10 of the best places to visit in January

11 November 2016

Still have a few holiday days to use before it expires? Dreaming of a quick getaway early in the new year?

January offers some fantastic value travel opportunities and destinations tend to be much quieter after the festive season, so you can relax after a busy Christmas!

Read on to find out 10 of the best places for a holiday this January…

Winter warmth: Barbados

Winter sun in Barbados

As one of the most southerly Caribbean islands, Barbados enjoys even better winter sun than most, with temperatures usually around the high 20s in January. If that isn’t enough to get you on the plane right now, then it’s picture-perfect coastline should. A ruggedly beautiful island, fringed by stunning white sand beaches and dotted with luxurious hotels, Barbados is everything you want from a Caribbean destination. On this little island you’ll find a warm welcome and authentic cuisine sitting alongside fine dining, all-inclusive leisure, and luxury spas.

Winter sun that’s close to home: Madeira

A January holiday in Madeira

Visiting Madeira, expect a friendly, English-speaking welcome, a beautiful and rugged coastline, your pick of luxury hotels and spas, and fantastic Portuguese-influenced cuisine. Not to mention the island’s eponymous fortified wine, of course. Add in average temperatures in the late teens and it’s a perfect island escape in January.

Romantic landscapes and log fires: The Scottish Highlands

The rugged landscape of the Isle of Skye

How about a holiday to the beautiful Scottish Highlands. Might the promise of taking in rugged highland scenery before warming yourself with a wee dram of whiskey in front of a cosy fire tempt you away this January?

We can’t promise balmy weather but we can promise wonderfully romantic landscapes, luxury hotels, great dining, distillery tours and maybe even a spot of skiing at Aviemore.

Theme parks and sunshine: Orlando

Theme parks and sunshine in Orlando, Florida

Orlando is a wonderfully varied destination: with a unique natural environment, some of the world’s best theme parks and – come January – temperatures in the low 20s. 

January is typically quiet in the parks. This makes January a great time to visit Orlando , especially if it is your first time visiting the theme parks.

If you don’t want to spend every day in the parks, we definitely recommend exploring further afield in this water-rich state. Take an airboat ride, visit one of the natural springs or a State park, make a trip to the Gulf Coast or Atlantic Coast beaches, and don’t miss the Kennedy Space Center.

A land of snow and ice: Reykjavik

The Northern Lights in Iceland

The days might be short near the Arctic Circle in winter but that doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty to enjoy in Iceland in January. Treat yourself to a dip in its famous blue lagoon and explore Iceland’s other famous sites, such as the UNESCO world heritage site of Thingvellir National Park, the hot springs at Geysir and the stunning Gullfoss Waterfall.

In Iceland in January, though, the light is the star of the show. Wonder at the soft daylight of the short days and, if you’re lucky, the incredible Aurora Borealis.

Europe’s sunniest capital: Malta

Explore Malta this January

Malta offers up a mind-blowing 5,000 years of culture as well as one of the mildest winter climates in Europe. With temperatures in the mid-teens, it might not be swimming weather but you can still enjoy picturesque walks to explore Malta’s beautiful coves and beaches. Make time to soak up some culture too: from Neolithic temples to Roman catacombs and forts built by the Knights of St John, this beautiful island has much to explore.

Cornwall without the crowds: Cornwall

Beautiful Cornwall is a stunning winter destination

With one of the UK’s mildest climates, Cornwall makes for a wonderful January seaside break. Cornwall’s beautiful beaches and quaint seaside villages are no less picturesque in the winter months and strolling along the stunning coastline, stealing time on a deserted cove or meandering around cobbled ports without the crowds is a real treat. 

Enjoy Tintagel Castle and St Michael’s Mount when they aren’t jam-packed with visitors, and don’t miss the beautiful gardens at the Eden Project, where the pop-up ice-skating rink stays open throughout January.

A land of contrasts: Andalucía

Ronda, Andalucia in Spain

Andalucía might attract crowds to its beaches in the summer months but January offers its own draws. In the mountains around Granada it is cold enough to ski, and there’s the opportunity to explore this atmospheric city’s Alhambra Palace in a quieter month. Warm yourself with tasty tapas and authentic flamenco music then head west to the coast to enjoy the beautiful beaches and historic towns of Jerez, Cadiz and Seville.

Romantic riads: Marrakesh

Marrakech, Morocco

Marrakesh isn’t all about the vibrant Jemaa el-Fnaa square or haggling over trinkets, leather and spices in its markets. Hidden away behind many of the city’s thick, imposing sand- and rose-coloured walls are beautiful boutique hotels with character details, intricate fretwork, Islamic art, geometric tiles and high ceilings. You can also expect top-notch service, cool courtyards, stunning private plunge pools, fantastic Moroccan and French-inspired dining and January temperatures in the mid-teens. Perfect for a romantic escape with an opportunity to explore a fascinating city.

Great value skiing: Andorra

Skiing in Andorra

January is a great month to take a skiing holiday as, generally, you’ll enjoy good conditions and much quieter slopes than the Christmas and half-term holidays.

With some impressive ski runs, excellent English-speaking ski schools, Spanish-inspired cuisine, and tax-free shopping, Andorra is an ideal choice for a snow-filled January break.

Have we tempted you to head off on a January break? Get in touch with your Travel Counsellor for more January holiday ideas!

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