Escape the Cold With These Awesome US Warm Weather Winter Getaways
Rolling out of bed partially frozen to go scrape the ice off your car? Or maybe you’re not freezing, but thrive in summer weather! Whichever person you are, I am sure we can all agree that warm winter getaways are some of the best getaways and we have quite a few in the US!
Below we are covering some of the best warm weather destinations in the US to escape the brutal winter that will make all your friends jealous!
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Honeymoon Island State Park, Florida
Recommended by Paula from Paula Pins the Planet
If you are looking for a warm US destination to visit, Honeymoon Island State Park is a great option for winter getaways. With 4-miles of amazing beaches to explore, the island also includes a 3-mile hiking trail through one of the last remaining virgin slash pine forests.
Honeymoon Island is an exceptional place for outdoor lovers since it offers many options like soaking in the sun, swimming, fishing, kayaking, hiking, and biking.
Additionally, consider taking the ferry across the channel to Caladesi State Park. This island offers pristine beaches and turquoise water. Caladesi State Park may even be less crowded and rocky than the beaches of Honeymoon Island.
Honeymoon Island is a great destination to visit all year-round, but if you visit in the wintertime you have higher chances to see birds such as eagles, osprey, and great horned owls, along with ground animals including gopher tortoises, raccoons, and armadillos.
Also, during winter it is easiest to spot manatees and dolphins close to shore, due to the temperate climate during this time of the year, with nice weather and temperatures between 59-70 F.
You can visit the Park 365 days per year, from 8 am until sunset. The park has an $8 entry fee per vehicle. Honeymoon Island State Park is located about 25 minutes north of Clearwater Beach on Florida’s west coast.
You can find 2 cafes on Honeymoon Island to buy food and beverages or you can bring your own for a nice picnic on the island.
There is no option for accommodations inside Honeymoon Island & Caladesi Island. However, it is just a short distance driving from Clearwater or Dunedin, where you can find several options for accommodations.
New Orleans, Lousiana
Recommended by Agnes from The Van Escape
Jazz on the streets, live concerts in every bar and restaurant, extraordinary vibrant energy, choice of excellent cocktails, and of course delicious food. All of this surrounded by stylish inspired French and Spanish architecture and rich history. New Orleans, Louisiana, is the perfect US city for those looking for warm winter getaways.
The best time to visit NOLA is January and February when the famous Mardi Gras Carnival takes place. Officially Mardi Gras begins on January 6th and runs until Fat Tuesday.
Most events, colorful marches, and concerts are held in the two last weeks before Fat Tuesday. How to prepare for Mardi Gras, where are the best spots to observing marches, how to spend time, you can check in this Mardi Gras New Orleans Itinerary.
Louis Armstrong Park, Voodoo Museum, St. Louis Cathedral, Jackson Square, French Bazaar, and Jazz Museum are the best NOLA attractions for couples worth seeing during Winter Gateway.
On the Jazz Boat Cruise, dinner on the Mississippi River is a perfect idea for a unique romantic evening in New Orleans. Another great activity to do during a winter getaway is taking a plantations tour or the Louisiana swamps tour from NOLA.
Additionally, New Orleans is famous for its cuisine and excellent cocktails. So, it’s worth trying Louisiana Creole cuisine with its specialties such as gumbo, jambalaya, seafood. Muriel’s Jackson Square offers delicious cajun cuisine with oysters, shrimps, crab cake, or gumbo.
Moreover, enjoy exceptional Hurricane cocktails that you will get in every bar on the famous Bourbon street.
The best selection of hotels and apartments for any budget is at the famous “French Quarter.” This is by far the best area to stay in New Orleans to feel the city’s energy and be close to all the attractions.
Recommend by Sam from Find Love & Travel
Maui is likely one of the most popular Hawaiian Islands because it gives you a mix of Kauai and Oahu. You can find busy towns and shopping areas (Lahania) like in Oahu, while still being able to get that remote tropical vibe that Kauai gives you.
One of Maui’s best attractions is driving the road to Hana! The twisting winding road of Hana is full of endless waterfalls, lava landscapes, a black sand beach, bamboo forests, and just overall stunning views! I highly recommend driving it!
Additionally, you can experience the sunrise at Mt. Haleakala which was by far the most stunning sunrise I have ever witnessed!
Moreover, let’s not forget relaxing on gorgeous beaches, the chance of swimming with sea turtles, whale watching, snorkeling at Molokini island, surfing, and luaus!
Maui offers all the above and more making it the perfect warm winter vacation.
The best way to explore Maui is by renting a car. If renting a car is not an option, there are a ton of tours to help you explore Maui!
We loved our stay at the Sheraton Resort at Black Rock Cliff. With both mountain and ocean views from the same window, it feels like total paradise! I especially loved staying here because we saw Green Sea Turtles every day at the beach. The Sheraton is also located super close to town where there are tons of amazing restaurants.
Additional great places to stay in Maui include:
Recommended by Holly from Globeblogging
If you’re looking for sun, sand, and glorious warm weather getaways this winter, you simply can’t go wrong with a visit to the paradise that is Hawaii.
Probably the best known of the collection of islands off the US mainland, Oahu is perfect to plan a jam-packed itinerary to cater to just about any traveler!
With an average temperature that ranges from 62 up to 77 degrees Fahrenheit and low average rainfall, February is the perfect time to visit.
Naturally, being an island paradise, there are plenty of water activities to choose from. Dive with sharks, snorkel in a nature reserve, head out parasailing, or take a walk along the ocean floor. Whether you choose to hang out on the beach or head on over to the North Shore to surf and enjoy a spectacular sunset, you can’t go wrong!
Movie buffs will love a visit to Hollywood’s Hawaii set, Kualoa Ranch, to check out filming locations from blockbusters including Jurassic Park, Jurassic World, Jumanji, and Godzilla, while Pearl Harbor is a somber but unmissable experience.
Additionally, a hike to the top of the Diamond Head crater will get the heart rate up and offer exceptional views of Waikiki from the top as a reward.
There are plenty of options for accommodations in the tourist hub of Waikiki, and no shortage of delicious food. Check out Dukes for a delicious buffet breakfast and Bills Waikiki for the best Australian grade coffee in town.
Bargain hunters shouldn’t miss checking out the Waikele outlets for a day of shopping, something else that Oahu is famous for.
Recommend by Sam from Find Love & Travel
Kauai, known as the Garden Island is another perfect US warm weather winter getaways to add to your bucket list! I mean who doesn’t want to spend the holidays on a tropical island with temperatures in the 70’s, am I right?
Full of lush green jungles, beautiful beaches, waterfalls, and adventure, Kauai, HI has something for everyone! Some of the best things to see in Kauai include the famous Napali Coast, Waimea Canyon (known as Hawaii’s Grand Canyon), seeing Wailua Falls, and adventuring out to Secret Falls to name a few!
The best way to explore Kauai, Hawaii is by renting a car. By doing this, you will have full flexibility to see a ton of the Island! I would also suggest spending at least 3 days in Kauai if you are planning on island hopping!
The winter is high season in Kauai, so I would recommend booking your getaway in advance! We visited Kauai during our honeymoon and had an excellent stay at the Kauai Marriott Resort. The property is a beautiful beachfront property with giant pools, several restaurants to choose from.
Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa is another top resort to stay at.
Los Angeles, California
Recommended by Sam from Find Love & Travel
California dreamin? Los Angeles easily makes the list of perfect warm winter getaways with beautiful coastlines, great hiking, city vibes, and not to mention great non-humid temperatures.
There is also tons of fun to be had in Los Angeles including hikes to the famous Hollywood sign, watching the sunset at Griffith Observatory, walking down Santa Monica Pier, riding bikes down Venice, or looking for your favorite stars on the Hollywood walk of fame, just to name a few!
Los Angeles is perfectly located if you are interested in a day trip to Malibu, Palm Springs, or Santa Barbra to name a few.
Even if you plan to road trip around California, make sure to spend at least 3 days in Los Angeles to experience some of the best things this city has to offer!
The 3 most popular areas to stay in Los Angeles is Hollywood (attractions), Beverly Hills (luxury), and Santa Monica (more beachy vibes).
Puerto Rico, USA
Recommended by Sam from Find Love & Travel
Dreaming of a warm US Caribbean getaway? Think no further than Puerto Rico! This Island seriously has so much to offer.
Enjoy the charming streets of Old San Juan, explore waterfalls in the El Yunque Rainforest, experience the Pink Salt Lakes in Cabo Rojo, and beautiful beaches are among some of the best things to do in Puerto Rico.
If you have the time, I’d suggest taking a road trip around the Island of Puerto Rico! Some top towns to hit include Ponce, Cabo Rojo, and Rincon.
And if you want to see some local gems, I’d suggest checking out this Puerto Rico Itinerary that goes in-depth on helping you plan your trip to PR, where to stay, eat, and more!
Key West, Florida
Recommended by Pauline from the Beeloved City
If you are looking for a warm winter destination in the US, Key West will be perfect for you!
Located at the very end of the beautiful Florida Keys, Key West is known for its unique atmosphere, beautiful beaches, and ghost stories!
You can fly directly to Key West from pretty much anywhere in the United States. However, if you can, going on a road trip from Miami to Key West is well worth your time!
There is so much to do in the Florida Keys and there is something magical about driving the 7-mile bridge.
Once you get to Key West itself, head to Duval Street. That’s where you will find all the bars and restaurants. It’s a very lively and unusual place where Texan saloons are right by Irish pubs and wild roosters wander the streets!
Make sure to go to the Southernmost point buoy for photos and the Ernest Hemingway home.
In the evening, make your way to Mallory Square for the sunset celebration. It can get quite busy so it’s best to get there early to score a good spot. You are allowed to walk around with drinks so if you were in one of the bars in Duval Street, don’t feel like you need to rush, just take your glass with you!
After that, you can head to the bars and experience the Key West nightlife. Alternatively, you can also choose to go on a spooky ghost tour! It’s pretty fun!
In terms of accommodation, opt for a condo near Duval Street for convenience. If you’d like to stay near the beach, you can also book one of the beautiful beachfront rentals in the Florida keys.
Best Warm Winter Getaways in the US Wrap up
As you can see, there are quite a few awesome warm US getaways that are perfect for escaping the winter! From the East coast to the West Coast and even Island life, I hope you have the best warm winter vacation!
Are there any additional destinations you would like to see on the list? Let me know in the comments below!
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