Europe is known for its cold climate in many regions during the winter season, but there are still plenty of warm winter destinations to visit or to live in throughout the continent. Looking to soak in the warmth of the sun and some vitamin D year round? Or maybe you are dreaming about retiring in a country in Europe with a mild climate, beautiful beaches and an easy carefree lifestyle?
Out with the dark cold days, bring on the sunshine! Here are the warmest places in Europe, that also happen to be quite the dreamy locations:
Image Credit: DepositPhotos.com.
1. Canary Islands, Spain
This Spanish archipelago located off the coast of Africa is the warmest winter location in Europe. It boasts warm temperatures year-round, with temperatures ranging from 64°F to 75°F during the winter months.
The Canary Islands are known for their sunny weather, beautiful beaches, and unique landscapes. Check out some fun facts about the Canaries:
They are an autonomous community of Spain, but they are geographically closer to Africa than to Europe.
The islands were named after the canary bird, which is not native to the area but was brought over by Spanish settlers.
The islands are volcanic in origin and boast a diverse range of landscapes, from sandy beaches to rugged mountains and lush forests.
The Guanches, the original inhabitants of the Canary Islands, had a unique culture and language that was largely wiped out after the Spanish conquest.
The islands are home to several endemic species of flora and fauna, including the Canarian black lizard, the laurel pigeon, and the Canarian pine.
The Canary Islands are a popular destination for stargazers, as their clear skies and lack of light pollution make for excellent astronomical viewing conditions.
The islands have a rich history of wine-making, with the volcanic soil and unique climate contributing to the production of several distinctive varieties.
The Carnival of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, held annually in February, is one of the largest and most colorful festivals in the world, attracting thousands of visitors from around the globe.
The Canary Islands have been used as a filming location for several Hollywood movies, including Clash of the Titans, Fast & Furious 6, and Wonder Woman 1984.
The islands are a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts, with opportunities for hiking, surfing, paragliding, and other activities.
Image Credit: Depositphotos.com.
2. Costa del Sol, Spain
Spain is the perfect sunny destination to be in the winter. The sunny Costa del Sol located in the south of Spain enjoys mild winters with temperatures ranging from 50°F to 68°F, making it a popular destination for snowbirds.
The Costa del Sol is a region in southern Spain that is known for its sunny Mediterranean climate, beautiful beaches, and lively nightlife. Here are some interesting facts about the Costa del Sol:
The name “Costa del Sol” means “Coast of the Sun” in Spanish, and the region boasts over 300 days of sunshine per year.
The Costa del Sol is home to some of Spain’s most popular beach resorts, including Marbella, Torremolinos, and Fuengirola.
The region has a rich history, with evidence of human habitation dating back to prehistoric times.
The Costa del Sol was a popular destination for Hollywood stars during the 1950s and 1960s, and many famous faces, such as Elizabeth Taylor and Sean Connery, have holidayed here.
The region is famous for its fresh seafood, including fried fish, paella, and grilled sardines.
The Costa del Sol is a popular destination for golf enthusiasts, with over 70 golf courses in the region.
The town of Mijas is famous for its traditional white-washed houses and donkey taxis.
The region has a strong Moorish influence, with many historic buildings and landmarks reflecting the area’s Islamic heritage.
One of Spain’s best places is the coastal city of Malaga, the birthplace of famous artist Pablo Picasso, hosts several museums dedicated to his work.
The Costa del Sol is a popular spot for water sports, including surfing, windsurfing, and kiteboarding.
Image Credit: Depositphotos.com.
3. Algarve, Portugal
Algarve in Portugal has become a favorite warm winter destination in Europe in recent years for many foreigners. This southern Portuguese region enjoys warm temperatures, with an average of 59°F to 68°F during the winter months. The Algarve also has over 300 days of sunshine a year.
The Algarve, Portugal is very popular for its stunning coastline, warm climate, and picturesque towns. Algarve was blessed with natural beauty and it also has a lot to offer in terms of entertainment:
The region has a long history, with evidence of human settlement dating back to the Neolithic era.
The Algarve is the southernmost region of mainland Portugal and is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the south and west.
The region is famous for its beautiful beaches, many of which are backed by dramatic cliffs and rock formations.
The Algarve is a popular destination for golf enthusiasts, with over 30 world-class golf courses in the region.
The town of Lagos was an important center of trade and exploration during the Age of Discovery, with many of the region’s historic landmarks dating back to this period.
For hiking and nature exploration, Portugal’s Algarve is home to several natural parks and reserves, including the Ria Formosa Natural Park, which is a haven for birds and other wildlife.
For devout foodies, the region is famous for its seafood, with grilled sardines, octopus, and squid among the local specialties.
For action seekers, the Algarve is a popular destination for water sports, including surfing, windsurfing, and kiteboarding.
The town of Silves was once the capital of the Algarve and is home to a well-preserved Moorish castle.
The region has a mild and sunny climate year-round, with temperatures rarely dropping below 15°C even in winter.
Image Credit: Depositphotos.com.
This Mediterranean island located south of Turkey enjoys mild winters with temperatures ranging from 54°F to 64°F. Cyprus is also known for its beautiful beaches and rich history.
Cyprus is an island country located in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, south of Turkey and west of Syria and Lebanon. Here are some cool facts about Cyprus:
Cyprus is one of the oldest countries in the world, with a history dating back over 10,000 years.
The island is divided into two parts: the Republic of Cyprus, which is a member of the European Union, and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, which is recognized only by Turkey.
The country has a rich cultural heritage, with Greek, Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman influences all leaving their mark on the island.
Cyprus is known for its beautiful beaches, with many of the island’s coastal areas being designated as Blue Flag beaches.
The island is famous for its wine production, with several indigenous grape varieties being used to produce unique and flavorful wines.
Cyprus was once a major center of copper mining, and the country’s name is derived from the Greek word for copper, “Kypros”.
The island is home to several historic landmarks, including the ancient city of Kourion, the Tombs of the Kings, and the Roman amphitheater in Paphos.
Cyprus is a popular destination for outdoor activities, including hiking, mountain biking, and water sports.
The country’s traditional cuisine features a wide range of dishes made with fresh local ingredients, including seafood, grilled meats, and vegetables.
The island is a great place to be for birdwatching, with several species of migratory birds passing through Cyprus each year.
Image Credit: DedMityay / istockphoto.
5. Crete, Greece
The largest of the Greek islands, Crete is another fantastic warm winter destination in Europe, enjoying mild temperatures during the winter months, with an average temperature of 59°F to 68°F. Crete is also home to fantastic beaches, ancient ruins, and picturesque villages.
Crete is the largest island in Greece and the fifth largest island in the Mediterranean Sea. There is so much to learn about Crete:
Crete is believed to be one of the oldest civilizations in Europe, with evidence of human habitation dating back over 130,000 years.
The island is known for its beautiful beaches, crystal-clear waters, and stunning mountain landscapes.
Crete has a rich cultural heritage, with influences from ancient Minoan civilization, Byzantine culture, and Venetian and Ottoman rule.
The island is home to several important archaeological sites, including the Palace of Knossos, the ancient city of Phaistos, and the ruins of Gortyna.
Crete is famous for its traditional cuisine, which features a range of dishes made with fresh local ingredients, including seafood, olive oil, and honey.
The island is also known for its wine production, with several indigenous grape varieties being used to produce unique and flavorful wines.
Crete is home to several stunning natural landmarks, including the Samaria Gorge, the White Mountains, and the Elafonisi Beach, which has pink sand.
The island has a rich tradition of music and dance, with several unique styles of Cretan music and traditional dances.
Crete is home to several rare and endangered species of flora and fauna, including the Cretan wildcat and the kri-kri, a type of wild goat.
The island has a vibrant and colorful festival calendar, including the Carnival of Rethymnon, the Feast of Saint Titus, and the Wine Festival of Archanes.
Image Credit: Depositphotos.com.
This island country boasts a mild Mediterranean climate, with temperatures ranging from 54°F to 64°F during the winter months. Aside from having some of the warmest and sunniest weather in Europe, Malta is also known for its rich history and beautiful architecture.
Malta is a small island located in the Mediterranean Sea, south of Italy and north of Libya. Malta packs a lot of interesting places to see and things to do on its tiny territory:
Malta is one of the smallest countries in the world, with a land area of just 316 square kilometers.
The country has a lengthy and very interesting history, with evidence of human habitation dating back over 5,000 years.
Malta has been ruled by many different powers over the centuries, including the Phoenicians, Romans, Arabs, Knights of St. John, French, and British.
The country is home to several historic landmarks, including the Megalithic Temples of Malta, which are among the oldest freestanding structures in the world.
Not many people know that Malta is a top destination in Europe for scuba diving, with several shipwrecks and underwater caves to explore.
The island has a mild Mediterranean climate, with warm, dry summers and mild, rainy winters.
For creative art lovers, the country is famous for its traditional crafts, including pottery, lace-making, and filigree jewelry.
Malta is a popular filming location, with several blockbuster movies and TV shows having been filmed on the island, including “Game of Thrones” and “Gladiator”.
The country is known for its traditional cuisine, which features a wide range of dishes made with fresh local ingredients, including seafood, rabbit, and pastries.
Malta is home to several colorful festivals and celebrations throughout the year, including Carnival, the Feast of St. Paul’s Shipwreck, and the Malta International Fireworks Festival.
Image Credit: Cristian Mircea Balate / istockphoto.
7. Sicily, Italy
One of the first places that come to mind when thinking about sunny places in Europe is Sicily. This Italian island located off the coast of southern Italy enjoys mild winters with temperatures ranging from 50°F to 64°F. Sicily is also known for its attractive coastline, ancient ruins, and delicious cuisine.
Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea and an autonomous region of Italy. Here are a few interesting things to know before visiting Sicily:
Sicily has a long and complex history, having been ruled by the Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, Arabs, Normans, and Spanish over the centuries.
The island is world famous for its amazing beaches, rugged coastline, and active volcanoes, including Mount Etna, one of the most active volcanoes in the world.
You will find some delicious cuisine in Sicily, which features a blend of Italian and Mediterranean flavors, including fresh seafood, pasta dishes, and sweet pastries.
History afficionados can visit several historic landmarks, including the Valley of the Temples in Agrigento, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and the Cathedral of Monreale, a stunning example of Norman architecture.
Sicily is also famous for its colorful and vibrant festivals, including the Feast of St. Agatha, the Infiorata Flower Festival, and the Festa di Sant’Alfio, which features a procession of carts pulled by oxen.
The island is home to several ancient ruins and archaeological sites, including the Roman amphitheater in Syracuse and the Greek theater in Taormina.
The island has several stunning nature reserves and parks to explore, including the Zingaro Nature Reserve, the Nebrodi Regional Park, and the Madonie Regional Park.
Sicily is the birthplace of a number of famous historical figures, including Archimedes, the Greek mathematician and inventor, and Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa, the author of the novel “The Leopard”.
For movie geeks, the island has been the setting for several famous films, including “The Godfather” trilogy, “Cinema Paradiso”, and “Malena”.
These are just a few of the warmest places in Europe, but there are many more destinations throughout the continent that offer a great lifestyle and mild temperatures during the winter months.
In search of the right country to move to? You may also check out the safest countries in Europe to live in.
More from MediaFeed:
- The one dive bar to visit in every state
- This dog has one of the most-visited gravesites in America
- Over-the-top last meals of death-row convicts
Like MediaFeed’s content? Be sure to follow us.
Image Credit: Balate Dorin/iStock.
More from MediaFeed
Image Credit: mizoula.