Admit it: January probably occupies the gloomiest spot on the calendar. It is one of the coldest and darkest times of the year, Christmas is a rapidly fading memory, and the warm and sunny days of spring are still months off in the distance.
Yet for some reason, airfares are the cheapest they will be all year. Take advantage of this opportunity to escape somewhere warmer and/or more exciting.
Stuck on where to go? In this article, we share where we’d rather be during the month of January.
Best Vacation Spots to Visit in January
1) Dominican Republic
If you are looking for a Caribbean island that has plenty of cultural appeals to go along with the region’s amazing dry season weather, then you will love the Dominican Republic.
Home to the first permanent settlement in the Americas, this fiercely proud island nation has developed a strong identity ever since Christopher Columbus first set foot on its sandy shores approximately 500 years ago.
With plenty of Spanish colonial architecture, a cuisine that combines European, Native, and African influences, and home to upbeat Merengue music, there are many experiences here that are just waiting for you to discover them.
Once you have settled into one of the many fabulous hotels in Punta Cana, be sure to book a tour that will allow you to immerse yourself into the culture of this complex Caribbean island.
Although Colombia is a great place to travel at almost any time of year, those wanting to experience its Caribbean coast at its best will want to travel during January.
Cities such as Cartagena and Santa Marta experience almost no rain during this month, leaving you free to enjoy their beaches without having to worry about storm clouds ruining your day.
When you are done having fun in the sun, there are plenty of other highlights to be found elsewhere in the country.
From climbing volcanoes to digging deeper into Colombian culture in cities like Bogota, the possibilities are endless.
Want to escape the cold while getting a taste of a culture that is completely different from your own? Thailand makes it easy to fulfill this desire, as its tourism infrastructure have been developed and refined over many decades.
With most regions of the country experiencing day after day of perfect sunshine in January, you won’t have to worry about taking an umbrella with you.
As you explore Buddhist temples, hunt your favorite Thai dish down in the streets of Bangkok, or walk along some of the world’s most beautiful beaches, the weather will be the last thing on your mind.
4) Hokkaido, Japan
For some people, ideal January weather means plenty of snow. If you are looking for the perfect place to go skiing in 2017, we recommend taking a trip to the Japanese prefecture of Hokkaido.
Situated in Japan’s far north, a steady flow of Pacific storms and ocean-effect snow squalls pounds the mountains of this island throughout the winter months, providing plenty of powder for avid skiers and snowboarders.
As great as conditions are here, that isn’t the only reason to plan a snow holiday here. Where else in the world can you enjoy soaking in a traditional Japanese Onsen or dine/drink in an authentic Japanese Izakaya as your apres ski activity?
No place in North America or Europe comes close to matching Japan when it comes to the opportunity to experience a different culture on a snow vacation.