Well, winter has finally reared its ugly head. It took awhile, but that doesn’t mean I have to love it. Though I live in Canada, I should be used to it by now, right? -20°C is not something anyone should ever really get used to. We just learn to deal with it really well 🙂
With the most recent snowmaggedon and the incessant shovelling that followed, getting away from it all and relaxing my mind and body seems to be more appealing to me with each day that passes.
In one of my recent blogs, “It’s a New Year, Time to Wipe the Slate Clean”, I listed taking a vacation as one of the top ten ways to take care of yourself in the new year. As a result, I did some research to find budget-friendly locations that you too might enjoy to take your mind off the cold, Canadian “every day”. Here we go:
- New Orleans – New Orleans is known for its colourful nightlife and incredible food. It really is an amazing place to hang your hat for a few days and let loose. In February, the typical high is around 19°C, and it’s fairly dry, with an average of 6 rainy days throughout the month. Great hotels are around the $150/night mark (though you can likely find cheaper if you hunt a little longer.) And, a return flight is about $500.
- Jamaica – this one doesn’t need much of an explanation because… beaches! Oh, and the food in Jamaica is just unreal. And on a number of vacation websites, all-inclusive trips can be found for less than $1400 for the week.
- Lisbon, Portugal – the culture and history in Europe is like no other place in the world. And Portugal has no shortage of history, amazing food, and the view, of course. Flights are relatively inexpensive, sitting at around $800 for a return flight to Toronto. Hotels can be incredibly affordable, as well. You can live like a queen (or king) for $140 per night. The average temperature in the winter is around 16°C, so although not balmy, it’s still a nice reprieve.
- Greece – with its picturesque white stucco buildings and stunning blue roofs in seaside towns like Santorini, Greece is on the bucket list of many people. Flights into Athens can easily be found for about $675, while gorgeous hotels are available for $100 or less per night. It’s a tad chilly in winter, averaging around 10°C, but there’s still lots to see and enjoy.
- Chile – Here’s somewhere that balmy weather can be found. Adventure and beachy weather, what could be better? In February, the average temperature is between 23° to 29°C, which is just amazing if you ask me. Flights to Santiago are reasonable, sitting around $900 return. And sure like anywhere, you can find expensive hotels, but it’s also not hard to find some that are sub-$100 in the heart of the city. It’s not close, but imagine trekking out to Easter Island while you’re there! What a dream to see.
- George Town, Grand Cayman – It’s home to the most perfect beaches, tasty food, and NO all-inclusive resorts. You can snag a cheap return flight for $500, and find a reasonable AirBnB for $1000 for the week. Then, eat, drink, and enjoy yourself locally for no more money than you’d spend here at home. Oh, and if you go, make some time to take a cruise to Stingray City – it’ll change your life.
- Bucharest, Romania – you wouldn’t typically find this on many travel lists, but it’s remarkably inexpensive and SO culture rich. I mean, Dracula’s castle (Bran Castle) in Transylvania is a cheap day trip from Bucharest ($75USD per person, and organized through most hotels, along with a host of other castles along the way.) The Radisson Blu is an extremely trendy hotel in the heart of Bucharest and is incredibly affordable at just $109 per night, and a return flight can be found for around $700.
- Mexico City – Sure, this may feel like an obvious choice here, but hear me out. There’s a way to do Mexico without being a slave to the all-inclusive resorts that are littered with young, 20-somethings on spring break. Hotels can be found for less than $100 per night, which is certainly attractive. The weather is amazing year round, but in the winter season, the average is around 25°C. And while there, you’ll be able to experience some of the best homemade mexican food you’ll ever have! And a day trip out to Templo Mayor (a 13th-century Aztec temple) should definitely be on your docket.
Now that we’re in the new year, mental health and well-being should be at the top of anyone’s to-do list. Grabbing a friend, getting away and resetting yourself can be an incredibly rewarding experience. Someday soon I’ll tell you about the “Staycation” that I took shortly after my separation!
Have you visited somewhere affordable recently that we missed? What do you look for when you’re researching somewhere new to visit?
As always, I’m here to answer your questions and lead you in the right direction. Remember, you’re not alone. Contact me today!