Now that summer is behind us, the fall travel season is here for us to enjoy. Although fall is an ideal time for a European trip, the reality is that many of us find it hard to get the time off from work or school to enjoy a fall getaway.
The good news is that winter is just around the corner, and with it comes winter vacation time and holiday breaks.
Planning where to visit in Europe in the winter can be quite the undertaking, as the continent offers some epic ski and snow destinations and also sun-soaked beaches to enjoy. If you are one of the many who are curious as to where to go in Europe for some winter sunshine, this article is for you.
While tropical islands such as the Canaries or Portugal’s Madeira will out-sun any of these picks, they are a bit more out of the way and require a tad more planning than the destinations you will see below.
Although most of these destinations are in fact islands, they are much closer to mainland Europe and therefore convenient for traveling around the continent.
Note: It’s important to keep in mind that mainland Europe and the surrounding islands will not be balmy and beachy in the winter months, but they offer a nice mild temperature that makes for sunbathing and exploring in a t-shirt ideal; just remember to bring a layer for when the sun goes down.
These Are 5 Of The Warmest European Destinations To Visit This Winter:
This island nation is simply stunning, not to mention packed with interesting places to see, such as Nicosia, Aphrodite’s Baths, Nissi Beach, and many more. However, it’s the south coast that stays the warmest through the winter. The popular city of Limassol, for example, has an average December high temperature of 66 degrees.
Places such as Paphos, Limassol, Latchi, Larnaca, and Ayia Napa will provide you with the sunniest days in the winter months, although the average sea temperature of around 70 degrees might make swimming too cold for you.
Ah, tiny, mind-boggling Malta. This little gem is a must-visit at any time of the year, but winter makes an ideal time to explore the island of Malta and its smaller and even more unique island of Gozo.
The weather in the winter is sunny; after all this place gets an average of 3,000 hours of sunshine each year. For example, December (a notoriously gloomy month across the continent) should bring about 5 hours of sunshine a day, an average temperature of about 60 degrees, and perhaps 8 days of rain.
@shorello 72 Hours in Malta (Winter Vlog Edition) #malta🇲🇹 #travel #winterbreak ♬ Crazy Vibez – Luxury SA
As Greece’s largest and most southern island, Crete is a favorite of travelers from all over. Although swimming in the winter is highly unlikely, the loads of sunshine that you will have are sure to make you happy and ready to explore the island and, of course, eat and drink all the Greek food you possibly can. Remember that after all, Crete is a large Mediterranean island, and therefore the weather can vary.
Did you know: Crete is home to a village called Myrtos, which is technically one of the warmest places in Europe due to it’s average of 320 days of sunshine a year?
@uhatravels Somewhere in Crete during winter 🇬🇷☀️ #travel #trending #traveltiktok #traveltok #greece #crete #fyp ♬ Disturbia – mbappegoals10x
This Italian island has been trending recently thanks in no part to a little show called the White Lotus. Famous for much more than this popular show, Sicily is a culture-packed destination year-round, and the winter months are warm and pleasant.
Be aware that the winter months can be wet, so prepare yourself for a little drizzle, and you should be fine. This island weather tends to be a bit overcast in the winter, so it might not be the sunniest destination on our list, but the average temperature in the 60s means you can enjoy the outside without having to bundle up too much.
@kitatozer The only place you should spend winter 🇮🇹 #palermo #sicilytravel #winterinsicily #siciliabedda #palermoitaly #sicilytourism #exploreitaly #siciliabella_official #summervibes ♬ original sound – elaina.
Saving the most popular destination for last, we have Portugal’s southern Algarve region. Portugal is known to be one of the cheapest Western European places for a holiday, and the weather in this area is warm and pleasant throughout the winter.
One main reason to enjoy this stunning region of Portugal in the winter is the deep discount prices you can find on the resorts all around the area. While the sea is too cold to swim, find yourself a heated pool and dive in.
The average temperature of the popular town of Faro is about 60 degrees in December, and it boasts about 300 sunny days each year, meaning you are bound to enjoy some sunshine here.
@butlarii No better place to escape the cold🤩 Portugal is beautiful in any month, but warm winter days are ❤️ #portugal #algarve #winterinportugal #europeanwinter #lagosportugal #portugaltravel ♬ som original – crz
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com