Winter is coming. At least for large sections of the northern hemisphere where the warm sunny weather is starting to fade and the dreary onset of bone-chilling misery is all that lies ahead. Though all is not lost, for there are still plenty of places around the world where there is an abundance of warmth and sunshine to escape those winter blues.
Summer may be officially over in China, but that’s not to say you need to pack a parka just yet. The sweltering heat and humidity have only just subsided, leaving a warm, balmy climate in its wake. China’s awe-inspiring mountainous regions are not yet covered in snow, meaning the entire country is currently very much open for business.
Japan might still be in its humid typhoon season, but come October more temperate weather will envelop the nation. Be sure to include Kyoto on your itinerary, where autumn transforms nearby maple forests into stunning shades of red and brown.
The worst of India’s monsoon will soon be coming to an end, leaving large swathes of the country lusciously green and teeming with life. In the coming months, the north will be only mildly chilly while the south will be pleasantly warm – the perfect conditions for exploring everything India has to offer.
Okay, so South Africa is not exactly sweltering in September. But it isn’t freezing either and now is the ideal time to visit those world famous game reserves you keep hearing about. Why, you ask? Because the current dry weather means all your favorite exotic animals are hanging around waterholes and are ever-so-easy to see.
The United States
Given recent horrific meteorological events, give the usual southern states of Florida and Texas a miss for the time being and head straight to California instead. The sunshine state is perfect this time of year, as the fog begins to recede and warm sunny days bring the locals out to play.
Mexico has had a run of bad luck with hurricanes and earthquakes over the last week, though the lucky folks down in Cancun have gotten off completely unscathed. Hot weather aside, it’s the luxury resorts, turquoise beaches and raucous nightlife that draw the masses to Cancun.
Although some rain is to be expected, Colombia’s northern coastal regions rarely receive excessive downpours this time of year, for the most part remaining blissfully sunny and warm. Spend some time marveling at the colonial architecture of Cartagena before heading off for a well-deserved beach break in the picture perfect Tayrona National Park.
Brazil is starting to heat up again after the relatively cooler winter months, meaning now is the ideal time for a not-too-hot, not-too-cold tropical South American escape. Explore the sights of Rio de Janeiro, admire the awesome Iguazu Falls or just kick back and relax on a white sandy beach while enjoying the sultry climate.
Most tourists visit down under during the summer months when it gets “bloody hot”, as the locals say. Rather than sweltering through January’s relentless heatwaves, visit now for a more agreeable (though still warm) springtime climate. Of course, if you really want to see the mercury rise then a visit to the tropical north or red center is just what the doctor ordered.
New Zealand is only just starting to emerge from winter, meaning her majestic mountain peaks are still packed with snow. Although you’re currently unlikely to swelter anywhere in the country, the current temperate climate is ideal for exploring the land of “Middle-Earth.”
Whether you wish to visit the Colosseum without queuing for days or just stroll along the canals of Venice in relative solitude, autumn is an awesome time to visit the land of spaghetti and pizza. What’s more, it’s still sunny and warm there, even enough for a swim at the beach.
From Nice to Perpignan and everything in between, the French Riveria is pleasantly warm and refreshingly uncrowded this time of year. Most outsiders have gone home and the locals are back from holidays, giving the entire Côte d’Azur an authentically French feel.
Ever the envy of the British, Spain is seemingly always sunny and September is no exception. The Costa del Sol is an obvious choice for sun-seekers while Ibiza’s crazy clubbing season is still in full swing for those looking to really turn up the heat.
Croatia’s picturesque coastline has become increasingly popular over the years, with hordes of sun worshipers filling up its islands during the summer months. Although the peak season may be over, winter has yet to arrive and most of the crowds have gone home.
Soak up some culture, savor some exotic food or just kick back on the beach. The summer European crowds have long gone meaning attractions are less crowded and hotel prices have plummeted. Best of all, Morocco is still seriously scorching in September.
Got a rather generous budget for your upcoming vay-cay? Here are the best places to visit if money were no object.