The clocks have gone back and winter is well and truly on its way, but you don’t have to dread the miserable British weather when there are some excellent destinations to escape to!

While some people will savour cosy evenings by the fire and some delicious food, saving up money for a delightful break in the sun this winter could make a massive difference to your mood ahead of the busy Christmas season.

Perhaps you could even splash the cash on a trip with your friends or family rather than give gifts? To tempt you away from the wind and rain this year, here are some great flight options:

It’s summer all year round in Lanzarote!

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The Canary Islands are one of the most reliable destinations in Europe for winter sun. With temperatures averaging around 20 degrees even in December, you can be almost sure of a warm climate in Lanzarote.

While the island is mostly known for its beaches, there are plenty of fantastic attractions to look forward to this winter. Timanfaya National Park, for example, is a truly jaw-dropping sight. This UNESCO designated biosphere reserve is made up of volcanic terrain and offers some magnificent views and an otherworldly atmosphere that will be long remembered by visitors.

For something a little different, Lanzarote’s underwater museum is sure to be popular. The Museo Atlantico is the first of its kind in Europe and is based 12-15 metres beneath sea level, providing a truly unique experience for divers. What’s more, the installations are designed to help marine life in the area, so it’s good for the environment as well as educational.

Swap the wind and rain for tranquility in Madeira

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With spectacular beaches, great weather and a wonderfully laid-back way of life, it’s easy to see why Madeira continues to be a popular choice for winter sun. There are some interesting events lined up across these beautiful Portuguese islands, too.

Film buffs will no doubt be intrigued by the Madeira Micro International Film Festival (7th-10th December), where amazing local and international cinema will be showcased in the Cine Sol art deco cinema. The venue is more than 100 years old and provides sublime views of the Atlantic Ocean.

If you’re interested in exploring some truly breathtaking surroundings, the Madeira mountains will be an absolute delight. Based on the outskirts of Funchal, the scenery is perfect for outdoor adventurers. With many tour options available, you can take on the landscape by foot, or take it all in with a jeep trip. Whatever you decide, you’re sure to enjoy a truly unique experience.

Take in the amazing beauty of Tenerife

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Another one of the gorgeous Canary islands, Tenerife has turned into a hugely popular year-round holiday destination for Brits. Warm weather, picturesque scenery and delicious food are just some of the things to look forward to in this slice of paradise.

While those searching for relaxation will find everything they need at the gorgeous Las Vistas and El Duque beaches, the sensational Teide National Park is ideal for adventurers. It is designated as a World Heritage Centre and features the mammoth Teide volcano, along with plenty of stunning walking routes.

Visitors can even go whale watching off the south west coast of the island, where a variety of spectacular species roam, including enormous blue whales and playful dolphins.

Therefore, whether you’re searching for a quiet break or looking forward to exploring magnificent landscapes, Tenerife has it all.

How about Almeria, Faro or Alicante?

iStock credits: LUNAMARINA,  Peeter Viisimaa, Lalocracio

If none of those above whet your appetite for sun this winter, Almeria, Faro and Alicante are three other fantastic options.

Firstly, Almeria is one of the most beautiful cities in Spain and is steeped in history and tradition. Along with the stunning beaches of Roquetas de Mar and Vera Costa, there is the astounding Alcazaba Castle, which provides unforgettable views over the local area. Nijar Natural Park is another delightful attraction and is perfect for outdoor types.

If warm weather and history is what makes you tick, Faro is a great holiday destination. Its majestic Old Town is wonderfully well-preserved, boasting plenty of excellent restaurants, shops and the incredible cathedral. However, if you really want to get away from it all, Ilha Deserta will be perfect. It is one of the most isolated islands off Portugal and is surrounded by the crystal waters of the Atlantic Ocean and the Rio Formosa.

Last but certainly not least, Alicante is a fantastic choice for a last-minute winter getaway. Nestled in Spain’s gorgeous Costa Blanca region, visitors can expect golden sands and a peaceful way of life. If you simply want some peace and quiet, Alicante Beach will be much quieter this time of year, while the views from the Castillo de Santa Barbara building are simply spellbinding.

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