Where to go on holiday in February 2016

The cold hard truth about deciding where to go on holiday in February 2016 is that being a winter month, you will need to travel further than in the coming months for real beach break conditions. There is sunshine to be had closer to home: in the Canaries, for example, you're likely to find pleasant conditions for walking and exploring, but nowhere within six hours is really suitable for a proper beach holiday.

Where to go on holiday in February: Top five destinations

Fear not, however, as there are still plenty of places in the northern hemisphere you can choose from when deciding where to go on holiday in February, be it for the half term break or just to escape the British weather. Read on to discover our pick of destinations to consider when working out where to go on holiday in February for the best weather:

Where to go on holiday in February 2016 © Warren Goldswain - Fotolia.com

1. Goa, India

  • Flight time from London: 10 to 11 hours
  • Daily high: 32°C
  • Hours of sunshine: 10
  • Sea temperature: 28°C

Those deciding where to go on holiday in February after a tropical beach experience without the hefty price tag will want to give Goa some serious thought. As India's premier beach resort for tourists and locals alike, it's a hive of travellers and sun worshippers, with two very distinct sides. Stick to the north of the for glitzy resorts and late night bars, and to the south for some laid back charm and more intimate guest houses.

Goa sunset © Maciej Bledowski - Dreamstime.com

Whichever appeals, you're certain to have some fabulous weather: not only is this the sunniest destination in February on our list, you'll also find temperatures in the low thirties and bath-like sea conditions, ideal for swimming and water sports. Although heat and humidity is high, it's the dry season, so you'll avoid any rain, and benefit from long, hot days - just don't forget the SPF, as the UV is extreme. Goa is especially good for those deciding where to go on holiday in February who crave a taste of the tropics on a shoestring.

Read more: Goa beaches

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2. Phuket, Thailand

  • Flight time from London: 12 to 13 hours
  • Daily high: 33°C
  • Hours of sunshine: 9
  • Sea temperature: 28°C

In many ways Phuket is very similar to Goa at this time of year, with hot temperatures, extreme UV, and high heat and humidity. Important differences to be aware of when deciding where to go on holiday in February are that Phuket is slightly less sunny than Goa and prone to passing showers, although these are rarely severe. It is actually the driest month of the year in Phuket, and overall a fabulous beach holiday destination.

Phra Nang Beach, Thailand © Mark Fischer - Flickr Creative Commons

For something a bit different, head to the mountain city of Chiang Mai, which has 10 hours of sunshine and less rain than Phuket (one day versus three), and is just a degree cooler by day, although considerably chillier by night (dips to around 14°C compared with 23°C in Phuket). Wherever you decide to go on holiday in February, much like Goa again, Thailand is great value, and cheap once you arrive.

Read more: Things to do in Phuket

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3. The Maldives

  • Flight time from London: 10.5 hours
  • Daily high: 31°C
  • Hours of sunshine: 9 to 10
  • Sea temperature: 28°C

There's no need for the hard sell when it comes to the Maldives, which happens to be a fantastic option if you're after somewhere to go on holiday in February with hot and sunny weather. Conditions are similar to those already mentioned in Goa and Phuket, as February is the driest month of the year here also. You'll experience long days with plenty of sunshine and, at most, some passing cloud.

Island paradise in the Maldives © Ibneesham - Dreamstime.com

The sea is perfect for taking in the island nation's reefs and marine life, while offering some respite from the high to very high heat and humidity. The baking sun provides optimum tanning conditions, while the extreme UV, also makes it prime burning territory, so do slap on high factor protection and avoid midday sun where possible. Evenings remain warm as well, with temperatures sitting no lower than around 21°C. The Maldives really is the dream beach destination that anyone with deep pockets considering where to go on holiday in February should put at the top of the list.

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4. Dominican Republic

  • Flight time from London: 9 hours
  • Daily high: 28°C
  • Hours of sunshine: 8 to 9
  • Sea temperature: 26°C

A skip, hop and a jump west across the Atlantic will take you to one of the Caribbean's most up and coming holiday destinations. The Dominican Republic has soared in popularity in recent years thanks to the availability of affordable holiday deals to this slice of paradise. If you're looking for somewhere to go on holiday in February, the Dominican Republic offers hot weather with plenty of sunshine, and sea temperatures warm enough to make the most of watersports and a splash about.

Typical hotel Punta Cana, Dominican Republic © Petrkurgan - Dreamstime.com

February is also one of the driest months of the year here (as well as March) with an average of 12 days rainfall, although these are usually short sharp bursts, nothing that lingers. Meanwhile, the heat and humidity may only be moderate, but the UV is still very high so sunbathe with caution, cream and sunhat.

Fly from London to the Dominican Republic with British Airways, Thomas Cook Airlines and Thomson Airways.

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5. Luxor, Egypt

  • Flight time from London: 5 to 6 hours
  • Daily high: 24°C
  • Hours of sunshine: 10

If you would prefer somewhere to go on holiday in February a little closer to home, head to the land of the pharaohs on the banks of Egypt's glorious Nile River, as Luxor is beautiful in February. Visit here for an immersive journey through time taking in some of the world's most revered temples, not to mention stunning views and Instagram worthy sunsets.

Temple of Hatshepsut, Luxor Egypt © Mirek Hejnicki - Fotolia.com

Located in southern Egypt (or upper Egypt in historical terms), Luxor is warm with hardly any cloud and lashings of sunshine in February. Temperatures during this winter month are a touch lower than the other destinations mentioned, however, it remains comparable with the likes of southern Spain in May. Although heat and humidity is nonexistent, there is still high UV. If you like the idea of taking a dip, make sure you book yourself a hotel with a heated pool.

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As you can see, the destination we recommend for those trying to decide where to go on holiday in February are generally located in the southern half of the northern hemisphere. This is largely owing to the fact that they are nearer the equator while remaining within easy reach of the UK, even if it involves a long haul flight. There's a real mix of destinations to suit everyone from budget independent travellers to all inclusive lovers and luxury seekers.

Want to keep reading about where to go on holiday in February 2016? Head over to our weather in February section for more detailed look at conditions worldwide, before checking out our current collection of travel deals and discounts and dedicated half term offers for families.

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Colin Carter

Colin Carter

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