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Winter is the perfect time to book a trip to your favorite sunny destination. We’ve partnered with family and lifestyle blogger Kirsten Maxwell from Kids Are A Trip, who lives in Chicago, but grew up in Phoenix. She knows quite a bit about seeking out warm places as she tries to escape the cold Midwestern winters every year. Here are her favorite 7 warm winter getaways to escape the cold and find some sunshine. 

7 Warm Winter Getaways to Escape the Cold


The Arizona desert is the perfect winter getaway. The days offer plenty of sunshine, and the evening temperatures need little more than a sweater. Tucson has a thriving downtown restaurant scene, with old time favorites like El Charro Café and newer ones like Tumerico and Downtown Kitchen that shouldn’t be missed. Golfers will have plenty of opportunities to hit the links. Outdoor enthusiasts should head to Sabino Canyon, Yetman Trail, and Mt. Lemmon for hiking and exploring the Arizona desert in all its splendor.

Palm Springs

The desert is beautiful in winter and Palm Springs is no exception. It’s the perfect spot for families looking for pool time or a girls’ getaway to the spa. There’s an abundance of hiking spots in the Coachella Valley Preserve or Joshua Tree National Park. Those who want to spend their time shopping and eating can head downtown, uptown, or to the outlet malls for a fix. Don’t forget to take a ride on the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway for spectacular 360-degree views of Chino Canyon, there’s nothing quite like it!

Las Vegas

Las Vegas is more than bright lights and casinos. There are restaurants for every budget, awesome shows like Mystére and Michael Jackson ONE, and plenty of swimming pools and water parks. Those seeking outdoor trail adventures should visit Red Rock Canyon or head out of town to Valley of Fire for spectacular scenery. If you’re up for an adrenaline rush, try the Voodoo Zipline at the Rio, Skyjump at the Stratosphere, or the Sling Shot at Circus Circus. We say what happens in Vegas doesn’t have to stay there, because there will be plenty of experiences to write home about.


Many people think South Beach when they hear Miami, but the city has evolved in recent years. Head to Wynwood to check out the street art, design district, and food scene. Little Havana has lively music, delicious food tours, and Cuban culture in spades. Downtown Miami is experiencing a revival with the completion of Museum Park, featuring the Frost Science Museum and Pérez Art Museum Miami. This has brought many new restaurants and hotels to the area, making downtown a popular destination once again.


Do we really have to convince you to go to Hawaii? This is one destination guaranteed to have amazing food, copious amounts of sunshine, and plenty of water sports. Rent a jeep and cruise the island, island hop, or visit a pineapple plantation. Don’t miss taking part in a luau, hiking to see volcanoes and waterfalls, or having a snorkeling adventure. Hawaii is one destination where you can be incredibly active or spend the entire trip relaxing on the beach soaking up the sun.


Texas promises warm weather and sunshine year round, and Austin is no exception. The food scene is crazy good from BBQ to Tex-Mex to creative desserts. Head to SoCo (South Congress) to get your shopping fix, take a tour of the state capitol, or catch some live music on Sixth Avenue. Those looking to explore outdoors should consider taking a kayak out on Lady Bird Lake, bike or jog the Ann and Roy Butler trail, or go for a hike at the Barton Creek Greenbelt or McKinney Falls State Park.

New Orleans

The winter season in New Orleans is one of the best times to visit with the celebration of Mardi Gras in early February. Instead of bar hopping in the French Quarter, consider taking a historical walking tour of the downtown area including St. Louis Cemetery No. 1. Don’t miss beignets at Café du Monde, po-boys at Verti Marte, and the turtle soup at Commander’s Palace. If the city’s crowds aren’t your scene, head out to Laura’s Plantation or Oak Alley Plantation for a look at life during the antebellum period. Another option is to head to the swamps and take an airboat tour through the bayou, it will blow your mind!

7 U.S. Cities to Visit This Winter New Orleans-Travelocity

Photo: Eric Stoen

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