One of our Facebook page fans, Sophia, recently asked for travel recommendations as she begins planning a girls weekend getaway this winter. We jumped at the opportunity to help her out. Our criteria? That the destinations would be accessible within a four-hour flight time and that there would be a variety of activities to suit different types of travelers.
Sophia: Any suggestions for warm winter travel for a girls' weekend?
Compass & Key: Hi, Sophia! June/July is an ideal time to be planning for winter travel, particularly to popular warm weather destinations. Here are three spots we think you should consider from your home base on the East Coast:
1) St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands
60% of the island is a National Park, featuring some of the most stunning, undisturbed beaches in all of the Caribbean. Hike to the sugar factory ruins at Cinnamon Bay, or take in sunset views at Peace Hill. Don’t miss snorkeling the underwater trail at Trunk Bay. Rent a house near Cruz Bay to enjoy fun nights out after the day trippers have returned to St. Thomas.
2) Isla Mujeres, off the coast of Cancun
Escape the Cancun crowds with a 20-minute ferry to quiet Isla Mujeres, a car-free island with beautiful beaches. Rent a golf cart to explore the lighthouse and temple remains at the southernmost tip of the island, and spend a day lounging at Zama Yacht & Beach Club. Hotel Secreto is a fabulous boutique hotel within walking distance of the charming town center with plenty of restaurants and bars.
If Zika is a concern for any of the women on the trip, Bermuda is considered Zika-free, and it's about a two-hour flight from New York. Explore the UNESCO World Heritage Site of St. George and its historic forts or wander the Bermuda Railway Trail. Rental villas are readily available or try the newly opened hotel, The Loren at Pink Beach.
For more Zika-free destinations, check out this recent Condé Nast Traveler article.