Africa & The Middle East | Inspiration

These are the warmest countries to visit in December for winter sun

Sure, the glittering snow, twinkling lights and mulled wine of winter have a charming appeal. But even the staunchest of winter fans can only stand the cold weather and minimal sunshine for so long. If white sand sounds more appealing than a white Christmas – or if you’re just in need of a strong dose of vitamin D – look no further. We’ve gone to the far-flung corners of the globe in search of the warmest countries to visit in December. From the sizzling cities of Australia and Brazil that come alive in their summer time, to the balmy beaches of Thailand and Zanzibar, here is where to bask in the glorious winter sun in December.

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Australia

If you’re looking for the warmest countries to visit in December, you’ll find it in the Land Down Under. The country’s summer season runs from December to February, with blazing temperatures and sunshine all the way through. In December, you’ll get temperatures ranging from 27°C on the East Coast to over 30°C on the sunny West Coast. And with balmy backyard barbeques, cricket on the beach, and sparkling swimming pools, there’s nothing quite like Christmas in Australia. Whether you want to go snorkelling in the Great Barrier Reef, beach-hopping in Sydney, or sipping cocktails on rooftop bars in Melbourne, you’ll have a blast in Australia’s warm December weather.

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Thailand

Dreaming of soaking up some winter sun in December this year? It’s got to be Thailand. Famed for its tropical islands, turquoise waters, and white sandy beaches, Thailand is a paradise for sun-seekers. November to February is the country’s “winter” season – but it’s not what you’re thinking. The temperatures still range from 30-35°C and humidity drops to 50% – 60%, making this one of the greatest December travel destinations. Instead of huddling by the fireplace this December, why not lounge in a hammock on the beach in Thailand instead?

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Brazil

There are few better places to banish your winter blues than Brazil. This steamy country is one of the warmest places in the world in December, with cities like Rio de Janeiro sizzling at 30- 34ºC daily. Swap your coats for your swimsuits and claim your patch of golden sand on iconic beaches like Copacabana and Ipanema. Learn how to surf or sail, or simply lounge on the sand with refreshing ​​Caipirinha cocktails. Then dive into the buzzing culture and nightlife every evening. If this sounds like a December summer paradise – it’s because it truly is! 

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Tanzania

Sick of snow and gloomy weather? When you visit Tanzania in December, it’s guaranteed that the only ice you’ll see is in your cocktails. This extraordinary East African country is one of the best December travel destinations, where national parks and sugary white beaches are lit up in the summer sunshine. You can expect average temperatures of around 30ºC, perfect for spotting the Big Five in the famous national parks like the Serengeti and Tarangire. Or why not skip over to Zanzibar, where you can bliss out on some of the world’s most stunning beaches and islands. Whether you want to go on a romantic sailing trip at sunset or get lost in the vibrant markets of Stone Town, this is a winter sun getaway you’ll never forget.

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Hawaii, USA

While it’s technically not a country, Hawaii is certainly one of the warmest places to visit in December. It’s actually one of the colder months in Hawaii, but you’ll still score average daytime temperatures around 24-27ºC… Perfect for relaxing in the winter sun. Plus, it’s one of the best months to go whale watching or see the pro surfers take on the massive waves. You can even enjoy a very unique Christmas with Santa arriving on a canoe and brightly decorated boats at the ​​Festival of Lights Christmas Boat Parade.

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Costa Rica

Costa Rica may be one of the warmest countries to visit in December – but that’s just the start of what makes this country so incredible. From the sandy beaches and steaming volcanoes to the lush jungles teeming with wildlife like monkeys, sloths and toucans, Costa Rica is an adventure lover’s paradise. With average temperatures ranging around 25ºC, you’ll get a good dose of vitamin D while chasing all the thrills of Costa Rica.

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Vietnam

Why shovel snow this December when you could be sailing around the spectacular islands of Vietnam? December is one of the cooler months in Vietnam… But that just means you’ll get pleasant temperatures ranging from 22ºC in northern Hanoi to 26-31ºC in southern Ho Chi Minh City. It’s perfect for exploring the emerald rice fields and ancient architecture and lounging on the white sandy beaches, and indulging in delicious street food like phở and banh mi. You’ll feel totally rejuvenated after basking in the winter sun in Vietnam this December. 

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South Africa

Summer is in full swing by December in South Africa, making this a magical time to visit this gorgeous country. You’ll get the golden beaches, lush vineyards, soaring mountains, and wildlife-dotted national parks – all against the backdrop of sunshine and blue skies. The average temperature in the cities like Cape Town and Johanessburg sits around 25°C, but it can get even warmer in places like Kruger National Park. Whether you want to sip your way around the Cape Winelands, ride a cable car up Table Mountain, or spot the Big Five on safari, South Africa is undoubtedly one of the warmest countries to visit in December.

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Argentina

Ready to escape somewhere warm this winter for a much-needed fix of vitamin D? Head to Argentina. Summer kicks off in December in Argentina, and by the end of the month, you’ll be relishing the sunny temperatures around 28°C. Go hiking in the spectacular landscapes of Patagonia. Dive into generous steaks and sip superb red wine in the glowing vineyards of Mendoza. Or turn up the heat with a sultry tango hall session in Buenos Aires. With endless festive events throughout the month, you can bring back the summer party vibes in December in Argentina. 

What are your favourite December travel destinations and tours to soak up the winter sun? Let us know in the comments below!

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