The good news? Many of the warm places in January you might want to visit are either in the US, or are located in countries Americans can visit. The better news? Skyscanner has assembled this scannable, sharable list, which will make planning your trip a (balmy) breeze.
Before we get started, we’d like to remind you once again to check government guidelines before booking travel. Although many airlines and hotels are offering flexible terms and conditions right now, it’s better to avoid having to request cancelation in the first place!
January destinations to warm you up
- Austin, TX
- Miami Beach, FL
- San Diego, CA
- Savannah, GA
- Sedona, AZ
- South Padre Island, TX
- Puerto Rico
- Baja California
- Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
- Tulum, Mexico
1. Austin, TX
Why you should visit: If Austin tops your list of January destinations, we have a couple of pieces of advice. If it’s typically warm, kayak out onto Lady Bird Lake, or watch the bats emerge from the Congress Avenue Bridge. On chillier days (which, admittedly, are rare here), the open-air design of The Domain’s designer shops is perfect for COVID-era retail therapy. Check out a full list of Austin hotels.
Average January high temperature: 61ºF
2. Miami Beach, FL
Why you should visit: The only thing better than the white sands, turquoise waters, and Art Deco hotels of Miami’s legendary South Beach? Visiting in January, after the Christmas and New Year vacationers have left but before the crowds of Spring Break arrive. January is also an excellent time to take a Florida Keys road trip.
Average January high temperature: 74ºF
3. San Diego, CA
Why you should visit: More than perhaps any of our other picks for January destinations, San Diego offers something for everyone. Beach bums will enjoy an afternoon at La Jolla Cove, while urbanites might prefer a stroll through Balboa Park or the iconic Gaslamp District (which is home to some of San Diego’s best hotels).
Average January high temperature: 66ºF
4. Savannah, GA
Why you should visit: When it comes to warm places in January, Savannah has it all, from culture (haunted hotels and the legendary SCAD Museum of Art) to nature (who doesn’t love the city’s hanging Spanish moss), to down-home Southern food. Craving the beach? Rent a car and drive to nearby Tybee Island.
Average January high temperature: 61ºF
5. Sedona, AZ
Why you should visit: When we classify Arizona’s Sedona among warm places to visit in January, we aren’t just talking about the temperature (at least during the daytime—you’ll need a jacket at night). Native American attractions like Honaki Heritage Site exude a profound spiritual warmth, to say nothing of our favorite Sedona hotels.
Average January high temperature: 60ºF
6. South Padre Island, TX
Why you should visit: This famous Spring Break destination is downright dead during the first weeks of the year, which is an opportunity to see this party hub in its calm form. We recommend choosing a cozy South Padre hotel—while some warm places in January lend themselves to sightseeing, travelers visit the Texas Coast to chill.
Average January high temperature: 69ºF
7. Puerto Rico
Why you should visit: From the cobbled streets of San Juan, to the paradisiacal beaches of Vieques, Puerto Rico brings the travel heat no matter what the weather’s doing. Unlike other Caribbean warm places in January we’ve listed, Puerto Rico doesn’t require a passport, though you will need to take some COVID-specific measures before departing.
Average January high temperature: 81ºF
Why you should visit: With outstanding beaches, unique Dutch-Caribbean heritage, and easy-to-follow COVID-19 entry requirements, Aruba is among the most unique of the warm places in January you can visit. After toasting your skin in the sun, warm your belly with classic Aruban cuisine like pastechi pastry pockets, or fresh grilled Caribbean lobster.
Average January high temperature: 86ºF
9. Baja California
Why you should visit: Whether you’re searching for warm places to visit in January or any other month, catching a flight to balmy Baja California, Mexico will raise your temperature. Boat around the famous arch of Cabo San Lucas, or say a socially-distanced “cheers” (salud en español) at a cantina in Acapulco.
Average January high temperature: 80ºF
10. Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Why you should visit: Punta Cana is so much more than a beautiful beach—why not ride horses amid towering palm trees, or zipline over them? As is the case with other international destinations, the Dominican Republic requires a bit of COVID-specific preparation.
Average January high temperature: 84ºF
11. Tulum, Mexico
Why you should visit: Many destinations on Mexico’s Yucatan could earn a spot among top warm places in January, but eclectic Tulum is our pick. If you tire of warm cyan water washing powdery sand off your feet (however unlikely that is), you can explore ancient ruins—these offer stunning sunrise views if you don’t mind getting up early!
Average January high temperature: 83ºF
FAQ about warm-weather January escapes
In addition to the warm places in January we’ve mentioned above, Southern hemisphere destinations such as Australia, Brazil, and South Africa experience summer in January. However, travel restrictions or the COVID cases in a particular place might preclude visits to these countries in January 2021.
Southern US states such as Florida, Texas, and Arizona can regularly experience highs over 80ºF in January. Additionally, Hawaii can be downright balmy in January.
The Warmest January Destinations: A Recap
Let’s recap the amazing weather you’ll enjoy during the first month of the year at these destinations, shall we? Click the name of any destination to be taken back to its description.
|Destination||Average January High|
|Miami Beach, FL||74ºF|
|San Diego, CA||66ºF|
|South Padre Island, TX||69ºF|
|Punta Cana, Dominican Republic||84ºF|
Whether or not you end up booking a trip to these warm places in January, reading about them will warm your heart as the chill of winter knocks. Winter warmth takes many forms in and around the United States, from more traditional beach destinations in Florida and the Caribbean to cultural cities like Savannah and spiritual Sedona, in the Arizona desert. If, on the other hand, you’re ready to bite the travel bullet, you might be wishing January was longer!
Where can I travel right now?
The good news? Destinations around the world are starting to re-open their borders to tourists. The better news? Whether you want to venture far, or prefer to stay closer to home, Skyscanner’s beautiful and helpful new travel restrictions map keeps you up to date with the latest government regulations.
Want to read more?
Even if you don’t even up venturing out in January, there’s never a bad time for inspiration. Check out some of Skyscanner’s best travel articles:
- Coronavirus travel advice: Everything you need to know about staying safe (and sane!) if you travel during COVID-19
- The best small towns in America: The easiest way to social distance? Go to places with more charm than people!
- The 11 best beach hotels in the US: Pandemic or not, there’s never a bad excuse to get some Vitamin Sea.