February 17th, 2020 | Updated on June 29th, 2022
Winter in the UK isn’t the best time of year. The days are short and it’s cold and dark. We can’t even enjoy snow often – the most we can hope for is rain.
No one would blame you if you wanted to get out of the country. In fact, we’ll help you do it, with this list of some of the best short-haul winter sun destinations.
Read on to see how you can access nearby beautiful beaches all year round.
10 Warm Short Haul Winter Sun Destinations
1. Costa del Sol, Spain
Costa del Sol earns its name, which means ‘coast of the sun’, because of the year-round sunshine that blesses this lovely slice of short-haul heaven.
It’s a little colder in the winter than in the summer, but even in January temperatures rarely drop below 12 degrees.
Top Tip: Check out these Costa del Sol hotels.
2. The Algarve, Portugal
Another great short-haul winter sun destination is Portugal. It’s right next door to Spain, and its Algarve region boasts beautifully warm winters.
Temperatures average 15 degrees in winter, and the area is blessed with some of the most sunshine of any destination in Europe – as well as more than 150 beautiful beaches.
Don’t Miss: World-class golf courses. There are 35 clubs in the Algarve, and visiting outside the hotter months will let you enjoy them without overheating.
Deeply influenced by Spanish culture, the Balearics are some of Europe’s most popular destinations. Even better, they’re far enough south that they’re perfect for winter sun holidays!
Majorca is the largest of them, and between its golden sand beaches, excellent bars and restaurants and more there’s a lot to see and do.
It’s known as a party island, but Ibiza has more to offer than just a happening nightlife scene.
Though some clubs are open outside the May to October busy season, a holiday in winter means you’re more likely to enjoy the island’s lesser-known relaxing side, with activities like yoga perfect for the warm weather.
Menorca is the last of the Balearics we’ll include here. Its major selling point is its natural beauty – and the best way to enjoy it is on a coastal path that lets you explore over 134 miles of coastline.
It’s also a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, so nature lovers are sure to find lots to appreciate. Just make sure to stay safe when exploring.
6. Sardinia, Italy
Moving away from Spain and Portugal now, we find yet another of the Mediterranean’s wonderful winter sun destinations.
This Italian island has over 1,200 miles of coastline to enjoy, as well as mountain forests to hike in and explore. Like Menorca, it’s perfect for outdoor types.
7. Mellieha, Malta
Just 80 kilometers from Italy, this small country takes pride in its year-round sunshine and hospitable reputation. It’s affordable, too, and there are more than enough great restaurants and bars to try.
Best of all, it’s warmed by a wind that blows all the way from the Sahara Desert, so it’s perfect for a short-haul winter sun holiday.
8. Nice, France
The town so nice they named it… Nice.
With beautiful harbours and sparkling blue waters, this city is regarded as the jewel in the French Riviera’s crown, and year-round sunshine makes it great to visit at any time.
You might get a little rain, sure, but even in January and February you’ll have enough clear days to stroll along the Promenade des Anglais or see the stunning views from Mount Boron and Castle Hill.
9. Bodrum, Turkey
We’re moving further out now, but don’t let the slightly longer flight times put you off! Four hours is far from long haul, and it’s worth it to experience warm winters and a distinct culture.
This southwestern city is also close enough to the Greek island of Kos that you can visit for a day trip. A chance to see two great winter sun destinations on one trip? Count us in!
10. Marrakech, Morocco
You might think flight times to Africa would be too long, but Morocco is an easy short-haul jaunt. When you get there, you’re rewarded with a bustling, busy city – and some excellent weather.
Marrakech boasts a unique and vibrant culture with lots to do, and it’s also got warm temperatures, year round sunshine and very little rain.
We hope this list has gotten you excited for some of the best short-haul winter sun destinations. If so, why not look up accomodation and travel now?