With winter weather slowly returning and a fierce and draining presidential election now completed, many Americans may consider journeying to a tropical or temperate locale for a much-needed vacation.
Whether it's the Caribbean, Asia, the land down under, costal resorts along the Pacific, or the middle of the Indian Ocean, there are many diverse and exotic warm weather travel destinations to escape to during the coming winter. Here are five warm weather locations around the world to consider visiting.
Temperatures consistently remain in the mid-to upper 80s F (28-31 C) from November into February for the Dutch Caribbean island of Aruba.
Aruba has its wet season between November and January. While visitors should be prepared for occasional downpours if they are visiting the island for an extended stay, the weather remains dry most of the time. "The later in the winter season you go, the drier it's going to be," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Jim Andrews said. Besides the white sand beaches, Travel + Leisure suggests plenty of other outdoor pursuits for tourists. At Arikok National Park, visitors can hike, go on off-road explorations and trek through caves.
Bangkok has a tropical climate and is one of the hottest major cities in the world. Its dry season occurs during the winter months.
The coolest months on average in the city are during November and December with highs in the upper 80s F (30-31 C), according to Andrews. About 2.5 inches of rain falls in November, while only two-tenths of an inch falls in December, he said Travel + Leisure recommends visiting in November and February due to the cooler conditions, but also because the peak of tourist season is in late December and early January. Popular things to do in the city include visiting Lumphini Park, perusing the items on display at the street markets or relaxing at the many luxurious spas in town.
The Maldives are an island chain located in the Indian Ocean that feature very little variation in temperature. Highs remain at or above 80 F (27 C) most of the time, Andrews said. The islands receive about 5.5 inches of rain during November, but that number drops to 3 inches in December and just over an inch in January.
The dry season lasts from January until April, Andrews said. Visitors to the Maldives enjoy water sports such as surfing, water-skiing or windsurfing, while a chartered fishing excursion is another popular option. The island chain, located near the equator, is made of 26 natural atolls and guests can take an air taxi to visit different ones.
Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
Located on Mexico's Pacific coast, Puerto Vallarta features a climate that's warm and generally dry from November and through much of the winter.
"It's extremely dry once you get into the winter," Andrews said. Daytime temperatures are typically in the mid-80s F (29-30 C), during the late fall and winter, according to Andrews. The waters of Puerto Vallarta remain warm year-round, which is great if you're looking for water activities such as snorkeling, according to Travel + Leisure.
As many Americans get ready for the long winter, Australians are preparing to enjoy summer.
The average high for Sydney in November is in the low to mid-70s F (21-24 C), while the normal high climbs to almost 80 F (27 C) in January, Andrews said.
An average of 2.5 inches of rain occurs during November, while December is one of the driest times of the year with an average rainfall of 2 inches. That number rises to nearly 3 inches in January. Sydney has a generally moderate climate but occasionally blasts of hot, dry air will blow in from the Outback, Andrews said. Temperatures can reach triple digits at times during summer, he added. In addition to the world famous Sydney Opera House and ferry rides on the harbor, Sydney boasts a plethora of downtown attractions including museums, historic sights and a vibrant nightlife. "Australia's largest city and the capital of New South Wales could win any visitor over on looks and climate alone," Travel + Leisure stated.