GET AWAY THIS WINTER
As I am writing this December installment, it is a beautiful 70 degrees outside my downtown window. I am loving it! The sun shining so brightly makes me think of warm winter getaways for when the temperature falls, which we know will happen very soon. I bet some of you out there know what I’m talking about and are envisioning an escape from the cold this winter. In
case you need ideas and inspiration, here are my top five destinations to enjoy a little R & R in the sunshine. The best part? No passports required!
An acquaintance traveled to Maui for Thanksgiving and her trip led me to thoughts of ringing in the New Year watching fireworks on Maui’s beachfront. The annual fireworks celebration caters to all types of people; travelers and locals, couples, singles and families, alike. But, hey, it’s Hawaii; do you really need a reason to visit? This land of amazing rainbows and waterfalls, beaches and volcanoes is truly a tropical paradise that offers something amazing for everyone.
New Orleans, LA
The Big Easy also offers a beautiful New Year’s Eve fireworks display. Balmy day time temperatures may turn a little chilly at night, but it is sure to be warmer there than in Michigan. Think how thrilling it would be watching the fireworks on the Mississippi River, seeing the Baby New Year descend in La Place d’Armes (aka Jackson Square), and ending the evening in the wee hours of the morning in revelry along Bourbon Street.
When I lived in southern Arizona I used to call my family in Michigan to brag about hiking Camelback Mountain in my shorts in winter. I haven’t lived there in a few years and, boy, do I miss the weather. The sun shines almost every day, and no matter which direction you look, you are sure to capture wonderful views of majestic mountains. With an average winter temperature of 72 degrees, it’s no wonder the Valley of the Sun is home to thousands of snow birds from the East and Midwest. Go, see for yourself and you will learn what I did; salt is for margaritas and not for melting snow!
Palm Springs, CA
Another desert city I love is Palm Springs. It is one of the coolest, most iconic places I’ve ever been. There you can find the perfect balance of old hipster-style ambiance and modern contemporary chic. Head there for the Palm Springs International Film Festival in January or the Desert Classic in February. You are bound to see celebrities enjoying down time away from Hollywood.
San Juan, PR
Finally, Puerto Rico, considered the gateway to the Caribbean, has perfect winter weather. Skip the heavy heat of the summer and the accompanying tourist crowds and head there for a great winter vacation. The entire island is rich in history and there is so much to explore. Take part in the San Sebastian Street Festival, Puerto Rico’s version of Mardi Gras. Hike El Yunqué, the only tropical rainforest in the USA. Swim in three of the world’s five bioluminescent bays in the world.
Whatever you do, you will return with wonderful travel experiences filled with great stories to tell about your winter fun in the sun.