Escape the Cold: The Best Places to Warm You Up

Bora Bora

The crown jewel of French Polynesia is the island paradise of Bora Bora. The tropical summer that starts in November means that it’s hot and wet when we’re experiencing snowy temperatures. Most people go to Bora Bora for the unspeakably beautiful beaches and luxury accommodations. It’s possible to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars for just a few days in an over-water villa. However, it is possible to save some money by staying in places like the Sunset Hill Lodge or Manureva House, both of which cost around $200-300 USD per day.

Once you’re on the island, most of the activities, like snorkeling, swimming, and sunbathing, are free. If you want to pay a bit of money to explore the inland parts of the island, a Jeep tour can take you to WWII ruins, or up to the peak of mountains where you’ll have a spectacular view of the island. This is definitely a once-in-a-lifetime trip, so plan it as early as possible to avoid disappointment. You’ll need to connect through Tahiti, and the small planes that fly the route from Tahiti to Bora Bora fill up fast.

Matteo Colombo / Getty Images

Malta

If you’re looking for a European destination that’s still warm, even during the coldest months of the year, Malta is a great choice. It’s an archipelago of islands located just south of Sicily and has some of the warmest year-round temperatures in Europe. It also has a rich history, tons of amazing architecture, and is quite easy to traverse by public bus or bike.

To get there, you’ll have to transfer via a European hub like Aberdeen, London, Milan, or Madrid. Luckily, many of these connections are operated by low-cost carriers like Ryanair or Easyjet, which means the cost will be minimal. Most people head straight to Valletta, the capital city, and use it as a base for further travels.

Hiking, diving, and sailing are popular activities, and if you’re there over the Christmas holidays, you can observe some of the unique island customs.

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Sailing boats on Senglea marina in Grand Bay, Valetta, Malta

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