Okay, we get it: you’re sick of shoveling snow, dry skin, and not seeing the sun for days. We feel you — it’s definitely time for a break. But what about that pesky limited travel budget for the year? How do you get away without going broke? Don’t sweat it. Check out these great locations — both domestic and international — that are fun yet frugal.
New Orleans, Louisiana
Did someone say “Let the good times roll!”? Well, the Big Easy knows how to party at any time of the year, and while you may have to pack a light sweater for some cooler evening, you’re still guaranteed plenty of sunshine. Feast on some fiery gumbo, dance in the streets, and don’t forget to take in all the great jazz that’s being played in bars across town.
A beautiful stretch of beach, sun, rum punch, jerk chicken, and all-night parties don’t have to cost you an arm and a leg. You’ll find it a pleasant surprise that your dollars are stretched to fulfill all your Caribbean cravings in Negril. While the winter months do draw a lot of tourists, you’re sure to find your own little slice of island peace and happiness in this sprawling beach resort town.
Mexico City, Mexico
The December months bring in fine weather to Mexico’s most populous city, and that complements the vibrant nightlife and adventurous food scene the city is famous for. Enjoy the architecture of the Palacio Nacional, the cultural significance of the Templo Mayor Aztec temple, take a ride on the colorful gondolas at Xochimilco’s Floating Gardens, and piledrive your way through to 2018 at a lucha libre wrestling match.
Fueled by its sultry Latin flavor, Miami has all the ingredients of the perfect sunny getaway. Add a spoonful of South Beach lounging, a healthy dollop of salsa in Little Havana, and a sprinkling of its energetic electronic dance music scene, and you have a piping hot bowl of good times that’ll leave an unforgettable taste in your mouth.
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Who wouldn’t want to go somewhere where the beer’s actually cheaper than a bottle of water? When it comes to getting a bang for your buck, it doesn’t get any better than Cambodia’s capital city of Phnom Penh. Its trendy boutique hotels, upscale restaurants, and lively bars live harmoniously with its old French colonial architecture, bustling street markets, and tranquil temples. If time permits, don’t forget to catch a cheap internal flight to see the world-famous Angkor Wat temple complex in Siam Reap.
If a little bit of outdoor activity is on your winter itinerary, then Phonix is your place. Blessed with loads of sunshine throughout the year, you can hit some of the amazing hiking trails like the iconic Camelback Mountain and Papago Park. But it’s not all about burning calories in the bright sunshine; the city will also fill you up with some hard-to-resist culinary options that include Mexican fare with a Southwestern twist.
Buenos Aires, Argentina
You’ll tango all the way to the bank with the ridiculous deals you could enjoy in the southern hemisphere summer in Buenos Aires. While costlier than some other South American cities, you’ll see your dollars going far. Check out the Casa Rosada presidential palace and take in some art at the MALBA museum, and also dig into a choripan (Argentinian hotdog) and some of the best steaks in the world. The city’s nightlife is also legendary, so don’t forget to party with locals while you’re there!