Hitting the slopes for a good ski session or walking through a winter wonderland is all well and good, but what about good old fashioned fun in the sun? Sure, it may be nothing but chilly temperatures and snowfall in your neck of the woods, but these ten locales provide warmer climates and even warmer sun to soak up. Don’t worry about soaking up too much – you can always take some of the sunshine back with you when you’re ready to head home!
While there are many cruises that are selling out quickly, it is possible to get last minute cruise reservations to bring in the New Year right — after all, cruises often have cancellations and it can be a great way to get an amazing vacation at a reduced price that you won’t find advertised widely. With the right New Year’s cruise deal, you’ll save so much money you might even be able to bring a friend!
Below is a list of top travel destinations that should get your brain thinking about all the wonderful things to do on vacation – don’t forget your sunscreen!
This hot holiday destination is one of the most overlooked cruise destinations — while other popular travel spots like Hawaii and Bali are crowd favorites, there’s plenty of features about a cruise trip to Prague that make it worth a second look. Many cruises offer a long tour of the river that curves around the city, along with a traditional Czech meal course. After all, part of the fun of traveling is tasting exotic dishes that you can’t get at home! The fireworks show over the river is also a sight that has to be observed firsthand. While this location is not as warm as the others on the list, it’s a must add to your list simply for the rich, scenic views of the riverfront.
The land down under makes a great cruise destination — if you’re coming from the northern hemisphere, you’ll find that your December and early January will really feel more like June and July. Australia enjoys their seasons in reverse, making this a perfect chance to really get away for some fun in the sun. Once you get to port, there’s plenty of activities to do and culture to see. Don’t forget to stay peeled for the grand fireworks display in Sydney Harbor that happens every year — it’s bigger than just about any other show on earth!
3. Costa Rica
This hidden jewel provides mixes a nice moderate climate with exotic culture and delicious food. On your cruise you’ll get the opportunity to try out a number of different activities, including snorkeling and diving. Beautiful coral and underwater life await you in crystal clear blue waters, but if the water isn’t your thing there’s plenty of fun waiting for you on shore as well. Sightseeing is an absolute must if you’re going to Costa Rica – the lush tropical paradise holds enough unique plants and animals to keep your camera busy for a long time. While it does not get as much attention as other travel destinations around it, Costa Rica is a peaceful island that is definitely worth visiting.
When an island belongs to a group of over 17 thousand other islands, one thing is certain: that island has to be pretty special to rise to the top! That island is Bali, part of the greater island chain of Indonesia. Bali has long been held as one of the many great treasures of the South Pacific, for numerous reasons. For starters, the unique culture of Bali blends many Hindu elements with the dominant ethnic Balinese culture to create a very unique style in art, music, and entertainment that is like no where else on earth. The food would also fit into this category, benefiting from the ethnic diversity of this beautiful island as well as the unique types of plants that flourish here. History fans will fall in love with the many temples and old architecture that still dot the landscape providing a strong link to the past.
This is one cruise destination where it is absolutely critical to get off the cruise ship and explore the island as much as possible. The people are extremely friendly and since tourism makes up a big part of Bali’s economy, many are more than happy to help a lost tourist find their way again.
With constant pictures of dreary snow and ice, who isn’t ready for the beach? You’ll find plenty of beaches to explore in Antigua, an island that prides itself on providing a top notch luxury experience that will be discussed for months, even years to come.
Snorkeling, scuba diving, and just regular old swimming are all popular water-based activities in Antigua. On land, sightseers will be interested to see the mix of European, Portuguese, and African cultures that blend together here, with a strong British core rising to the top. In addition, many American trends have also made their way into Antigua, so first-time cruise travelers will be comforted to know that those they meet during their stay here will know exactly what to do to help make their stay extremely pleasant. The lush tropical paradise of the island gives way to unique crops and even more unique cuisine choices, and the feeling of being plugged into familiar culture makes Antigua even more appealing. This travel destination is highly recommended for first time cruise travelers that want to experience luxury at its finest from every angle, while being protected by a culture that definitely knows how to take good care of the tourists that visit year around.
6. Auckland or Wellington
These two jewels of New Zealand are mentioned as a double feature because it’s really hard to choose between them! Auckland is the largest city, while Wellington holds the proud distinction of being the capital of the country itself. No matter which country you choose you’ll be treated to an interesting blend of food, culture, and architecture. New Zealand ranks very high on just about every list when it comes to the overall cleanliness of the cities, the standard of living, and general happiness of the people. If you’re a sailing fan, Auckland is also known as the City of Sails and features numerous nautical shows and activities to keep you busy. Don’t forget about the rich history of the country itself — the indigenous culture’s influence can still be felt in between all the other modern touches, making New Zealand a perfect cruise destination for New Year’s Eve.
7. Rio De Janeiro
Carnival isn’t the only time of year when Rio sizzles — the vibrant citizens of Rio know how to make New Year’s Eve light up in a big way! Rio is home to not only world class restaurants, but a fiery, vibrant Latin dance culture that highlights samba along with other dance forms. The diverse mixture of European, African, Caribbean and Latin cultures makes for surprises at every turn — it is almost guaranteed that with everything available to do in Rio, you won’t be bored!
This city has a very unique composition — it is actually seven beautiful islands connected to each other. The home of Bollywood screen glamor and a bustling core of nightlife and activity almost around the clock, Mumbai is a perfect New Year’s cruise destination. There’s no reason not to travel here — no matter what you’re looking for, generally Mumbai will have an activity to suit your needs. Art fans will definitely appreciate the number of museums and open air art viewings available in the city’s main core. World class restaurants await those with a true heart for fine dining, offering exotic dishes that have to be experienced firsthand in order to be fully appreciated.
This beautiful chain of islands so close to the American mainland has been a favorite of many travelers for decades. The warm breeze, lush tropical paradise and constant sun are just some of the reasons why it’s such a crowd favorite. Many cruises traveling during New Year’s Eve offer a real Hawaiian experience, letting people from all walks of life see the best of Hawaiian culture, including authentic fire-pit barbecue and luau shows.
There are beautiful coral reefs and underwater life if you’re interested in exploring the depths of the sea, but there’s also more to do on land. The relative small size of Hawaii’s islands makes it possible to explore multiple islands over the course of your cruise. This is a great destination especially for American tourists that want to get away from home without leaving their home country, ideally getting the best of both worlds.
Sailing into the New Year on a beautiful cruise liner with twelve beautiful and untouched months ahead of you is one of the best feelings in the world – millions of people all over have taken this special time of year to say goodbye to a year gone by and hello to the bright future ahead – why not join them?