If you want to enjoy warm evenings outside cafes, snorkelling in the ocean, and long walks on sandy beaches, you will not be able to do it in the UK in February. While we're used to this, it doesn't mean we can't do something about it by swapping the drizzle of the UK for the warm weather of places like Greece, Phuket, and the Mediterranean.
To help you find the perfect February winter sun holiday, we've put together a list of places that offer excellent hotels, sunny road trips, and beautiful beaches. Ideal if you want to spend your winter months enjoying warm weather, overseas nightlife, hours of sunshine, and maybe even some water sports to keep you smiling and moving.
The Caribbean has to be seen to be believed
At a time of year when the UK barely scrapes into double-figure temperatures, most of the Caribbean is up towards a warm and welcome 30°C. Not only is it one of the world's most popular winter sun destinations if you're not fixed on taking a short-haul flight, but it's also ideal if you want to avoid the hustle and bustle of a city break.
Life in the Caribbean moves more slowly than back at home, giving it a sense of escapism and timeless charm hard to find elsewhere. Ideal if you want to rest and relax so you can recharge your batteries after the non-stop Christmas period.
We spoke to Jason and Sekai from JUMP INTO THE MAP, who had this tip for Age Times readers: "In February, enjoy 30°C sunshine as you relax on the sandy beaches of Grenada. Known as the Isle of Spice, Grenada is a hidden treasure unspoilt, the tri-island destination of Grenada, Carriacou, and Petite Martinique. It is home to amazing waterfalls, clear turquoise seas, aromatic spices such as Nutmeg, and organic chocolate."
Morocco is closer to home, and close to your heart
This beautiful little corner of the world is home to Marrakech - a tourist hotspot if ever there were one. You'll find architecture dating back centuries, plenty of incredible sights, and a variety of local cuisine just waiting to be sampled by you and your travel companions.
Morocco is ideal if you want a getaway with a modest flight time of approximately three hours. Look a little further east, and you'll find Egypt, which also offers you a whole host of incredible tourist sights...
The Great Pyramid is ready to be explored
This UNESCO World Heritage Site is one many of us dream of visiting when the winter months close in and it's freezing at home. As well as taking in the pyramids, river cruises allow you to take in the sites of the River Nile, offering sightseeing opportunities you'll remember for the rest of your life.
Luxury hotels are everywhere in Egypt, as are sunbathing opportunities for those of you looking to take a break and enjoy a good book every once in a while.
Abu Dhabi is usually 30°C or above
If you want to live in the lap of luxury throughout February, this is the place to do it. Here you'll find everything from indoor theme parks to fully air-conditioned shopping malls, which means you can relax and cool down if the sunshine and desert heat get a little too much. And because you'll be visiting out of season, you won't get overrun by tourists and sun seekers if you want to do things at your own pace.
An island getaway could be just what you need
Tenerife, Lanzarote, Gran Canaria, Madeira. The list could go on and on. The beauty of it is that each island offers you something different, and they'll all be out of season in February, in contrast to the large numbers of tourists that descend on them in the summer months. This means the prices are lower, the hotels are quieter, and it's much easier to get a table at your favourite restaurant just around the corner from your hotel.
For those of you who want island charm but with a little more space to explore, there's also Malta. As the gateway to the Mediterranean, it gets the full benefits of the North African heat throughout February. Ideal when you want to enjoy feeling warm in a single layer while everyone is wrapped up back home.
For those looking to experience the perfect combination of culture, cuisine, and coastal charm, heading to one of the many resorts in Mexico is a great idea. Some use it to finish a long road trip starting in the US; others fly straight there when they want a little more sunshine and warmth.
Whether it's the hustle and bustle of Mexico City or the likes of Cancun and Cozumel on the coast, the choice is yours. Perfect when you want to give yourself various options, each of which will give you temperatures consistently above 20°C with little or no chance of rain or cloud.
Portugal is a great option to consider
You don't have to speak fluent Portuguese to have fun here in the winter months because the sunshine will never leave you. There's hardly any rain, particularly towards the southern coast. Ideal if you want to head out in a single layer, explore the sights and sounds of Lisbon, or head over to the coast and walk the sandy beaches.
Thailand is perfect if you're happy with long-haul travel
If you don't mind a long-haul flight and maybe a couple of connections along the way, Thailand is the place to go. Temperatures in the thirties, stunning culture and architecture and vibrant nightlife are available here.
One thing to bear in mind is the humidity, which marks it out from some of the other destinations on our list. If you don't mind it, add Thailand to your February holiday shortlist without delay. But if you're concerned it might sap your energy a little too much, look for coastal resorts instead of more urban areas. That way, you can take the edge off things thanks to a cooling sea breeze that will arrive at just the right time.
The key to finding somewhere hot in February
The best travel advice we can give you is to look for whatever will make you smile at this time of year. It could be an exciting city break, endless sandy beaches, or just the chance to swap the winter chill for warm weather and glowing sunshine. Once you've drawn up a quick shortlist of what you want, you can have a quick read of our recommendations and start adding a few of our options to your shortlist. Work through it a few times over a coffee, and you'll be booking your tickets before you know it.