Chasing the Sun
For Northern Hemisphere dwellers, this time of year is when we start thinking that we’d like a little bit more sunshine in our lives. Deep in the midst of winter, it can be easy to forget the pleasure of warm sunlight on your skin or being able to venture outside without at least six layers of clothing on. Many people like to plan a mid-winter break and fly away to more exotic climates where they can soak up a couple of weeks of vitamin D before heading back to the rain, wind and snow. Others like to plan their summer holidays now, so that they have something to look forward to as winter continues to drag on.
Here we’ve gathered some of the best countries and cities in the world for chasing that sought-after sunshine, whether you feel like jetting off next week or can hold out until the summer months ahead.
Lands of Adventure
The Brazilian summer conveniently lasts from December through to February, so if you’re hunting for temperatures in excess of 30°C, this just might be the place for you. Although the summer months also mean the rainy season in Brazil, there’s enough sunshine and beach-worthy weather to keep any visitor happy. There’s also a whole host of fascinating museums and cultural sites to visit whilst the rain passes over, including the National Historical Museum and the Museum of Life.
If you’re keen for more adventure, why not try the African continent? Egypt is a captivating country full of history and magic, whereas Madagascar is populated by intriguing wildlife and magnificent rainforests. Both countries experience high levels of sunshine throughout the year and have daytime temperatures firmly in the 20s (Celsius).
Summer in the City
When you think of sun, sea and sand, you can’t help but picture the pristine beaches of Catalonian jewel, Barcelona. And if there’s one thing the people of Barcelona like to do (and do well!) it’s throwing a fantastic fiesta. As the summer months in Europe tend to range roughly from June through to August, attending the Festa Major de Gràcia is just one way to sample the party atmosphere in the hot weather and sunshine. Taking place over one sun-kissed week in August, this festival includes elaborate street decorations, fascinating parades, delicious street food and dancing. You couldn’t ask for more!
Nearby Lisbon, the capital of Portugal, is another city within walking distance of the beach, and it’s filled with friendly people, colourful buildings and a relaxing atmosphere. Or you could venture further afield to Mexico City, where it’s nice and hot—and there’s the Frida Kahlo Museum to visit.
On the Beach
Infamous as the Insta-celebrity destination of choice, there is good reason why so many visitors flock to the Maldives every year. With a steady temperature hovering around 30°C all year round, the only choice to make about when to visit is whether you go in the dry or wet season. Offering the opportunity to see fascinating and beautiful wildlife like hammerhead sharks, stingrays and dolphins, this truly is paradise on Earth.
Alternatively, you could fly out to Bali, which sits slap bang in the middle of Indonesia. Here you can experience the slow, steady pace of life and soothing, peaceful Hindu culture whilst being surrounded by the most beautiful scenery. Fiji is another gorgeous island in the Southern Hemisphere where you can explore lush jungles and laze on never-ending beaches.
Hopefully, there is something in this list to intrigue you. Chasing the sun doesn’t have to mean lying on the beach for a week, but it can do, if that’s what you want! You can get out and about in the world and experience all kinds of sunny vacations, from the deserts of Egypt to the blue seas of Indonesia to the hot hustle and bustle of Barcelona. Wherever you end up, a little bit of sunshine is bound to put a smile on your face.