Many people are making the wise decision to take a winter sun holiday and top up their diminishing supplies of Vitamin D. Escape the impending mulled wine and scarves and instead opt for a healthy dose of sun, sea and sand before the year out.
Many holiday makers don’t realise that there is no need to take a long haul flight to get to gorgeously hot, sunny winter weather. Cape Verde is becoming increasingly popular with travellers; positioned just off the coast of Senegal, it is a mere six hour flight from the UK. Cape Verde boasts a Mediterranean climate as well as exotic white sandy beaches spread acrossten separate islands. Expect a culture influenced by Africa, Portugal and Brazil, with a delicious mix of cuisine to match.
The Gambia is a solid mid-haul choice for indulging in luxurious winter holiday pleasures such as sunbathing and sipping cocktails next to a clear blue sea. The Gambia is only a six-hour flight from the UK and benefits from no time difference, so you’ll be jetlag-free and fighting fit on your return to the UK. You could spend your whole holiday simply stretched out on a sun lounger by the pool or on a palm-lined stretch of yellow sand such as at Cape Point, Bijilo and Kololi. Heavenly!
It may currently be cool season, but winter is the best time to visit the sunshine state of Goa. Weather within Goa can be unbearably hot in the Spring and Summer months, meaning a trip between November and February is just right; simply dry, sunny and hot. Goa is the perfect destination for rest and relaxation, boasting stunning beaches decorated with palm trees, fantastic fishing opportunities and tropical jungles that would even excite the likes of David Attenborough.
Mauritius is famous as the honeymoon spot of choice; however you don’t need to be getting married to enjoy this wonderful destination. While Mauritius can offer you white sandy beaches and romantic sunsets, it also boasts scuba diving trips with a wealth of sea life – you may even encounter the local whale sharks, however don’t worry, they don’t bite!
No top winter sun list would be complete without mentioning Zanzibar. The island of Bwejuu, with its classic coconut palms, turquoise waters and wide white sands, was recently voted among the top 30 island beaches in the world. The Indian Ocean offers snorkelling delights, especially the reef around Mnemba Island and the spell-binding Menai Bay. You can even live the lifelong dream of swimming with dolphins – although getting acquainted with magnificent manta rays may be even more amazing.