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Escapes from the Holidays and Cold Weather

Buzz Poole
11/06/2012 - 05:17
Ko Lanta, via Guardian

It's been a wild, windy week here in New York and throughout the eastern seaboard, right up into Canada. You don't need me to rehash the details but amid everything that has come to pass since last Tuesday, Halloween came and went, and the month of October bid us adieu for yet another year. With the start of November, evenings turn dark faster, the nights become brisk, and, especially once the presidential election is over here in the US, the media directs our attention to end-of-year lists and ideas for beating the cold. Two different newspapers from opposite sides of the Atlantic ran stories recently about breaking out of the seasonal doldrums and they both offer up some worthy ideas for families, couples, and single travelers wanting to slake their wanderlust in the next few months.

The UK's Guardian proposes a number of "Winter sun holiday ideas to lift the gloom." With some expected options like Miami, Florida, and Tulum, Mexico, the point is to remind readers of accessible global locations where even when the sun sets things remain hot, or at least pleasantly mild. For all of the time I've spent in Spain, I have never made it to any of the Canary Islands. A trip to Tenerife, the largest of these islands, is not a destination I would have come up with off the cuff but now that I have it in my head I probably won't be able to shake it until I get there one of these days. If you want a warmth that is more equatorial, Diani Beach's sixteen miles of luxuriant soft sand just south of Mombassa, Kenya, sounds wonderful. As does Ko Lanta, "an island in the Andaman Sea off the south-west coast of Thailand. . . . The island is home to a fascinating mix of cultures, including sea gypsies, who have settled in a coastal village but still have their own language, beliefs and rituals."

Writing for The New York Times, Stephanie Rosenbloom uses the pending holiday madness to compile a lengthy list of destinations suited for single travelers free and unfettered from the familial obligations of the season. As Rosenbloom writes in "Single for the Holidays," "Internet searches for 'solo travel ideas' are up by more than 50 percent and searches for 'solo travel destinations' are up by more than 60 percent year over year, according to Google." Clearly, the stigma of taking a big trip alone is a thing of the past. Whether you want an urban adventure full of culture and nightlife or a trek through wilderness, the article has ideas that span the globe, insuring that solo travelers won't feel lonely when they hit the road over the coming months. 

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