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10 winter sun cruise destinations

Sailing towards the sun: Top winter sun cruise destinations for a warm getaway

Published on 17 Nov 2023

As the winter chill sets in, the idea of escaping to a sunny, warm destination becomes increasingly appealing. Winter sun cruises offer the perfect antidote to the cold weather blues, combining the luxury of a cruise with the allure of tropical destinations. Here are some of the most popular winter sun cruise destinations to consider for your next getaway: 

Top winter sun cruise destinations

The Caribbean

A tropical paradise: The Caribbean is the quintessential winter sun destination, boasting crystal clear waters, sandy beaches and a vibrant culture. From the laid-back rhythms of Jamaica to the luxurious feel of the Bahamas, every island offers a unique experience. 

Must-visit islands: Don’t miss the chance to visit St. Lucia for its stunning Pitons, Barbados for its British colonial history and the Dominican Republic for its fusion of Spanish, African and Taino cultures. 

South East Asia

An exotic escape: South East Asia is a haven for cruisers looking for an exotic winter escape. This region offers everything from bustling cities and historic temples to serene beaches and lush landscapes.

Highlights: Thailand’s bustling street markets, Vietnam’s Halong Bay and the ancient temples of Cambodia and Myanmar are must-sees. Don’t forget Singapore, a melting pot of cultures and one of Asia’s most modern cities. 

The South Pacific

Island hopping: The South Pacific, with its array of idyllic islands, is a dream destination. These islands are the epitome of paradise, offering a relaxed pace of life amidst natural beauty.

Islands to explore: Fiji, with its friendly locals and beautiful coral reefs, Bora Bora in French Polynesia for luxury resorts and the diverse landscapes of New Zealand are highlights of the South Pacific. 

The Canary Islands

A European delight: Off the northwest coast of Africa, the Canary Islands are a popular choice for European cruisers. These Spanish islands offer a perfect winter getaway with their mild climate and diverse landscapes.

What to expect: Tenerife has stunning Teide National Park, Lanzarote offers unique volcanic landscapes and Gran Canaria is known for its bustling beaches and dunes. 


Down Under exploration: Australia’s vast coastline offers an array of experiences, from bustling cities to iconic natural wonders. Cruising in Australia during the winter months means enjoying summer in the Southern Hemisphere.

Don’t miss: The Great Barrier Reef, Sydney’s iconic harbour, Melbourne’s cultural scene and the unspoiled beauty of Tasmania

The Middle East

A blend of tradition and modernity: The Middle East offers a unique winter sun destination with its combination of rich history, culture and modern luxury. 

Key destinations: Dubai for its futuristic architecture and luxury shopping, Oman for its traditional culture and beautiful landscapes and the historic Suez Canal as a transit route.

South America

A continent of contrasts: South America, with its diverse cultures, landscapes and wildlife, offers a unique cruising experience. From vibrant cities to stunning natural wonders, there’s much to explore.

Highlights: The Amazon River for a jungle adventure, the beaches of Brazil and the fascinating history of the Inca civilisation in Peru.


A cultural feast: Mexico is a fantastic destination for winter sun cruisers, offering beautiful beaches, historic ruins and a vibrant culture. 

Must-see: The Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza, the beautiful beaches of Cozumel and the cultural heritage of cities like Cancun and Playa del Carmen.

The Indian Ocean

Island paradise: The islands of the Indian Ocean, including the Maldives, Seychelles and Mauritius, offer picture-perfect settings for a winter sun cruise.

Experiences: Stunning beaches, underwater exploration and unique wildlife, alongside luxurious resorts and spas.


Aloha spirit: Hawaii, with its warm aloha spirit, is a perennial favourite for winter sun seekers. Each island offers a different vibe, from the bustling beaches of Waikiki in Oahu to the volcanic landscapes of the Big Island.

Don’t miss: Pearl Harbour for a touch of history, Maui for its stunning beaches and the Road to Hana and Kauai for the breathtaking Waimea Canyon. 

Top tips for winter sun cruise destinations

  1. Book early: Winter is a peak season for cruising, so it’s wise to book your trip well in advance to secure the best deals and cabin choices.
  2. Pack accordingly: While you’re escaping the cold, remember to pack for various weather conditions, especially if your cruise includes stops in different climates.
  3. Explore excursions: Take advantage of shore excursions to fully experience each destination’s culture, history and natural beauty.
  4. Stay healthy: Remember to stay hydrated, use sunscreen and follow health protocols, especially in exotic destinations. 
  5. Embrace local cultures: Engage with local cultures and traditions; it’s a great way to enrich your travel experience.
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