I’m currently preparing for my upcoming trip to Fuerteventura in the Canary Islands for some much needed vitamin D top-up this January. As Londoners, we are pretty lucky to be living in the GMT zone where it’s a short hop-and-skip to some nearby Mediterranean destinations.
However, I think the choices are endless when it comes to choosing a place to hideaway for a few weeks in a different climate and return refreshed with a nice shade of tan. I came up with the below winter sun bucket list to check off in 2016 and beyond.
What are some of your favourite places?
1. Amalfi Coast, Italy
The stretch of Italy’s most scenic coast line is just stunning. Rows and rows of quaint villages terraced on the hill side as they perch over the turquoise waters below. This part of town is perfect for that open air road trip we are all dreaming about, driving through winding and narrow mountain roads with drop-dead gorgeous views.
Or perhaps a bit of old-school Italian flair as you dine above the serenading coastline.
Although April to September is a great time to visit the Amalfi Coast as the spring season is kicking off in full bloom, winter time is also pleasant to visit the area as you can still enjoy the scenery. Check out this beautiful villa in the heart of Positano with cliff side views.
2. Pansea Beach, Phuket, Thailand
This little secret cove on the northwest coast of Phuket is actually open to the public, despite being tucked away behind the coconut-tree lined barrier and several hotels. There is a secret path between the bamboo groves, so you’ll just have to do a little hide and seek to find it.
Perfect little spot to do some mindful meditation, don’t you think?
For some secluded luxury, you can find your perfect sleep in this private villa in Laguna, Phuket.
3. Mae Nam, Koh Samui, Thailand
I know. I keep going on and on about Thailand, but there are just too many islands I love!
On Koh Samui’s north coast, there is a beautiful stretch of creamy sand called Mae Nam. It’s not often packed as it’s easy to miss on the drive down.
Take a little nap between the swaying coconut palms and then feast on freshly grilled red snapper in one of the bamboo shacks on the beach. Heaven.
For views over the coconut canopy, you can find some inner peach here at this villa with a private infinity pool.
4. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
As the start of Summer kicks in full gear in January in Rio, it’s the perfect time to hit the city for the best travel season. With colourful festivals, beautiful views, beach parties, and hiking in the rainforests, what is there not to love about this vibrant city?
5. Gran Canaria, Canary Islands
Snorkling is one of my favourite things to do when visiting the Canary Islands. It has the perfect temperature for snorkling or go deeper with diving lessons.
There are also tons of other things to explore in Mogan or “little Venice” of Gran Canaria, which is lined with these colourful houses adorned with flower gardens on the walls.
I found a perfect blend of modern luxury mixed with old-town Spanish charm in this villa in Mogan, which is a great place for a group getaway.
6. Tulum, Mexico
Adventure awaits as Tulum unfolds before your eyes. Pyramid shaped temples full of history is scattered around the Mayan archaeological sites for the curious explorers. The jade-blue water is also very inviting for a dip in the ocean before heading back shore.
7. Petite St. Jean, St.Barts
Just steps away from the small village of St. Jean, where many small restaurants and shops are located, this tucked away white sandy beach is an oasis of calm, if you can find a secluded spot for yourself. Instead of an ocean, it is almost like a transparent calming azure lake.
Afternoons can be spent reading a nice book and curled up next to a palmy tree to this view.
8. Cape Greco, Cyprus
Another destination for the active types. This place needs to be explore on foot via hiking or on water via kayaks to appreciate its natural beauty of limestone caves. Or if you like two wheels, cycling is also excellent in the Cape Greco National Forest Park.
With panoramic sea views in an idyllic location and minutes away from Cape Greco, this is a great spot to admire the azure waters!
This post is in collaboration with Clickstay.com, where some of these luxurious villas are listed. The opinions are of course my own, as always.