as the parties can get super hot, even at night). 

Average Maximum Temperature: 28°C/82°F

Tulum - Where is hot in january

To make the most of your time in the land of sombreros and burritos, check out my other guides to Mexico:

  • Top 15 Glamping Mexico Getaways
  • Famous Landmarks in Mexico
  • 21 Amazing Things to Do in Tulum, Mexico
  • 16 Things to Do in Cozumel, Mexico

Top 5 Activities in Tulum, Mexico

  • Book a day trip through many of the popular cenotes. Or I’d also recommend renting a car and doing a self-guided trip to all the different cenotes (there are tons in the area)
  • Meander through the ancient Tulum Ruins .
  • Head to the “Hotel Zone” and rent a sunbed and relax for a day. The beaches in Tulum are stunning, making it one of the best places to travel in January for warm weather!
  • Revel in the healing properties of the mud on a Laguna de Kaan Luum experience .
  • Party it up to experience the famous Tulum nightlife! January, in particular, there are some incredible festivals and all-night-long parties.

HOW TO TRAVEL TULUM - 7 Days in Paradise

2) Phuket, Thailand

Thailand - Where is Hot in january

Phuket is a popular island destination in Thailand, brimming with mountains and rainforests. It is the largest island in Thailand and lies on the Andaman Coast, so it’s the gateway for exploring all the nearby islands!

This region is also home to the cultural and historical Phuket City, which boasts streets of Sino-Portuguese architecture. There are many restaurants, bars, and clubs here.

What makes the city so popular is its energetic nightlife and humid temperatures, which allow for relaxing on the many beautiful beaches. January also marks the high season for Phuket as it presents some of the warmest and driest weather in Southeast Asia!

Some of the attractions and landmarks in Thailand reside in this incandescent city. Think of the Big Buddha, the Buddhist temple Wat Chaithararam, and the scenic Cape Phrom Thep. Simply put, if you’re searching for warm weather in January and plenty of activities, Phuket should be a top pick.

Average Maximum Temperature: 31°C/88°F

Phuket - warm places in january

Phuket is easily one the best warm places in January to visit!

My website is also filled with fun articles about traveling in Thailand. So be sure to give them a read if you decide to book a Thailand trip in January!

  • 10-Day Thailand Itinerary for First-Timers
  • The 15 Best Music Festivals in Thailand
  • The Ultimate 2-Day Bangkok Itinerary
  • Three Weeks in Thailand Itinerary

Thailand Beach in January

Top 5 Activities in Phuket, Thailand

  • Island-hop to Phi Phi Islands for spectacular scenery, snorkeling, and scuba diving – the ocean is calm enough to do so in January
  • Go canoeing in Phang Nga Bay Sea Cave .
  • Relax on Patong Beach it’s rated one of Thailand’s most beautiful beaches.
  • Watch the elaborate ladyboy – Simon Cabaret.
  • Eat Thai delicacies at the Naka Weekend Market.

Top 12 Things to do in Phuket #livelovethailand

3) Bali, Indonesia

Bali - where is hot in january

These days, Bali needs no introduction, as it has become one of the world’s hottest tourist destinations. And while it’s technically the rainy season, Bali is still an incredibly warm destination to visit in January!

Famed for its iconic volcanos, rice paddies, beaches, temples, sunsets, and so much more – a trip to Bali deserves a place on everyone’s bucket list! Spend your days zooming around on scooters, chasing waterfalls, doing yoga, drinking coconuts, or partying it up in Canggu. The list of incredible things to do in Bali seriously never ends.

The island also boasts scenic coral reefs with multitudes of fish species – more than the Great Barrier Reef! There are hot and humid temperatures in January, but you should expect some tropical rain too.

I’ve personally flown to Bali to spend the entire month of January several times, and it’s truly remarkable. You simply can’t beat the food, the accommodation, the sights. I could honestly ramble forever if given the chance.

Average Maximum Temperatures: 29°C/81°F

Bali Indonesia

Bali is one of my favorite warm destinations to visit during the winter!

Bali’s one of the best countries to visit in January for warm weather, but it’s much more than sunny skies and glorious beaches! Here are a few of my top guides to help plan your Bali bonanza:

  • The Ultimate Bali Itinerary
  • The 40 Best Bali Honeymoon Hotels
  • 25 Amazing Things to Do in Uluwatu, Bali

bali itinerary

Top 5 Activities in Bali, Indonesia

  • Rent a scooter and explore all of the incredible beaches around Uluwatu (the southern part of the island)
  • Explore Ubud and its rice terraces, cafes, and swings. The iconic Tegalalang Rice Terrace is a must-visit!
  • Taste the world’s most expensive coffee bean; Kopi Luwak!
  • Complete the Mount Batur sunrise hike ! It’s not all too strenuous, and the views above the clouds looking out over volcanoes are breathtaking!
  • Take a day trip to Nusa Penida for jaw-dropping scenery, swimming with Manta Rays, and incredible viewpoints.


4) Mirissa, Sri Lanka

Mirissa, Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is an unbelievably underrated destination that would be a perfect warm place to visit in January!

Mirissa is a small coastal city on the southern side of Sri Lanka. It attracts many tourists due to its tropical and clean beaches with palm tree-lined. Travelers especially love this destination as it has incredible resorts, beach hotels, and affordable guest houses.

Mirissa is not overly hot, nor is it very humid, making it one of the more popular warm places to visit in the winter months. If you do plan a trip to Sri Lanka, be sure to hop around quite a bit. The entire country is filled with amazing national parks, iconic landmarks, unique landscapes, and so much more!

If you make your way to Sri Lanka in January, be sure to visit the amazing Sigiriya Rock Fortress as well! It’s one of my favorite places in the country!

Average Maximum Temperature: 29°C/84°F

Sigiriya Rock - Sri Lanka

Sigiriya Rock, Sri Lanka

My site has tons of fun Sri Lanka content to browse through as well to inspire your next adventure:

  • The 20 Best Sri Lanka Beaches
  • The 12 Best 5 Star Hotels in Sri Lanka
  • 27 Amazing Things to Do in Arugam Bay
  • Kaudulla National Park
  • The 15 Best Airbnbs in Sri Lanka

Best Beaches in Sri Lanka, Mirissa Beach

Image via Flickr | Falco Hermert

 Top 5 Activities in Mirissa, Sri Lanka

  • Trek to a coconut farm that’s on the top of a hill in the ocean.
  • Enjoy picturesque views from the top of Parrot Rock on Mirissa Beach.
  • Easily discover the Mirissa (not so) Secret Beach, where you can also enjoy the food and beverages from the on-site beach bar.
  • Take part in the many snorkeling and scuba-diving opportunities.
  • Take a day trip to the Sinharaja Rain Forest, a UNESCO World Heritage Site .


5) Lahaina, Maui, Hawaii

Lahaina - Where to Stay on Maui

For those US travelers who want to visit someplace warm without leaving the country, a trip to the Hawaiian Islands is a no-brainer!

Lahaina is a historic seaside town in Western Maui and runs along a 30-mile shoreline, providing a lovely oasis to laze in. Its traditional culture and appearance have been supplemented by contemporary aspects such as art galleries, beachfront resorts, and restaurants/bars.

This is one of the best warm destinations in January for balmy weather as it’s still within the convenience of the Northern Hemisphere.

There are typically fantastic flight specials to and from Maui. It would be a great place to start a Hawaiian island hopping trip or spend a full week exploring Maui itself!

With an array of natural destinations like the ʻĪao Valley State Monument and Haleakalā National Park, Maui is a hiking enthusiast’s dream destination. And if hiking isn’t your thing, I’m sure your resort will cover your every need.

Maui, Hawaii - Warm Places To Vist in January

If you can’t get enough of this islands lifestyle, check out my other Maui guides:

  • The Ultimate Maui Itinerary
  • Where to Stay in Maui | Best Areas & Hotels
  • The 17 Best Music Festivals in Hawaii

Where is Hot in January

Top 5 Activities in Lahaina, Maui, Hawaii

  • Take a trip in the Atlantis Submarine , which plunges 30 meters into the water.
  • Partake in one of the many snorkeling tours or scuba diving excursions .
  • Stroll along Front Street for culture, shopping, and beachfront views.
  • Snap a picture with Maui’s oldest living tree at Banyan Tree Park.
  • Rent a car and enjoy a windy road trip along the iconic Road To Hana.

How to Travel Maui - BEST Maui Travel Guide!!

6) The Maldives


Do I really need to give you a reason to visit the Maldives? It’s one of the most sought-after destinations in the world, not to mention it’s one of the warmest places to visit in January!

While it may be difficult to choose where to visit in the Maldives, as it’s made up of around 1200 islands, I’m sure you’ll have an awesome time no matter where you go.

You can choose between visiting countless luxury resorts or spending thousands on overwater villas. Visiting Maldives on a budget? Not a problem. There are tons of local islands, which are all pretty great and help support the local economies.

While it may be one of the most expensive places on the list, it’s definitely one of the best countries that are hot in January! It’s also the dry season, which means little rain and lots of sunshine. I’ve personally visited the Maldives two different times now, and each trip was truly jaw-dropping (and worth every penny).

Average Maximum Temperature: 30°C/86°F

The Maldives

I spent a month in the Maldives, so be sure to check out my articles here for some inspiration:

  • The Westin Maldives Resort Review
  • Top 14 Things to Do on Thulusdhoo Island, Maldives
  • Kurumba Maldives Resort Review

Where is Hot in January - Maldives

Top 5 Activities in The Maldives

  • Snorkeling & Scuba Diving! It has some of the most magical dive sites I’ve experienced in my life.
  • Visit the local islands for a cheaper option and experience the culture.
  • Delicious cuisine at world-class restaurants (all the resorts have fantastic dining options and local cuisine).
  • Experience luxury at the world’s top resorts and stay at an overwater villa.
  • Watersports, Island hopping, and Sunset Cruises. The resorts all offer a ton of different activities and day trips.

15 Things You Didn't Know About The Maldives

7) St. George, Bermuda

Bermuda Travel Guide - Where is hot in January

This old coastal town was once the British colonial settlement of Bermuda. It’s located on St. George’s Island and is still very much the way it was many years ago. Because of this age-old feeling and maintenance of the historic buildings, the town is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site .

While visiting in January, there will be a chance of some rain, but the weather is still warm and enjoyable!

A trip to Bermuda has a little something to offer everyone, and visiting in January would be a much-needed winter escape that the whole family will enjoy. You can enjoy the sunkissed Tobacco Bay and explore the otherworldly crystal caves on the island.

It also makes for the perfect romantic getaway that’s slightly off the beaten track!

Average Maximum Temperature: 21°C/70°F

Bermuda in January

Top 5 Activities in St. George

  • Enjoy excellent visibility of the water in January and try watersports or snorkeling in Tobacco Bay.
  • Learn about historic wars in the World Heritage Center.
  • View the ruins of an incomplete Gothic Church from the 19th century called Unfinished Church.
  • Go on a day trip to the Crystal and Fantasy Caves.
  • Visit Fort St. Catherine, which has now been transformed into a History Museum.

Things to Do in Bermuda

8) Eilat, Israel

Eilat Israel - Where is Hot in january

Unbelievable Israeli food and scuba-diving in the Red Sea – need I say any more?

Exploring Israel in January will bring about varying climatic conditions. These conditions vary from wet, cold conditions in Jerusalem to warm conditions in Eilat – which boasts an extensive coastline adorned with white-sand beaches and crystal-blue water.

Eilat is regarded as one of the hottest places to visit in January in Israel. The Red Sea temperatures are fortunately warmer than that of the Dead Sea, so this will be your best bet for enjoyable swimming, relaxing, and top-notch nightlife.

There is consistent sunshine throughout the month, with the nights becoming much cooler. While in Israel, you could also hop over the border to Taba Heights in Egypt or do a few day excursions over to Jordan to visit Petra.

The Red Sea

Israel is an all-around amazing decision any time of the year, so check out a few of my top articles:

  • Top 10 Highlights From Visiting Israel for One Week
  • There’s One Main Reason you Need To Visit Israel
  • Welcome to Midburn: The Israeli Burning Man

Welcome to MIDBURN: The Israeli Burning Man in the Dusty Negev Desert

Top 5 Activities in Eilat, Israel

  • Go scuba-diving and snorkeling along Eilat’s coral beaches.
  • Swim with dolphins in the Dolphin Reef, where they naturally like to swim because of the nearby corals.
  • Take a hike along the Red Canyon , a desert and geographically distinct feature.
  • Visit a lake in the Negev Desert at Timna National Park .
  • Submerge underwater into the country’s largest public aquarium, the Underwater Observatory Park.

A Tour of Eilat, Israel on the Red Sea: Is It Worth Visiting?

9) Aqaba, Jordan

Where is Hot in January - Aqaba

Okay, so I couldn’t mention Israel without mentioning the neighboring country’s iconic Red Sea destination!

Most people don’t know that Jordan actually has a coastal city, Aqaba. This city is set along the northeastern section of the Red Sea and offers easy access to coral reefs, luxury beach resorts, blue waters, and desert mountains!

This is actually the country’s only port and coastal town, so it’s common for locals to spend their holidays here.

In January, Aqaba experiences almost no rainfall, and a trip to Jordan is always a good idea. Visit Petra , the Dead Sea, Wadi Rum, and Aqaba all in just one short week! Be warned, though, Jordan can be a bit expensive.

PS: If you make it out to Jordan, check out my two days in Jordan review for some trip inspiration.

Petra Abraham Tours Review

Top 5 Activities to Do in Aqaba

  • Go scuba-diving in the coral reefs of the Red Sea.
  • Stroll around Aqaba’s Old Town.
  • View remnants of the first Islamic town not to be placed within the Arabian peninsula – Ayla.
  • Take a day trip to Wadi Rum , also known as the Valley of the Moon.
  • Visit the Mamluk Castle, which was originally built by the Crusaders in the 1100s.

DIVING IN THE RED SEA! Sunken Plane & Military Tank | Aqaba, Jordan

10) Gold Coast, Australia 

Gold Coast, Australia - Where is hot in January

As a country and continent, Australia is a beachcomber’s haven. With all of its major cities being coastal, you’ll find this nation densely populated with tourists and locals alike.

What makes it popular for visitors in January is the fact that it’s summer here, and most locals are on vacation. The southern region, mainly the Gold Coast, becomes a favored spot for vacationers!

With the Kirra Reef at your doorstep and a whole host of nature parks to explore, the Gold Coast is a thrill seekers’ paradise. But it’s also fantastic for families, with spots like Dreamworld offering epic days of fun in the sun.

And if you’re an art lover, wandering through HOTA is a great idea. Whatever the case, with the balmy temperatures at play, Australia is one of the warmest countries in January that you’ll have a blast exploring.

My site is filled with Australian content, so be sure to read a few of these articles for some more inspiration:

  • The Ultimate Sydney Itinerary
  • The Ultimate Melbourne Itinerary
  • The Ultimate Perth Itinerary
  • The Ultimate Northern Territory Outback Itinerary
  • Cairns – Sydney: The Ultimate Greyhound Bus Pass Itinerary

Gold Coast, Australia

Top 5 Activities in the Gold Coast

  • Swim in the clear waters of the Pacific Ocean along the area’s 43 miles of golden sand beaches.
  • Take a lesson on how to surf, or if you’ve already learned, enjoy this surfer’s paradise!
  • Hike in Tamborine National Park , in the hinterland of Queensland.
  • Take a jetski safar i through the Gold Coast’s varied islands and rivers.
  • Unleash your inner kid at the Warner Bros. Movie World.


11) Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Kuala Lumpiur - Where is hot In January

Kuala Lumpur is the capital city of Malaysia and amongst the most visited cities in the world for 2023. With a colonial past, the city has a rich history. Although landlocked, it’s only a 1.5-hour drive away from tropical, white-sand beaches.

Kuala Lumpur functions as the country’s hub, and its economic development is rapidly increasing.

The city is infamous for its high flooding rates during summer due to its close proximity to two rivers. It would be a wise decision to visit Malaysia in January, which is their winter. This is because there is low rainfall at this stage in comparison to the summer months.

The city offers incredible food, rich culture, and is a gateway to exploring the rest of the country. If you find yourself heading to Malaysia, be sure to visit the Perhentian Islands , Langkawi, Penang, and the Cameron Highlands as well!

Average Maximum Temperature: 32°C/90°F

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

If you do happen to visit Malaysia in January, check out a few of these articles:

  • The Ultimate 2-Day Kuala Lumpur Itinerary
  • The 16 Best Kuala Lumpur Airbnb’s
  • The Best Two Weeks in Malaysia Itinerary

Unique Kuala Lumpur Airbnb

Top 5 Activities in Kuala Lumpur

  • Visit the world’s highest twin towers and walk the sky bridge at the Petronas Towers .
  • Take a trip to the Batu Caves , which are within a limestone hill and accompanied by Hindu temples.
  • Get cultured at the Sri Mahamariamman Temple, the oldest Hindu Temple in the city.
  • Take a day trip to the Cameron Highlands and the butterfly garden.
  • Indulge in the local delicacies and food at the Jalan Alor Food Market.

A Tour of KUALA LUMPUR | This City is Amazing!

12) Puerto Princesa, The Philippines

Philippines - Where is hot in January

Situated in the largest jurisdiction island of The Philippines , Palawan, Puerto Princesa is picture-perfect. It is a fairly new settlement that lies in close proximity to green rainforests and white-sand beaches.

Tourists mainly utilize this city as a gateway to the Subterranean River National Park. This has been named a UNESCO World Heritage Site because of its astonishing cave systems and underground rivers.

January is a great month to visit these caves – and the city – as it’s a dry and hot month. What’s more, the sun shines here all day, with an average of 11.5 hours of sunlight for you to enjoy.

If you do happen to visit the Philippines in January, check out a few of these posts:

  • One Month in the Philippines Travel Itinerary
  • Where to Stay in Coron | Beautiful Hotels & Resorts
  • Where to stay in Boracay | Best Hotels & Accommodation

Where to stay in Coron

Top 5 Activities in Puerto Princesa, Palawan

  • Venture through the world’s longest navigable underground river, the Puerto Princesa Underground River , beneath limestone rock.
  • During sunset, walk along the city’s bay walk promenade.
  • Go island-hopping to the other nearby islands, such as Honda Bay.
  • Laze at one of the many private or public beaches. Talaudyong Beach is a top pick.
  • Travel to Mitra’s Ranch for lovely views of the city and ocean.

Underground River in Sabang | Puerto Princesa | Palawan | Philippines 2017

13) Auckland, New Zealand

Auckland - Where is hot in January 2020

Auckland is the biggest city in New Zealand and is connected to two natural harbors. This means that the city rests between the Pacific Ocean and the Tasman Sea. The metropolis is located around a volcanic field where there are 53 dormant volcanoes.

It has incredible coastlines, forestry, and prolific native wildlife nearby. January is a splendid time to visit since this is the middle of summer in New Zealand. Warm, temperate days are accompanied by cool nights.

If you’re a Lord of the Rings fan, Hobbiton is only a few hours’ drive from the city, where picturesque green fields await. And while New Zealand isn’t well known for its nightlife, the locals sure know how to throw an epic summer festival.

Average Daily Temperature: 22°C/72°F

Piha Beach - Auckland Day Trip

Piha Beach – Auckland Day Trip

If you decide to visit New Zealand in January, be sure to check out a few of these articles:

  • The 17 Best Airbnb’s in Auckland For An Unbeatable Getaway
  • The Ultimate North Island of New Zealand itinerary
  • The Ultimate South Island of New Zealand itinerary
  • The 16 Best Things to Do in Wellington, New Zealand
  • The Ultimate Queenstown Itinerary + Travel Guide

Where is Hot in January

Top 5 Activities in Auckland, New Zealand

  • Kayak to Rangitoto Island , where a dormant volcano sits.
  • Take a day trip and marvel at or surf in the dramatic setting of Piha Beach.
  • Take a ferry to Tiritiri Matangi Island to view conserved endangered wildlife.
  • Do the coast-to-coast walk; from Waitemata Harbor to Manukau Harbor.
  • Elevate 330 meters above ground to get panoramic views from the Sky Tower .

New Zealand: The Ultimate Travel Guide by TourRadar 5/5

14) Cape Town, South Africa

Where is Hot in January

Table mountain sunset

If you’re wondering where to go in January for warm weather and picturesque views of the South African coast, look no further than Cape Town. From viewing penguins at Boulders Beach to hiking the inner-city mountains, it is one of the continent’s most visited cities.

It attracts a liberal, artistic crowd and is an innovative African city. With a colonial past, Cape Town is also marked by indicators of the time of Apartheid. 

Flocks of international and local visitors head to Cape Town in January for its long summer days and dry conditions. Rain won’t be a problem for you here during this month, which means it’s one of the best places to visit in January for some sun.

Be sure to read my guide on Airbnbs in Cape Town for the ultimate vacation getaway!

Airbnbs in Cape Town | Where is Hot in January

overall aerial view of Cape Town, South Africa

Top 5 Activities in Cape Town

  • Visit Robben Island to see where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for 18 years.
  • Laze on Camps Bay Beach and walk across to the many bars and restaurants.
  • Hike up both Lions Head and Table Mountain, on two different occasions, of course.
  • Take a drive to Cape Agulhas , the most Southern tip of Africa.
  • Venture to the nearby wineries in the province.


15) Nassau, The Bahamas

The Bahamas - Where is hot in January

Scenic view of Paradise Island in Nassau, Bahamas

Many of the islands in the archipelago of the Bahamas remain untouched. Yet, the capital city of Nassau boasts the best of both worlds; natural landscapes accompanied by high-rise buildings and lavish beach resorts.

This is a famous stop among cruise ships and is based on the largest island of the country, New Providence. But it’s far more than just a waypoint for cruise ships. You can visit hidden gems like the Queen’s Staircase or the super interesting Pirate of Nassau Museum.

The month of January brings peak season to visit as the weather is at its finest. You’ll enjoy dry, hot conditions and won’t need to worry about hurricane season, which is still far away.

Average Maximum Temperature: 26°C/79°F

Nassau, Bahamas

Top 5 Activities in Nassau, Bahamas

  • Buy straw artifacts from the Nassau Straw Market.
  • Take a jet ski tour across the ocean.
  • Spend the day on Blue Lagoon Island, where you can find the Bahama’s best beaches.
  • Be entertained in the colossal resort, Atlantis, which has an Aquaventure Waterpark.
  • Take a day trip to the Exuma Cays , where you can swim with pigs!

Top 10 Things To Do in Nassau, Bahamas

16) Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Dubai Facts | Where is hot in January

Fun fact about Dubai , it experiences up to 14 million tourists annually, with a large portion visiting in January.

It’s a world-renowned city that is scattered with high-rise, futuristic buildings and is the economic and financial center of the UAE. The city and broader inland mainly have hot and dry desert conditions.

Fortunately, Dubai is on the banks of the southeastern Persian Gulf, which provides relief from the heat. This makes it a great beach holiday year-round. Some days reach a high of 24°C (75°F) during January, so you’ll definitely find yourself lying on the spacious beaches at one point.

Dubai has a typical desert climate which means it’s not often affected by a cold winter. Rather, it remains warm and dry in its winters. And there’s a slim chance it’ll rain in January, so you can enjoy the day to its fullest.

Average Maximum Temperature: 24°C/75°F

Fun Facts about Dubai

Top 5 Activities in Dubai

  • The world-famous Dubai Shopping Festival takes place in January.
  • Brave your way up the world’s tallest tower, the Burj Khalifa .
  • Go on an Arabian desert safari on a camel.
  • Unwind and relieve yourself from the heat at Jumeirah Beach.
  • Cool down in the Atlantis Waterpark .

11 Things NOT to do in Dubai - MUST SEE BEFORE YOU GO!

17) Peninsula Papagayo, Costa Rica 

Costa Rica Runset - Safe Countires in Central America

Costa Rica’s hidden gem is a dry tropical forest along a 15-mile shoreline. This 570-hectare area is home to Latin America’s premier resort destinations! Much of the inland forestry is conserved, and the biodiversity within is well-maintained. 

It’s definitely one of the most scenic and hot places to visit in January, and it’s the dry season during this time. In other words, you won’t be burdened by rain and can enjoy the beaches in tropical conditions!

It’s also one of the safest Central and South American countries to visit, which is nice to know! The country has tons to explore, making it an ideal winter escape.

Average Maximum Temperature: 33°C/91°F

Costa Rica Beach

Exploring the Beaches of Costa Rica in January is truly unforgettable!

Top 5 Activities in Peninsula Papagayo

  • Zipline for an entire mile at Diamante Adventure Eco Park .
  • Enjoy a variety of watersports at Playas del Coco Beach.
  • Day trip to Arenal Volcano National Park, an active volcano.
  • Visit Planet Hollywood Resort for a foamy pool party.
  • Go scuba-diving at the Summer Salt Diving Center.

18) Baga, India

Goa | Where is Hot in January

Baga is a small coastal town in the state of Goa, India. It offers visitors long-stretching tropical palm-lined beaches along the Arabian Sea. The town has a youthful energy and even has a “party strip” for those who love to drink and socialize.

It’s mainly a tourist location and is located in Northern Goa. However, it allows for easy access to other coastal and inland areas of Goa, such as Calangute. 

In January, Goa isn’t troubled by rain, which is a real bonus. This makes it one of the unmissable warm holiday destinations in January. Temperatures are still very hot, yet not wet or humid.

Goa is also a prime spot for India’s electronic music festivals because it hosts the popular SunBurn Reload.

Top 5 Activities in Goa

  • Spend a day at India’s first inflatable watersports park, Monsoon Fun Park.
  • Tan and swim on Baga Beach.
  • View Goa’s best example of neo-Gothic architecture at the Church of Mae de Seus.
  • Join a yoga class at Satya Yoga Goa.
  • Escape the Churches and explore the Shri Shantadurga Temple.

Journey Through India: Goa | CNBC International

19) Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Brazil - Where is hot in january

As one of Brazil’s most iconic cities, Rio de Janeiro has many of the best things to do in Brazil . This coastal metropolis bustles day and night and is surrounded by mountainous landscapes and lengthy shorelines.

It’s famed for its vibrant nightlife and lively culture. The city is on the banks of Guanabara Bay , which consists of over 100 islands. Rio also houses the world’s largest urban forest.

In January, summer has just begun, and it can get very hot here. Although the sun doesn’t shine all day, when it does, the beaches become populated. Rain is not uncommon in this month and offers relief from the hot temperatures.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Top 5 Activities in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

  • Visit one of the seven wonders of the world, Christ the Redeemer .
  • Take the cable car up 400 meters to the top of Sugarloaf Mountain.
  • Absorb the sun at the spacious Ipanema Beach.
  • Spend the day in the Tijuca Rainforest .
  • Browse through the bohemian area of the mountains, Santa Teresa .

Rio De Janeiro Brazil Tour 4K

20) Arusha, Tanzania

tarangire national park arusha tanzania

Seen as the entryway to the Serengeti, Arusha is a bustling metropolis resting at the base of Mount Meru. It may not be the first travel destination that comes to mind, but trust me when I say it’s an epic African getaway.

Thousands pour into the country for the Great Migration from March to August. So if you want to skip the crowds but still experience the mass movement of animals, January is the time to visit.

Although predicting the animals’ movements is near impossible, they generally pass through the Ngorongoro Conservation Area during this time of year. You can expect the occasional rainfall in January, which is welcomed in the intense summer heat.

You’ll also have quick access to some of the best cultural spots in Tanzania during the low tourist season, so say goodbye to the massive crowds.

Top 5 Activities in Tanzania

  • Admire the Great Migration in the country’s many national parks.
  • Soak up the eclectic history of Arusha at the Cultural Heritage Center.
  • Take a day trip out to Mount Kilimanjaro.
  • Spend a few days exploring Zanzibar’s mesmerizing beaches.
  • Make the day of it and visit Lake Victoria.

21) Santa Marta, Colombia 

Tayrona National Park - Where is Hot in January

While the saying goes that you should leave the best for last – we left one of the hottest destinations to visit in January for last! Colombia’s oldest city, Santa Marta, often has days in January that reach 35°C/95°F. So, it’s certainly one of the hottest places in January to visit!

Santa Marta boasts scenic beaches along the Caribbean bay. It’s a major port for the country and holds significant archaeological and historical value. It was the first site that the Spanish colonizers occupied within the country.

In January, there’s a low chance of rain, making Santa Marta popular to visit for its beautiful beaches. 

Top 5 Activities in Santa Marta

  • Visit Simon Bolivar’s house, the man who brought about Colombia’s independence.
  • For the fit, journey to the ancient Lost City .
  • Unwind on the pristine beaches at Tayrona National Park.
  • Visit the organic coffee farms in Minca .
  • Admire the gold artifacts at Museo del Oro.

Tayrona National Park

Warm Destinations in January in the US

death valley national park

It may be winter in the US, but that doesn’t mean you can’t experience some warm weather. If you’re planning on exploring the Land of the Free, here are the warmest places in January:

Death Valley National Park: Known as the hottest place in the world, Death Valley National Park still sparks to life in winter. Some of the top things to see include the Mesquite Flat Sand Dunes, Ubehebe Crater, Artists Palette, and Dante’s View. Temperatures can reach up to 20°C/68°F.

Key West, Florida: The Sunshine State is known for its year-round balmy weather, and that’s exactly what Key West offers. Top places to visit include Duval Street, Dry Tortugas National Park, and Smathers Beach. Temperatures can reach up to 24°C/75°F.

palm springs california

Palm Springs, California: Seen as the gateway to the Sonoran Desert, visiting Palm Springs in January is a great idea. Top activities include visiting Joshua Tree National Park, the Palm Spring Aerial Tramway, and the San Gorgonio Pass Wind Farm. Temperatures can reach up to 22°C/71°F.

Tucson, Arizona: It occasionally snows in this desert landscape, but come midday, it’s cooking as per usual. Some of the top things to do here include visiting Saguaro National Park, Mount Lemmon, Sabino Canyon, and the San Xavier del Bac Mission. Temperatures can reach up to 20°C/68°F.

What are Your Favorite Warm Places to Travel in January?

This list really could have gone on and on! There are so many more places I haven’t included, though, so I would love to hear from you guys and see if there are any specific warm winter destinations that I should have included on my list!

My personal favorite? Well, I’d have to say the Maldives! It’s so beautiful, and contrary to popular belief – doesn’t need to be an expensive trip!

Maldives- Where is Hot in January

Final Thoughts on Warm Countries in January

So, there’s certainly no excuse for you to stay cold in January unless you want to. From snorkeling in the ocean to having a healing mud-bath in Mexico, something ought to have tempted you.

Being the peak summer month for many Southern Hemisphere countries, hot holidays in January are plentiful. Temperatures can exceed 36°C/97°F in some destinations, and the weather is mainly unburdened by rains as this month marks the middle of the dry season for most destinations.

Top 5 Winter Sun Destinations

Looking for More Travel Inspiration?

If you enjoyed this list of epic places that are warm in January, consider checking out some of my other thrill-seeking guides:


Thanks for Reading My Guide for Where Is Hot in January

Share these warm winter destinations with your favorite travelers.

Month of January marks the peak of winter, and you’re either all snug and cozy in your lounge near the fire while enjoying the cold weather, or if you think similar to me, are planning a mission to escape the brutally cold January weather. Very amazing task are also described here. Attractive image are also seeing in this blog are very nice. Oh very wonderful tips are also discussed in this blog.

To all those who do not like winters. Such a great compilation of places that will be warm in January. Hawaii is a personal favorite due to its adventurous sports options like Ziplining!

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

[…] Where is Hot in January ☀️ 20 Warm Places to Visit in January 2022 says: November 5, 2021 at 3:58 pm […]

[…] the weather hardly fluctuates, you can sunbathe and beach hop year-round. It’s the perfect winter sun destination. But no matter when you visit, you can expect plenty of blue skies and […]

[…] Where is Hot In January | 20 Awesome Winter Sun Holidays […]

Leave a Reply

Leave a reply cancel reply.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

Photography Gear

Work With Me

Privacy Policy


Music Festivals

Travel Itineraries


Travel Gifts

Southeast Asia

' title=

UK Edition Change

  • UK Politics
  • News Videos
  • Paris 2024 Olympics
  • Rugby Union
  • Sport Videos
  • John Rentoul
  • Mary Dejevsky
  • Andrew Grice
  • Sean O’Grady
  • Photography
  • Theatre & Dance
  • Culture Videos
  • Food & Drink
  • Health & Families
  • Royal Family
  • Electric Vehicles
  • Lifestyle Videos
  • UK Hotel Reviews
  • News & Advice
  • Simon Calder
  • Australia & New Zealand
  • South America
  • C. America & Caribbean
  • Middle East
  • Politics Explained
  • News Analysis
  • Today’s Edition
  • Home & Garden
  • Fashion & Beauty
  • Travel & Outdoors
  • Sports & Fitness
  • Sustainable Living
  • Climate Videos
  • Behind The Headlines
  • On The Ground
  • Decomplicated
  • You Ask The Questions
  • Binge Watch
  • Travel Smart
  • Watch on your TV
  • Crosswords & Puzzles
  • Most Commented
  • Newsletters
  • Ask Me Anything
  • Virtual Events
  • Betting Sites
  • Online Casinos
  • Wine Offers

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged in Please refresh your browser to be logged in

Where is hot in January? Best holiday destinations for winter sun

Where to go to beat the post-christmas blues, article bookmarked.

Find your bookmarks in your Independent Premium section, under my profile

Plenty of destinations are blessed with sun in Britain’s colder months

Simon Calder’s Travel

Sign up to Simon Calder’s free travel email for expert advice and money-saving discounts

Get simon calder’s travel email, thanks for signing up to the simon calder’s travel email.

Post-Christmas, there’s always something far less jolly waiting on the other side of the unwrapped presents – the depths of British winter.

But while the January blues are on the horizon for some, those in the know are aware that the beginning of a new year can be the best time to jet off in search of winter sun .

The southern side of the world is at the height of summer in January, with destinations like Melbourne and Zanzibar offering warm city breaks or sun-drenched beach holidays.

Cities such as Buenos Aires and Ho Chi Minh provide some South American summer flair and southeast Asian character respectively, while island favourites like Barbados and Tenerife remain the go-to for a sunny fly-and-flop holiday with just the right amount of things to see and do.

Half of the world is basking in the high 20s as we hide away in sub-zeros, so we’ve narrowed down some of the best destinations for a warm January trip.

Buenos Aires, Argentina

January is roughly the middle of summer in Buenos Aires

  • Average temperature in January:  25C
  • Hours of sunshine per day: 9

Known as the ‘Paris of South America’, Buenos Aires is an eclectic capital city that still houses remnants of its country’s often complicated, sometimes sobering history. Architecturally, it is far more similar to a European city than a South American one, a characteristic seen in buildings like the Art Deco Metropolitan Theatre or the Beaux-Arts Kirchener Cultural Centre.

Culturally however, Buenos Aires is the centre of the vibrant, energetic Argentinian way of life. By day, the streets of districts like Palermo, Almagro and San Telmo hum with the chaotic activity of eager tourists, local football fans and alfresco cafe terraces, while at night the equally frenzied nightlife is on show through the Latin music blasted out of bar speakers and the proliferation of intense tango shows.

Read more on travel inspiration :

  • Best winter sun holidays 6 hours from the UK
  • The best holidays to book for January, from Cuban winter sun to ski breaks in the French Alps
  • The best river cruises around the world

Barbados is in the middle of its dry season during January, meaning you’ll miss the rainstorms that sometimes plague the island

  • Average temperature in January: 26C

This beautiful Caribbean island has long-term links with the UK, making it a perennially popular destination with Brits from winter through to the height of summer. Expect highs of around 29C, and many tourists who are simply there to make the most of the bone white sands and turquoise waters that front their grandiose resorts.

The western shores of the Platinum Coast are where the most luxurious resorts are based, while parts of the eastern coast around the town of Bathsheba are the most famed surf areas on the island. Towards the south, Carlisle Bay contains several shipwrecks that have become renowned scuba diving spots.

A handful of inland areas are worth exploring too if you want to make the most of your visit here. Discover a slice of history at the Mount Gay rum distillery, or head to the capital, Bridgetown, a thriving city of rum shacks and shopping streets. High-end Holetown is where you’ll find the best international cuisine and luxury brands, while Oistins, a smaller fishing town in the south, hosts a weekly ‘Fish Fry’ event featuring hours of music and partying alongside local vendors and food stalls.

Tenerife, Spain

Tenerife lies off the coast of Morocco

  • Average temperature in January: 19C
  • Hours of sunshine per day: 6

The warmest destination in Europe provides just the right amount of winter sun, with weather that will allow entire days on the beach while rarely getting too warm – average highs will be around 20C. Head to the southern coastal areas like Los Cristianos and Playa de las Americas for a fly-and-flop holiday, where dozens of resorts cater to different types of holidaymaker while offering activities like watersports, snorkelling and scuba diving.

Alternatively, choose somewhere closer to Santa Cruz, the island capital, to explore the best of the island’s nature. The northern coast contains several striking black beaches, as well as the impressive artificial beach at Teresitas, while Mount Teide National Park is a land of rugged red terrain and scenic hiking trails that also contains the highest peak in the country.

Zanzibar, Tanzania

Zanzibar consists of more than 50 islands

  • Average temperature in January: 28C
  • Hours of sunshine per day: 8

That an island just 53 miles long can compete with Mount Kilimanjaro to be the jewel of Tanzania’s natural landscape is testament to Zanzibar’s natural beauty. This archipelago lies jut two hours from Dar es Salaam by ferry, and offers visitors from the mainland a host of pristine, paradise-like beaches, the waters of which are home to groups of dolphins and shoals of fish that live among the colourful coral reefs.

As well as exotic relaxation and world-class snorkelling, this Indian Ocean destination offers characterful towns, spice plantations and the dense, swamp-like Jozani-Chwaka National Park, where plenty of exotic animals such as red colobus monkeys live. The main islands are Pemba and Unguja, home to the island capital and its Unesco-listed Stone Town.

Dubai’s first skyscraper was built in 1979

  • Average temperature in January: 20C

The UAE’s most well-known city has become a glitzy desert metropolis since the discovery of its oil reserves in 1966. It now contains a variety of modern sights – from the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa, to the enormous Dubai Mall or impressive built-up areas like the Marina – and extensive heritage districts such as Dubai Creek and the historic Al Fahidi neighbourhood, alongside a series of beautiful souks .

Highs in January will peak at around 24C, meaning that beach areas like Jumeirah, JBR or Kite Beach can all be enjoyed during the day without experiencing the summer’s sweltering temperatures. The surrounding desert is worth exploring too, with activities like dune buggying and camping in traditional Bedouin campsites popular among tourists.

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Ho Chi Minh City was formerly known as Saigon

  • Average temperature in January: 27C

Vietnam’s second city sits in the southern end of the country, around 1,000 miles directly south of the capital, Hanoi. Being the economic heart of the country, it has become a sprawling metropolis that is known for its lively and often hectic way of life, enticing visitors with the promise of seeing a city that combines the best bits of Vietnam’s past and present.

Whether you tour yourself on a scooter or are sampling Vietnamese delights at a street food market, the buzz of activity – and likely traffic – is palpable throughout the city. The Chinese Quarter and District 1 – where many of the main sights, such as the Opera House and Notre Dame cathedral, are located – are testament to the influence of their Asian neighbours and the colonial French period, with Dong Khoi street the city’s main thoroughfare and Bui Vien a popular area for tourists and backpackers. Attractions include the Ho Chi Minh museum, the Cao Dai Great Temple and Cold War-era Cu Chi tunnels; it is best to explore over a couple of days seeing as highs can reach 32C.

Melbourne, Australia

Many of Melbourne’s top sights are concentrated in the Central Business District

  • Average temperature in January: 21C
  • Hours of sunshine per day: 10

Australia’s second-largest city may be difficult to get to for Brits, but a combination of excellent January weather – you can expect highs of around 27C – and the fusion of different characteristics makes this southern city a must-visit. From sports venues and restaurants to nightlife and art galleries, Melbourne is home to some of Australia’s highlights , including the city’s Cricket Ground, the National Gallery and the region-dedicated Melbourne Museum. The Australian Open is also held here every January.

Consistently ranked as one of the world’s most liveable cities, Melbourne is underpinned by a somewhat European atmosphere, visible throughout areas like its Central Business District and the beachfront of St Kilda, with the Royal Botanic Gardens also offering a dose of UK-related history. It’s brimming with other subtle highlights, from the array of hidden bars and food spots to amazing outdoor and indoor art and a series of impressive architectural highlights, such as the towering skyscrapers that define its skyline and historic buildings like Flinders Street station.

Read our reviews of the best winter sun hotels

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Subscribe to Independent Premium to bookmark this article

Want to bookmark your favourite articles and stories to read or reference later? Start your Independent Premium subscription today.

New to The Independent?

Or if you would prefer:

Want an ad-free experience?

Hi {{indy.fullName}}

  • My Independent Premium
  • Account details
  • Help centre

Knowledge is power

warm places to visit end of january

Stay in the know about climate impacts and solutions. Subscribe to our newsletters.

  • Eye on the Storm News
  • Weekly News from Yale Climate Connections

Stay in the know about climate impacts and solutions. Subscribe to our weekly newsletter.

By clicking submit, you agree to share your email address with the site owner and Mailchimp to receive emails from the site owner. Use the unsubscribe link in those emails to opt out at any time.

Yale Climate Connections

Yale Climate Connections

Last month was the world’s warmest January on record

Jeff Masters

Share this:

  • Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
  • Click to share on X (Opens in new window)

Los Angeles sunset

January 2024 was Earth’s warmest January since global record-keeping began in 1850 and was also the planet’s second-wettest January on record, NOAA’s  National Centers for Environmental Information , or NCEI, reported Feb. 14.  NASA  also rated January 2024 as the warmest January on record, 1.44 degrees Celsius (2.59 °F) above the 1880-1899 period, which is its best estimate for when preindustrial temperatures occurred. This beat the previous record from January 2016 by 0.03 degrees Celsius (0.05 °F). The  Japan Meteorological Agency and the European  Copernicus Climate Change Service also rated January 2024 as the warmest January on record.

For the 10th consecutive month, global ocean temperatures were the warmest on record; land areas had their third warmest January on record in 2024, according to NOAA. South America and Africa had their warmest January on record; Oceania and Australia, their third-warmest; Asia, its ninth-warmest; Europe, its 19th-warmest; and North America, its 20th-warmest. In contrast, Antarctica had its fifth-coldest January on record.

The contiguous U.S. had near-average temperatures in January, with only Wisconsin notching a top-10 warmest January on record. No states recorded a top-10 coldest January on record. Thirteen states, 10 of them in the Northeast U.S., had a top-10 wettest January on record.

Map of Land & Ocean Temperature Percentiles in January 2024 showing that most of the world outside Antarctica was warmer than average

El Niño weakens, expected to end by June

The strong El Niño event in the Eastern Pacific weakened during January but remained above the strong threshold by the end of the month. Neutral conditions are expected to emerge by the Northern Hemisphere spring (79% chance in April-May-June), NOAA reported in its February  monthly discussion  of the state of the El Niño/Southern Oscillation, or ENSO. Long-range ENSO predictions are typically not reliable until after northern spring, but there is enhanced predictability at this point when a strong El Niño event is in progress. The odds of La Niña in late 2024 are rising, with increasing  long-range model support  for a transition to La Niña later this year. There is also some climatological support: In  records  going back to 1950, all four of the El Niño events that were as strong as the current one transitioned to La Niña conditions in the following year.

Read: Will La Niña return this fall? The tea leaves are unusually strong

The February forecast from NOAA and  Columbia University’s International Research Institute for Climate and Society  has raised the odds from the previous month, now calling for La Niña to be the most likely outcome as soon as June-August 2024. For the upcoming Atlantic hurricane season (August-September-October), the forecast called for a 74% chance of La Niña, a 24% chance of ENSO-neutral, and a 2% chance of El Niño. El Niño conditions tend to suppress Atlantic hurricane activity through an increase in wind shear, but La Niña conditions tend to have the opposite effect.

Ice Watch – Time to start tracking the annual maximum #Arctic sea ice extent. There will be NO new records this year. Follow the daily data at https://t.co/tBkW5GBgHF . Data from JAXA. pic.twitter.com/xlWIQY4T2V — Zack Labe (@ZLabe) February 12, 2024

Arctic sea ice: 20th-lowest January extent on record

Arctic sea ice extent during January 2024 was the 20th-lowest in the 45-year satellite record, according to the  National Snow and Ice Data Center , or NSIDC, and is approaching its annual maximum, which usually occurs in March (see Tweet above). Though is it heartening to see Arctic sea ice not near a record low, the ice is quite thin, and winter ice extent is a poor indicator of what the summer and fall extent will be.

Antarctic sea ice extent is currently the *2nd lowest* on record (behind last year) and will be approaching the seasonal minimum later this month… More graphs: https://t.co/V0Lt0w20IQ pic.twitter.com/mKsKfEmaYG — Zack Labe (@ZLabe) February 7, 2024

Antarctic sea ice extent  in January was the fourth-lowest on record and was the second-lowest on record on February 13 (see Tweet above). The seasonal maximum typically occurs in late February or early March.

Notable global heat and cold marks for January 2024

The information below is courtesy of Maximiliano Herrera. Follow him on Twitter:  @extremetemps :

– Hottest temperature in the Northern Hemisphere: 41.5°C (106.7°F) at Jesus Maria, Mexico, Jan. 30; – Coldest temperature in the Northern Hemisphere: -58.8°C (-73.8°F) at Yurty, Russia, Jan. 1; – Hottest temperature in the Southern Hemisphere: 49.4°C (120.9°F) at Birdsville, Australia, Jan. 25; and – Coldest temperature in the Southern Hemisphere: -46.7°C (-52.1°F) at Concordia, Antarctica, Jan. 25.

Major weather stations in January: 14 all-time heat records, 4 all-time cold records

Among global stations with a record of at least 40 years, 14 set, not just tied, an all-time heat record in January, and four stations set an all-time cold record:

La Tontouta (New Caledonia, France) max. 38.3°C, January 1; Taro Island (Solomon Islands) max. 35.0°C, January 2; Kvikkjokk (Sweden) min. -43.6°C, January 3; Tromelin Island (French Southern and Antarctic Lands, France) max. 35.5°C, January 4; Cilaos (Reunion, France) max. 32.0°C, January 4; Yoho National Park (Canada) min. -42.6°C, January 13; Sparwood (Canada) min. -40.3°C, January 13; Penticton (Canada) min. -27.6°C, January 13; Monte Patria (Chile) max. 42.0°C, January 14; Vicuna (Chile) max. 39.1°C, January 14; Tranque Lautaro (Chile) max. 42.1°C, January 14; Paraburdoo (Australia) max. 48.1°C, January 21; Gite de le Bellecombe (Reunion Island, France) max. 25.5°C, January 22; Talca (Chile) max. 38.8°C, January 22; Bariloche (Argentina) max. 36.4°C, January 22; Trelew (Argentina) max. 42.6°C, January 23; Bogota Airport (Colombia) max. 25.2°C, January 25; and Malargue Airport (Argentina) max. 37.0°C, January 30.

Sixteen monthly national/territorial heat records beaten or tied as of the end of January

Sixteen nations or territories have set monthly all-time heat records in 2024:

– Jan. (16): Mayotte, Dominica, Saba, Cocos Islands, Malta, Hong Kong, Ivory Coast, Maldives, Andorra, Portugal, Costa Rica, UK, Seychelles, Martinique, St. Barthelemy, Nicaragua

No additional all-time monthly cold records have been set so far in 2024.

Hemispherical and continental temperature records in 2024

– Highest minimum temperature ever recorded in January in Asia: 28.5°C (83.3°F) at Bangkok Klong Thoey, Thailand, January 14

Bob Henson contributed to this post.

Jeff Masters

Jeff Masters, Ph.D., worked as a hurricane scientist with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990. After a near-fatal flight into category 5 Hurricane Hugo, he left the Hurricane Hunters to pursue a... More by Jeff Masters

warm places to visit end of january

  • Share full article


Supported by

2024 Begins With More Record Heat Worldwide

On the heels of Earth’s warmest year, January was the eighth month in a row in which global temperatures blew past previous records.

Raymond Zhong

By Raymond Zhong and Elena Shao

The exceptional warmth that first enveloped the planet last summer is continuing strong into 2024: Last month clocked in as the hottest January ever measured, the European Union climate monitor announced on Thursday.

warm places to visit end of january

Daily Sea Surface Temperatures

Feb. 3, 2024

69.9° F

Previous record

All other years

67.5° F

warm places to visit end of january

It was the hottest January on record for the oceans, too, according to the European Union’s Copernicus Climate Change Service. Sea surface temperatures were just slightly lower than in August 2023, the oceans’ warmest month on the books. And sea temperatures kept on climbing in the first few days of February, surpassing the daily records set last August.

The oceans absorb the great majority of the extra heat that greenhouse gases in the atmosphere trap near Earth’s surface, making them a reliable gauge of how much and how quickly we are warming the planet. Warmer oceans provide more fuel for hurricanes and atmospheric river storms and can disrupt marine life.

January makes eight months in a row that average air temperatures, across both the continents and the seas, have topped all prior records for the time of year. All in all, 2023 was Earth’s hottest year in over a century and a half.

The principal driver of all this warmth is no mystery to scientists: The burning of fossil fuels, deforestation and other human activities have driven the mercury steadily upward for more than a century. The current El Niño weather cycle is also allowing more ocean heat to be released into the atmosphere.

Yet precisely why Earth has been this hot, for this long, in recent months remains a matter of some debate among researchers , who are waiting for more data to come in to see whether other, less predictable and perhaps less understood factors might also be at work around the margins.

“Rapid reductions in greenhouse gas emissions are the only way to stop global temperatures increasing,” Samantha Burgess, Copernicus’s deputy director, said in a statement.

According to Copernicus’s data, temperatures in January were well above average in eastern Canada, northwestern Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia, though much of the inland United States was colder than usual. Parts of South America were warmer than normal and dry, contributing to the recent forest fires that devastated central Chile .

The intensity of recent underwater heat waves prompted the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in December to add three new levels to its system of ocean heat alerts for indicating where corals might be bleaching or dying.

An El Niño pattern like the one currently observed in the Pacific is associated with warmer years for the planet, as well as a swath of effects on rainfall and temperatures in specific regions.

But as humans heat up the planet, the effects that forecasters could once confidently expect El Niño to have on local temperatures are no longer so predictable, said Michelle L’Heureux, a NOAA scientist who studies El Niño and its opposite phase, La Niña.

“For regions that previously tended to have below-average temperatures during El Niño, you almost never see that anymore,” Ms. L’Heureux said. “You see something that’s more near-average, or even still tilting above average.”

Raymond Zhong reports on climate and environmental issues for The Times. More about Raymond Zhong

Elena Shao is a reporter and graphics editor based in New York. More about Elena Shao

Learn More About Climate Change

Have questions about climate change? Our F.A.Q. will tackle your climate questions, big and small .

New satellite-based research reveals how land along the East Coast is slumping into the ocean, compounding the danger from global sea level rise . A major culprit: overpumping of groundwater.

The planet needs solar power. Can we build it without harming nature ? Today’s decisions about how and where to set up new energy projects will reverberate for generations.

Carbon-free electricity has never been more plentiful, but it hasn’t yet been enough to reduce reliance on fossil fuels. We looked at how electricity generation has changed over time to help you understand today’s global picture .

Singapore is rethinking its sweltering urban areas to dampen the effects of climate change. Can it be a model for other cities ?

New data reveals stark disparities in how different U.S. households contribute to climate change. See your neighborhood’s climate impact .

Did you know the ♻ symbol doesn’t mean something is actually recyclable ? Read on about how we got here, and what can be done.

KOA 850 AM & 94.1 FM

2 Colorado Destinations Among The Best Places To Visit In January

The new year is here and the holiday festivities are over. While most people are recharging from their busy travels, some people are still itching for a trip, even if it's just a weekend getaway . January marks the off-season for travel, meaning cheaper prices, fewer crowds, and more flexibility with your itinerary.

If you're craving a January vacation, Trips to Discover revealed the best places to travel in America this month. The list includes a wide range of destinations, from winter wonderlands and warm-weather spots to under-the-radar towns and popular cities.

Two Colorado destinations landed on the list. The first one is Durango , a southwestern town bustling with winter activities. Visitors and locals can ski, snowshoe, go snowmobiling, ice skate, go snow tubing, and undertake all sorts of pursuits. Writers recommend you take a ride on the Cascade Canyon Winter Train and check out the Snowdown Festival in late January.

Then there's Estes Park , a beloved city known for its access to Rocky Mountain National Park. On top of the plethora of snow-based activities and wildlife-viewing opportunities, writers urge you to visit the Mustand Mountain Coaster and historic Stanley Hotel, which inspired Stephen King's The Shining .

Check out the full list on tripstodiscover.com .

2 Colorado Destinations Among The Best Places To Visit In January

  • extreme weather

2024 Had the Hottest January on Record Following 2023’s Hottest Year on Record

Climate activists detained in The Hague

L ast month was the hottest January on record, with global temperatures 1.66C above the average during pre-industrial times, according to a monthly report by Europe’s Earth observation agency Copernicus. 

It was the eighth consecutive month with record-high monthly temperatures, according to the report. Global temperatures over the past 12 months were the highest ever recorded — 1.52C above the average between 1850 and 1900.

Read More: A Look at TIME’s Century of Climate Change Coverage

“Rapid reductions in greenhouse gas emissions are the only way to stop global temperatures increasing,” Samantha Burgess, deputy director of the Copernicus Climate Change Service, said in a statement. Thermometer readings were well above the average of the past three decades in southern Europe, eastern Canada, northwestern Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia. 

2023 was the hottest year on record , and experts are already predicting 2024 will beat 2023’s extremely high temperatures. That’s due to a combination of more planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere and El Niño, a cyclical phenomenon that alters ocean circulation and weather patterns, leading to more heat and drought in many latitudes.

El Niño began to weaken in the equatorial Pacific, where it originates, Copernicus said. But temperatures over the oceans (marine air temperatures) in general remain at an unusually high level. The average global sea surface temperature reached a monthly record in January and daily sea temperatures have kept rising in early February, surpassing previous absolute records reported in August.

More Must-Reads From TIME

  • East Palestine, One Year After Train Derailment
  • How Tech Giants Turned Ukraine Into an AI War Lab
  • In the Belly of MrBeast
  • The Closers: 18 People Working to End the Racial Wealth Gap
  • How Long Should You Isolate With COVID-19?
  • The Best Romantic Comedies to Watch on Netflix
  • Taylor Swift Is TIME's 2023 Person of the Year
  • Want Weekly Recs on What to Watch, Read, and More? Sign Up for Worth Your Time

Contact us at [email protected]

You May Also Like


  1. Best Warm Places to Visit in January

    warm places to visit end of january

  2. 14 Warm Places to Visit in January -PureWow

    warm places to visit end of january

  3. These Warm January Destinations Make the Perfect Winter Escape

    warm places to visit end of january

  4. Best Places To Travel In January For Hot Weather

    warm places to visit end of january

  5. 7 Stunning Warm Places to Visit in January

    warm places to visit end of january

  6. Top 20 Awesome Places To Visit In January USA

    warm places to visit end of january


  1. 36 Best Warm Places to Visit in January in USA [2024]

    36. Malibu, California 🌡️ Average January temperature: 53°-68°F | 12°-20°C 💧 Average rainy days in January: 5 ☀️ Why visit in January: Malibu, a beachfront city situated along the Pacific, is a year-round tropical oasis for couples and adventurers.

  2. Where is hot in January? 12 sunny destinations to visit

    1. Fuerteventura, Canary Islands Average January temperature: 18℃ It might be the second-largest Canary Island, after Tenerife, but Fuerteventura is comparatively empty: its teeny population numbers just 113,000, and there are more than 90 miles of golden, sandy coastline, only some of which has been developed.

  3. 15 Best Warm Places to Visit in January in the USA

    1. Honolulu, Hawaii Hawaii's timeless beauty makes it a top choice for a January getaway. Honolulu, on the island of Oahu, is truly a slice of paradise this time of year. Escaping the mainland's winter chill, you'll find yourself in a sunny, vibrant world where the aloha spirit is as warm as the weather.

  4. 14 Warm Places to Visit in January

    The warmest spots in the U.S. overall in January are probably gonna be Hawaii or Puerto Rico. On the mainland, it's all about the Sun Belt region, spanning from Southern California to North Carolina, including cities like Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Houston, Las Vegas, L.A., Phoenix, San Antonio and more.

  5. 15 Best Places to Visit in January 2024

    Railay Beach Zermatt Tasmania Seville Cancun Tulum Jaipur View 19 Photos Belongs on List? Yes No Argentine Patagonia #1 in Best Places to Visit in January 2024 As January brings some of the...

  6. The 10 best warm places to visit in January

    1. Jamaica Average temperature: 77°F Average hours of daily sun: 9 hours What better way to start the new year than on a warm Jamaican beach, rum punch in hand? January is actually Jamaica's coolest month with the average temperature dropping to a still balmy 77°F. Base yourself in Montego Bay.

  7. 24 Warm US Destinations In January

    San Diego, California (A Great Family Vacation In January) San Diego is located on the coast of California and is a great place to visit during the winter months. The average high temperature in San Diego is just above 60 degrees, making it a warm destination for those looking to escape the cold weather. San Diego is also home to Balboa Park, a ...

  8. 10 Best Places to Travel in January 2024

    Hot air ballooning, hiking, horseback riding, and golf are great local activities. You can also go wine tasting or visit area breweries and distilleries. Old Town Temecula has a historic feel and...

  9. 10 Best Warm Places to Travel to This Winter

    Key West, Florida. NAPA74/Getty Images. Key West is a true delight in the winter months, as the average high temperature never really falls below 75 degrees. It's the perfect place for fruity ...

  10. 14 Best Warm Places to Visit in January

    Travel Inspiration 14 Best Warm Places to Visit in January by K.C. Dermody Last updated on November 18, 2022 While January often brings visions of snowy slopes for skiing and other winter sports, if you're tired of that chilled-to-the-bone feeling you're probably looking to escape it, not delve into it more.

  11. The best winter-sun destinations

    When to go: November-March. Average winter temperature: 26°C. For year-round sunshine, spotless beaches and impeccable service a short hop away, Dubai is an obvious choice. The Palm, a manmade sweep of beach packed with superb hotels, each with its own immaculate patch of beach, is perfect for family holidays.

  12. 25 AMAZING Warm Places to Visit in January [USA Edition]

    Average Temperature in January: low 80s ℉ highs, mid-70s ℉ lows. San Juan, Puerto Rico is an excellent January destination. This United States territory is located in the Caribbean and enjoys gorgeous tropical weather year-round, so it is a great place to visit to escape cold winter weather.

  13. 23 Warm Places to Visit in January in the USA

    1. Maui, Hawaii, for Whale Watching With temps in the mid-70s, Maui makes the ideal warm weather getaway in January. Plus, it's prime time for whale watching! ( June is also great if you're looking for best weather and don't mind bigger crowds.) The Auau Channel here, just off the coast of Lahaina, is where the action is.

  14. 22 Warm Places to Visit in January in the USA (Best ...

    A great place to stay during your January visit is Andaz Scottsdale Resort & Bungalows. Suggested by Theresa of The Local Tourist. 11. Anna Maria Island, Florida. If you are searching for a perfect warm destination to visit in January in the US, put Anna Maria Island at the top of your list!

  15. 21 best holiday destinations in January 2024

    Montreal, Canada. Temperature in January: -4°C high; -12°C low. Season: winter. Travel time from UK: 7 hours 20 minutes. Time difference: GMT -5. If a rave in sub-zero temperatures sounds appealing, Montréal is for you. The city's annual January Igloofest tempts parka-clad party people outside with a line-up of world-class EDM acts.

  16. 37 Warm Places to Visit in January in the USA

    1. Phoenix Average temperature: 46 - 69 degrees Fahrenheit phoenix Phoenix is perfectly pleasant in January when much of the country is freezing. Unfortunately, hotel rates aren't very pleasant during this time; consider booking early for a reasonable price.

  17. Where is hot in January? 15 sunny destinations

    1. Dubai, United Arab Emirates Average temperature 24C The glitziest, glammest Emirate effectively has two seasons: hot and hotter. Firmly part of the former, January is Dubai 's coolest time of...

  18. 34 Best Countries to Visit in January (Perfect for Relaxation & Adventure)

    1. Costa Rica (one of the best places to visit in January for sun) View of Manuel Antonio National Park, Costa Rica from above 😍 Average temp: high 78, low 64 (varied by region) Fly into: Juan Santamaria International Airport, San Jose

  19. Warm Places to Visit in January: International and US Hot Spots

    San Juan, Puerto Rico. With a high temperature averaging around 83 degrees in January, this iconic and historic city makes for one of the best warm places to visit, with its many sandy beaches, iconic landmarks, and national parks. The historic district of Old San Juan provides an array of cultural and culinary adventures.

  20. 12 Warm Places to Visit in January (USA)

    Oahu. At the top of this list of warm places to visit in January is, an absolute fav, Oahu, Hawaii. The consistently beautiful weather extends into January. You'll see temps easily in the upper 70s and possibly into the 80s. This gorgeous weather means you'll be enjoying everything Oahu has to offer.

  21. Best Warm Places to Visit in January

    1) Tulum, Mexico To kickstart the list, there's arguably no "hotter" destination to visit in January than Tulum, Mexico. It's recently skyrocketed in popularity (largely in part to social media) and is now Mexico's third-most visited destination!

  22. These are the warmest destinations in January

    Visit Phuket Elephant Sanctuary. 2. Barbados. Beaches, barbecues, and beauty aplenty, Barbados is the perfect provider for a warm destination in January for travellers. Spend your vacation lounging by the beach or have adventure-filled days exploring the island's natural wonders - either way, unforgettable memories await you here in Barbados.

  23. Where is hot in January? The best destinations for winter sun

    The southern side of the world is at the height of summer in January, with destinations like Melbourne and Zanzibar offering warm city breaks or sun-drenched beach holidays.

  24. Last month was the world's warmest January on record

    January 2024 was Earth's warmest January since global record-keeping began in 1850 and was also the planet's second-wettest January on record, NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information, or NCEI, reported Feb. 14. NASA also rated January 2024 as the warmest January on record, 1.44 degrees Celsius (2.59 °F) above the 1880-1899 period, which is its best estimate for when ...

  25. January Temperatures Hit Record Highs on Land and at Sea

    On the heels of Earth's warmest year, January was the eighth month in a row in which global temperatures blew past previous records. By Raymond Zhong and Elena Shao The exceptional warmth that ...

  26. 2 Colorado Destinations Among The Best Places To Visit In January

    If you're craving a January vacation, Trips to Discover revealed the best places to travel in America this month. The list includes a wide range of destinations, from winter wonderlands and warm ...

  27. 2024 Had the Hottest-Ever January as World Continues to Warm

    L ast month was the hottest January on record, with global temperatures 1.66C above the average during pre-industrial times, according to a monthly report by Europe's Earth observation agency ...

  28. Crucial ocean current system could be on course to collapse with ...

    Some parts of Europe might see temperatures plunge by up to 30 degrees Celsius over a century, the study finds, leading to a completely different climate over the course of just a decade or two.