Where to Go in January: The 15 Most Romantic Locations

The romantic month of January is the ideal time to go on vacation with your chosen travel companion, whether you want to enjoy the chilly weather or flee to a tropical island. Regardless if you’ve been seeing your sweetheart for a while or have decided to propose to her, January is the perfect time for the two of you to go on an intimate getaway.

Levi, Finland

What could possibly be more romantic than cuddling up in a glass igloo and admiring the spectacular Northern Lights? In addition to luxurious facilities like heated floors, heated non-fogging glass, and an air conditioner if things get a little too warm, the roomy igloos in Lapland have sitting spaces, kitchenettes, ensuite bathrooms, and shutters for privacy. Want to spend one or two nights outside the bubble? The local tourism office can help you reserve exciting winter activities like husky dog sledding, snowmobile safaris, and reindeer sleigh rides.

Cape Town, South Africa

What’s not to love about wine, wildlife, and magnificent natural surroundings? And with temperatures in the 70s and no possibility of rain, January is smack dab in the thick of South Africa’s summer. Visit Tokara and Boschendal wineries while spending the day visiting the renowned Cape Winelands. Other must-do activities include exploring the vibrant Bo-Kaap district of Cape Malays, seeing the penguins at Boulders Beach, and riding the cable car up Table Mountain at sunset. Retire to the Tintswalo Atlantic, the only hotel inside Table Mountain National Park, as night falls. There are just 11 suites on the site, and each one is breathtaking with stunning views of the dramatic surroundings.

Ko Kut, Thailand

Usually overlooked in favor of larger, busier islands, this uninhabited island off the southeast coast of Thailand is ideal for romance. You won’t find more immaculate dunes or cleaner water anyplace else in Thailand than in January, when the weather is optimal (pleasant temps, little rain). Stay at Shantaa, which in Hindi means “tranquility,” where the beautiful surroundings and spacious lodgings live up to the name. Each “sweet” (a play on the word “suite”) has a garden bathroom that is open to the outdoors, complete with a rain shower and an outdoor soaking tub for two. Instead of televisions, private terraces make it simple to converse with one another without being interrupted.

Rajasthan, India

Rajasthan is one of the dreamiest regions of the globe, known for its elaborate palaces, vibrant cities (Jaipur is known as the “Pink City,” Jodhpur as the “Blue City,” and Jaisalmer as the “Golden City”), and striking desert vistas. And one of the best months to travel is January. With little probability of rain, daytime temperatures range from 60 to 80 degrees. Consider boarding a luxury train for your trip if you want to simplify traveling across the sizable state of Rajasthan. With gilded coaches that have just undergone renovations for the 2018 season, Palace on Wheels, the oldest and most recognizable of India’s luxury train companies, provides week-long itineraries leaving from New Delhi that will make you feel like the maharajas of old.

Lanai, Hawaii

You’ll spend your tropical vacation at the Four Seasons Resort Lana’i, which is the only hotel on the smallest populated island in Hawaii. The five-star experience starts at the Honolulu airport, where travelers are given to a VIP lounge with food, drinks, Wi-Fi, charging stations, and televisions while they wait for their puddle-jumper connections to Lanai. Once on the island, a car with your personal “ambassador,” who will serve as your concierge the entire time, will be waiting. Although we wouldn’t blame you if you only wanted to stay at the resort, he or she can organize all of your island excursions (by helicopter, UTV, or horseback).

Soneva Jani, Maldives

If you have the means to travel, go to the Maldives—it might be the stuff that dreams are made of. If you can, live it up. Soneva Jani, the newest addition to the upscale Soneva brand, appeals to the child in all of us. The “smallest” of the 24 enormous homes, which start at an enormous 4,478 square feet, has retractable roofs over the bedroom for the best stargazing on clear January nights and a 20-foot infinity pool. Even water slides that descend from the top deck directly into the glistening ocean are available in the larger villas. You’ll even have date nights set up with an outdoor theater to watch a movie and an on-site astronomer to discuss the constellations over a candlelit picnic meal.

Whistler, Canada

Whistler is the ideal location for couples who would rather zip down mountains at heart-pounding speeds than bask around in the sun. The top-rated ski resort offers 8,000 acres of skiable land and more than 200 trails. But there is also a ton of amorous action off-piste. Book a dog sled or horse-drawn sleigh ride, go snowshoeing on wilderness routes to find your own piece of winter heaven, or visit the Scandinave Spa to relax your aching muscles. Are you sick of having romantic dinners without a heart-pounding adventure? Order a fondue on a snowmobile. You and your companion will ride to Crystal Hut, a quaint log cottage positioned 6,000 feet above Blackcomb Mountain, where you will have fondue while listening to live music before descending the mountain in a hurry.

Sedona, Arizona

What better spot to refuel and replenish during the winter than Sedona, where it is rumored that the red rocks emit particular healing energies? Comfortably mild temperatures in the 50s are experienced in January, but you can also be lucky enough to witness Sedona’s famed rust-colored landscape sprinkled with snow. Winter is a particularly enticing time to visit because there are less tourists and cheaper accommodation costs. At the Enchantment Resort, take in the distinctive red rocks straight from your casita while being pampered in the 24,000 square foot Mii Amo Spa. You’ll never be bored at the resort because there are so many free activities available, like sommelier-hosted wine tastings, guided hikes, workshops in photography, painting, and cookery, and food demonstrations.

Patagonia, Chile

What could be more romantic than making the ultimate sacrifice for your loved one, or better yet, with them? In January, when summer is in full swing and the weather is moderate, Patagonia, a destination for nature lovers and adrenaline addicts, is the best place to embark on an outdoor adventure. The main attraction in Chile’s Torres del Paine National Park is nature: a wild place with snow-capped mountains, turquoise lakes, golden grasslands, and ice-blue glaciers, as well as fauna like flamingos, pumas, and guanacos that resemble llamas. Stay close to the activity at Awasi Patagonia, which offers breathtaking views of the park’s namesake granite peaks that shine pinkish-red at daybreak. You will be able to concentrate on each other’s companionship because Wi-Fi in this area can be sporadic.

Inn at Little Washington, Virginia

Take heed, gourmets: your bed and breakfast’s food doesn’t have to be forgettable. When you stay at the Inn at Little Washington, you’ll get difficult-to-get dinner reservations at the inn’s restaurant, which is run by renowned chef Patrick O’Connell. Originally a small business that operated out of a garage conversion, it has since amassed two Michelin stars thanks to dishes like carpaccio of herb-crusted baby lamb with Caesar salad ice cream. You will receive a special menu if you decide to dine at the inn more than once, so you won’t have to order the same thing twice (unless you want to). Take dessert to go and go straight to your room to enjoy a glass of wine by the fire.

Soufrière, St. Lucia

Because they are constructed with just three walls, the suites at Jade Mountain Resort provide visitors with unrivaled views of the island’s recognizable twin Pitons. Your own personal infinity pool replaces that fourth wall and melds with the tropical scenery. Although you might be tempted to spend the entire day in your suite (after all, they are called “sanctuaries”), these lavish accommodations also come with a dedicated concierge who can book everything from rum tastings and cooking classes to diving and mountain biking trips. Even sailing on the exclusive resort yacht is an option.

Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy

Cortina d’Ampezzo has a low-key atmosphere with lots of European charm but lacking the pomp and glamor of other European ski resorts (cozy cafes and upscale boutiques in piazzas flanked by 18th-century churches). Celebrities like Sinatra, Audrey Hepburn, and most lately George Clooney have been drawn to it. You can see the imposing Dolomite mountains piercing the horizon from anyplace in town. The ancient Cristallo hotel received a makeover in the spring of 2017, and now offers newly renovated suites with views of the magnificent Dolomites in the distance, blond wood paneling, hand-painted flower embellishments, marble baths with heated floors, and a chalet-like ambience.

Barnard, Vermont

The Barnard resort Twin Farms sets the bar incredibly high for a picture-perfect New England escape. Twin Farms is an adults-only, all-inclusive bed and breakfast that seeks to give guests the impression that they are staying at their second home. It is difficult to resist the urge to settle down. Each of the 20 homes, which are scattered across 300 acres of picturesque Vermont countryside, feels incredibly isolated. Nothing is too much to ask for, and everything can be handled. The service is perfect but unobtrusive. Gourmet breakfasts, lunches that may be customized and delivered anywhere you like, and farm-to-table dinners with wine pairings and evening cocktails are all included in the price of your stay. Enjoy the Bridge House Spa to restore skin that has been dried out by the winter’s elements; ask for a private soak for two in the Japanese furo bath.

San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

This quaint colonial city, one of Mexico’s prettiest, features Spanish architecture, winding cobblestone streets, lively markets, an outstanding food scene, and many festivals that highlight the city’s rich culture. Plus, January is a terrific time to travel with temperatures in the 70s and little likelihood of rain. To sample inventive reinterpretations of traditional Mexican dishes, book a romantic meal for two at Enrique Olvera’s Moxi. After that, retire to the Rosewood, a 13-acre property covered in bougainvilleas and built to resemble a typical hacienda. The large rooms have magnificent Spanish colonial furnishings, hardwood ceilings, and floors that were acquired locally. There is also a rooftop bar with Instagram-worthy sunset views, a spa, and an award-winning restaurant.

Porto, Portugal

Unbelievably, Porto is the ideal, reasonably priced getaway, and it’s only over the pond. Not only is it one of Europe’s least expensive towns, but visiting in January also entitles you to low-season savings on lodging and travel. The only thing you need to do to feel romantic is walk hand in hand through the narrow cobblestone alleyways. You should stay at the wine-themed Yeatman Hotel because it is the birthplace of Portugal’s well-known fortified wine. It has one of the best wine vaults in the nation with 29,000 bottles and a vinotherapy spa that employs wine, grapes, and grape seeds in treatments. Everywhere you look, including the indoor and outdoor infinity pools, there is a view of the Douro River because the hotel is built into a hillside above it.

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