Weather in February 2016

With January out of the way and half term calling, February is a popular time for many to go away. Whether you're considering where to take your little ones, after a long weekend break for Valentine's, or simply in need of some hot and sunny weather in February, we can help you find the destination with the right conditions for your trip.

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Weather in February: Top destinations

From exciting cities to beautiful beaches, there are destinations all around the world with great weather in February; it's simply a question of choosing the one that's right for you and your holidaying needs. Read on to discover our pick of places with some of the best weather in February:

Weather in February © joserpizarro - Fotolia.com
Weather in February © joserpizarro - Fotolia.com

Short haul: Canary Islands, Morocco and Egypt

It's no great surprise that the weather in February in popular destinations close to home is less than ideal for a hot and sunny holiday. If you fancy catching some rays without travelling too far, you have a few options that will ensure you get a touch of sunshine, without perhaps the reliable heat and drier conditions of the coming spring and summer months.

The easy-to-reach shores of the Med are no place for those after holiday weather in February, however, the Canary Islands offer an attractive alternative, as it's warmer and sunnier than anywhere in the Med at this time of year. All of the Canary Islands have much the same sort of weather in February with seven hours of sunshine on average and daytime highs around 20°C falling to 12-13°C overnight. As a comparison to the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, Larnaca is 4°C cooler with a greater chance of rain, and up to an hour's less sunshine each day.

Even though the average number of days with rainfall is limited to three, the Canary Islands are vulnerable to low pressure systems which can bring generally bad weather in February that can linger - something to be aware of.

Jemaa el Fnaa, Marrakech © Valentin Armianu - Dreamstime.com
Jemaa el Fnaa, Marrakech © Valentin Armianu - Dreamstime.com

For a completely different experience, head east to Morocco where the weather in February is usually a tiny bit sunnier than the Canaries. Take the southern town of Ouarzazate (home to a well known film studio, and Aït Benhaddou - a collection of ochre coloured kasbahs and renowned UNESCO site): here temperatures peak at around 19°C before plummeting to around 4°C at night, although there is plenty of sunshine (eight to nine hours), no heat and humidity to speak of, and only moderate UV.

Majestic Marrakech is much the same with very similar weather in February, if a touch warmer but slightly less sunny (evening temperatures dip to around 7°C here). Ultimately, the comfortable, sunny weather in February at these Moroccan destinations makes it a great time to explore historical sites, souks, walking trails, and more without conditions intensifying in the lead up to the overbearing heat of summer.

As for a country with the warmest and sunniest weather in February, Egypt takes gold - but only just. It may well be the destination with the most inviting conditions close to home, but that's up against other areas enduring winter, and is nowhere near the truly delightful weather that Egypt enjoys during spring, summer (although too hot for some), and autumn.

Entrance to Luxor Temple © Vyacheslav Argenberg - Flickr Creative Commons
Entrance to Luxor Temple © Vyacheslav Argenberg - Flickr Creative Commons

While the Red Sea resort of Marsa Alam basks in plenty of sunshine in February, the reality is it's probably just a little too cold to have a proper beach break. Temperatures may reach up to 25°C with 10 hours of sunshine, but the sea only struggles up to 22°C. It's better to shelve a visit here until the waters have really warmed up and you can make the most of the Red Sea's delights.

Instead, head further south to Upper Egypt where Luxor and Aswan see temperatures up to 26°C. Generally speaking, the weather in February here is comparable to that of Marsa Alam, however, here you can find a hotel with a heated pool and soak up every minute of being by the Nile. Whereas in Marsa Alam, you would want to be able to enjoy the turquoise waters on your doorstep, which is why you're better to save that trip for later in the year.

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Long haul - up to 10 hours: Barbados, Dominican Republic and St Lucia

The Caribbean: an exotic blend of white beaches, warm waters, and coconut laden palms, and the truly closest region to the UK with the best beach weather in February. While the whole area is very much 'in season' at this time, it's the southern islands that have the most delightful conditions.

Don't worry about rain as you're very unlikely to encounter any during this dry period, apart from in the northern Caribbean, which is susceptible to cold fronts that occasionally slip down from the United States bringing rain and cooler conditions. As a general rule, the further south you go, the sunnier it gets.

View from the villa, Dominican Republic © Vladimer Shioshvili - Flickr Creative Commons
View from the villa, Dominican Republic © Vladimer Shioshvili - Flickr Creative Commons

The Dominican Republic is a real winner with many holidaymakers, not only due to the many great value deals that can get you there for less, but also as the weather in February sees eight to nine hours of sunshine, and temperatures of 28°C, falling no lower than 20°C by night - ideal conditions for a beach break. The sea is more than adequate for swimming and watersports at 26°C, although there is very high UV, and moderate heat and humidity to contend with.

Marigot Bay, St Lucia © Charlesjsharp - Flickr Creative Commons
Marigot Bay, St Lucia © Charlesjsharp - Flickr Creative Commons

Likewise, Barbados and St Lucia - longtime favourites with British sun seekers that have a little extra cash to splash - have very similar weather in February, although the UV is extreme, and Barbados has high heat and humidity.

Many Caribbean destinations are becoming increasingly accessible with numerous direct flights available from British Airways and Virgin Atlantic - just remember to pack your SPF.

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Long haul - 10 hours of more: Cape Town, Maldives, Goa and Thailand

If you're prepared to travel for your sunshine, Cape Town makes a wonderful city break in February. With temperatures between 25°C by day and 15°C by night, 10 hours of sunshine and low heat and humidity, the weather in February is comparable with Marbella in June. The sea, however, is far cooler due to the Antarctic current, making Cape Town a fabulous option for those after sunshine and warmth without a beach.

If a beach is nonnegotiable, fear not, as there are plenty of exceptional holiday destinations with divine weather in February for those happy to embark on a long haul flight.

The Maldives - image courtesy of www.visitmaldives.com
The Maldives - image courtesy of www.visitmaldives.com

Looking to the warm Indian Ocean with its glorious beaches and luxurious resorts, the Maldives is a clear winner when it comes to finding lovely weather in February. The northern atolls in particular have between nine and 10 hours of sunshine in February (which is the sunniest month of the year here), while daytime temperatures rise to 30°C or more. You'll also benefit from warm evenings with temperatures falling no further than 25°C. Then there's the sea, which peaks at around 28°C - great for discovering the island nation's renowned marine life and reefs through snorkelling or diving.

Glancing northeast, Goa is, without doubt, the sunniest of all our suggestions. The weather in February at this popular Indian resort can see temperatures stretch up to 32°C during the day, with 10 long hours of sunshine before sinking no lower than 20°C after dusk. The sea is more than pleasant at 28°C, while the high heat and humidity and extreme UV add to the tropical experience.

Railay Beach, Thailand © Mikhail Nekrasov - Fotolia.com
Railay Beach, Thailand © Mikhail Nekrasov - Fotolia.com

Another option, which is slightly warmer than both Goa and the Maldives, is southern Thailand. With just over nine hours of sunshine a day, temperatures into the low thirties, and sea temperatures at 28°C, resorts such as Phuket have inviting weather in February. The mountainous city of Chiang Mai is another treat with temperatures up to 32°C and almost cloudless blue skies, although there is high heat and humidity, and extreme UV.

Southeast Asia is a hive of activity at this time of year, however, be aware of the northeast monsoon, which blows strongly over China at this time of year bringing cold and sometimes cloudy wet weather to the likes of south China (including Hong Kong) and northern Vietnam, which can persist for days.

As you can see, there are loads of places (near and far) with enjoyable weather in February. If you'd like to read more, check out our dedicated where to go on holiday in February section, and don't forget to visit our travel discounts page for the latest special offers on holidays flights, hotels and more. Looking for a half term holiday? Don't miss our selection of great value family escapes this February.

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