Christmas lights and eggnog lattes aside, winter brings with it some testing conditions that can send even the most festive of spirits into a bout of winter blues. With all the cold weather, runny noses and the imminence of January exams, now is the perfect time to fix a quick trip away before you really start knuckling down on the revision. We have compiled a list of adventures for those of you who are crying out for a spot of winter sun as well as the christmas market lovers among you with a little more ‘ho-ho-ho’. Without further ado…
- The Canary Islands
Tenerife, Fuerteventura and Gran Canaria are very close to the equator, making them the perfect destination for winter sun with temperatures remaining above 20 degrees. Most resorts stay open year-round in the Canary Islands, meaning you won’t struggle for things to do and you’ll still get the benefits of cheaper deals and purer relaxation. If you’re up for an adventure, the Canary Islands are also a hot spot for hikers as their volcanic landscapes provide a dramatic setting with a variety of trails for all levels, including Tenerife’s Mount Teide, the world’s third highest volcano at 3,718m.
2. German Christmas Markets
If you feel ready to embrace winter’s chill, why not head to the continent and inhale the festive aromas of bratwurst and glühwein? You’re going to have to face the winter some time so you may as well do it in style. We recommend Berlin, Nuremberg or Strasbourg for the traditional German Christmas Market experience.
Budapest’s beauty is at it’s pinnacle in the winter with its fairy tale architecture and Christmas markets. Spend a day wandering around the historic sites, including the Hungarian parliament and Budapest Castle district and don’t forget to sample some Hungarian pastries at the internationally acclaimed Vorosmarty Square Christmas Market. On a cold evening why not take a dip in the steamy Szechenyi Baths for a temporary escape from the chill? Both indoor and outdoor pools are open during the winter months making them one of Budapest’s major attractions. For the perfect pre-exam detox be sure to add on a massage for ultimate chill-fest.
4. Cape Verde
This little haven off the coast of Africa hovers above 20 degrees throughout the winter making it ideal for escaping the winter blues. Its warm crystal waters make it a popular spot for divers, with colourful coral and all types of fish to be seen in Sal, Boa Vista and Santiago. Back on land, island hop between Cape Verde’s ten isles or take a cruise between them on a catamaran. If you’re into your music, we recommend a trip to São Vicente where bars and cafés have live performances most evenings.
If you’re lucky enough to visit Amsterdam at its coldest, you may get the chance to skate across the frozen lakes to take in the dutch scenery. If it’s not too chilly, this city is best explored by bike where you can ride through canals and breathe in the fresh city air. In the winter months, the city is draped in fairy lights for the annual Amsterdam Light Festival transforming the city into a spectacle of festivity. The best way to enjoy the illuminated city is by the festival’s own boat tour. Gezellig!
Head to the capital of chocolate and indulge in praline perfection. Belgium is another one for the Christmas market lovers and is the perfect place for picking up some Christmas presents. Know anyone that’s craft beer crazy? They’re in for a treat!
Fancy something a little wilder? Bag return flights to Bangkok for under £400 using Skyscanner and live the backpacker life with super cheap prices once you’re off the plane – the rainy season is over so you can make the most of beautiful beaches, temples, and a whole new culture!
8. Sharm El Sheikh
This divers’ paradise in Egypt makes the perfect winter getaway with temperatures in December remaining around 24 degrees both on land and in the sea!
We have accommodation around the world, so head to www.uninest.com to see if we have accommodation in your chosen winter retreat destination!