Long and Short Haul Options for Hot Destinations in February
February. That short, bouncy month that treats itself to the occasional leap year and which is STILL COLD in the northern hemisphere. When it comes to the best places to visit in February, the world offers up a travel smorgasbord or opportunities. But where is hot in February? That's trickier to answer.
Beware false prophets of winter sun. Instead, read our list of places that really are hot in February. Most cluster around the Caribbean and Middle East, with a sprinkling of holiday destinations in southeast Asia.
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10 Best Places for Winter Sun in February
After the flourish of the festive season and the belt-buckling grey gloom of the start of the year, February needs some travel spice. Here is a hand-picked, hand tested guide to the best places to travel in February.
Where's hot in February?
Long Haul Destinations
Barbados in February
Barbados is one of the big fish in the Caribbean with plenty to do outside the resorts. Or, of course, you can just lie back in the sun.
Easy direct flights from the UK, whether from London or Manchester, with a range of luxury and uber-luxe accommodation at the other end make this an easy Caribbean destination to visit.
Oman in February
Oman remains one of my favourite countries in the world for its unspoiled landscape and friendly welcome. Expect beautiful beaches with warm seas although the sand isn't always that white.
Hire a car and head into the desert, pass camels, pick dates and wander around cool, cream castles and crowded souks. Stay at one of my favourite hotels in the world: The Chedi in Muscat.
St Vincent and the Grenadines in February
Smaller and more scattered than Jamaica and Barbados, SVG is still no stranger to liming (having a good time.)
But that's what makes it special. The pace is slower, your presence more traveller, less commodity.
You'll need to travel in a smaller plane, typically changing at Barbados to reach SVG. February is usually warm and one of the driest months on the islands.
Jordan in February
The year round heat of the Middle East just about lingers on the coast at Aqaba and the Dead Sea but nights in Amman, Petra and the desert can be cold, cold, cold. So... know before you go. Bear in mind that summer at these sites can be stiflingly hot so if you want some sunshine on the coast but don't want to sleep beneath the stars then this could be the time to go for you to visit Jordan.
Florida in February
Miami and the Keys are still warm in February but not quite as hot and humid as they'll be later in the year. Miami offers chic, beachside hotels and clubs while hire a car and drive virtually on the water to reach the most colourful key of all: Key West.
Elsewhere in Florida, consider driving through the Gulf Coast where world class science and art museums mingle amid the white sand and clear waters. Snorkel up and swim with gentle sea giant manatees.
Cuba in February
Cuba offers balmy evenings and comfortable days in its intoxicating capital, Havana. Listen out for salsa and son, drink rum, watch old cars drive by and ruminate on the events that made this Caribbean island so different to all the rest.
Thailand in February
Both January and February see the lowest rainfall in Thailand with a rich mix of cultural and beach-lazing activities available on both the west and east coasts. Flights into Bangkok are regular and easy or alternatively you can fly direct to the resorts if all you are looking for this February is sun.
Singapore in February
This compact city-state offers sunshine all year round but in February the showers are easing off and it's not TOO hot just yet either. Combine colonial architecture with blinging spaceship hotels and artificial trees with remote island treks. Far from off the beaten track, you'll find plenty of things to do in Singapore.
Aruba in February
Aruba swaps the lush, green Caribbean vibe for a rusty red strut instead, with flamingoes and pelicans flocking to her shore. Aruba has frequent connections to Amsterdam and the US and well developed hotels along her coastline. Stay in the beautiful boutique Boardwalk Hotel and check out these other great things to do in Aruba.
What About Winter Sun in Europe?
Ah, I hate to be a heart-breaker but it's simply not guaranteed. I've had some glorious sunshine days in France, Germany and even the UK but nothing even remotely approaching reliable heat, even when I lived in Seville, Europe's hottest city.
Short Haul Destinations
Where are the best places to travel in February?
The best places to visit in February are either very hot, very cold or bursting with Mardi Gras flavour.
Southern Hemisphere: Beat the Crowds
As summer draws to a close in the southern hemisphere, you can beat the crowds in key locations like Cape Town, Sydney and Melbourne while still getting a taste of warmth.
Northern Hemisphere: Embrace the Cold
Meanwhile, snow on the northern hemisphere's slopes is still reliable enough for a ski and snowboard with the optimistic promise of a sunny afternoon with a vin chaud to top things off.
In the Middle: Warmth and Mardi Gras
Mardi Gras and masked balls make iconic cities like Venice and New Orleans even more popular, while the Caribbean can still deliver soothing warmth to chilled February bones tired of a long grey winter in the north.
Good luck! And may the sun dance be with you (though probably not Butch Cassidy or the kid.)
Where to Go for Warm Beach Holidays in February
The Caribbean hits peak season in February, with frequent daily flights to the bigger islands like Barbados and Jamaica, and smaller connections to the arguably more characterful places like St Vincent & the Grenadines and the British Virgin Islands.
The Middle East is always hot, so check out Dubai for bling, Jordan for the Dead Sea and Oman for a combination of beautiful beaches and intense unspoiled culture.
Asia also offers sunshine in Goa and Kerala in India, the west coast of Thailand and Malaysia, not to mention Sri Lanka, The Maldives and Borneo.
And don't forget the Americas. Miami offers warm beaches, as does Mexico.
And Tanzania, Madagascar and Kenya in Africa allow plenty of sunshine in between magnificent safari sightings and beach-lazing.
Disclosure - I have visited some of these countries and cities with assistance from local tourist boards or hotels. However, none of them had any input into this list of where's hot in February. I always keep the right to write what I like here on the lab. Otherwise there's just no point.