Top 10 heavenly islands to winter on while waiting for the sun to return
Beware, this top 10 might make you want to pack your bags as soon as possible! Winter is here, with its clouds and lots of rain. Yet, on the other side of the planet, some people still have the chance to enjoy the white sand, a cocktail in the shade of a palm tree and the turquoise water. So, just to recharge your batteries and tan your complexion, why not treat yourself to a little break, real or virtual, under the tropical sun? Petit Futé proposes you its classification of the 10 paradisiacal islands where to find the sun in January, for the pleasure of the eyes, but also to give birth to the desire to fly away to idyllic regions.
Tahiti, the enchantress
Tahiti, a carpet of flowers and shells, is the largest of the "Windward Islands" which are part of the Society Archipelago in French Polynesia. In the middle of the Pacific Ocean, you should not miss to discover all the richness of the fantastic seabed, inhabited by "big fishes" such as dolphins or sharks, rays and clownfish, but also all kinds of small colourful tropical wonders. The white sand beaches are among the most renowned, such as Viava beach, or Tehahupoo beach, where surfers enjoy the waves. Tahiti is a dreamlike island where everyone imagines themselves sipping coconut milk in front of an emerald sea, and in the evening, taking part in the sunset show, with the desire to be already at the next day.
Saint Martin, the misunderstood
Sometimes Dutch, sometimes French, Saint Martin is one of the pearls of the Caribbean. With its 70 km of coastline, its white sandy beaches and its Creole charm, it is a paradise island where you like to put your towel down for hours and bask in the sun. If the Dutch part reveals Anglo-American influences, the French part has nevertheless managed to keep its authenticity, as in Marigot and Grand-Case, where you can see wooden houses and set out to conquer hiking trails. You should also not miss to spend some time on the beach of Maho. It's right over the heads that the airport planes land. A thrilling and unmissable experience!
Bahamas, the sea-aquarium
The Bahamas is a coral archipelago located in the northern Caribbean Sea. The 700 islands that make it up are just a multitude of fine sandy beaches bordered by turquoise water where it is pleasant to swim for hours. One example is Shelling Beach at Great Harbour Cay. A little paradise? You are quickly convinced of this when you discover the beauty of the fascinating seabed during diving sessions. Swimming with dolphins and feeding sharks are experiences to be lived in the Bahamas, as is strolling around the capital Nassau to admire the colonial architecture. These magical islands have even been the setting for two James Bond films (Operation Thunderbolt and Never Again).
Seychelles, the postcard
An archipelago of 115 islands, each one more beautiful than the next, welcome to the Seychelles! The Anse Source d'Argent site alone is worth the detour. It is indeed no coincidence that its beach regularly ranks among the most beautiful in the world. On arrival, one is dazzled by the white and powdery sand, by the silvery boulders, the coconut trees and by the transparency of the sea. An exceptional site not to be missed under any circumstances. In addition to hours of enjoying the wonderful beaches, you can enjoy an exotic-looking hike in the Morne Seychellois National Park or pass through the gentle capital Victoria, an open-air architectural museum from the British colonial era. And to enjoy the local gastronomy, head to Sir Selwyn Clarke's market.
Mauritius, the Creole sweetness
Drink of love, Gold dust... Here, toponyms are real poems, like this fantastic island bordered by the warm waters of the Indian Ocean. Mauritius is an infinite palette of colours where European, Asian, Indian and African cultures blend in perfect harmony. Life there is sweet and simple. We start by going to see the mountain of Morne Brabant, which can be seen magnificently from the eponymous beach. Another beach not to be missed for its postcard setting, that of Trou aux Biches. Coconut trees, white sand and blue lagoon on the program. For variety, Black River Gorges National Park is a great place to hike. We stroll through the rainforest, along rivers before stopping at the edge of the waterfalls. In addition, a variety of endemic plant and bird species can be observed
Bali, the Zen attitude
In the Indonesian archipelago, Bali, or the Island of the Gods, is a paradise land where nature is still sacred and protected. In addition to its ideal beaches for lazing around or learning to surf, Bali offers exceptional landscapes: rice terraces, such as those of Jatiluwih and Pupuan, majestic volcanoes, such as the Butan volcano around which it is pleasant to hike. But the island also has a very marked culture that the warm-hearted inhabitants are happy to show visitors, especially the sacred temples, meeting points between humans and gods for Hindus. There is the Tanah Lot temple and its exceptional location on the sea or the Ulun Danu temple, which rests serenely on Lake Bratan. For another unforgettable experience, don't miss the chance to board a boat to go dolphin watching at Lovina Beach
Tasmania, the sporty one
Tasmania has nothing to envy to the continent to which it is attached: Australia. It is a true natural jewel which, in a much smaller area, concentrates a very dense fauna and flora. We go to the Freycinet National Park for a hike that leads to heavenly beaches as a reward. Some of the world's most challenging hiking trails. Lovers of extreme sports are also delighted to discover a jagged terrain suitable for activities such as caving or climbing. For lovers of relaxing time in the sun, go to Bay of Fire and Binalong Bay, unmissable spots to enjoy translucent water and a magnificent red granite rocky coastline.
Jamaica, Rasta atmosphere
In the collective imagination, Jamaica is the island of Bob Marley, the inevitable reggae singer. Sure, this music resounds around every corner on this charming Caribbean island, but Jamaica has many other hidden treasures! The scenery here is sumptuous: the Blue Mountains range that rises and watches over the island impresses. Waterfalls are also present in number. The most popular are the Dunn Falls and the Mayfield Falls and its 21 small waterfalls. The beaches of Port Antonio are sumptuous: Frenchman's cove is the perfect place to get away from it all. Nestled between two cliffs, you can swim in the cool river or in the warm waters of the sea. And then there is Montego Bay, where you can enjoy diving, and the splendid political and musical frescoes that cover Kingston, a city where you also enjoy stopping to discover the local gastronomy
Fernando de Noronha, Brazil's Fernando de Noronha
Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2002, the archipelago of Fernando de Noronha seduces nature lovers. Those who have never heard of the place can talk about it with the Brazilians, who have no hesitation in saying that this is Brazil's corner of paradise. Here, the fauna and flora are luxuriant and we protect them! For this reason, the number of visitors is limited and swimming with dolphins is prohibited. You can admire the seabed full of fish, corals and other molluscs: the area is a recognized diving spot. For beaches, Praia do Sanchos is one of the most beautiful places in the world, with its rocks, white sand and shades of blue in the sea. And then there is the happiness of walking along the Baia dos porcos, a beautiful place where it is difficult to swim because of the rocks and the waves, but what a delight for the eyes. Fernando de Noronha is a corner of paradise on earth still untouched by the ravages of mass tourism!
Providenciales, another paradise
Located in the north of the Dominican Republic, Provo, as it is nicknamed, is situated in the Turks and Caicos Islands archipelago which belongs to the United Kingdom. It is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful islands in the world. Here, no need to dive! The water is so clear that you can see corals and fish directly. Grace Bay beach is idyllic, the sand is extremely fine and the water is turquoise. The past of the Providenciales Cotton Plantation is revealed at Cheshire Hall, a site that delights history buffs. There are some beautiful ruins there. And then, to cool off again, we go to Long Bay Beach, a place also known for welcoming surfing enthusiasts. In short, a dream spot while waiting for the sun to return home!