For many Americans, the winter is a time of staying indoors, of braving the cold, wind, snow, and sleet when necessary, of limited daylight hours and, in general, a slow pace of life. Many, however, would like things to be a bit different and, by the time the holidays are over, many begin getting a bit of cabin fever. While there are always winter outdoor activities to engage in, like skiing, snowshoeing, sledding, etc., others like to get away from cold weather altogether. For those seeking some good destinations within the US, here are some prime places to visit that offer both sunny, warm weather, and plenty of things to do.
San Diego, California
Locals sometimes joke that a thermometer is a waste of money in San Diego. Chances are good that if it's not summer, the skies will be clear and sunny and the temperature will be hovering somewhere in the 60s or 70s. Oddly, though it remains warm in the autumn and winter, San Diego is not terribly hot in the summer either, making it a good destination just about year round. But if 70 degrees and sunny sounds good to you as you huddle around your fireplace, San Diego may be a great choice to get away from it all. While there will be a greater chance of rain during the winter months in San Diego, there is still significantly less rainfall during this time of year in San Diego than in most Eastern cities.
The Florida Keys in winter are also very predictable. If the temperature happens to dip down into the 50s, which happens occasionally, locals will be bundled up in coats, hats and gloves while visitors will probably be strolling about in long-sleeved t-shirts and enjoying the relative warmth. The most likely weather in the Keys in winter, however, will be sunny and in the 70s. Daily rain is nearly a given, though a thoroughly soaking all-day rain happens only occasionally. The Keys also offer many winter vacation options, from very, very relaxed (Sugarloaf, as an example) to hard-partying (think Key West).
The 'Redneck Riviera'
Affectionately known as the 'Redneck Riviera', the gulf coast of Alabama and Mississippi offers relative warmth as well as casino gambling. Technically, the term 'Redneck Riviera' refers to the 'Emerald Coast' of Florida, in the Pensacola area, but has since grown to encompass all three states. Some have even added Louisiana to the mix. Regardless of your destination, from New Orleans to Pensacola, the weather is relatively warm.
Texas Gulf Coast
Galveston and Corpus Christi most often show up in the national news as part of Hurricane warnings, but after the fall season ends, both cities and the surrounding areas offer warmth, beaches, and sun. Much different from Texas' heartland, the gulf coast of Texas is more akin to other beach resort areas in the South and in Florida. Palm trees, tropical drinks, and Tiki bars are the norm, and they are waiting for the snow birds from the north.
As the quintessential US warm-weather getaway, Hawaii is somewhat less accessible than the other destinations mentioned, as it requires either a flight or a long cruise to get there. On arriving, however, the atmosphere is unlike any other city in the US, as the Pacific islands offer their own version of warm-weather fun and adventure. An excellent destination for adventurers and hikers, Hawaii's various islands offer a wealth of opportunities for fun or relaxation and, of course, great weather for those seeking to get away from snow and cold weather.