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10 Memorable Winter Escapes for Sun or Snow Adventures

February 07, 2020

Find a getaway that suits your style whether you love chilly escapes or basking in the sun.

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Photo: Fabrice Rambert ©

St. Barts, Lesser Antilles Islands

Forecasters are predicting this winter will be colder than normal weather in two-thirds of the U.S. and warmer than usual in parts of the South. Not to worry. Our list of destinations for sun and snow will help you find the getaway — and the temperature — you want.

St. Barts beckons sun-lovers with the new Hôtel Barrière Le Carl Gustaf, shown here, where the suites and bungalows have private terraces, plunge pools and breathtaking views of the Caribbean. From January to March, average daytime temperatures on the island, known in French as St. Barthélemy, are in the mid 80s. Spend some time at Shell Beach, where the water is calm, seashells cover the shore and you can cliff-dive if you’re game. Later, dine at Fouquet’s Saint-Barth, where Michelin-starred chef Pierre Gagnaire puts his own twist on classic French cuisine.

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Photo: Quintana Roo Tourism

Quintana Roo, Mexican Caribbean

You get more than tropical temperatures when you visit Quintana Roo from the U.S. at wintertime. This Mexican state on the Yucatan peninsula is also known for its inviting beaches, fishing, diving and golfing. Playa del Carmen, a popular tourist town, is home to little-known Rio Secreto, where an underground river once held sacred by the ancient Mayans flows through an amazing cave system. Guides will lead you as you bike or swim past spectacular mineral formations and experience the clear, turquoise water. Archeology buffs, don't miss nearby Mayan ruins like Tulum, pictured.

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Photo: Playa Hotels and Resorts

Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

Peak season in the Dominican Republic runs from March to May, but the weather is warm in February, with temps in the low 70s to low 80s, and prices start to drop in March. Punta Cana is a resort town known for its nightlife, markets, waterfront boutiques, surfing and sandy beaches, ATV jungle safaris and more. Stay in the Hyatt Ziva or Hyatt Zilara, both located on Juanillo Beach in Cap Cana, a luxury resort and real estate community. All-inclusive Hyatt Zilara, for adults only, shares some amenities with the all-inclusive Hyatt Ziva, which is great for multi-generational travel. Head out to a nearby championship golf course, go deep-sea fishing or salute the sun with yoga on the beach.

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Photo: Anthony J Rayburn

Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Don't want to go far to escape the cold? Greater Fort Lauderdale has you covered. Slather on the sunscreen and hit the new restaurants, bars, art exhibitions and attractions like Crave, the annual South Beach Food and Wine Festival. If that’s not enough, head to the certified user-friendly Blue Wave Beaches. Divers can explore 18 major shipwrecks in the near-shore waters of the Atlantic, while landlubbers in search of gators and other wildlife can book an airboat tour at Everglades Holiday Park. Stay at the new Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood and swim in the 13.5-acre pool, play water sports in the lagoon and catch spectacular daily light and sound shows that play on the hotel's guitar-shaped exterior.

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